Robert Brehl is a writer in Port Credit, Ont., and can be reached at bob@abc2.ca.

As we celebrate Canada Day we may not have a team in the exciting World Cup soccer tournament this month, but events surrounding it remind us that we’re so fortunate to live here. One news story really drove this point home: people in soccer-mad Africa are being killed by Islamist extremists for watching the games on television. 

No place for state in personal beliefs of nation

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Just before Christmas, 1967, then-justice minister Pierre Trudeau famously said: “There’s no place for the state in the bedrooms of the nation.”

PQ’s star candidate a Harper ally?

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A friend in Montreal — I’ll call her Sassy Knoll for her love of conspiracy theories — thinks Pierre-Karl Peladeau and Prime Minister Stephen Harper are in league to torpedo the Parti Quebecois’ chances in the crucial April 7 Quebec election.

Rolling Stone and the Pope: what a shame

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It is official: Pope Francis is a rock star. Or, at least that is what Rolling Stone magazine is announcing to the world by putting the Pontiff on its current cover.

Restoring my faith in media balance

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As a young lad, I remember coming home after being teased at school and my mother immediately asking me what was wrong.

Technology sure has a hold on us

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The other day, I lost my so-called smartphone. It was kind of dumb of me. But the episode set off a range of emotions; from the pit-in-my-stomach initial feeling to panic and stress at figuring out what to do next, including a little prayer to St. Anthony, to contentment realizing life without that digital albatross around my neck actually feels pretty good.

Bringing the Church back to its core

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Reading through Pope Francis’ fascinating 12,000-word interview in the Jesuit journal America Magazine, many thoughts and sentences leapt out, especially this one.

Always a car crash waiting to happen in Ottawa

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Political scandals, whether on Parliament Hill, city hall or elsewhere, are like car accidents: you don’t like to see them happen but it’s difficult to look away.

Humility, humour and simple kindness in Francis

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Like most everyone, I’ve been fascinated and delighted with the election of Pope Francis. His simple, gracious acts during his first days on the job bode well for the Church.

A Lenten message from a mother

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March, always a special month, is set to be one to remember this year. Forever a part of Lent and leading up to the holiest days of the year, March can also be a tease for Canadians: warm spring sunshine on the face one day followed by snow and sleet the next.

Heroes, it seems, only fall from their perches

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We’re still deep in winter and already this young year has been bad for “heroes.”

First, there was Notre Dame’s star linebacker Mante T’eo admitting he lied about a girlfriend he never had who died of cancer, although she never existed so she didn’t really die. Conveniently, the truth was only revealed after the national championship football game in January.