Religious Persecution is Byproduct of Pandemic

By Ray Cardello for October 20, 2021 Season 6 / Post 30

Here in America, we closed schools, churches, and some hospitals during the Pandemic. In contrast, Walmart, Target, and Planned Parenthood were open for business and abortions. Those priorities spoke volumes about the state of mind of those in charge during the Year of Covid. Very little made sense in the Bizzaro Year of 2020, and we have not improved on this in 2021. The people in charge are continuing to show their hands. Their decisions are not about public health but about controlling the public. The most egregious decisions were the shuttering of churches and the jailing of priests who defied their orders and tended their flock. This assault on our Right to Worship was not unique to America, and one of the most publicized cases happened north of our border.

Arthur Pawlowski grew up behind the Iron Curtain of Communism, and if asked about his life today in Canada, he will tell you little has changed. Pawlowski, the Canadian pastor who gained international media attention over his refusal to comply with draconian pandemic restrictions forcing him to shutter his church, was arrested again on October 2, 2021. The preacher, who was arrested in May for holding worship services in Calgary, Alberta, was taken into custody this week. He was apprehended and handcuffed by police on the Tarmac of the Calgary International Airport. His arrest was just the start of this bizarre story.

When Pastor Artur Pawlowski landed back in his home city of Calgary on Monday following a four-month tour of the United States, customs officials were waiting to cuff him on the tarmac for two criminal charges.

“They have fallen to a new low,” Pawlowski said of the Canadian authorities. “Our lawyers contacted them and asked them if there are any pending warrants for me when I was in the states. They said that there are no pending warrants, there is nothing outstanding.” When Pawlowski appeared in court, the Judge showed him who was really in charge. During his last hearing, prosecutors for Alberta Health Services (AHS) were seeking 21 days in jail and a fine of $2,000, plus $15,000 in legal costs. Justice Adam Germain had other ideas and took advantage of his moment in the spotlight.

The official written decision from Justice Adam Germain regarding the case of Pastor Artur Pawlowski has been released. The document puts in writing some the bizarre statements from the judge, including his suggestion that sending Pastor Artur back to jail, as requested by prosecutors representing Alberta Health Services, would “make him a martyr” and the script Pastor Artur is compelled to read any time he speaks against the official government narrative surrounding COVID-19.

Justice Germain also ordered Pastor Artur to condemn his own words, compelling the pastor to effectively denounce himself any time he makes comments on lockdowns, masks, vaccines, or any other pandemic-related topic.

Wrote Justice Germain:

The final term of his probation order will be that when he is exercising his right of free speech and speaking against AHS Health Orders and AHS health recommendations, in a public gathering or public forum (including electronic social media); he must indicate in his communications the following:

I am also aware that the views I am expressing to you on this occasion may not be views held by the majority of medical experts in Alberta. While I may disagree with them, I am obliged to inform you that the majority of medical experts favor social distancing, mask wearing, and avoiding large crowds to reduce the spread of COVID-19. Most medical experts also support participation in a vaccination program unless for a valid religious or medical reason you cannot be vaccinated. Vaccinations have been shown statistically to save lives and to reduce the severity of COVID-19 symptoms.

Discussing any potential violation of Pastor Artur’s rights, Justice Germain described pandemic restrictions as “intrusions on personal liberty,” but felt that they were not “sacrifices that would offend the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms and they are not egregious sacrifices.”

So in one decision, Judge Germain shredded a person’s right to free speech and religion. So, where is the problem? Is it the elected that are on a power trip during COVID? Or is it the judiciary who are not interpreting situations but legislating from the bench? It is probably best shared but watching various governments erode the rights of their citizens is painful. These rights were given by God and reinforced with the blood of brave men and women who sacrificed to preserve these rights. We cannot allow politicians and judges to erase them with the stroke of a pen.