Now a household name in most Christian circles after his standoff with Calgary policemen at his church went viral, Pastor Artur Pawlowski expressed concern about the future of churches in Canada.
According to The Epoch Times, Pastor Pawlowski fled communist Poland in 1990. His experiences growing up have shaped in him a steel determination to stand strong in faith when faced with communist-like suppression of religious liberties.
"It was about 50,000 communists that were ruling over 36 million Poles," he said while recounting his story in an interview.
"They could come into your house [at] five in the morning, beat you up, torture, even murder. A number of clergymen were murdered," he said in reminiscent of his Polish past.
Pawlowski has made it his practice to do research and to fact-check anything that a government says. He explained that he grew up in a country where the government and the mainstream media were pretty much in cahoots to deceive people.
In 1995, he came to Canada in hopes of experiencing freedom. He would later realize that his host country's government would one day exploit a global health emergency to deprive people their civil liberties.
Epoch Times noted that Pawlowski has been fined for holding church services beyond the allowed capacity, considered a violation under the new public heath order. But when policemen entered his church during a Passover service on April 3, the pastor had enough. He took his phone and filmed the confrontation with the authorities.
"I just did it for my own protection," he said. "And when I posted it, I said well, maybe a couple thousand people will watch it and that's it. But what happened-it looks like it sparked some kind of hope in people's hearts that it's OK to fight, it's OK to stand up," he added.
Pawlowski said he received about 40,000 emails, texts, and messages from people around the globe expressing their thanks and appreciations for making a stand on and in behalf of churches worldwide.
He also noted the plight of GraceLife Church in Edmonton and their pastor James Coates. He said that he fears people will soon lose their rights and other liberties due to restrictions flanked by state governments.
"That's the state telling the people what they can do, what they cannot, with whom they can, and how," comments Pawlowski. "... Seeing what they're doing, which is a repetition of history in front of my eyes, it scares me. Very scary stuff, what is happening."
The pastor pointed out that the so-called physical distancing and the prohibition to congregate are meant to destabilize the family-like structure that keep people sane and strong as one body.
Now an evangelical pastor who has been serving for twenty years, he and his church, the Cave of Adullam, have continuously demonstrated fealty amid the crisis.
"People are losing hope. There are lots of people that are suicidal, turning into drugs and alcohol. So we have a church in the poor neighborhood of Forest Lawn, trying to help as many as we can," he said.