Our Mission

Faith and Civic Engagement

We began this project with the aim of creating an approach to civic engagement rooted in Christian hospitality. Unlike tolerance, hospitality calls us to care for those who are different. We seek an approach to civics education that helps students grow in love of neighbor as they participate in civic spaces and processes.

Our Process

Focusing on Character,
Not Just Content

We set out to create learning materials that did not just talk about hospitality and civic engagement. We want to help shape the qualities of character that enable hospitality amid differences. We have tackled this by designing lessons that work on several levels.


Helping students understand what Christian hospitality means.


Relating hospitality to specific civic skills, topics, and issues.


Providing regular opportunities for critical self-reflection.


Enabling students to work at the practice of hospitality as they learn.

Kuyers Institute

The Kuyers Institute for Christian Teaching and Learning at Calvin University exists to promote pedagogy, learning and educational leadership from a Christian perspective.

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Henry Institute

The Paul B. Henry Institute for the Study of Christianity and Politics at Calvin University exists to promote serious reflection on the interplay between Christianity and public life.

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Our Team

Meet the Authors

David Smith
David Smith Director, Kuyers Institute and Professor of Education, Calvin University
Kevin den Dulk
Kevin den Dulk Associate Provost, Global Campus, Calvin University
Micah Watson
Micah Watson Director, Henry Institute and Associate Professor of Political Science at Calvin University
Matthew Kaemingk
Matthew Kaemingk Director and Chair, Mouw Institute of Faith and Public Life, Fuller Seminary
Kelli Boender
Kelli Boender Teacher and Instructional Coach, Grandville Calvin Christian High School
Erik Ellefsen
Erik Ellefsen Director of Networks and Improvement, Baylor University Center for School Leadership
David Tsui
David Tsui High School Humanities Teacher, Vancouver Christian School
Mark VanderWerf
Mark VanderWerf Bible teacher and chaplain, Grand Rapids Christian High School
Our History

How it Started

Like many projects, this one started with a conversation. David Smith and Kevin den Dulk wondered aloud one day how the approaches to Christian pedagogy developed by the Kuyers Institute might inform civics education. Grant funding secured with the help of the Issachar Fund turned an idea into a project. A team of talented educators turned the project into a resource for schools everywhere.

Our Other Projects

We have resources for other areas of education too!


Explore examples of teachers connecting Christian faith with their teaching across the curriculum.

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A wealth of learning activities about faith and science designed by teachers for teachers.

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Practicing faith

Gain insight into how faith formation is unfolding within school using this assessment tool.

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Ready to investigate further?