Presenter Information

Levi Nkwocha


Levi Nkwocha explains eucharistic hospitality in two ways, as an act of communion by which we become like Christ through God’s hospitality, and also as an act that commands us to share Christ’s love with all people. As Nkwocha writes, “worship itself is hospitality” and “include[s] the living out or sharing of the faith-based experience.” Nkwocha contends that this community aspect of the eucharist is often lost. He uses the Igbo people’s practice of sharing the kola nut to illustrate eucharistic hospitality. This sharing “celebrates the oneness of those who partake of it, among themselves, and their unity with the spiritual world”; it is “a covenant meal.” He describes the layers of meaning in this ritual in detail. Nkwocha also acknowledges the limitations of this illustration from a Christian perspective. For example, eucharistic hospitality requires equality and reciprocity in the sense that we reciprocate God’s love for us by loving others, even enemies or strangers (whom the kola nut ritual excludes). The ramifications of these two components of eucharistic hospitality are discussed.