As you go to church this morning, please keep Trinity Bible Chapel (TBC) in your prayers. The Waterloo-based Church has been locked out of their building since late April, despite the fact that their province has, as of two days ago, allowed churches to finally start having indoor church at capacity, so long as they socially distance and maintain two meters.
In TBC’s case, the judge on Friday overseeing their case has not yet released his decision over whether or not they can have access to their building again, reserving his decision and saying “I will release something when it is released.” This capriciously punitive decision means that the church will continue having outdoor services, under threat of further fines or even possible jail if they dare access their church before the judge gives the go-ahead.
In many ways, Trinity Bible Chapel has faced the most opposition and steepest price out of any church in North America for being open. GraceLife Church in Alberta had their pastor James Coates arrested and spend over a month in jail. Fairview Baptist Church also had their church building taken away, and their pastor Tim Stephens serve nearly 3 weeks in prison, but TBC has endured absolutely brutal, punishing, unending fines for being open.
They’re facing 50 million dollars in potential fines right now. 50 million. And while the large multi-million dollar fines might possibly be appealed if granted – some of their large fines like the $83,000 given for a single service cannot be waived, removed, or appealed. These crushing tickets are not just to the Church entity, but parishioner after parishioner is being handed crushing fines for daring to attend.
These are crippling numbers, but they have not bent the will of the church.
Thankfully, Pastor Jacob Reaume, the elders, and the congregants at Trinity have continued to serve faithfully in this trying time and have been a shining example in Canada and all throughout the world.
We honor them for it.
We thank God for them.
And we lift our voices in prayer.
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