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Faith

Special Feature

October 2016

Ghost whisperers

By Elena Gritzan

Do the dead remain among us? Paranormal investigators are determined to prove what science rejects, Christianity scorns — and half of Canadians believe.

Feature

October 2016

Verbatim

By Nancy Loucks-McSloy

‘My determination is tested in daily training when I push myself to the limit.’

Feature

October 2016

Highway to healing

By Tim Johnson

In search of adventure and solace after the death of his mother, travel writer Tim Johnson rekindles his family’s road trip tradition

Feature

October 2016

The gratitude effect

By Trisha Elliott

We all know that giving thanks is integral to Christianity. But new science reveals the far-reaching benefits of expressing appreciation.

Feature

September 2016

Atheist minister Gretta Vosper one step closer to dismissal, formal hearing requested

By Mike Milne and Observer Staff

Feature

September 2016

United Church committee finds atheist minister ‘not suitable’

By Mike Milne

Feature

September 2016

Vosper’s comment sparks survey of clergy beliefs

By Paul Knowles

Feature

September 2016

Atheist minister’s suitability reviewed

By Mike Milne

Feature

September 2016

Young, smart and into Jesus

By Pieta Woolley

Millennial ministers are embracing Christ, spiritual practice and the Bible. Is a return to theological roots the wave of the future?

Feature

September 2016

Secretly spiritual

By Lucille Joseph

As she rose up the ranks to become a Toronto business executive, the writer felt compelled to keep her quest for deeper meaning hidden. Why she’s decided to talk now.

Special Feature

September 2016

Rainbow Muslims

By Davide Mastracci

More than half of Canadian Muslims believe it’s impossible to be an observant Muslim while living openly in an LGBT relationship. El-Farouk Khaki and Troy Jackson, co-founders of Unity Mosque, are proving there is another way.

Special Feature

July 2016

When exodus is the only answer

By Patricia Clarke

Christians are fleeing the cradle of the faith amid escalating turmoil in the Middle East

Feature

July 2016

Mr. Trump comes to Cleveland

By Mark Giuliano

The eyes of the world will be focused on the Republican National Convention this month. A landmark church near the meeting site is offering a warm welcome while bracing for unrest.

Feature

July 2016

Sidebar: Religion’s downside

By Samantha Rideout

Feature

July 2016

Does religion really make you happier?

By Samantha Rideout

The writer examines the popular theory that people with faith are more content than those without

Feature

July 2016

A river of one’s own

By Alison Brooks-Starks

The writer attempts a month-long solo paddle on the North Saskatchewan River and discovers the gift of intuition and the power of nature

Feature

July 2016

Verbatim

By Kate Spencer

‘Music is almost a manifestation of some otherworldly power’

Feature

June 2016

Talking spirituality

By Various Writers

Earlier this spring, seven distinguished Canadians gathered in Toronto to share their views on religion, faith and secularism. Here are highlights from “The United Church Observer presents The Walrus Talks Spirituality.”

Feature

June 2016

My messy vocation

By Jonathan Orbell

No amount of schooling prepares you for everything you’ll encounter as a minister. Most of the learning happens on the run.

Feature

May 2016

2015 Press Awards

By Observer Staff

The Observer won 41 church press awards and has been nominated for two National Magazine Awards for work published in 2015. The winners’ list included First Place for denominational magazines in the U.S.-based Associate Church Press competition. It was the third year in a row that The Observer was named the ACP’s best magazine.

Feature

May 2016

Anglicans at a crossroads

By Michael Coren

They will vote on same-sex marriage at their General Synod in July. The consequences could be far-reaching.

Feature

May 2016

Judicial panel denies Vosper appeal

By Mike Milne

Atheist minister’s suitability may now be reviewed

Feature

May 2016

Verbatim

By Kylie Taggart

‘Parts of our lives are beyond scientific understanding’

Feature

April 2016

Churches under the gun

By Anne Bokma

Shootings in the sanctuary. Pistols in the pulpit. The culture of violence is infiltrating U.S. places of worship.

Feature

April 2016

For gun-control activists, the cause is political — and personal

By Anne Bokma

Feature

April 2016

The United Church of Christ: two decades of demanding gun control 

By Anne Bokma

Feature

April 2016

Getting inked

By Trisha Elliott

Six ministers share their stories

Feature

April 2016

What their tats tell

By Trisha Elliott

You’d be surprised by the number of United Church ministers with tattoos these days. Here's the meaning behind all that ink.

Feature

March 2016

Our national folly

By Trisha Elliott

Canada endeavours to be secular and multicultural at the same time. Who are we trying to kid?

Feature

March 2016

The Holland I never knew

By Anne Bokma

A first-generation Dutch Canadian wrestles with her religious history in the land of her ancestors

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Editorials

David Wilson%

Observations

by David Wilson

Outrage is the new normal

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Video

ObserverDocs: Stolen Mother

by Observer Staff

The daughter and adoptive mother of one of the Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women share their story

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Profiles

October 2017

Fall from grace

by Justin Dallaire

Don Hume was a United Church minister nearing retirement. Then he tried crack cocaine.

Faith

September 2017

Yearning

by Jane Dawson

Restless longing is at the core of the human condition, urging us onward through life. What happens when it veers off course?

Society

July 2017

From far and wide

by Various Writers

Meet 11 immigrants who are putting down new roots

Faith

October 2017

A tale of two cancers

by Catherine Gordon

One year after the writer discovered she had breast cancer, her sister in California received the same diagnosis. They both recovered, but their experiences were worlds apart.

World

June 2017

Resisting genocide

by Sally Armstrong

In August 2014, ISIS attacked Iraq’s Yazidis, slaughtering thousands and forcing women and girls into sexual slavery. Today, the survivors are fighting for their ancient way of life.

Society

April 2017

Dear Grandkids

by Various Writers

Six acclaimed Canadian authors write letters from the heart

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