Catholic Vitamin X: Xenia

Our guests for this special Catholic Vitamins are Carol and Roger Fornoff. They have a tale of pain turned to helping others, and doing this help by welcoming the hurting and those in recovery into a beautiful home in the mountains.

Pronounced ZENIA — Xenia is from the Greek word meaning the concept of hospitality or generosity and courtesy. Here’s an overview of the origins and understanding of Xenia.

Xenia consists of three basic rules:

  • The respect from host to guest. The host must be hospitable to the guest and provide them with food and drink and a bath, if required. It is not polite to ask questions until the guest has stated his/her needs.
  • The respect from guest to host. The guest must be courteous to their host and not be a burden.
  • The parting gift from host to guest. The parting gift is to show the host’s honor at receiving the guest.

Xenia was considered to be particularly important in the ancient times when people thought gods mingled amongst them. If you had played host to a deity (a concept known as theoxenia) and performed poorly, you would incur the wrath of a god.

Well – that’s enough background on the word — now let’s move to our guests, Carol and Roger. They split time between Mesa and Pine, AZ. They are involved in their Church and in Meals on Wheels. But their most touching example of Xenia is found in their welcome of groups into the Christy House in the Pines. Chief among the groups that come to Pine are the PARENTS OF MURDERED CHILDREN. If requested by the attendees, the Fornoff’s will share their journey which involves the murder of their 13 year old daughter Christy. They share this story with us on this episode of Catholic Vitamins.

Come and learn about pain… about recovery… about forgiveness and about XENIA. Thank you Carol and Roger for the love you’ve shared to thousands of visitors to your home in the woods. And, if you or a loved one or a friend has a reason to reach out to the Fornoff’s — Carol’s email address is

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