Canadian classes called to special meeting
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Canadian classes called to special meeting

For months now there has been a polite rumble among Canadian members of the Christian Reformed Church (CRC) about an obscure report called SALT. The Structure and Leadership Taskforce report (SALT), adopted by the CRCNA Council of Delegates (CofD) in May 2021, is on its way to Synod 2022. It is not headline news. It…

A better future
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A better future

When the Christian Reformed Church (CRC) began allowing the ordination of women as clergy, Helen Reitsma anticipated positive change for the church she attends in Brantford, Ontario. Twenty-five years later, however, her congregation still has no women in office, let alone female clergy. Even so, she says, “a lot of stuff is really run by…

‘Why we love CC’
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‘Why we love CC’

Last month I spoke with three Christian Courier subscribers, Dennis and Jenny DeGroot and John Ravensbergen, to ask why they love Christian Courier. My first call was with the DeGroots. Dennis grew up in Alberta, Jenny in Langley, British Columbia. They live in Langley and are recently retired. “We’re recent personal subscribers, but in some…

The hyphenated Augustine
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The hyphenated Augustine

“In the West, there is no theologian who can compare with Augustine.” So González writes in the introduction to his groundbreaking biography of Augustine’s life, thought and works. Catholics and Protestants alike turn to the bishop of Hippo as the patron saint of theological discourse, the forefather of our ecclesiological and soteriological imaginations. Whether we…

Tears as prayers
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Tears as prayers

Have you cried lately? If so, do you know the meaning of your tears? It’s a complicated question. We humans are not fully transparent to ourselves – we are not fully aware of the experiences or realities that shape our emotional lives. Our tears in any situation may result from past experiences, diverse sensitivities, hormonal…

The art of questions
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The art of questions

Art Linkletter asked children questions. He concluded “kids say the darndest things.” Do we ask enough questions? Questions play different roles. Questions investigate, inquire, interrogate. Questions expose need, attitudes, understanding, misunderstanding, interpretation and inconsistencies. Questions can challenge, express frustration or curiosity, create agreement, or show disagreement. Questions create interaction, discussion, relationships. Good questions invite. Do…

Hearing from the ‘moderates’
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Hearing from the ‘moderates’

“I can’t get two people alone in a room together, let alone worry about what they’re going to be doing with each other.” This tongue-in-cheek remark kicked off an online conversation between five Christian Reformed (CRC) pastors from across the U.S. and Canada this summer, all feeling stuck between revisionist and traditional voices in the…

Creating space
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Creating space

Amanda Bakale can still picture the first time she saw a woman step up to the pulpit to preach, her long lavender skirt swishing in the silence of the sanctuary. “I remember the movement of her skirt,” Bakale recounts, years later. “Not a suit, but a beautiful, flowing skirt. And a body that looked like…