Last week, Canadian Pastor Tim Stephens was arrested outside his home after holding a worship service in violation of a health department order which appears to have been happened upon by police helicopters the day prior.
Canada’s The Rebel reports that this is Stephens’ second arrest, although Alberta Health Services was forced to drop charges against him previously after it was discovered that a health order he was accused of violating had been given to someone else by mistake, so he’d never received it.
While it is unclear if police helicopters were searching out gatherings that violated local pandemic regulations, they reportedly circled an “underground” service held by Stephens’ Fairview Baptist Church on June 13.
— Adam Soos ⳩ (@ATSoos) June 14, 2021
Stephens will be held in prison until June 28 for refusing to agree to bail conditions which would have inhibited his freedom to gather with his congregation.
The pastor is being represented by the Justice Centre for Constitutional Freedoms.
“Ironically, all efforts to suppress worship by Alberta Health Services, whether at Pastor Artur Pawlowski’s or Pastor Tim’s church have only served to significantly bolster church attendance,” The Rebel notes. “As public health restrictions continue to be relaxed, these churches are not facing defeat at the hands of overreaching officials, quite the opposite — they are stronger and larger than ever before.”
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