Features/Features

Standing at the brink of history, it is impossible not to wonder what’s on the other side. Pope Francis’ six-day penitential pilgrimage through Canada will certainly be historic. There has never been a papal journey like this. But there’s more to it that just originality.

WYD 20 years later: Welcoming Francis, remembering John Paul II

By

It’s 20 years to the (give or take) day since Pope John Paul II visited Canada, and Canada is once again graced with another papal visit.

Synod shining light on Church warts

By

What the Church believes, what it thinks, what it cares about and where it’s going are subjects of debate and speculation every day in classrooms, in parish halls and on social media. But Sudbury, Ont., theologian Christopher Duncanson-Hales is seizing on the synod process to inject some real-life, empirical data into the Catholic conversation.

Schmalz unveils hope for historic visit

By

Originally, Timothy Schmalz did not intend his latest creation, Mary, Untier of Knots, to be his artistic muse to symbolically represent the ongoing truth and reconciliation efforts in Canada. 

Teacher MikeAll uses hip hop culture to help students find voice

By

In Michael Grandsoult’s eighth grade classroom, students are encouraged to use music and rhymes to tell the story of their lives.

One last Mass eased a father’s passing

By

Readers may recall my May 2020 article in this publication. I shared how my Dad, Edward Ecker, was coping with the reality of the COVID-19 pandemic while living in a long-term care facility in Brantford, Ont.  

Heeding ‘red flags’ to combat trafficking

By

When Sr. Nancy Brown began serving as pastoral counsellor at Covenant House Vancouver in 1998, her eyes were opened to the sex-trafficking crisis happening right under the nose of everyday Canadians.

Trafficking numbers down, but challenge is in accessing true figures

By

Human trafficking incidents reported by Canadian police declined from 546 in 2019 to 515 in 2020, according to Statistics Canada, but advocates for victims are under no illusion that the numbers are dwindling.

Artistic styles of Spanish Empire as real as it gets

By

To anyone who ever thought St. Paul was talking philosophically or theologically when he said “The wages of sin is death,” 18th-century Ecuadorean sculptor Manuel Chili, known as Caspicara, has left a message in wood, glass, metal and paint. Four sculptures called The Fates of Man illustrate St. Paul’s warning in the most immediate, visceral and concrete sense possible.

The healing waters of Lac Ste. Anne

By

Steve Simon knows that one of the best tricks in photography is learning how to record the invisible — things like faith, hope, healing, memory, time and wonder. The award-winning photographer, now based in New York, learned this trick early in his career at Lac Ste. Anne.

Annual Lac Ste. Anne pilgrimage dates back to 1889

By

The legacy of the Lac Ste. Anne pilgrimage stretches back a lot longer than the Church remembers. Lac Ste. Anne was a sacred pilgrimage site for centuries before French Oblate missionaries arrived at Fort des Prairies (later known as Edmonton) in 1843.