In the bible it is very clear that we are to pray (talk to God), and to make our petitions known to Him. We are commanded to pray not only for our selves but also to bless those in authority. There is no better place than in the heart of the city, the gate if you will, in the public square, the city hall. It is important to know that in this country, even though those that are against law and order and disagree with this statement, we as citizens have the privilege and approval with blessing from the highest law of the land, that is the constitution, which includes the charter of rights and freedoms. In it, it is very clear that we have certain guarantees of freedom such as religion, expression, assembly etc.,
These freedoms are why I fell in love with Canada. A country that in the national anthem prays "Ruler supreme (God of the Bible) hear our humble prayer", and it goes on to express "keep our land glorious and free". Wow! We need prayers coming from all believers to keep Canada this way. Well, you will have the opportunity this Tuesday at noon. Come and join like minded citizens for worship and prayer inside the city hall atrium, where we can all publicly lift the name that is above every other name, Jesus! So come.
For more information, please contact Artur Pawlowski at 403-607-4434 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org
God Bless you in the Name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth,
On Behalf of Street Church Ministries
Here are some pictures from the last meeting:
Thursday, February 2, 2012
Just two days after challenging City’s unconstitutional bylaw that disallows prayer or any religious activities inside City Hall’s municipal complex boundaries. Street Church receives repercussions of attacks and threats. Art Pawlowski, Thursday morning received a letter with threats that includes very disturbing statements. Here are some of them:
Now, you must answer for this unforgivable sin.
We are Legion
We do not Forgive
We do not Forget
This is an order from Anonymous to cease and desist all further legal battles
You won’t win against city officials
You are actually hindering the progress of Calgary in the revolution
This is very disturbing that in "democratic" Canada, we are progressing so fast into a bully-state that wants to silence religious speech. Whoever has uttered these threats is expecting us to withdraw from standing for our fundamentally guaranteed rights and that should be a concern for everyone.
Not only did they make these threats but these individuals have been launching cyber attacks on our web servers constantly since, we are told last night at eleven in the evening.
"I believe this group is determined to try to thwart us from showing up again next Tuesday at City Hall. Whoever is doing this is seriously threatening free speech and democracy."
The police have been called to investigate the matter further.
For more information on this issue or to see a copy of the letter, please contact Artur Pawlowski at 403-607-4434.
By Renato Gandia ,Calgary Sun
Sun Poll Results
Is the city of Calgary justified in disallowing prayer in city hall during business hours without a permit?
First posted: Tuesday, January 31, 2012
Owen Key (L), manager of corporate security at Calgary City Hall tries to block Art Pawlowski, minister of Street Church Ministries from entering old city hall where Pawlowski demanded to see Calgary Mayor Naheed Nenshi on January 31, 2012. This is after been given a one-year trespass order by city hall officials as well as ticketed by city police for praying, preaching and singing in the city hall atrium with his followers, who were also given the trespass order and some were also ticketed by police. STUART DRYDEN/CALGARY SUN
Members of the Street Church Ministries have forced their way to the old city hall demanding to see the mayor.
City officials attempted to block them, but the churchgoers struggled with them.
The city hall trespassers have left forms requesting to see Mayor Naheed Nenshi.
They’ve given the mayor one week to respond.
Activist pastor Art Pawlowski (pointing) returned to City Hall on Tuesday to protest his one-year ban from the building. Police handed him a trespassing ticket. Photograph by: Jason Markusoff
Street preacher Art Pawlowski signs a form outside the mayor’s office Monday. He demanded to see Mayor Naheed Nenshi, whom he brands as anti-Christian. the mayor is Muslim. Photograph by: Jason Markusoff
CALGARY — In what has become a Tuesday noontime spectacle, street preacher Art Pawlowski and his followers once again held a service in the atrium of City Hall and decried perceived persecution by police and security officials.
Pawlowski was not arrested by officers even after refusing to leave during an hour of prayer and singing, and then pushing his way past city security personnel as he marched toward the mayor’s office.
Instead, he and his followers hung around outside the mayor’s office for 10 minutes and then left, with Pawlowski saying he wanted a meeting with Mayor Naheed Nenshi within a week.
Pawlowski and his brother were issued tickets for trespassing.
Last week, the preacher was banned from City Hall for a year following a similar gathering.
Pawlowski has refused to seek a permit to hold gatherings at City Hall, a rule by which all other groups, religious or otherwise, must abide.
He accuses Nenshi of being against the Christian faith.
Nenshi, a Muslim, is noted for routinely attending and supporting Christian services and meetings.
Pawlowski has had previous run-ins with city officials, over his use of loudspeakers when street preaching.
© Copyright (c) The Calgary Herald
We just wanted to take this opportunity to send you an update and an invitation to come back to City Hall this Tuesday at 12 noon we will be meeting in the Atrium and at the bottom of the escalators outside the City Council chambers.
Last week we went with between 25 to 30 believers to pray, read from the Charter of Rights and Freedoms, read from the Canadian Bill of Rights, read quotes from different political leaders who stood for rights in the past, to sing the national anthem and to sing Amazing Grace.
As we were about to start the meeting, a representative of Corporate Security came and asked us if we were going to have a problem again this week. Jim Blake responded that he hoped that there wouldn’t be a problem with Corporate Security. To which the security representative said okay fine so you can gather but no preaching or things like that. So here we clearly see, by this statement from a representative of Calgary’s Corporate Security that gathering in our City Hall’s Atrium is okay but religious speech is not.
In the group were two elderly people. One was a World War II Veteran by the name of Sandi De Waal who fought, and watched his friends die, along his side, for our freedoms, so that we could stand in our municipal buildings and in other public places and speak without fear of persecution or prosecution from police and other civic officials and other governing bodies or individuals.
The other elderly person was a lady by the name of Daisy. Daisy’s husband was World War II Warrior, as well, and he has now passed to be with the Lord. But he also fought for our freedoms so that we can live as free men and women in a land strong and free, as our national anthem states.
Jim Blake, National Chairman of Concerned Christians Canada was the one that ran our gathering last Tuesday. I will briefly include a couple of points that he made in his talk.
He reminded us that when we sing our national anthem we are singing a pledge that we will stand on guard for Canada. He even reminded us that it even includes a prayer, "God keep our land glorious and free."
He also read part of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, relating to our guaranteed fundamental freedoms that we are granted under that legislation. Along with that, he read from the Canadian Bill of Rights, the following two quotes:
The first was from the preamble of the Canadian Bill of Rights which reads:
The Parliament of Canada, affirming that the Canadian Nation is founded upon principles that acknowledge the supremacy of God, the dignity and worth of the human person and the position of the family in a society of free men and free institutions;
Affirming also that men and institutions remain free only when freedom is founded upon respect for moral and spiritual values and the rule of law;
The second was a quote from Prime Minister Diefenbaker included at the bottom of the Canadian Bill of Rights:
"I am a Canadian,
free to speak without fear,
free to worship in my own way,
free to stand for what I think right,
free to oppose what I believe wrong, or
free to choose those who shall govern my country.
This heritage of freedom I pledge to uphold for myself and all mankind."
For doing these activities we are surrounded by around 30 officers and staff of Corporate Security and we were told that we were not welcome and that we had to leave.
After Mr. Blake spoke, that security person came back and told us okay you said you piece now it’s time to go. Jim Blake had agreed and it was after he agreed that he was presented with a one-year no trespass notice indicating that he could no longer enter into City Hall for a full year.
That was the straw that broke the camel’s back for me. I decided this was way too much like the regime that I saw growing up in postwar Poland where people were in constant fear of persecution from people like the Nazis, who stole their rights and shot and killed for their own wicked purposes.
Being surrounded on all sides with armed officers threatening us and telling us that we had no rights to freedom of religion, freedom of expression or freedom of peaceful assembly. Ready to hall us all off at a moment’s notice if we wouldn’t shut up and leave. I took a stand and spoke out against this shameful treatment.
Daisy, the eighty-five year old I told you about, was confronted by an officer and was told that she should leave, to which she responded I don’t want to leave, I’m going to stay right here. Arrest me if you want to, but I’m staying.
A couple of people from our group were escorted out by police officers and warned not to return to the building. Jim Blake was able to convince Stephen Patterson the Corporate Security Advisor of City Hall to be wise and not to cause the officers to arrest citizens who are merely exercising their charter protected guaranteed fundamental rights and freedoms.
He agreed to meet with Jim Blake and to discuss options for us to be able to freely exercise our rights and freedoms and to find a balance that would work for everyone, but that would ensure that our rights are not denied.
So, in good faith Jim Blake will meet with Steven Patterson on Monday, January 30 to try to work something out but regardless we are going back Tuesday to exercise our guaranteed fundamental rights and freedoms at City Hall.
City Hall will demonstrate it’s true heart; whether it truly cares to honour the rights and freedoms of its citizens as it did with Occupy Calgary or whether it will again arrest its citizens for exercising those rights.
Please come out and show your support for freedom, for democracy, and for the right to freely speak one’s strongly and deeply held beliefs in the public forum.
Please don’t by the lie that for Christians public speech in political forums is banned. We were guaranteed these rights and we need to stand on guard for Canada for our freedom and for this and coming generations. Please join us Tuesday at 12 noon at Calgary’s City Hall at the base of the escalators in the Atrium.
Street Church Ministries
Posted by Kenzie Love on Wednesday, January 25, 2012
Street preacher Artur Pawlowski and some members of his flock were booted from Calgary’s civic temple again Tuesday, which may or may not have been their goal, but did attract some much-prized coverage.
Calgary Sun columnist Michael Platt strongly criticized Pawlowski in his piece, suggesting the preacher’s attempt to hold a prayer meeting inside the municipal building’s atrium was prompted by his "massive ego," and that his subsequent eviction was not, as Pawlowski claims, religious persecution.
The column is a sharp contrast to one penned by Sun TV’s Ezra Levant last month. Levant argued Pawlowski’s eviction for a previous attempted prayer meeting was in fact evidence of Mayor Naheed Nenshi’s "anti-Christian bigotry"—while repeatedly referencing the mayor’s Muslim faith.
There’s no word from Levant yet on Pawlowski’s latest squabble, but it seems there’s no such thing as bad publicity for the preacher, who’s posted links on his website to nine articles about the incident, including Platt’s (perhaps not realizing the columnist’s use of the word "crusade" wasn’t intentended to be flattering).
Despite being served with a one-year ban from the atrium, Pawlowski’s indicated he intends to return next week, although respondents to a church poll apparently believe "community outreach" should be a low priority for the organization.
Pawlowski’s love of microphones also seems somewhat at odds with the approach advocated by his character in an issue of the comic book "Back 2 Streets," which he co-wrote. In it, a character seemingly modelled on Pawlowski stirringly proclaims: "We’re not called to be talkers, but instead doers of the Word!"
Watching St Paul’s, London, from a distance has been an interesting experience recently. I was then intrigued to discover that this Christian street preacher in Calgary was comparing his treatment with that of “Occupy Calgary.” Artur Pawlowski comments that, “I have stood over 70 times in the courts. We have been charged over 100 times. Eight arrests,” he says. “Just because I believe in Jesus Christ, I’m treated differently.”
Apparently his treatment is in contrast to the more familiar and understanding attitude that the Occupy protesters receive. There may be many reasons for this beyond the scope of the theological, perhaps, and beyond the scope of this article. But it raises an important question for Mr. Pawlowski and for us: what sort of ‘counter-culture’ campaign is the church allowed to launch these days? What kind of marching would be permissible? When was the last time anyone threw any money lenders out of any temples?
If the Guardian’s statistics are correct (‘grauniad’ anyone?), the true picture of US unemployment may be even worse than it appears. It is not hard to have sympathy with people campaigning for jobs, or for fair treatment.
My point is simply: when was the last time the church tried, not social unrest, or aggressive ‘occupation’, but counter-cultural proclamation? Of course, we do it every Sunday. And every street preacher does it. And every Christian does it every day of the week as they travel on the Tube, or buckle up in the car, and get ready for another day of counter-cultural Christianity in ‘the world.’ But perhaps the ‘Occupy’ movement tells us that there is more taste for confrontation these days with the powers that be, and the disadvantages and inequalities of our age, than we may in our modesty, and tendency towards irenic Christianity, have predicted.
Perhaps a Temple or two needs to be occupied – that is, with the Gospel.
December 9, 2011
Artur Pawlowski. Street Church. Are these names ringing a bell? Depending on your theological convictions, they may be actually sounding an alarm. Many Canadian Christians already know about brother Artur’s “evangelistic escapades” in Calgary, Alberta, over the past six years—actions which have lead to his repeated injunctions, fines, and arrests. A recent National Post article gave him national (and international) attention as he voiced his frustration over the treatment he’s received from police versus that of the Occupy movement protestors.
Though this article is not in an endorsement of Artur’s ministry, it seems that he and I do share something in common: persecution for our faith right here at home.
As a minister of the Gospel, I too have been forced from street corners and threatened with arrest by local law enforcement. I have also been sucker punched while preaching open air. Doing spiritual battle always carries a cost…even when the mission field is right here in Canada.
But how does a good soldier of Christ Jesus both tactically and tactfully please the One who enlisted him, effectively reach out to the lost, sincerely respect authorities, and do so all without compromising the core Truth of the mission?
After years of experience, I have come to believe that biblically and culturally balanced street ministry in North America may be best modeled after what have been called the “three worlds” of Paul the Apostle.
Paul’s “Three Worlds”
The Cross Current (TCC) equips local missionaries to preach the Gospel specifically in the context of our increasingly complex North American culture.
TCC’s training is based on the ministry demonstrated by Paul the Apostle. As an evangelist to the Gentiles, Paul has been appropriately called the “man of three worlds” – an expert in the Scriptures, false beliefs, and rights of Roman citizenship.
This “tripod” of training expertise enabled Paul to be a fruitful and faithful witness predominantly in the context of a Greek (Acts 17) culture, much like ours today.
First, street ministers need to accurately apply the Scriptures. As a Jew, Hebrew of Hebrews, and former Pharisee (Phil. 3:5), Paul was masterful in his handling of Scripture in both evangelism and discipleship. As faith and regeneration come only by God’s sovereign grace through hearing His Word (Eph. 2:8-9; Rom. 10:17; 1 Pt. 1:23), street ministers must resist the pull towards pragmatism and “culturally relevant” preaching by constantly placing their trust in the power of the foolish preaching of the cross.
Second, street ministers need to biblically defend against false belief systems. As a Greek thinker, Paul demonstrated exceptional dexterity in boldly confronting the false belief systems of his day with the truth of Christ, yet always doing so with sensitivity and diplomacy (Acts 17). As ones called to bear witness to exclusive Truth amidst an academically charged culture steeped in philosophical/religious pluralism, street ministers must develop an appropriate balance of both presuppositional and evidential apologetics.
Preaching Christ in Canada, eh?
Granted, while the first two aforementioned Pauline “worlds” are hopefully very obvious to today’s street ministers, it’s been my experience that the third is rarely (if ever) explored. And that is that street ministers must know how to legally leverage their rights as citizens. In several instances, Scripture testifies to how Paul’s timely appeal of his Roman citizenship not only spared him further persecution, but also furthered His God-given mission of evangelizing the Gentiles (Acts 16:37; 22:25). Undoubtedly, this vital component of Paul’s public preaching ministry is the most often overlooked.
As a Canadian citizen, I am obviously most familiar with the guidelines found in the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms. While I will be speaking from my experience with the laws of my nation, I trust that the following guidelines will serve invaluable for anyone serious about faithfully preaching the Gospel on the streets of your own:
1) Understand that the Charter of Rights and Freedoms only protects you against GOVERNMENT ACTION. In other words, it protects you against a police officer if he stops a preacher from expressing a biblical message, but NOT against one’s employer.
2) Understand that the Charter of Rights and Freedoms is not absolute. Section 1 of the Charter guarantees things like freedom of expression and religion only to the extent that it doesn’t interfere with the smooth running of society. (The exact wording is: “…subject only to such reasonable limits prescribed by law as can be demonstrably justified in a free and democratic society”.)
3) Understand that one’s section 2(b) freedom of expression is content neutral but may involve form restrictions (by way of municipal by-laws). That the freedom of expression is “content neutral” means that a court will not be prejudiced against any expression based on its meaning. However, the law may state how and when you are to express your views. For example, a government agent cannot say to you: “You are forbidden to mention the name of Jesus in a public place”. But that agent may say to you: “You are forbidden to use a bull horn in a residential neighborhood between the hours of 7pm and 7am”.
4) Understand that Section 319 of the Canadian Criminal Code legislates against hate speech. Generally, “hate speech” occurs in two scenarios: (1) something is uttered in a public place that incites hatred against any identifiable group that leads to a breach of the peace or (2) a statement is uttered, other than in a private conversation, that willfully promotes hatred against an identifiable group. An identifiable group means any section of the public distinguished by colour, race, religion, ethnic origin or sexual orientation.
5) Understand what the “form restrictions” are in your jurisdiction by reviewing your city’s municipal by-laws. These by-laws outline the form restrictions on one’s freedom to express their views, religious or otherwise. Only where these by-laws effectively eliminate one’s ability to be heard will legal remedies (like a Charter challenge) be necessary.
6) Understand that litigating the matter will not be worth the cost unless there is evidence of deep and systemic discrimination. Only consult a lawyer as a last resort, and after you have attempted to use the legally mandated means.
7) Finally, it is recommended that those street ministers who preach and equip others to preach on a regular basis have access to a dedicated Christian lawyer who fully supports your public proclamation of the Gospel. Christian Legal Fellowship is one such trusted source for credible legal council.
Good soldiers aim to please
In closing, I charge all street ministers with the same charge Paul extended to a young preacher named Timothy: “Share in suffering as a good soldier of Christ Jesus. No soldier gets entangled in civilian pursuits, since his aim is to please the one who enlisted him.” (2 Tm. 2:3-4)
As soldiers of Jesus Christ, we have not been called to be on parade on the streets of our nations, we have been called to pray and preach on the streets our nations.
So hit your knees…do your homework…and then “go”. And by God’s grace, we will prove to be good soldiers who joyfully share in suffering as we bring glory and pleasure to the precious One who enlisted us.
Cory McKenna is founder of The Cross Current, host of TCC Radio and TV, and Pastor of Local Missions at Harvest Bible Chapel London. He has street witnessed and open air preached in many major cities across North America. He is an experienced church and conference speaker who specializes in equipping evangelists and their churches to more faithfully preach the Gospel. Cory and his wife Dawn live in London, Ontario with their two sons, Joshua and Caleb.