Pastors fleeing communism fear Canadians losing their freedom

Artur Pawlowski fled communist Poland in 1990. More than 30 years later, he found video fame by expelling police from his Calgary church on Easter weekend. The event concludes the journey around Paulowski’s faith under oppression, doubts about the land of freedom, and again the journey to faith in oppression.

Paulowski first learned the meaning of standing up when he lived under communist oppression in his native Poland.

“It was about 50,000 Communists who dominated more than 36 million Poles,” he recalled in an interview.

“They may enter your home [at] At 5 in the morning, I hit you, torture you, and even murder you. Many ministers were killed, “he added,” seeing the power of solidarity with Lech Wałęsa, “who led the solidarity movement against the Communist regime in Poland in the 1980s.

“In 1981, I saw the power of a unified voice with my own eyes. People gathered and said to the government.” They wanted their freedom. “

Paulowski’s father was an engineer who worked in a coal mine, and his mother was an architect who became a restaurant owner and learned law. There are 5,000 books in his home library, and the young Pawlowski read most of them.

“Whenever the government said something, I always checked to see if it was true, because I grew up in a country where most governments and mainstream media were always lying to you. So you are yourself I learned to find the truth for myself, “he said.

His father fled to Greece in 1989, and his family continued a year later when Pawlowski was only 17 years old.

“We were very poor. We almost fled from Poland without doing anything, and we ended up doing nothing in Greece, and we started from scratch, so I I remember the moment in our lives when we didn’t have enough food and we didn’t know how to pay the next bill. They were trying to seize our house. ” Pawlowski remembers.

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In July 1998, his wife Marzena and Artur Porowski. (Courtesy of Artur Porowski)

Pawlowski’s faith was also the worst. He then met his wife, Marzena, a former Greek-Polish expatriate who worked at the museum.

“She was a Christian and a devoted Christian. I was a little anti-Christian. I was a dissident. I was anti-corruption. I didn’t like the corruption I saw in the church, She brought me back to God. She led me to Christ, to faith. It was a long process, but here I am a pastor. “

Now an evangelical, Paulowski has been a minister for over 20 years. His church is named Aduram’s Cave, the biblical name for a refugee shelter from persecution.

“People are losing hope. Many people commit suicide and turn to drugs and alcohol. So we have a church in the poor areas of Forest Lawn and are trying to help as many people as possible. “He said.

He also runs a street church four times a week at the Olympic Plaza near Calgary City Hall, providing food and clothing to the poor and the homeless.

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Artur Pawlowski’s Street Church service will serve the poor at the Olympic Plaza in Calgary in March 2021. (Provided by Artur Pawlowski)

Pawlowski came to Canada in 1995 to promise freedom, but he says it’s not always his experience.

On April 3, Pawlowski was fined $ 1,200 for holding a rally of more than 15 people at his street church in violation of the COVID-19 health order.

He has also been repeatedly fined for violating public health orders by conducting church services. He had harsh words to the police and COVID Bylaws Enforcer who entered the lobby of his church during the Passover Festival on April 3.

“Get out. Get out of this property …. Get out! Get out! Get out of this property right away until you come back with your warrant,” he said. “I don’t care what you have to say …. Gestapo is not allowed here!”

He filmed the incident and posted it on social media, which quickly spread by word of mouth.

“I just did it for my own protection,” he said. “And when I posted it, I often said, maybe thousands of people would see it, and that’s it. But what happened, it fought in people’s minds. It looks like it’s okay, and it seems to have caused some hope that it’s okay to get up, “he explains.

“We have probably received 40,000 emails and text messages from all over the world. [saying things like] “I lost hope, and you regained that hope. Thank you. Thank you.’ That is, it’s overwhelming and incredible. Someone who is so hungry for someone to stand up. I didn’t think there were a lot of them. “

He mentions the closure of Edmonton’s Grace Life Church, where the minister has been imprisoned and charged with violating public health orders, and fears that people will lose their rights and freedoms as COVID restrictions continue to grow. It states that it is.

“When they’re telling us now, social distance, physical distance, don’t meet together, don’t pray. That is, you’re talking about your family. You’re talking about us all. We’re talking about a structure that keeps us sane, all together and strong, but they want to destabilize it, pull us apart, and make us miserable alone. ” Says.

“It’s a state of telling people what they can do, what they can’t do, who they can do, and how they can do it …. It scares me when I see it. It’s so scary, what’s happening? “