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Society

Feature

February 2016

When values collide

By John Barber

Should faith and tradition trump comprehensive sexual education?

Feature

January 2016

A complicated love story

By Alanna Mitchell

After the death of her alcoholic ex-husband, Alanna Mitchell confronts a terrible question: could she have done more to save him?

Feature

January 2016

This baby’s life

By Sanjay Khanna

Climate chaos. Economic upheaval. Psychological stress. A futurist looks for hope amid the coming turmoil.

Feature

December 2015

O cannabis

By Pieta Woolley

With the Trudeau government set to legalize marijuana, it’s time for a truly sober look at the pros and cons of pot

Feature

November 2015

Photo Essay: The Hillhurst effect

By Lyle Aspinall

Inside a United Church success story

Feature

November 2015

Sidebar: 'The pornography filled a void'

By Trisha Elliott

A United Church minister describes how a pornography dependency hurt his first marriage and how he recovered a healthy sex life. The 50-something church leader spoke to The Observer on condition of anonymity.

Special Feature

November 2015

The topic churches won't touch

By Erica Lenti

Online erotica is booming, and so are porn addictions. But mainline churches seem all too content to look away.

Feature

November 2015

Too much information?

By Kylie Taggart

Genetic testing can warn you about serious illnesses lurking in your DNA. The downside is chronic worry — and snooping insurance companies.

Feature

November 2015

‘It’s like a death in the family’

By Chantal Braganza

A Toronto church that welcomed 50 North Korean refugees speaks out against the mass deportation of their new friends

Feature

October 2015

ObserverDocs: Clearing the smoke

By Observer Staff

Special Feature

October 2015

The bridge

By Laura Eggertson

How a traumatized Aboriginal community fought back against an epidemic of youth suicide

Feature

October 2015

Verbatim

By Alanna Mitchell

'What if we talked about cancer as a dance instead of a war?'

Feature

October 2015

The town that paranoia built

By Anne Bokma

Salem, Mass., is a living monument to the perils of witch-hunting

Special Feature

September 2015

Murder on the margins

By Richard Wright

The beating death of Andrew Mixemong in small-town Ontario three years ago seemed like a blatant case of racist violence. It turns out the truth goes deeper — exposing gaps in the social fabric we’d rather ignore.

Feature

September 2015

Twilight blues

By Erica Lenti

Depressed seniors often struggle in silence. Why aren’t they getting the treatment they need?

Feature

September 2015

Unholy allies

By Donald Grayston

Christian Zionists are among Israel’s most ardent supporters. But their apocalyptic theology comes with dangerous strings attached.

Special Feature

August 2015

Broken dreams in Little Mogadishu

By Andrew Livingstone

Canada's Somali community continues to struggle with higher-than-average levels of violence, unemployment and discrimination

Feature

July 2015

Final decisions

By Various Writers

Dying used to be so simple. New laws and changing customs make for a more complicated exit.

Feature

July 2015

Baby(sitting) boomers

By Pieta Woolley

How much parenting should today’s grandmas and grandpas do?

Feature

July 2015

Sharing the path

By Julie McGonegal

Walking was a healing force at the end of the truth and reconciliation process. But the journey is far from over.

Feature

June 2015

'Do we still believe that something vital is in the making?'

By Phyllis Airhart

The United Church of Canada at 90

Feature

June 2015

Grim reminders

By Pieta Woolley

What should be done with Canada’s remaining Indian residential school buildings?

Feature

June 2015

Divorce in a fishbowl

By Trisha Elliott

Ending a marriage is tough. Imagine what it’s like when you’re a minister.

Feature

May 2015

Confronting the unbelievers

By Mike Milne

Reaction against a minister who came out as an atheist was swift and blunt. But questions persist about how to deal with clergy who no longer believe.

Feature

May 2015

The Cosby Showdown

By Anne Bokma

I wasn't amused when comedian Bill Cosby came to town amid fresh allegations of sexual assault. So I and 30 others planned our own stand-up moment.

Feature

May 2015

Forever young

By Larry Krotz

Researchers are using cutting-edge science in a quest to defy mortality. How far should they go?

Feature

May 2015

Men, not monsters

By John Barber

Offenders labelled 'NCR: Not Criminally Responsible’ are often judged to be beyond redemption. Documentary filmmaker John Kastner offers a different take and is transforming public opinion.

Feature

April 2015

Why kicking carbon makes dollars and sense

By Alanna Mitchell

Giving up fossil fuels will not only save life on Earth — it will also save us money

Feature

April 2015

Confronting the Sixties Scoop

By Anne Bokma

From the 1960s to the ’80s, some 20,000 Aboriginal children were removed from their homes and placed with non-Native families. Now adults, many want redress for the loss of cultural identity.

Feature

March 2015

Extreme downsizing

By Anne Bokma

For tiny house enthusiasts, sometimes less is more

Faith

The author is baptized at Central United in Calgary. (Photo courtesy of Al Coe)

Why I got baptized in a United Church at the age of 42

by Jacqueline Mercer-Livesey

"I told myself that I didn’t need to go to church to believe in God. I found peace and the Holy Spirit in the things that surrounded me. But still, there was a nagging sense of something missing."

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Observations

Editor/Publisher of The Observer, Jocelyn Bell.

Observations: The rewards of letting go

by Jocelyn Bell

Editor Jocelyn Bell reflects on the upcoming changes for The United Church of Canada, the magazine and in her own life.

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Video

ObserverDocs: Two nurses tackle Vancouver's opioid crisis

Richard Moore is a resident of Vancouver's Downtown Eastside. In this poignant interview, he explains the important work of nurses Evanna Brennan and Susan Giles.

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Faith

July 2018

250 United Church leaders have a message for Doug Ford

by Emma Prestwich

They're urging the new Ontario premier to remember those in need as he carries out promised economic reform.

Culture

July 2018

Tracing Nelson Mandela’s path a century after his birth

by Tim Johnson

A travel writer visits some of the places that shaped the anti-apartheid icon’s life.

Interviews

July 2018

Jamil Jivani sheds light on why young men radicalize

by Suzanne Bowness

In his book 'Why Young Men,' Jamil Jivani talks about his own experience as a troubled youth.

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