Canadian pastor Artur Pawlowski has been arrested for the fifth time since COVID restrictions began in the province of Alberta in March 2020. The arrest was yet another dramatic takedown by police, this time outside the Pawlowski family home in Calgary.
On February 8, Pawlowski, who grew up in Communist Poland, was detained following a speech he gave on February 3 at the Coutts border crossing in Southern Alberta, where truckers formed a blockade as part of the national “freedom convoy” calling for Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to drop all COVID restrictions that infringe on Canadians’ civil liberties.
Following the arrest, the pastor’s son, Nathanial Pawlowski, and brother, Dawid Pawlowski, posted a video on YouTube explaining that Pawlowski went to the border of Montana and Alberta to “deliver a sermon, the Lord’s Supper, and to pray with them [the truckers].”
“He simply wanted to do his job as a pastor and give them hope,” said Nathaniel Pawlowski.
See Pastor Pawlowski’s speech below:
Today, Pastor Pawlowski remains in solitary confinement at the Calgary Remand Centre, reportedly held in “quarantine” in squalid conditions. He faces charges of mischief over $5,000, interrupting the operations of essential infrastructure, and breaching his condition of not keeping the peace. “All of these charges are in relation to his speech at the lodge in Coutts at the trucker blockade,” said son Nathaniel.
On February 16, Rebel News reporter Adam Soos tweeted an update from the Calgary Remand Centre, stating access to the facility is now restricted.
Last week, Lethbridge Judge Erin Olsen denied Pawlowski bail, and during a separate hearing this past Wednesday refused to release him on the pretext that he would “not follow court orders.” Thus, Pawlowski remains jailed without bail until his next hearing on March 11.
Pawlowski is reportedly the first person to face a criminal charge under the Critical Infrastructure Defence Act; this law passed in June 2020 in response to protesters who voiced frustration over a pipeline dispute and set up blockades that wreaked havoc on the Canadian rail system.
Pawlowski’s lawyers, Sarah Miller and Chad Haggerty, are appealing Olsen’s ruling and fighting daily for Pawlowski’s release.
Rebel News’ Sheila Gunn Reid reported on Wednesday’s virtual hearing, in which Judge Olsen rendered her decision regarding bail. Reid reported that Pawlowski wore blue and black prison-issue coveralls and carried a Bible, documenting the hearing via a series of tweets:
Pawlowski is the pastor of Cave of Adullam Church and founder and pastor of Street Church. He has been arrested more than a dozen times for offenses such as feeding the homeless and fulfilling his basic duties as a loving pastor who cares for and shepherds his people.
For opening his church and ignoring state-imposed masking requirements, Pawlowski has spent weeks in jail. Disturbing videos of his arrests for defying Alberta’s public-health orders have gone viral, and his refusal to kneel to the tyrannical dictates of the Canadian government has gained him respect and notoriety among freedom lovers around the world.
Standing in solidarity with the pastor, hundreds of supporters continue to gather outside of the Calgary Remand Centre.
Pawlowski’s son, Nathaniel Pawlowski, told Rebel News that “He [Pawlowski] has embarrassed them [public health authorities] on a global scale. He’s exposed their corruption and people are waking up. He has a powerful voice. They are scared of that voice so they want to keep him in prison as punishment.”
Artur’s brother, Dawid Pawlowski, who has been arrested multiple times alongside his brother, was also interviewed. “It’s very hard because he’s not a criminal,” said Dawid. “They’re cooking up all these charges just like I remember from back when I was young [living] under the Iron Curtain…. He’s not a criminal, he’s a pastor, he’s a father, he’s a brother, a family member. To see him being tortured on the inside like this — this is not right; this cannot happen.”
Dawid went on to describe Artur’s arrest and imprisonment. “For the first few days, he was treated horribly,” he said. “He was put in some cage that he described as a dog kennel…. He was fighting for air. He was tortured like this for hours on end. They didn’t give him water. He didn’t have water for two days. There is no running water in the cell. They say they are putting him in quarantine for two weeks, but the cell, he says is disgusting.”
One Pawlowski supporter with whom Rebel News spoke said, “My wife and I, we don’t go to church. We aren’t religious but we certainly are in favor of freedom, and we feel like our rights have been taken away. Our connection with Pastor Pawlowski [at a rally] that day was one of a gentleman, kind, giving. We just felt like we were included amongst a lot of other people, but he made a point of making us feel included. And that’s why we came out here today…. He loves people. He is not a criminal.”
Artur’s wife, Marzena Pawlowski, commenting on the ongoing persecution the family has endured, said, “of course we are not numb. In a way we are stronger each time [Artur is arrested], but this is not easy on us…. This is sickening, this is sickening.”
“For me to stand here and know my husband is behind those walls, and they told me that they moved him on the other side but other inmates are telling him what is happening [outside] … of course, this gives him strength. That he is treated this way shows the level of corruption. This is unacceptable and obviously they are afraid of our message, whatever it is. But this is a free country.”
She concluded, “I’m speechless…. We have friends here who say the orders are from the chief of police to act in such a way toward my husband. The irony is that they created this. We chose the smallest and most dangerous park, where we can do our job, preach to them [the people], show them love. By pushing us around and taking our rights, they created this…. We really just want to serve God, and then this escalates and escalates.”
“My father will grow in his notoriety,” exclaimed Nathanial Pawlowski. “He will never back down. They might as well lock him up and throw away the keys or put a bullet in him because he’s never going to back down and he told that to the Calgary police. This is only going to feed the flame and expose what this is all really about. This isn’t about safety. He’s been placed in a filthy cell that he’s described as disgusting, like it hasn’t been cleaned in ten years. This is for quarantine, right? This is exposing what this is really about, it’s about control. It’s about bowing to the government. It’s about tyranny. It has nothing to do with health or the law.”
The Pawlowskis have rallied to organize several calls to action in support of Pastor Art. People who want to participate in prayer and peaceful protests, can go to freepastorart.com. Rebel News has also been dedicated to documenting Pawlowski’s arrests and his work with the poor and others in the community. The outlet has worked tirelessly to raise money through the crowdfunding site SaveArtur.com to help Pawlowski pay his exorbitant legal costs as the tyranny rages around him and the government uses him as an example to Canadian citizens of the consequences of refusing to follow state orders.