The street pastor accused police of trying to intimidate the worshippers
A video captured the moment a Canadian pastor drove away health officials and police trying to enforce the mask mandate at his church during a Passover service.
The incident unfolded Saturday at a church in Calgary in Alberta, Canada, pastored by Artur Pawlowski.
The video shows several police officers assisting a public health official inside the church as Pawlowski yells at them to get out of his church.
"Immediately get out of this property! I don't want to hear anything!" yells Pawlowski.
"Until you get a warrant! OUT!" he continued screaming. "Immediately go out and don't come back! I don't want to talk to you, not one word!"
Pawlowski forces the officials out and chases them away while decrying what he saw as intimidation.
"Do not come back you Nazi psychopaths! Unbelievable sick evil people! Intimidating people in a church during the Passover!" he says on the video. "You Gestapo Nazi communist fascists!"
The video quickly went viral on Twitter with millions of views.
Calgary Police released a statement on Sunday explaining their part in the action against the church and Pawlowski.
"The concern was that the people in attendance were not adhering to the government's COVID-19 public health orders, which are in place to ensure everyone's safety," said the police in part.
"The organizer of the gathering was uncooperative with the health inspector, and repeatedly raised his voice asking all parties to leave the premises, which they did approximately one minute after entry and in a peaceful manner," they added.
"We understand the pandemic has caused great disruption to all Calgarians in their professional and personal lives. We do not wish to disrupt anyone's holidays or religious or spiritual events, however we must support our partner agencies when called upon to help ensure everyone can safely celebrate these occasions," the statement concluded.
The police indicated that no tickets were issued at the time but that "subsequent enforcement activity" is being considered.
Pawlowski has been a vocal opponent of mask mandates and pandemic lockdowns.
Here's the video of the altercation:
Carlos Garcia, The Blaze, 4-4-2021