Check Your Filters
Opinion | Theology & Spirituality

Check Your Filters

Many current controversial ethical issues lead back to Genesis. Climate change. The role of women in church and society. Treatment of Black and Indigenous peoples. Who should be allowed to get married. The problem is not the text itself. Christians so often find themselves having to apologize for harms done because of the filters used…

Peace on Earth
Opinion | World News

Peace on Earth

“Peace on Earth” rings out from Christmas carols and greeting cards at this time of year. It echoes the good news of the angels long ago; it expresses the hope for shalom as a result of God coming down into our world. We cherish the serenity of a crèche and singing Silent Night by candle…

Beyond Stewardship
Industry & Agriculture | Opinion | Social Justice

Beyond Stewardship

Waste reduction motivated two major initiatives in my early social justice work. Both became national success stories; over time, however, both enabled more waste and had other unintended consequences. Reflecting on that, I wonder if more than stewardship is needed to ground our approach to care for God’s creation. Edmonton’s Blue Box program was cutting-edge…

Competing Rights in a Media World
Media & Culture | News | Politics

Competing Rights in a Media World

I find it a challenge to balance staying informed about news and thinking within my faith community, being alert to other perspectives, and engaging in the public conversations that are shaping our society. This month, Christian Courier celebrates 75 years of connecting and building a community. Without it, we readers would be less connected and weaker in…

A Careful Critique
Arts & Culture | Politics | Reviews

A Careful Critique

Flags at the front of churches and Bibles waving at political rallies are common place in the United States, and two thirds of Americans agree with the statement “America is a Christian nation” (according to a 2013 poll). That level of fusion between love of God and love of country, however, does not explain why many, in the name of Christ, reject non-white immigrants, refuse to recognize racial injustice in spite of overwhelming evidence, oppose equality for women, defend gun culture, and excuse killing civilians…

Refugee Rights
Immigration | News | Social Justice

Refugee Rights

In 2017, Nedira Mustefa sought refugee protection at the Canadian border and found herself in solitary confinement in a small cold cell with no blanket and little food in a U.S. prison, without being charged for any crime. Her story is the real-life outcome of something called the Safe Third Country Agreement (STCA) between Canada…

The ‘White’ Talk
Opinion | Social Justice

The ‘White’ Talk

The “talk” for adolescents in Black households is not about sex and avoiding teenage pregnancy. It focuses on what to do if the police stop you to avoid being arrested or worse. I have seen a circle of boisterous Black youth at a local bus station in Ottawa be threatened and dispersed by police, while a group of laughing white youth nearby were allowed to stay.

Spiritual Care During COVID-19
News | Theology & Spirituality

Spiritual Care During COVID-19

Tearful stories from people who could not visit an aging parent will likely be one of the memories associated with COVID-19. Suffering or dying alone, without the usual support networks, has also been a reality for persons with other illnesses. That is spawning new conversations about what is essential in both healing and dying. A broader understanding of health care may be one of the constructive legacies of COVID-19.

Public Trust
Opinion

Public Trust

When survival depends on everyone washing their hands and avoiding contact, public trust is critical – and stretched. A serious common threat that requires communal action can strengthen public trust and social cohesion or it can widen existing divisions. It is not surprising to see anxiety and shaming those who break the rules, as the current COVID-19 pandemic requires everyone to follow restrictions on our regular way of life.

Measuring What Matters
Opinion

Measuring What Matters

The mandate letters for three federal cabinet ministers this year include finding a way to “better incorporate quality of life measurements into government decision-making and budget processes.” While this may sound like another frivolous, feel-good Liberal talking point, it could have profound implications. And it is in line with Biblical teachings. The Bible is full of warnings about letting wealth and economics dictate our lives, at the expense of other factors that are equally important for our well-being – or flourishing, to use a Biblical word.