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Features

Feature

October 2010

Surprise, you’re an elder

By Donna Sinclair

Becoming an elder is not just about reaching a certain age. It’s also about embracing new perceptions of yourself and your community.

Feature

September 2010

General Council lays off 16 staff

By Mike Milne

Youth and young adults portfolio is among the positions cut

Feature

September 2010

Shaken to the core

By Various Writers

Last winter's earthquake changed Haiti forever. It also left an indelible mark on four writers who witnessed the disaster and its aftermath.

Feature

September 2010

The cost of doing good

By Trisha Elliott

Donors often wonder how much of their money goes directly to the causes they support. But that may not be the question to ask.

Feature

September 2010

Can big business save the planet?

By Kevin Spurgaitis

Philanthro-capitalists are putting their money where their morals are, using cash and clout to redefine the meaning of good business

Feature

September 2010

A study in diversity

By Drew Halfnight

A new Muslim studies program at the United Church's largest seminary pushes the envelope of theological education

Feature

July 2010

Survey quotes

By Observer Staff

Feature

July 2010

The pulpit and the pew

By Observer Staff

The Observer's 2010 reader survey results reveal why ministers have their work cut out for them

Feature

July 2010

Survey: Overworked and underpaid

By Patricia Clarke

Most of the pressure to perform comes from ministers themselves

Feature

July 2010

Survey: Predicting the future

By Mike Milne

Where will the church be in years to come? Depends who you ask.

Feature

July 2010

Survey: The new recruits

By Richard Wright

There’s no doubt about it. We need preachers in pulpits. But whose job is it to pull them in?

Feature

July 2010

Survey: In search of Reverend Right

By Kylie Taggart

Educated, ordained and caring: Are the ministers we want the ministers we’ve got?

Feature

July 2010

A home here is possible

By Miriam Spies

Twelve years ago, the author felt excluded at church because of her cerebral palsy. By speaking out, she helped her church become more accessible for all.

Feature

July 2010

Gambling on casinos

By Richard Wright

Casinos bring much-needed jobs and revenue to First Nations communities, but can also exacerbate social problems. Do the wins outweigh the losses?

Feature

July 2010

The forgotten children

By Mike Milne

Researchers scour church archives to find records of students who died at Indian residential schools

Feature

June 2010

Photo Essay: Reborn green

By Kevin Spurgaitis

Three years ago, a monster storm flattened a small town in Tornado Alley. Instead of reconstructing what was lost, townsfolk seized the opportunity to build the greenest community in North America.

Feature

June 2010

The pleasures of thrift

By Anne Bokma

Brown-bag your lunch, shop second-hand and discover the joys of a simpler lifestyle

Feature

June 2010

Feature: Reborn green

By Kevin Spurgaitis

Three years after being destroyed by a monster tornado, a small town in rural Kansas is setting a global standard for sustainable living.

Feature

June 2010

The gospel of sobriety

By Jasmine Budak

Times have changed since Alcoholics Anonymous was formed 75 years ago. While surrendering to a higher power remains part of its official creed, AA insists it is not religious.

Feature

May 2010

Photo Essay: A refuge from despair

By Terry Asma

Thirty years after the Sandinista revolution, Managua, Nicaragua is a study in contrasts — none starker than the numb despair of the city’s poorest kids and the infectious hope of child street vendors at a United Church-supported school

Feature

May 2010

The happiness enigma

By Lisa Van de Ven

Recent research is shedding new light on what happiness is and how we might be more successful at finding it

Feature

May 2010

A motherlode of debate

By Mike Milne

Should the church sell its stock in controversial mining firms, or press for change from within?

Feature

May 2010

Toil and trouble

By Carolyn Morris

Every temporary worker who comes to Canada has a dream of a better life. Too often the reality they face is exploitation and a system that seems to invite abuse.

Feature

May 2010

Pure grit

By John Bird

Rallied around a common cause, church people, Natives, cottagers and environmentalists halted a massive dump near Georgian Bay that threatened some of the purest water on Earth

Feature

April 2010

The paradox of Easter

By Mardi Tindal

It is through the brokenness of the cross that God reveals the way to wholeness. A message from the moderator.

Feature

April 2010

Back from the brink

By Caley Moore

Relations between the United Church and Canada’s main Jewish organization hit a low last year. A truce has been reached, but what will it take to make it last?

Feature

April 2010

Hardwired for worship

By Alanna Mitchell

Recent advances in brain imaging suggest we are more receptive to certain styles of worship than others.

Feature

March 2010

From rugged cross to flaming chalice

By Anne Bokma

Many former United Church members drift toward Unitarian Universalism. So what’s the attraction?

Feature

March 2010

Overpopulation

By Lisa Van de Ven

More tiny footsteps equal a bigger collective footprint. How many people can our planet sustain?

Feature

March 2010

Living in limbo

By Carolyn Morris

Zimbabwe-born Tanya Mpala has no legal status in Canada. College-age students like her face systemic barriers that can bring their education to a screeching halt.

Interviews

Courtesy of Pixabay

Why this woman is leaving the Catholic Church in her 60s

by Angela Mombourquette

After a lifetime devoted to Catholicism, a Nova Scotia teacher is settling in with the United Church of Canada. Here, she explains why.

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Editorials

Jocelyn Bell%

Observations: It’s a long road toward full equality for women

by Jocelyn Bell

'It’s a wonder that we continue to see male ministers as normative and attach shame to female ministers’ biology and sexuality.'

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Video

ObserverDocs: Playing by Heart

by Observer Staff

United Church music director Kara Shaw was born prematurely, became almost totally blind and was later diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder. Today, the 28-year-old showcases her unique musical ability, performing piano on local and national stages.

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Faith

May 2018

Toronto church builds interfaith friendship

by Vivien Fellegi

Faith

May 2018

This parent found no support for her autistic daughter — and decided to change that

by Kieran Delamont

Suzanne Allen talks about raising a daughter on the autism spectrum and bringing all autistic girls together

Faith

May 2018

Church retreat helps first responders with PTSD

by Joe Martelle

Interviews

May 2018

Why this woman is leaving the Catholic Church in her 60s

by Angela Mombourquette

After a lifetime devoted to Catholicism, a Nova Scotia teacher is settling in with the United Church of Canada. Here, she explains why.

Ethics

May 2018

Pregnant in the pulpit

by Trisha Elliott

Ministers who take a maternity leave still face discrimination in their own congregations

Interviews

May 2018

The two words Rev. Cheri DiNovo wants to hear from the United Church

by Alex Mlynek

The Toronto minister talks about her disappointment over the church’s silence when she officiated the country’s first legalized same-sex marriage 17 years ago – and why she wants an apology.

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