Author: Colin Postma

01 Oct 2020 Federal Liberals retable criminal ban on “conversion therapy” with major legal implications for pastoral ministry

Today, the federal Liberal government tabled Bill C-6 (which was before Parliament earlier this year as Bill C-8). The bill defines conversion therapy as any “practice, treatment or service designed to change a person’s sexual orientation to heterosexual or gender identity to cisgender, or to repress or reduce non-heterosexual attraction or sexual behaviour.” In case that is unclear, let me apply it directly to the pastoral work of the church. This bill, if passed as written, would make it a criminal offence to help a person struggling with their sexual orientation...

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19 Aug 2020 Grassroots Campaign to expand worship services in Ontario

From mid-March until June 12th, our congregations have been unable to gather together for corporate worship. Since June 12th, the Province of Ontario has allowed church services to resume with a 30% capacity cap. Since that time, the vast majority of municipalities and counties in Ontario have enacted mask bylaws.Church communities and the work of our churches amongst their members and their neighbourhoods is extremely limited by these capacity requirements. As a result of ongoing limits and restrictions, our church communities and the work of our churches amongst their members and...

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09 Jul 2020 Parental Rights and Education in Alberta: A Timeline of Success

Real progress in education! The past two years on the Alberta education front have been anything but dull. To name just a few memories… The court challenge against Bill 24. The emails. The phone calls. The Gideon Project. The appeal hearing and ARPA’s intervention there. The Education Amendment Act. And now, finally, the Choice in Education Act. Below, we've put together a timeline of legislation from limiting parental involvement to legislation promoting the idea that parents know what’s best for their children. An Act to Support Gay Straight Alliances In November 2017, Alberta’s...

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25 Jun 2020 Ruth the Can Collector: The Case for Restoring Old Testament Gleaning Principles

  By Mark Penninga If Ruth the Moabite lived today, she would probably have resorted to collecting empties from recycling bins and on the sides of roads to feed herself and her mother-in-law, Naomi. Few Bible stories warm my heart like that of Ruth. When Ruth moved to Israel from Moab with her mother-in-law Naomi, she was vulnerable on a number of levels: widowed, without children, a foreigner, and the caregiver of her mother-in-law, who was also widowed.If Ruth the Moabite lived today, she would probably have resorted to collecting empties from recycling...

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03 Jun 2020 Canada’s lack of strategy in targeting COVID-19 led to unnecessary crisis in long-term care homes

By Anna Nienhuis Long-term care facilities house some of our society’s most vulnerable: those who need help eating, using the bathroom, or simply turning over in bed. The fact that some of our elders are facing neglect and abuse from those meant to care for them incites justifiable outrage. We need to ask what can be done to improve long-term care and assisted living. But we also need to ask how our governments’ (federal, provincial, and municipal) responses to COVID-19 contributed to this. Long-term care homes were known to be high risk Outbreaks...

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02 Jun 2020 Funding for Victims of Human Trafficking Quietly Removed during COVID-19

  In the midst of the 2020 COVID-19 crisis, the Canadian federal government has quietly removed funding for several programs that work with sex trafficking survivors. The London Abused Women's Center released a press release on May 12th announcing that federal funding for their organization and others had been eliminated. Here is a portion of what they released: After waiting for months and repeatedly contacting the Justice Department, organizations across Canada providing long-term support to trafficked, prostituted and sexually exploited women and girls discovered their funding proposals submitted to the Justice Department...

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29 May 2020 Over 400 Ontario Churches Call on Premier to Allow a Gradual Reopening

  By Colin Postma Several weeks ago, I wrote about the Church of God in Aylmer, Ontario - a small, rural congregation that held church services in their parking lot in response to social distancing laws. I did not expect the level of response that post received. Clearly, this situation highlighted concerns about religious freedom for many in this province, and around the country! This situation highlighted concerns about religious freedom The Ontario Government, using their emergency powers during the COVID-19 crisis, prohibits gatherings of more than five people. The congregation in Aylmer...

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05 May 2020 2020 National Pro-Life Prayer Service

Each year we host a national prayer service in the nation's capital. This year we are holding a prayer service online instead. Pastor Winston Bosch, pastor of Ottawa's Jubilee Canadian Reformed Church will lead us through a meditation, and then several prayers will be offered on this day of the March for Life. Join us: Thursday, May 14: 11 am EDT, 10 am CDT, 9am MST, 8am PST This event will be livestreamed to our Facebook page, and to our Youtube Page. Watch on Facebook!Watch on Youtube!    ...

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29 Apr 2020 Holding Church in your Car? Not in Ontario!

By Colin Postma This past Sunday, April 26th a small congregation met in the lazy little town of Aylmer, Ontario for worship. That sentence wouldn’t normally invite much commentary – in fact you might think it was the beginning of a novel. It might surprise you to know, however, that this was big news. COVID-19 has changed the landscape of worship in our country for the last 7 or so weeks – and rightly so. Glancing over the headlines of major newspapers, you might think this congregation packed the building, shook hands,...

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08 Apr 2020 Is Corporate Worship “Essential”? Some Biblical Considerations for the Church’s Response.

  Essential services are a hot topic right now, as everyone wonders whether their place of employment or job description qualifies as “essential” under COVID-19 restrictions. Essential services include the obvious: nurses and doctors, fire fighters, grocery stores, child protective services, police officers. But they extend far beyond that, even including liquor and recreational cannabis stores. The result is that some businesses with hundreds of employees continue to operate with minimal oversight, while others have closed despite there being measures they could easily take to mitigate risk. Churches are not on the...

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