This year is the sesquicentennial of Canada, which means that it is now 150 years since Confederation, when Canada first became an independent country. Confederation was the culmination of a drawn-out political process which finally ended with the passing of the British North America Act by the British Parliament in 1867. For the final stages of the drama a number of leading Canadian politicians travelled to London to negotiate the final details. Among other things, the Canadian delegates in London debated with their colonial overlords whether the new nation which they were designing should be called the kingdom of Canada, or the republic of Canada, or something else.
On June 26, 135 cyclists will begin a nine-week journey across Canada. “To me, this is an ideal time. This is the church without walls. If the government or anyone else were to ask, ‘What are you doing to celebrate Canada’s 150th?’ we can share what we are doing and why,” Peter Slofstra explained. “It allows us to testify to a different way of living that moves from inwardly-focused living to putting others first. It is the Christian Reformed Church (CRC) impacting a whole nation, inspiring people towards good.”
In Western cultures we accept as normative the virtues of equality and of democracy. The “you are no better than I am” sentiment results in a reluctance to submit to legitimate authorities – the boss, the coach, government, parents. This sort of thing seeps into the Western church as well.
Do visitors to Canada see our shame? Did your Canadian history classes include the darker moments as well as the victorious? For many, the stained stories of our country’s past were never discussed in the classroom and we need to re-educate ourselves. But first we need to recognize what prejudices we bring with us.
Sometime heroes wear capes and fly. Sometimes they perform great acts of rescue or service. And sometimes they simply show up in life, being who they are and inspiring others to be better human beings.Login to View