Home Page

Summer 1: Open Arms

Open Arms

Open arms symbolise a gesture of welcome and a willingness to adopt a culture of generous hospitality which embraces the whole school vision. Open hearts and open minds both require open arms by encouraging equality in all areas of school life through the principle of mutual hospitality, creating an ethos of dignity and respect for all people.


Welcome and hospitality is a Christian practice with many examples throughout the Bible starting from the creation story in Genesis. Human life begins with God’s act of hospitality making a place for us in a world he created. Throughout the Old Testament God’s people are called to welcome and offer hospitality to the stranger or foreigner and treat them as their own. “When a foreigner resides among you in your land, do not mistreat them.  The foreigner residing among you must be treated as your native-born.” (Leviticus 19:33-34).


In the New Testament love and grace are closely associated with hospitality. “Keep on loving one another as brothers and sisters.  Do not forget to show hospitality to strangers, for by so doing some people have shown hospitality to angels without knowing it.” (Hebrews 13:1-2)


Jesus himself often received hospitality from people who had been rejected by society, outcasts, tax collectors and people considered to be unworthy. Accepting their hospitality was not just about sharing a meal, it was a way of identifying with them and making them a part of his community. In doing so he gave power to the powerless and in the ultimate act of hospitality he opened wide his arms for all upon the cross.