Easter celebrations did not run entirely smoothly for religious Poles living abroad, with two incidents drawing widespread media attention in both Great Britain and Canada, with the Canadian incident featuring a viral video of a pastor kicking out Canadian police officers from his church.
In a video uploaded online, the local pastor of Street Church in Calgary, Canada, Artur Pawłowski, threw police officers out of the church, saying they should not come back without a warrant. The police arrived at the church due to supposed breaching of coronavirus restrictions during a Mass celebrating Passover.
The pastor first asks the officers to leave, but later loses his patience when they did not comply and begins shouting at them to “get out of this property.”
“Out of this property you Nazis! Gestapo is not allowed here!” he shouted. “Out, Nazi! Out! Nazis are not welcome here! Do not come back here, you Nazi psychopaths!”
The officers eventually complied and left the property.
Pawłowski’s video received millions of views and earned high praise from users on social media fed-up with coronavirus restrictions. Some also claimed that the Calgary police were violating Canadian law by entering the church without a warrant.
This is how you handle police who enter a church without a warrant. They’re lucky they only got a tongue-lashing: s. 176 of the Criminal Code makes it a crime to disturb a church service. Those @CalgaryPolice thugs were breaking the law (and knew it). pic.twitter.com/0XhAuwv0yg
— Ezra Levant ? (@ezralevant) April 4, 2021
Polsat News reported that according to Canadian media, Pawłowski has been fined by the authorities multiple times for organizing protests without adhering to restrictions. He is known for preaching against Sharia law, abortion and gay rights.
Across the Atlantic, British police also disrupted a Good Friday Mass in the Christ the King Polish RC Church in London’s Balham, reported portal wPolityce.pl
Someone reportedly informed the police that coronavirus restrictions were not being upheld during the Mass. Priests present at the event disagreed with the accusation. Nevertheless, the faithful were asked to leave the church’s premises by the parish priest. The priests also mentioned the possibility of filing a complaint against the police officers’ actions.
A recording from the police raid was uploaded onto social media.
Father Aleksander Dasik told the participants that the church’s authorities could not understand what restrictions were being broken during the Mass.
“I asked which restrictions in particular were being broken, since we were all wearing masks, maintaining social distance and we even created special tickets for the event. I asked the police to explain to you what regulations we had broken,” he said during the incident.
One of the police officers had explained that “you are not allowed to meet inside with this many people under law. At this moment in time, you need to go home. Failure to comply with this direction to leave and go to your home address ultimately could lead you to be fined 200 GBP or if you fail to give your details to being arrested.”
Title image: Polish Church raided in Balham by Metropolitan Police London, UK, source: print screen of the video by Andrzej Fryzicki, YouTube.