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Faith

Feature

February 2012

A contemporary look into the value of traditional clerical costumery

By Michael Webster

The tradition of wearing a clerical collar may be outdated. Michael Webster wore one every day for a month to find out if the traditional costume is a meaningful symbol or just a pain in the neck.

Feature

February 2012

Caught in the bottleneck

By Carolyn Morris

New limits on refugee applications are meant to relieve a backlog of unprocessed claims. Churches fear the cap will undo the sponsorship program that has helped thousands flee to safety in Canada.

Feature

January 2012

Back to the garden

By Margaret Atwood

Theology and ecology were once interconnected, but two millennia of Christianity have steered us away from nature. Can religion recover its roots?

Feature

January 2012

El Salvador’s journey of redemption

By Tim Johnson

Two decades ago, civil war raged in Central America’s smallest country. Visitors today will discover that while the scars remain, the healing power of peace is stronger.

Feature

December 2011

Interview with Rev. Brent Hawkes

By Ken Gallinger

The minister of Toronto’s Metropolitan Community Church presided over the state funeral for Jack Layton last summer. He recently spoke to The Observer.

Feature

December 2011

Christmas in the Holy Land

By Sherry Ann Chapman

An Alberta woman encounters inspiration, heartbreak and the odd Santa during an Advent season in East Jerusalem and the West Bank

Feature

December 2011

Is the end really nigh?

By Kevin Spurgaitis

Though every doomsday prediction to date has proven false, they’re still hard to ignore

Feature

December 2011

Risking the birth of love

By Mardi Tindal

Christmas reminds us to rise to the challenge of hope

Feature

November 2011

Mary Hynes reveals the 'Tapestry' interview that frustrated her

By Cory Ruf

The CBC Radio host often engages in wide-ranging discussions with the most interesting thinkers on faith and spirituality. She recently talked to The Observer.

Feature

November 2011

An unremarkable reunion

By Trisha Elliott

One woman’s six-year journey to find her birth mother skips the Hollywood ending for something more complicated

Feature

November 2011

The ultimate outsider

By Will Braun

The Bible tells us to love our neighbour, but what if he’s a pedophile?

Feature

November 2011

Evolutionary Christianity spokesperson Rev. Bruce Sanguin brings an athlete’s intensity to his spiritual questing

By David Wilson

The United Church minister is busy reconciling traditional theological thinking with science and the universe's natural mysticism

Feature

October 2011

Giving thanks amid uncertainty

By Trisha Elliott

Thanking God is easy when things go right, but hardship can foster a more radical kind of gratitude

Feature

October 2011

Lofty living

By Larry Krotz

Former church buildings spell opportunity for condo developers, who are discovering that buyers are drawn to more than the stained glass windows and cathedral ceilings

Feature

September 2011

Revealing Jordan

By Jocelyn Bell

While other Middle Eastern countries convulse, this ancient kingdom offers an oasis of calm

Feature

September 2011

Interview with Marcus Borg

By Therese DesCamp

American biblical scholar talks about his recent books — 'Putting Away Childish Things' and 'Speaking Christian' — and the importance of story and language

Feature

August 2011

Photo Essay: Revealing Jordan

By Jocelyn Bell

Travel in Jordan is a fabulous mix of world-class archeological sites, biblical landmarks, diverse cities and eco-adventures

Feature

July 2011

The essential question: Do you believe in God?

By

Feature

July 2011

The last time I prayed, the focus of my prayer was

By Observer Staff

Feature

July 2011

Non-conformists: 8 percent

By Samantha Rideout

Feature

July 2011

What you believe

By Observer Staff

We asked you about your faith. You didn’t hold back. Now, the surprising results of The Observer’s 2011 survey.

Feature

July 2011

Traditionalists: 13 percent

By Samantha Rideout

Feature

July 2011

Intuitives: 35 percent

By Samantha Rideout

Feature

July 2011

Mainliners: 44 percent

By Samantha Rideout

Feature

July 2011

Q&A with Douglas John Hall

By Samantha Rideout

Rev. Douglas John Hall is a United Church minister and a professor emeritus of Christian theology at McGill University in Montreal. He told The Observer what he makes of the 2011 Faith Survey results.

Feature

July 2011

Faith under construction

By Murray Malcolm

For decades, United Church member Murray Malcolm tried to build a solid theological foundation. He read dozens of books and attended church faithfully. Today, he’s still trying to fit the pieces together.

Feature

July 2011

If I could send a Twitter message to Jesus, it would say

By Observer Staff

Feature

July 2011

Would the discovery of intelligent life elsewhere in the universe impact your faith?

By Observer Staff

Feature

July 2011

When I visualize God, I picture

By Observer Staff

Feature

July 2011

25 theologians to help broaden your faith

By Observer Staff

We asked 30 United Church ministers from across Canada to tell us which authors and books they would recommend to people in the pews — besides the Bible, of course. Here are their top picks.

Columns

(Photo: cuatrok77/Flickr via Creative Commons)

Cormorants aren't the devil

by Douglas Hunter

Ontario's proposed new measures amount to a slaughter of an entire native bird species for no scientifically compelling reason, says this writer

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Editorials

The United Church Observer's editor and publisher, Jocelyn Bell. (Photo: Lindsay Palmer)

The new name of 'The Observer' revealed!

by Jocelyn Bell

"United Church" will no longer be on the cover, but our commitment to sharing denominational news and perspectives remains the same

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Video

Meet beloved church cats Mable and Mouse

by Observer Staff

They're a fixture of Kirk United Church Centre in Edmonton.

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Society

February 2019

Marriage problems: Is the ancient tradition worth saving?

by Pieta Woolley

Bitterness and boredom seem to define many mid-life marriages, but we might not have to settle for apathy ever after

Ethics

February 2019

A Yukon artist and a Tlingit trapper create this stunning jewelry

by Amy van den Berg

The fur jewelry in Whitehorse boutique store V. Ægirsdóttir is creating a new possibility for future partnerships with the region's trappers

Columns

February 2019

Why white people need to stop asking, 'where are you from?'

by Mike Sholars

"...For all intents and purposes, Canada is the only home I really recognize or remember. But none of that matters if I look like I don’t belong, and that single question makes that abundantly clear every single time."

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