ALBERTA -The documentary film “Street Advocate” enjoyed great success during its grand Canadian premier this past month.
The documentary starts off by emphasizing the early beginnings of a distinctively Christian ministry in the streets of Calgary that is now commonly known as “Street Church” and the extraordinary transformation of its oft-deemed controversial pastor: Artur Pawlowski. Pawlowski, a once thriving businessman with an assured future in his hands, is shown leaving behind his successful business to embrace his call to become a steward of the gospel of Jesus Christ and placing himself in the company of those in need.
The film explores the unseen streets of Calgary with unmistakable detail, and shows true reality of homelessness in the city. It also focuses on the struggles that Pawlowski has had to endure for the simple act of sharing hot, nutritious meals four times a week with those at the margins of society, while imparting the word of God to sow hope for their souls.
The documentary demonstrates how even in the face of adversity, he continues to stand convinced that there is a tremendous responsibility associated with his ministry. A very painful truth becomes evident: a prosperous urban city such as Calgary has two faces. One of growth, ambition and wealth, but also one of extreme poverty where those on the margins of society live without any of the basic necessities of life such as food or a warm bed in the harsh conditions of Calgary’s northern climate.
The “Street Advocate” is an important documentary film to watch. It definitely can impact the perception of homelessness. Rather than some kind of divine punishment from which there is no escape, this film offers the view of homelessness as a crisis that can prompt an opportunity for solutions if more people join the cause.
Axa Estrella Bolaños-Reicher