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Unique: a pastor from Manitoba, Canada, who was arrested earlier this week, tells Granthshala News that he spent an extra night in prison after refusing a condition of release that required him to stop preaching at his church services.

Pastor Tobias Tissen of Steinbach, Manitoba, was imprisoned for two days in May after being arrested for issuing a warrant relating to a provincial. public health order Prohibition on gatherings outside more than five people.


Tissen told Granthshala News that his bail hearing, previously scheduled for Tuesday, was postponed after he was denied the initial conditions of his release.

“Their conditions were that I was not allowed to attend any gatherings in violation of COVID-19,” Tissen said. “And that would automatically stop me from going to church and preaching. And I couldn’t agree with that.”

‘without incident’

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Tissen was done in hiding For the months before his arrest on Monday, Steinbach only briefly appeared in public at his Church of God Restoration in Manitoba, about an hour’s drive north of the Minnesota border.

The Church of God Restoration and its congregation of less than 200 people have repeatedly made headlines during the pandemic for clashing with authorities over church gatherings. Tissen and the church have fined tens of thousands. In November 2020, the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) blocked Church parking to prevent parishioners from attending the drive-in service.

Tissen, whose family left Germany to avoid a ban on homeschooling, said he wasn’t thinking about his warrant when he and his family got together in a park in Steinbach before their mother’s move to Austria the next morning. Went to spend time

Tissen guesses that someone had seen him in the park and reported it to the police, who pulled him over on his way home and informed him that he was under arrest.

According to Video Regarding the incident, Tissen explained to RCMP officials that he would like to say goodbye to his mother as she is leaving the country. When the officer tells Tisson that he will let him hug his mother if he gets in the car, he agrees.

The officer then immediately closes the door, leaving Tissen’s mother to kiss him goodbye through the glass.

The RCMP did not comment specifically about how Tissen was treated during his arrest, noting only that he was arrested “without incident”.

While he was being detained at Steinbach Police Headquarters, church members walked around the building singing hymns. Later that night, Tissen was driven 45 minutes north of Winnipeg, where he was eventually jailed at the Winnipeg Remand Center.

‘We can’t comply’

Since the pandemic, other churches across Canada have faced imprisoned priest, closed facilities, heavy fine and ongoing government infiltration.

Tissen’s church was one of seven rural synagogues that sued Manitoba over lockdown orders, which a judge Governance Thursday did not violate Canada’s Charter of Rights and Freedoms.

Tissen believes Canadian officials are targeting clergy “absolutely” which, he said, “is so clear that it’s a fight between good and evil, and they’re targeting those public figures.” who are fighting against evil.”

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Reflecting on his time in custody, Tissen said, “When you sit in jail for 45 hours, you have a lot of time to think. You have no sense of time. No clock in the cell.” It doesn’t happen. And the days drag on. Really, really slow.”

Tissen said that he spent most of his time in prayer, during which he became convinced that he had to stand up for religious freedom by denying any conditions that would forbid him from preaching or attending church.

He considers it “miraculous” that the terms of his release were changed. The conditions to which he agreed forbade him from organizing or inciting gatherings of others in protest of COVID-19 containment orders, but he is allowed to hold a regular religious gathering and carry out his pastoral duties.

He has a court date set for November 4.

“In the Ephesians, it says that we are fighting against spiritual wickedness in high places and principalities and powers,” Tissen said. “That is, right now, what we see. And they are after all what we are giving to God that is God’s and to Caesar what is Caesar’s. But now, Caesar wants what is God’s.”

“And as Christians, we can’t do that. We can’t comply,” he said.

‘No longer just church’

Videos of Tisson’s arrest and release were sent to the social media accounts of Pastor Henry Hildebrandt, pastor of the Church of God in Aylmer, Ontario.

A sister congregation of the Church of Tissen, the Aylmer. in the Church of God It has also faced continued interference from government officials, who closed their facility in May on the orders of a judge who convened the church.crucible of contemptible activity

The court continued to fine them hundreds of thousands of dollars when they took gathering outside.

Echoing Tissen, Hildebrandt told Granthshala News, “I think they’re trying to make a strong point here, ‘We don’t want the church to think they’re above the government.

“What gives me hope is that it’s no longer a pastor, it’s no longer just a church,” said Hildebrandt, who said the government was now going after the frontline workers they once held in high esteem. had claimed.

Earlier this month Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau roll over One of the world’s strictest COVID-19 vaccine mandates. As of October 30, employees in all federally regulated industries face vaccination or termination. Anyone over the age of 12 who wants to travel by plane, train or ship should also be vaccinated.

“They are now stabbing them in the back left and right, be it TSA workers, or police, or firemen, or doctors, or nurses,” Hildebrandt said.

“It gives me great hope that it is affecting the general public far more than it has ever been. And those who would probably stand firm for the government, thinking they were their friends, now clearly recognize that It’s not like that .”