Rumours of the Finnish Prime Minister promoting a four-day work week in her country sparked a global debate last month around the implications of such a plan, with mixed reactions. The notion of working fewer hours for the same pay is not new. In the 1920s, the Ford Motor Company was one of the first corporations to implement a five-day, 40-hour week for workers in its automotive factories.
This hockey season, for the first time since 1982, Canadian fans are cheering for their favourite hockey team to make the playoffs – without a running commentary from Don Cherry. He was fired last November after an on-air rant accusing immigrants of being disrespectful to veterans. For almost 40 years, Don Cherry’s voice was a regular feature in the soundtrack of Saturday night hockey. Now, although the swish of skates and the ricochet of pucks remain, Cherry is silent.
As Angela Reitsma Bick noted in a recent editorial (“An Other Perspective,” CC Jan. 27), it’s distressingly easy to fall into facile “us vs. them” assumptions; and in our present cultural moment, a lot of these assumptions have to do with class distinctions. During my university years, I worked as an intern for the U.S. federal government in my home state of Alabama, a job which required me to carry an ID card.
“Welcome to Hamilton,” opens a new poem by Canadian writer and cabinetmaker John Terpstra. “You’re going to love it here.” Terpstra read this poem to a group of Act Five students last fall, high school graduates taking a gap year program at Redeemer University College in Ancaster, Ont. Terpstra welcomed the students to Hamilton’s staircases, its bike lanes and one-way streets, “to nature, hidden in plain view,” to a city “that lives in two different centuries.”
Lately I’ve been reading the book Faith for Exiles: 5 Ways for a New Generation to Follow Jesus in Digital Babylon. Co-authors David Kinnaman and Mark Matlock spend quite a bit of time describing the “digital Babylon” we currently live in. In a nutshell, they say, our new reality is one in which transformative person-to-person experiences have been replaced with digital “brand experiences.”
The Vietnam War was raging, Martin Luther King Jr. and Robert Kennedy had been assassinated, the counter-culture movement was in full swing and Jimi Hendrix had just released his stunning retake on Bob Dylan’s song: “All along the watchtower, princes kept the view […] outside in the distance a wildcat did growl / two riders were approaching, and the wind began to howl.” It was 1968 and I wonder if Morris Greidanus had such an apocalyptic sense of the times as he launched a Christian Reformed (CRC) campus ministry at the University of Toronto.
In her excellent article in CC Nov. 11, 2019, Amy MacLachlan made us painfully aware of the many ways in which professional psychiatric care is failing people struggling with mental illness. It often leaves individual sufferers with no choice but to fend for themselves as best they can, or become overly dependent on the help of friends and loved ones. This situation leaves those close to them feeling overwhelmed and under-equipped. The problem is so severe that we can speak of a mental health crisis.
One day many years ago, I was sitting in my living room with some friends. It was Sunday afternoon and we had just gotten back from church. We were drinking strong, black coffee in cups with little windmills on them and eating Dutch pastry – gebakjes – when the subject turned to immigration.
“I don’t mind all these immigrants coming here,” my friend said, balancing her gebakje on her knee. “I just wish they’d give up their culture and become more Canadian.”
On September 28, approximately 450 guests convened in Edmonton, Alberta, to celebrate the 40th anniversary of The King’s University. Henk Van Andel’s recently published book, A Step at a Time, is a historical overview of the first 25 years of this institution.
Should Christians watch horror films? It’s a question I’m continually asked, especially every year around Halloween. I somewhat agree with the affirmative answers others have given: that by focusing on the darkness, there is opportunity to shine a light; that many horror films are built upon an undergirding of morality. But I wonder if there’s a way to push this defense a bit further. Might there be a crucial connection between how the best horror films function and a Christian understanding of fear?
When I was a kid, my cousin Henry and I played a game called “dig to China.” It wasn’t a complicated game. Basically, you’d say: “let’s dig to China!” and go digging in the backyard. Looking back, there were several flaws in our plan.
There is a 10-minute YouTube video with excerpts of Michelle Thrush’s one-woman play, Find Your Own Inner Elder. It has almost 1,800 views and 11 likes. Not the most viral video. There are also two comments, posted a year apart. Both comments say the same thing: She performed this show in my community.