UC Observer logo
UCObserver on SoundCloud UCObserver on YouTube UCObserver on Facebook UCObserver on Twitter UCObserver's RSS Feeds

Society

Feature

January 2017

The new agrarians

By Lois Ross

In the next 15 years, almost half of Canadian farms will change hands. Meet seven millennials who view agriculture as a career — and moral calling.

Feature

January 2017

Little bundles of nerves

By Denise Davy

Anxiety disorders are the most common mental health problem among children and youth today. Why is this generation so jittery?

Feature

January 2017

From kennel to courtroom

By Kat Eschner

A legal bid to save 21 former fighting dogs from being euthanized is part of a growing movement to grant animals some of the same rights as humans

Feature

January 2017

Prisonland

By Anne Bokma

Three years after shutting down, Canada’s oldest and most notorious prison is now a blockbuster tourist attraction. Is it trading on tragedy?

Feature

January 2017

The platitude trap

By Jonathan Orbell

Faced with senseless tragedy, many of us cling to religious clichés. But there's a different path.

Feature

December 2016

A black and white problem

By Anthony Bailey

Canadians are deceiving themselves if they think racism is only an American affliction. A recent deadly police beating casts our own prejudice in stark relief.

Feature

December 2016

Empty nests, broken hearts

By Anne Bokma

How today’s ultra-engaged parents suffer when their children take flight

Feature

November 2016

Neglected no more

By Evie Ruddy

The remains of dozens of children lie buried near the location of the residential school they attended in Regina. Local activists are determined to protect the site from being developed or forgotten.

Special Feature

October 2016

Ghost whisperers

By Elena Gritzan

Do the dead remain among us? Paranormal investigators are determined to prove what science rejects, Christianity scorns — and half of Canadians believe.

Special Feature

September 2016

Rainbow Muslims

By Davide Mastracci

More than half of Canadian Muslims believe it’s impossible to be an observant Muslim while living openly in an LGBT relationship. El-Farouk Khaki and Troy Jackson, co-founders of Unity Mosque, are proving there is another way.

Feature

July 2016

Mr. Trump comes to Cleveland

By Mark Giuliano

The eyes of the world will be focused on the Republican National Convention this month. A landmark church near the meeting site is offering a warm welcome while bracing for unrest.

Feature

July 2016

The disease of colonialism

By Larry Krotz

Can a straight line be drawn between rising rates of diabetes among Indigenous peoples and cultural assimilation?

Special Feature

June 2016

A new way to die

By Various Writers

Five United Church people who helped shape Canada’s groundbreaking laws about options at the end of life

Special Feature

June 2016

Spirit bear

By Pieta Woolley

Feature

June 2016

Remembering Gloria Taylor

By Chelsea Temple Jones

Feature

June 2016

All the lonely people

By André Picard

An estimated six million Canadians live in isolation. Social researchers are now calling it a hidden epidemic.

Feature

May 2016

Married to mental illness

By Denise Davy

The burden of caring for a spouse with serious psychological issues will test even the strongest relationship

Feature

May 2016

Sidebar: ‘He looked at me and said, “Look what you made me do.”’

By Denise Davy

Former NHL goalie Clint Malarchuk battled depression, anxiety and obsessive-compulsive disorder for years and chronicled it all in his book, The Crazy Game. In 2008, in a fit of depression, he shot himself in the head. His wife, Joanie Malarchuk, was sitting beside him at the time. She talked to Denise Davy in a phone interview from Nevada.

Feature

May 2016

Spare the rod, protect the child

By John Barber

With the Trudeau government on the verge of banning spanking, critics ask: why has it taken Canada so long?

Feature

May 2016

Are vegans right?

By David Macfarlane

The writer is in the midst of a radical six-month change of diet. He’s discovering that no cheeseburger tastes as good as being ethical feels.

Feature

May 2016

Out in the wilderness

By Alison Brooks-Starks

For one week last summer, a United Church camp in Saskatchewan welcomed transgender kids and their siblings

Feature

May 2016

Special report: Syrian refugees

By Various Writers

More than 300 congregations mobilized to help Syrian refugees. A sampling follows.

Feature

May 2016

Anglicans at a crossroads

By Michael Coren

They will vote on same-sex marriage at their General Synod in July. The consequences could be far-reaching.

Feature

May 2016

Verbatim

By Kylie Taggart

‘Parts of our lives are beyond scientific understanding’

Feature

April 2016

Churches under the gun

By Anne Bokma

Shootings in the sanctuary. Pistols in the pulpit. The culture of violence is infiltrating U.S. places of worship.

Feature

April 2016

For gun-control activists, the cause is political — and personal

By Anne Bokma

Feature

April 2016

The United Church of Christ: two decades of demanding gun control 

By Anne Bokma

Feature

April 2016

Diagnosis: poverty

By Susan Peters

Being poor can actually shorten your life. A new tool is helping doctors query patients about their physical and financial health.

Feature

March 2016

A citizen of nowhere

By Feras Saedam

For stateless Palestinians like Feras Saedam, life can be one long identity-card crisis. Occasionally there’s a happy ending.

Feature

March 2016

The fighter

By Richard Wright

When he was 13 years old, Willie Blackwater stood up to his abuser at a B.C. Indian residential school. His defiance would eventually help change the course of Canadian history.

Promotional Image

Editorials

David Wilson%

Observations

by David Wilson

Outrage is the new normal

Promotional Image

Video

ObserverDocs: A Tale of Two Cancers

by Observer Staff

Catherine Gordon's October 2017 feature for The Observer, 'A tale of two cancers,' recently caught the eye of U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders and his Washington, D.C.-based team, and inspired a short documentary. Gordon talks about the experience of writing the article and participating in the film.

Promotional Image

Profiles

October 2017

Fall from grace

by Justin Dallaire

Don Hume was a United Church minister nearing retirement. Then he tried crack cocaine.

Faith

September 2017

Yearning

by Jane Dawson

Restless longing is at the core of the human condition, urging us onward through life. What happens when it veers off course?

Society

July 2017

From far and wide

by Various Writers

Meet 11 immigrants who are putting down new roots

Faith

October 2017

A tale of two cancers

by Catherine Gordon

One year after the writer discovered she had breast cancer, her sister in California received the same diagnosis. They both recovered, but their experiences were worlds apart.

World

June 2017

Resisting genocide

by Sally Armstrong

In August 2014, ISIS attacked Iraq’s Yazidis, slaughtering thousands and forcing women and girls into sexual slavery. Today, the survivors are fighting for their ancient way of life.

Society

April 2017

Dear Grandkids

by Various Writers

Six acclaimed Canadian authors write letters from the heart

Promotional Image