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Faith

Feature

September 2015

Essential expectations

By Mike Milne

A compromise that facilitated the creation of the United Church 90 years ago is at the crux of a debate on what ministers are supposed to believe today

Feature

August 2015

Day Six

By Mike Milne

Decision on new-look church goes down to the wire

Feature

August 2015

Day Four

By Trisha Elliott

Hump day at the 42nd General Council

Feature

August 2015

Day Three

By Trisha Elliott

Commissioners urge United Church to divest from fossil fuels and Goldcorp

Feature

August 2015

Day Three

By Mike Milne

Support for Mideast peace, but no demand for divestment

Feature

August 2015

42nd General Council coverage

By Observer Staff

Feature

August 2015

Day Two

By Mike Milne

Massive structural changes may be too much to handle in just one week

Feature

August 2015

Day One

By David Wilson

Reform recommendations coming . . . but not quite yet

Feature

July 2015

Day Five

By David Wilson

Saskatchewan minister Rev. Jordan Cantwell elected as 42nd moderator

Feature

July 2015

United Church at a crossroads

By Mike Milne

Some are calling the August meeting of the General Council one of the most critical since church union. At stake is how the denomination works — and possibly its future.

Feature

July 2015

‘We’ll be a spiritual presence.’

By Erica Lenti

With the Toronto 2015 Pan Am/Parapan Am Games starting July 10, Metropolitan United’s Rev. John Joseph Mastandrea worked alongside other religious leaders to develop a multifaith centre in the Pan Am Village, where they’ll serve competing athletes.

Feature

July 2015

Atheist minister faces Conference review

By Mike Milne

Rev. Gretta Vosper, minister of West Hill United in Toronto and a self-declared atheist, faces a church trial on her suitability for ministry in The United Church of Canada.

Feature

July 2015

Final decisions

By Various Writers

Dying used to be so simple. New laws and changing customs make for a more complicated exit.

Feature

July 2015

The end of Aramaic

By Tali Folkins

Descended from the tongue spoken by Jesus, an ancient language faces extinction as ISIS advances in Iraq and Syria

Feature

July 2015

Amusing grace

By Trisha Elliott

Tales of worship gone awry

Feature

June 2015

'Do we still believe that something vital is in the making?'

By Phyllis Airhart

The United Church of Canada at 90

Feature

June 2015

Divorce in a fishbowl

By Trisha Elliott

Ending a marriage is tough. Imagine what it’s like when you’re a minister.

Feature

May 2015

Confronting the unbelievers

By Mike Milne

Reaction against a minister who came out as an atheist was swift and blunt. But questions persist about how to deal with clergy who no longer believe.

Feature

May 2015

A wretch like me

By Trisha Elliott

We all feel shame. Instead of running from it, maybe we should take a cue from the Bible and face up to our flaws and frailties.

Feature

April 2015

Moncton minister's Twitter following grows to 30,000

By Rhonda Herrington Bulmer

Feature

April 2015

Strangers in our midst

By Mario Toneguzzi

What did a Calgary church do when two Congolese refugees — a couple expecting a baby — were dropped on their doorstep? Welcome them, wholeheartedly.

Feature

April 2015

Losing Mom

By Tim Johnson

A travel writer's personal journey through grief — and how it was vastly different from everything he’d been told to expect

Feature

April 2015

The next supper

By Gary Paterson

A painting by the late B.C. artist Bill Dixon reminds us that Easter is not an event, but a movement. A message from the United Church moderator.

Feature

March 2015

A sanctuary of their own

By Luc Rinaldi

A Toronto congregation is providing space for two female priests to do what Catholics won’t allow: lead worship

Feature

March 2015

Teenage Stephen Harper grappled with God, remembers his confirmation class teacher

By Tim Johnson

Feature

March 2015

The perils of too much certainty

By Larry Krotz

Once a top poet and bureaucrat, Duncan Campbell Scott is today a pariah for his policies of assimilation. What will be our own generation’s shame?

Feature

March 2015

Elephants in the room

By Trisha Elliott

Care to talk about tithing? How about evangelism? Confronting the United Church’s taboos.

Feature

February 2015

The unlikely ascent of Kathleen Wynne

By John Barber

Ontario’s first female premier has surmounted barriers all her life. But she’s never strayed far from her United Church roots.

Feature

February 2015

With this ring, I thee divorce

By Anne Bokma

Separation doesn't have to be adversarial. Some couples are seeking more meaningful ways to untie the knot.

Feature

February 2015

Interview with Moderator Rt. Rev. Gary Paterson

By Chelsea Temple Jones

The United Church head talks about end-of-life ethics, where the personal, the political and the spiritual collide

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Editorials

David Wilson%

Observations

by David Wilson

Enclaves of the elderly

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Video

ObserverDocs: A shoulder to lean on

by Observer Staff

Sheima Benembarek was born in Saudi Arabia, grew up in Morocco and moved to Canada in 2005. In 2015, she relocated to Toronto. At first, the city seemed so much bigger, impersonal — and even threatening — until a fateful encounter in the subway one day.

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Faith

January 2017

Presbytery turns down bid to halt Vosper hearing

by Mike Milne

World

February 2017

Many faces, one humanity

by Wade Davis

The words and photographs of the Canadian author and explorer capture the richness — and fragility — of global cultures and rituals

Society

February 2017

An anatomy of hate

by Douglas Tindal

It’s on the rise everywhere. The writer explores our most troubling emotion and asks how we might overcome it.

World

February 2017

Many faces, one humanity

by Wade Davis

The words and photographs of the Canadian author and explorer capture the richness — and fragility — of global cultures and rituals

Society

January 2017

The new agrarians

by Lois Ross

In the next 15 years, almost half of Canadian farms will change hands. Meet seven millennials who view agriculture as a career — and moral calling.

Faith

March 2016

The Walrus Talks Spirituality

by Observer Staff

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