Pam Rocker writes about ending the practice of conversion therapy, saying "The way we treat LGBTQIA+ and Two-Spirit people will not change dramatically until we dismantle the archaic notion that heterosexuality equates to holiness."
St. Paul’s Indigenous Circle is an active group in a United Church congregation in Bowmanville, Ontario encouraging all to travel the rocky and difficult road to healing and reconciliation.
Dr. Velda Love of the United Church of Christ writes that her history is African centred and it’s beautiful.
At the Minority Youth Forum in Japan, Jacob Burns and Jacqueline Warner-Smith were exposed to a struggle for justice that had similarities to the Canadian experience.
Rev. Dr. Bentley de Bardelaben-Phillips of the United Church of Christ, writes about the recent powerful tour he took with colleagues to the Alabama cities of Birmingham and Montgomery, where much civil rights history took place.
Aimee Gavin writes about her volunteer outreach and advocacy work around homelessness in Port Credit, Mississauga, ON - where, as in many suburbs, homelessness can be largely invisible.
Rev. Allan David Smith-Reeve shares insights from the Bridging Teams program, where a core belief is that those who live in poverty are the lead problem-solvers.
Ekua Asabea Blair writes about the work of the Massey Centre to raise the issues affecting pregnant and parenting teens and the organization's advocacy for supportive housing for young parents.
Privilege is not only about racism! While we usually associate the phrase “check your privilege” in discussions about racism, the phrase has much wider implications. Ever so often we may need to check our privilege, to do that type of self-examination to see what advantages we may have which… Read more
Without question, being in a room with 1,500 other caring individuals is an uplifting phenomenon. The level of energy and optimism is so high that it is easy to see the potential for change, for solutions, for achieving positive responses.
As the United States sends asylum seekers back to danger, the world is watching.
Tessa Blaikie Whitecloud writes that neighbourhoods should be places where everyone is given a chance at the best life.
Kim Uyede-Kai writes from the Asian Ecumenical Women’s Assembly, a “herstorical” assembly where women could hear one another’s stories be given voice, some for the first time.
Sandy Hwang, one of four United Church young adults who participated in a young adult Pilgrimage of Justice and Peace organized by the National Council of Churches in Korea (NCCK) and the Ecumenical Youth Council in Korea (EYCK), shares her experience.
Rev. Dr. Kyongja (Kay) Cho shares the story of her two Korean brothers forced into the military on different sides during the Korean War.
John Egger, a Co-Worker in Mission in Korea, writes about joining 500,00 people to form a human peace chain across the DMZ separating North and South Korea.
Called to serve in global mission, Rob Witmer writes about his lifelong passion to serve in Japan.
Called to serve on a global mission trip to Nicaragua, Sarah Jane Wetelainen's faith journey and life choices were fundamentally shaped by the experience.
Called to serve in global mission service in Korea, John Egger is discovering firsthand the exciting new things God is calling us to.
John Durfey writes about a visit to a centre which offers emergency shelter for women in Japan escaping from violence and abuse.
Rev. Jean Stairs looks forward to a pilgrimage to El Salvador with a group of pilgrims from East Central Ontario / Eastern Ontario Outaouais Regional Councils.
John Durfey tells us about a visit to the Buraku Liberation Centre in Japan, a United Church partner which works to eradicate systemic prejudice against the marginalized buraku people.
Rev. Dr. Kyongja (Kay) Cho offers reflections at the Canadian launch of Korea Peace Now! Women Mobilizing to End the War.
That was brought home to me loud and clear when I read Paul Douglas Walfall’s blog about the role of United Church ministers in supporting the Ku… Read more
To describe Sarah (name is changed to protect her identity) in a few words is a difficult task, as she is a complex woman. She's a strong, dynamic woman of conscience who lives in several worlds. This sounds complicated, and it is.
During this past Advent, we put ourselves in the shoes of God’s people in biblical times as they wait for God to act. But the difference is that for us, we know what we’re waiting for (or we think we know), whereas for God’s people at the time, I don’t think they were quite sure what God had in… Read more
Ahmed (name is changed to protect his identity) is a 29-year-old university accounting graduate. He is married and works on his family's organic farm inside the Seam Zone in Tulkarm. Recently, to make ends meet, he found a part-time job in roofing. He told me that he cried some tears when he… Read more
They say a picture is worth more than 1,000 words, and I agree.
To try to understand the Rohingya crisis, I had read much about who the Rohingya Muslims are and why they are being persecuted. It has been pretty much an exercise of thinking—a head exercise. That changed when I saw the… Read more
When I acquired HIV in 1987, it was “a death sentence”. One of the first comments made by my GP in 1990 in Regina, when he gave me the HIV+ test result, was that I would need more tests to find out “when the clock started ticking.” Not very comforting words. My work in the community-based AIDS… Read more
In 2009, at the age of 19, my mother passed away from breast cancer.
I think, when we’re faced with profound injustice that we can’t comprehend fully, we are often brought back to experiences of our own where the piercing sensation of unfairness has touched us. That’s what I was thinking… Read more
As a child living in my First Nation community, I used to walk to the freshwater stream with my great grandmother to bring water home because we did not have running water. In the wintertime, it was harder to get water because the stream and the community water pipe were frozen. Instead, we… Read more
At the ACT Alliance General Assembly, the possibilities created by including youth in decision making are too great to pass up.
At the ACT Alliance General Assembly, the church continues to twist itself in knots about sex and sexuality.
Amina Mohammed of the U.N. recognized the work of ACT Alliance and other faith-based organizations, placing them firmly in the centre of the public square as essential and effective players in civil society and as prophetic agents of change.
A reflection on the speaker selection for a gender justice panel at the ACT Alliance General Assembly in Uppsala, Sweden, which consisted of a majority of men.
A dispatch from the ACT Alliance meeting in Uppsala, Sweden, where ecumenical justice activists highlight the power of change of local faith communities around the world.
In celebration of the canonization of Salvadoran Archbishop Oscar Romero this Sunday, we lift up the partnership between Bay of Quinte Conference and Mission & Service partner, Iglesia Bautista Emmanuel, as an example of the many ways The United Church of Canada has and continues to work… Read more
It was an historic moment and new day for world peace and for peace on the Korean peninsula when U.S. President Trump and North Korean Chairman Kim Jong-un met in Singapore on June 12, 2018. Unfortunately, Canada’s reaction to the summit is lining us up to be the wrong side of history.
“Today, 80 million hearts across the peninsula are broken.”
On Sunday (May 20), Venezuelans will elect a president and other local officials. It will be the fifth presidential election and 25th election of any type to take place in Venezuela since 1998, when Hugo Chávez was elected. His successor, Nicolás Maduro, is the front-runner in the current… Read more
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it's the only thing that ever has.
I have heard this quote often. So often that when I hear someone starting to say it I begin to think, “Oh no, isn’t this a bit… Read more
The silence of the streets is eerie. Everywhere that we have gone in Palestine has been busy with people, traffic, and commerce as well as the ubiquitous military presence. Not so in the old city of Hebron. Hebron reflects a microcosm of the conflict in this ancient land. Generations of peoples… Read more
From April 25 to 27, I and other United Church and Mennonite Central Committee colleagues are going to Ottawa to meet with members of Parliament, senators, and government officials. We are privileged to have as part of this delegation Michael Lynk, UN Special Rapporteur on the Situation of Human… Read more
Last summer, I spent three memorable hours in prison. I had not been arrested.
For centuries an olive branch has symbolized peace.
Greek and Roman cultures used the symbol as early as 2,500 years ago. The dual image of a dove with an olive branch has been a Christian symbol of peace since the end of the first century CE. This comes (in part) from Genesis 8:11,… Read more
Another world is necessary, urgent, and already in the making.
These are the core beliefs of those who attended the 12th World Social Forum (WSF) - a convergence of solutions, energies, and goodwill for the building of another world.
United Church Women have been very busy this past year, working to keep the issue of child poverty in Canada front and centre among all levels of government. Their Bread not Stones website at www.endchildpoverty.ca… Read more
It’s the children of Palestine I think about the most!
In the summer of 2015 I spent two months in Susiya, a small village in the South Hebron Hills of Palestine on a UN assignment. The homes of Susiya were once again being threatened with demolition by the Israeli government. The people… Read more
At the Heart of Justice blog continues the focus on health care in Canada with a series by Bill Blaikie, The United Church of Canada’s representative to the Canadian Health Coalition. We offer this personal reflection by Bill as an invitation… Read more
When you can’t find a family doctor in your community, or if you’re a hospital patient waiting for care from a desperately overworked nurse – then you understand the importance of finding solutions to Canada’s shortage of doctors and nurses. But allowing more private health care facilities won’t… Read more
Scripture tells us that we are created in the image of God (Genesis 1:26-27), and throughout the Bible we are reminded to act justly and to care for those on the margins (Isaiah 58:5-10, Mark 10:21). The United Church of Canada believes that as we lead lives of compassion and justice, “the poor… Read more
The United Church of Canada cares for refugees because we believe that sharing God’s love is our prime purpose. We believe that justice is the public face of God’s love, and work to share God’s love on a personal, local and global level.
I see the face of God in refugees’ faces:… Read more