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January 27, 2015

Anne Rice: Queen of Vampire Writers

By:Richard Handler

What’s a vampire writer doing visiting the good Christian studios of Context, talking with Lorna, who was clearly both delighted and unsure of what to expect? As she admitted to both the audience and Anne Rice, the old Mennonite in her (and the present evangelical) was clearly ambivalent about this whole “sex and blood” vampire enterprise. Read More
January 19, 2015

How Do We Name The Enemy? A Discussion

By:Lorna Dueck

What’s the biggest religion story in the world? France’s Charlie Hedbo fallout, says former CBC current affairs and Ideas producer, Richard Handler. Richard is our “Stubborn Agnostic” blogger and dialogues with Lorna, (the “Stubborn Evangelist”) on this topic. Read More
January 19, 2015

Fields of Blood

By:Richard Handler

Karen Armstrong seems to be the St. Paul of religion historians. Even before her breakthrough best-seller A History of God was published in 1993, she visited studios and assemblies, small and large, speaking, being interviewed, and proclaiming her positions. Lorna had time to catch up with her recently in Toronto to talk about her new book, Fields of Blood: Religion and the History of Violence. Read More
January 13, 2015

Dying to be Thin

By:Richard Handler

My own feeling when I see these individuals is complete and utter sadness. How in the one of the most prosperous countries on the face of the earth, in a world of poverty and not enough to eat, can these people starve themselves? I know they are ill; it’s not their fault because, as we hear on this last episode of Context, the plague of eating disorders is “complicated.” This means there is no single cause for any of them. Read More
January 13, 2015

Abella's Story

By:Kristina Evanov

Abella's Story was written by Kristina Evanov for children ages 8-12 who are struggling with body image. Kristina is the audience coordinator here at Context with Lorna Dueck and has wrestled with the issue of body image in the past. You can hear her story on our latest episode: Dying to be Thin Read More
January 5, 2015

The Stubborn Evangelist VS The Stubborn Agnostic

By:Lorna Dueck

Lorna goes back and forth with our 'Stubborn Agnostic' blogger Richard Handler on the existence of angels and the nature of belief and spirituality. Read More
December 31, 2014

2014 Reflections

By:Richard Handler

One of the things I love about being your Stubborn Agnostic blogger is that I work in a warm but alien environment. Almost by definition, alien environments are supposed to be hostile. One doesn’t think of them as welcoming. But Context IS welcoming -- it invited me in. My friend Lorna Dueck said to me, in the late spring, “It would be good to have some pushback.” Pushback that is, from a stick-in-the-mud secularist.
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December 23, 2014

Angels: The Secular Version

By:Richard Handler

Author John Geiger, an unlikely spiritualist, speaks of encounters with hidden forces in his book The Angel Effect: The Powerful Force that Ensures We Are Never Alone. Geiger, a former Globe and Mail journalist, told Lorna he that has never experienced the angel effect himself, but he has experienced intimations, felt presences. Whether these are real angels or psychological effects, stimulations in the brain’s cerebral cortex, we can leave till another time of year. Why play the secular Scrooge just to spoil the Christmas cheer! Read More
December 23, 2014

A Fresh Start

By:Lorna Dueck

Christmas is about the gift of new beginnings. We’ve loaded endless tinsel around the season, but the universally accepted tradition of giving gifts happens because God gave humanity a gift. Read More
December 15, 2014

The Vicar of Baghdad

By:Richard Handler

Iraq was once home to 1.5 million Christians. Most have fled; some have been killed. There are now an estimated 250,000 Christians left -- many of them displaced in their own country. Of those who left, White assured us, almost all don’t want to return. The Christian community is heading for extinction. Read More