NEW RELEASE: Strangers at My Door (Random House)
Jesus Told Us Where to Find Him. Just Look for an Outcast.
His first followers knew that Jesus could be found with the fatherless, the widows, and the hungry and homeless. He said that he himself was a stranger, and commended those who welcomed him. If he really meant these things, what would happen if you opened your door to every person who came with a need?
Jonathan and Leah Wilson-Hartgrove decided to find out. The author and his wife moved to the Walltown neighborhood in Durham, North Carolina, where they have been answering the door to anyone who knocks. When they began, they had little idea what might happen, but they counted on God to show up.
In Strangers at My Door, Wilson-Hartgrove tells of risks and occasional disappointments. But far more often there is joy, surprise, and excitement as strangers become friends, mentors, and helpers. Immerse yourself in these inspiring, eye-opening accounts of people who arrive with real needs, but ask only for an invitation to come in.
You will never view Jesus and the people he cares about the same way again.
Strangers at My Door is available from amazon.com, Barnes & Noble, IndieBound or wherever books are sold.
NBC Coverage of Rutba House Story
“We have a whole lot in common. All of us,” said Jonathan Wilson-Hartgrove, co-founder of the Rutba House.
Review in Raleigh News and Observer
“Strangers at My Door” is a fascinating book in many ways and provides some stories you won’t get anywhere else – stories from right next door. Read more here.
Interview with Religious News Service
“More than anything else, living with people who’ve been homeless for ten years has taught me that they are people like me. Sure, they all have problems. They wouldn’t have become homeless if they didn’t. But there’s a big difference between having problems and being a problem. I think the biggest misconception about homeless people in America is that we assume they are the problem.”
Excerpts in National Magazines
Sojourners Magazine reviews Strangers at My Door
“One Relationship Can Help Us See the Light,” by Sandi Villarreal
Jonathan talks with NPR’s Frank Stasio about Strangers at My Door
“Sharing life with people has helped me slow down, name my own limits, and see my own needs more clearly.” Listen to the full interview at WUNC.
Advance Praise for Strangers at My Door
“Strangers at My Door is not only an invitation into the life of a hospitality house; it’s an invitation into real Christianity. By that I mean the radical inclusivity of Jesus that embraces and fights for the ones mainstream society shuns and abhors and terminates without batting an eye. It is, in short, an invitation for each of us to open our lives to the stranger and become more fully human.”—Sister Helen Prejan, author of Dead Man Walking
“These beautifully written life changing encounters with those who have found themselves in the ditches of life illustrate the message of the Good Samaritan that many Christians often miss. If a homeless stranger knocks on your door, do you ask yourself what will happen to me if I open it? Or, what will happen to the one knocking if I don’t? Jonathan and his wife Leah leave the door open. Read and be blessed by their stories of real life Christianity the way God intended.” —Ron Hall, co-author of the New York Times best-selling Same Kind of Different As Me
“We Franciscans are always happy and impressed when other folks discover what we were supposed to be known for! The Franciscan ‘charism’ never dies and always re-emerges in fresh form—because it is the very ‘marrow of the Gospel’. Jonathan Wilson-Hartgrove is teaching you how to live that Gospel in our time, and in such fresh and alive ways.” —Fr. Richard Rohr, O.F.M., academic dean of the Living School for Action and Contemplation, Center for Action and Contemplation
“Fifty years ago, when the Civil Rights movement came to Mississippi, I saw the wisdom of the approach that says, ‘Go to the people. Live with them. Learn from them.’ Those young people did what Jesus had done, and black folks from the South were able to change America and say, ‘We’ve done it ourselves.’ Jonathan and his friends at Rutba House have joined that same quiet revolution, and they are not alone. They give me hope that America may yet be born again.” —John M. Perkins, founder of the Christian Community Development Association
“With elegant prose honed by brutal honesty, Jonathan Wilson-Hartgrove provides a theological account of what it means to welcome the stranger—strangers who often turn out to lack any gratitude. Wilson-Hartgrove’s narrative gives one hope as he refuses to be defeated by ungratefulness.” —Stanley Hauerwas, Gilbert T. Rowe Professor of Theological Ethics at Duke University