Seth Udinski, FISM News
Pastor James Coates has been at the forefront of Christian news coverage recently for his bold stand against COVID-19 restrictions. Coates was arrested and put in jail in February for continuing to hold church services despite COVID-19 lockdowns, then released the week before Palm Sunday. Now, the secular powers in Canada are fighting back.
Reports surfaced this past week that Canadian health officials restricted access to GraceLife Church, Pastor Coates’ congregation. Officials built a temporary wall surrounding the church building and completely prevented access to enter. In addition, Edmonton area law enforcement officers were stationed in their vehicles around the church property. A member of GraceLife sent a tweet with a picture of the situation on Wednesday:
Police and security are putting up a fence around Gracelife! Please pray for wisdom as our elders navigate this new development! @LaurenJDyck @tomascol @TomBuck @MichelleDLesley @Aspree_Berean @D_B_Harrison @TobyLogsdon @DrOakley1689 @MikeHovland pic.twitter.com/NPev6fCuLl
— Oma10 (@theresiasmith52) April 7, 2021
As the situation develops, there is no doubt the trial of James Coates, scheduled for May 3, will be highly publicized. Even in the midst of gross infringement upon religious rights, the church members of GraceLife refuse to back down. This past week, countless GraceLife members arrived at their church property and sang hymns together outside. Hopefully, these faithful believers will soon be allowed to re-enter their home church to exercise their legal right to worship.