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Reconciliation

A Tale of Two Wives: Scenes of Systemic Racism and The First Wife

At a church planting conference, I heard this metaphor which really described my own experience with systemic racism. Pastor Norton Lages argued “Canadian culture treats other cultures like an abusive husband who sends his wife to counselling expecting her to change.” If you have even been part of such a situation, you know how messy and hopeless it can be. 

Forgive Everyone Co.

As I’ve grown in my journey in the fight for social justice, it has been difficult for me to forgive the shames of my own past. Today, I am passionate about pushing ideals of racial equality, gender equality, criminal justice reform, etc. forward. But this was not always the case. Just eight short years ago, in my freshman year of high school, I began a slow descent into alt-right and supremacist ideologies online.

Turning Things Upside Down

Hundreds of protestors gathered at the steps of the Colorado State Capitol to protest Columbus Day and called to abolish the holiday. The protest was about the historical conquest of North America by Europeans, and to call attention to the losses suffered by the Native American peoples and their cultures.

Treatyless on Wet’suwet’en Yintah

If faith doesn't matter in all things

then faith doesn't really matter.

Integration Fatigue

I visited a young and energetic African American church located in south suburban Chicago last year. The church was once a failing white Reformed church who decided to take a gamble to reach a growing middle class African American community. Most of the white former members had left for other churches. With a vibrant African American pastoral couple, the church has transformed into a mostly African American congregation eager to reach others. This kind of church is rare in my circle. Could this be the start of something new in my denomination? I want more churches like this. 

Spark!

In November we held a conference here in Truro, Nova Scotia called “Spark!”. It was a new take on an old conference – we’ve held a Day of Encouragement event here every two years for a long time, providing an opportunity for the CRC churches in the Maritimes to gather for a day of learning and fellowship. When I was asked to write about it for Do Justice, my first thought was, “this wasn’t specifically a ‘justice’ conference…” But the more I reflect, the more I feel that the themes of justice and mission and the future of the church are all intertwined.

The “F” Word

The “F” word that I encounter regularly has a way deeper impact than the one you are probably thinking about. FEAR. 

"Forget Everything And Run” or “Face Everything And Rise. "

Climbing the Mountain of Reconciliation

I recently went on a trip to the Yukon, I’m not a big hiker so when my friend led me along the side of a steep slope on a mountain sheep trail I was well out of my comfort zone.  But I was also exhilarated, it was a new experience for me, on a perfect fall day. I was enjoying good conversation with my friend, and we could see our goal far up the hill.  

Grounded in Grace

“Grace is bad arithmetic”--famous words from my pastor Dave Vroege in a sermon just over a year ago. He continued, explaining how grace is nonsense.

“Grace is bad arithmetic.”

Nonsense! Why? Because it is given to us regardless of whether we want it or not.

I’ve always understood grace to be an action word. An invitation on how to behave and act. It’s the absence of anger and the presence of love and peacefulness.

Hard words to hold when one is full of rage.

Bringing Forth Fruit Worthy of Repentence

We noticed her standing just inside the front entrance looking up. While she was waiting to load her bus with the summer camp kids, she had stepped into the church foyer and saw the land acknowledgement: The Community Christian Reformed Church of Meadowvale is located on the Treaty Lands and Traditional Territories of the Mississaugas of the Credit First Nation.

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