EDMONTON – RCMP say a church whose pastor used to be charged closing week with violating Alberta’s effectively being rules used to be now no longer complying with COVID-19 restrictions all over Sunday morning’s provider.
Police say in a info free up that they, alongside side Alberta Health Companies and products, attended GraceLife Church shut to Edmonton to guarantee attendance used to be minute to 15 per cent of capability and that participants there had been practising bodily distancing.
They say officers at the scene “sure that the church did no longer agree to the limitations,” and as a end result police are “furthering their investigation into the actions of GraceLife Church and the church pastor, James Coates.”
The free up says yet any other, detailed media free up concerning the of the investigation have to restful attain mid-week.
No one from the church could well perhaps be reached for comment, however closing week it posted a 1,600-notice commentary on its web web web site explaining that it does now no longer judge the unfold of the virus is a severe public effectively being threat.
The commentary moreover argued the authorities is using the pandemic to undermine civil rights and freedoms.
Coates used to be charged closing week with violating one depend of the Public Health Act and is to seem in Stony Easy provincial courtroom on March 31.
“To be very sure, the RCMP’s just is now to no longer interrupt church companies and products, limit companies and products, nor utter peoples’ lawful to have a study their faith — merely to be sure that public effectively being restrictions are adhered to while doing so,” RCMP Insp. Mike Lokken talked about in the free up on Sunday.
Const. Kathleen Fossen, an RCMP spokeswoman, talked about police did no longer make any arrests or topic any tickets on Sunday, and that the investigation is ongoing.
The church has been clashing with effectively being authorities for 2 months over COVID-19 rules and had beforehand ignored an utter to shut down.
In a recorded sermon from Coates titled “Directing Executive to its Responsibility” that used to be posted on the church’s web web web site on Sunday, the pastor talked about that whether or now no longer or now no longer what the church goes thru constitutes persecution is beside the purpose.
“I’m doing what I’m doing in obedience to Christ. I’m fairly bellow to let the Lord Jesus Christ pick whether or now no longer or now no longer here is persecution,” he talked about.
Alberta’s chief clinical effectively being officer reported five new deaths of folks with COVID-19 on Sunday and 284 extra instances.
Closing week, Alberta started a four-stage opinion to lower economic restrictions after a almost two-month shutdown. They allowed in-person dining to renew, alongside side some sports and fitness activities, in particular for early life.
This file by The Canadian Press used to be first revealed Sunday, Feb. 14, 2021.