- People & Places
When I was a teenager, someone in my congregation gave me a dire warning about university. He made claws with his fingers and got a nasty look on his face. “They’re wolves,” he said. “And they will rip you apart. They’ll tear the Christian faith right out of you.”
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Long Road to Freedom
A reflection on the life and legacy of Nelson Mandela.
Exodus 6:6-7: "I am the Lord and I will free you...and deliver you from slavery... I will take you as my people, and I will be your God....
Journeys, destinations and new beginnings.
From July 6 to 22, 2012, Connie Wardle participated in a pilgrimage through countries touched by the Protestant Reformation—France, Switzerland and Scotland. This is the 10th of a...
Carolling across the threshold
"Travelling Christmas carols!" my friend Faye announced. "I saw it in a movie once and I think our church should try it." I asked her what travelling carols...
Finding warmth during a cold season.
It was my first Christmas alone and my internal landscape was as bleak as leafless trees against a grey sky. There was no warmth or comfort that year. The...
God grant me the serenity.
When we are empty, there is nothing to give. Sometimes, from that empty state, we give anyway. This can lead to renewed energy in the short term: It's...
Don't confuse one with the other.
There are two Christmases. One is the Christian Christmas and the other is the secular Christmas. This winter festival still carries the Christmas name, and, for nostalgic reasons,...
Levelled and Trowelled
Easter in Mexico to build homes.
Every year since 2005, to mark the 100th anniversary of Grace, Calgary, a group of us has driven down to Mexico to build homes. The smallest group was...
Pray for Peace
Living Faith seeks justice.
Living Faith 8.4 and 8.5 God is not always fair, but God is always just. I recently prepared a sermon on our Lord's parable, "The Workers in the Vineyard."...
The AMS’s annual gathering is good for the soul.
An annual meeting of the Atlantic Mission Society is kind of how I imagine a kitchen party in a brightly - coloured cottage on the shores of St....
Faith and the University
A conference explores the state of theological studies.
When I was a teenager, someone in my congregation gave me a dire warning about university. He made claws with his fingers and got a nasty look on...
Preparing the Preacher
Post-Christendom unfolds daily outside the seminary window.
"The challenge of theological education today is to prepare leaders for a church that we can't quite see yet." Rev. Dr. John Vissers speaks from long experience. The...
We can all be heroes.
The author of Luke's gospel tells us that one day Jesus told a story to his disciples and the crowd that had gathered around him. Jesus' listeners included...
The Business of Mission
Creating sustainability in 21st-century Taiwan
The Presbyterian Church in Taiwan's modern - day mission is rooted in a commitment to parish - level witness and outreach, and draws both on its missionary heritage...
The Question is Coming
Family, divorce and same sex marriage.
Living Faith 8.2 and 8.3 We rarely stop and give thanks to John Calvin, one of the founding theologians in the Presbyterian tradition, for the gift of divorce. We...
Remembering the Padres
Canada’s military chaplains in the
Second World War.
The padre scrambled over the stony beach dodging machine gun and mortar fire. It seemed like every few feet he came across another Canadian soldier lying wounded. With...
A Journey to Justice
Rediscovering what God requires of us.
In the 1970s, while working in Japan, I received a call from Rev. Dr. In Ha Lee, who had been the main author of a new mission statement...
A Malawian in Canada
Reflections on church.
Dear beloved daughter Fannie, It is summer here in Toronto in June and everyone looks delighted to see the sun. Everyone keeps telling me that I am lucky to...
The Denton Effect
Changing the face of Winnipeg, one refugee at a time
The city of Winnipeg is famous for its chilling weather and flat prairie land, but one man's work in sponsoring refugees is turning Winnipeg into a welcoming and...
A Great Mystery
We must believe in the resurrection.
The faith is a great mystery to me and nothing about it is cut and dried. Frederick Buechner, the American Presbyterian author, says if we want to discover...
The Church of the Bonsai
We must bear fruit.
I know this confession will fuel the fire of those who think my brain never leaves the church office, even on my day off, but sometimes a great...