In Christmases past, our December calendars were decorated with the dates of school Christmas concerts and community choir cantatas. This year, there will be considerably less live music heralding the good news. But many of us felt this void long before Advent. In a normal year, according to Stats Canada, 81 percent of Canadians would…
Not all words have wings. Some are just box printed, quick texted and rarely get lift off. So as we sit perched on Christian Courier’s 75th anniversary, we are left to wonder: what boundless grace has granted us the privilege to write, print, share, preach, laugh and walk together all of these years? May we…
In the early days of the pandemic, governments had to decide: who will speak for us? In 10 key locations across Canada, women serving as public heath officers have taken on those increasingly public roles. “The women we’re seeing on the national stage during the pandemic are being celebrated for both their compassion and their calm under pressure,” write Andrea Gunraj and Jessica Howard from the Canadian Women’s Foundation.
Are you familiar with the ice breaker “Two Truths and a Lie”? The game requires participants to share three statements about themselves – two sentences that are true and one that is false. The rest of the group tests their knowledge of the individual in question and tries to spot the lie. For example: I’ve completed the Camino, I own a horse, and I love to rock climb. Which one doesn’t quite sound like me?
Critiquing preachers and worship styles has long been a post-church pattern for congregants. Some Sunday mornings, our tongues are quicker to question than to urge empathy and understanding for those who lead us in worship. Perhaps the move to critique is quicker these days as we come to church through emails and gather around screens. Are we tempted to forget that these are uncharted waters for the very real people who are working hard to pivot our fellowship from in-person to online?
This month, we are delighted to welcome Jonathan Elgersma as Social Media Editor with Christian Courier for the summer. Jonathan is currently studying Mathematics at the University of Waterloo. He describes himself as having a passion for sports as well as an interest in building up relationships with people around him. He lives in Richmond Hill, Ontario, with his parents and two siblings, and says he’s happy to be a part of Christian Courier.
She had been housesitting for her newlywed friends over the holidays and was just about to pick them up from the airport. But then the news came. There would be no happy car ride home recounting the details of their recent trip. Arash and Pouneh’s flight never left Iran. It was Friday, January 10, and this was just one of the many stories of disbelief, shock and sorrow shared with with Rick Mast, the Christian Reformed campus minister stationed in the Computing Science Department at the University of Alberta. Most of the faculty, students and alumni gathered there had never met him before. In the routine work of running labs, processing data, writing code, attending conferences and submitting papers, there wasn’t usually a reason to check in with a campus minister.
“Who are you, little one? What sort of person will you be?” I mumbled out loud, tracing the distinct outline of a heel pushed against the inside of my rounded belly. There’s nothing quite like the moments that make new life tangible. The first kicks. The first cries. The first cuddles. Around this time last year, I was counting down the final days to the due date of my first born.
I grew up on 40 acres of land below the snowy coastal mountains of Northern B.C. The trees were plentiful and there was a science to finding the right one for Christmas. Perhaps even some deep rooted wisdom. Here is my dad’s guide to finding the perfect Christmas tree (and solving some of life’s other problems): Start looking early. June is late. Mom will give you parameters.
In the time it takes you to read this sentence, 20 people will have checked into an Airbnb somewhere in the world. That’s about two million Airbnb bookings every night, or the equivalent to the entire population of Greater Vancouver housed in an assortment of spare bedrooms, basement suites, tiny houses, historic castles and tent trailers every single night. There are 130,000 Airbnb hosts in Canada alone. Since launching in 2008, Airbnb has booked over 500 million stays and revolutionized the way we travel.
Last September, I was halfway up the mast of a tall ship when the world shifted beneath my feet. When I began my ascent, the ships’ heel over offered a favourable climbing slope. But just as the soggy rope ladder narrowed towards the top, we rounded a race buoy, the skipper called for a change of course and the whole vessel lurched to the opposite side.
I hated that big blue box of sand in the corner of my classroom. Every Sunday morning, I painstakingly pried little fingers away from its plywood lid. “It’s storytime!” I chimed, “you can play in the sand later.”