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COVID-19, Frozen 2, and “This Strange Time”

For some unknown reason, the sun still rose this morning, and it shone all day long. The chilly Atlantic winds still stung my cheeks and brought tears to my eyes. The taste of chocolate was still my favourite refuge. The joy of birdsong outside my window still...

All about PRAYER

What does prayer mean to you? What are the problems that prayer poses? What does it promise? In June 2019, Touchstone offered a special issue devoted to some of the questions related to prayer. We invite you to respond to that issue, or indeed simply offer your...

One Order of Ministry: A Robust Conversation

As we draw this series of blogs on One Order of Ministry to a close, we're grateful to two past Moderators, Lois Wilson and Peter Short, for their wisdom and insight as they offer the final reflections. Ministry is a demanding, Spirit-led, and complex vocation, and my...

Peter Short: Reflections on Ministry

Download PDF "Peter Short: Reflections on Ministry" The work of a minister is a bewildering array. Are you not a counselor? Are you not a mediator? Community development leader, educator, advocate? And aren't you a public speaker, an administrator and a servant? You...

Lois Wilson: Which Way will the United Church Go?

 Download PDF "Lois Wilson: Which Way will the United Church Go?"             I welcome the current discussion around One Order of Ministry because we need clarity in this area of our church’s life. Ephesians 4: 11 puts it succinctly, “The gifts we have were that some...

Kate Jones: Reflections on One Order of Ministry

Download PDF "Kate Jones: Reflections on One Order of Ministry"             Ministry does not exist for its own benefit; ministry exists for the benefit of the church.  Likewise, the church does not exist for its own benefit; the church exists for the benefit of God’s...

Linda Yates: “Ministry, in-love”

Download PDF Linda Yates: “Ministry, in-love” One summer, reveling in the new status of Affirming, the Session of St. John’s United Church in Halifax suggested a theological event for Pride Week exploring sexuality in the Bible and Christian tradition. The Session...

Joanne Anquist: Reflections on One Order of Ministry

Download PDF "Joanne Anquist: Reflections on One Order of Ministry"             If there’s one thing I’ve learned in my theological studies, it’s that context is everything.             If you truly want to understand what a biblical writer is saying, you have to know...

All about PRAYER

What does prayer mean to you? What are the problems that prayer poses? What does it promise? In June 2019, Touchstone offered a special issue devoted to some of the questions related to prayer. We invite you to respond to that issue, or indeed simply offer your...

One Order of Ministry Discussion Papers

Download Discussion Papers - invitation to readers In August 2015 at its triennial General Council, The United Church of Canada undertook to ask the whole church to agree to establish a single order of ministry. Touchstone is hosting an online conversation on this...

COVID-19, Frozen 2, and “This Strange Time”

For some unknown reason, the sun still rose this morning, and it shone all day long. The chilly Atlantic winds still stung my cheeks and brought tears to my eyes. The taste of chocolate was still my favourite refuge. The joy of birdsong outside my window still...

October 2018 “Beauty, God’s Signature”

Volume 36 October 2018 Number 3 Touchstone-October-2018-finalDownload Editorial ArticlesJonathan Edwards and the Beauty of God - Paul Miller Beauty and the Aesthetics of Poetry in the Bible - Judith H. Newman Beauty and Preaching - Paul Scott Wilson The Gift of...

June 2018 “Providence and Prayer”

Volume 36 June 2018 Number 2 Touchstone-June-2018-15Download Editorial ArticlesThe Sovereignty and Self-Limitation of God: Biblical and Theological Reflections on Providence - Harold Wells Reflections on Providence and Prayer in an Age of Science - Anna Case-Winters...

February 2018 “1968”

February 2018 "1968" Volume 36 February 2018 Number 1 Touchstone-February-2018-Draft-9Download Editorial ArticlesHow the Sixties Shifted North American Spirituality - Mark A. Lemke Martin Luther King as Preacher - Jason Byassee Karl Barth, 1886-1968: A Life in...

October 2017 “Free Creative Self-Withdrawal”

October 2017 “Free Creative Self-Withdrawal”

October 2017 "Free Creative Self-Withdrawal" Volume 35 October 2017 Number 3 Touchstone-October-2017Download Editorial ArticlesGod's Justice and Righteousness - Michael Welker "The Vision of an Archangel, The Enthusiasm of a Prophet, The Soul of a Hero": S.D. Chown's...

February 2017 “Pathways to Renewal”

February 2017 "Pathways to Renewal" In this issue: Volume 35 February 2017 Number 1 "Pathways to Renewal" Editorial Articles What Secular Canada? - Jason Byassee A Renewal Experience at Parkdale United Church with the Unbinding Series - Anthony D. Bailey Showing Up:...

October 2016 “Reconciliation”

October 2016 "Reconciliation" In this issue: Volume 34 October 2016 Number 3 "Reconciliation" Editorial Articles A Brief Theology of Reconciliation - Philip G. Ziegler The Church as Confessing Community: Dietrich Bonhoeffer's Theology of Forgiveness and Reconciliation...

June 2016 “Vocation”

June 2016 "Vocation" In this issue: Volume 34 June 2016 Number 2 "Vocation" Editorial Articles A Funny Thing Happened..."Vocation" in the Reformation Era - Sandra Beardsall "What's to be Done?" - "Vocation" in the Bible - Bill Richards "Killing Me Softly with His...