Calling himself "The Lion," he's been active in anti-2SLGBTQ+ and anti-Muslim spaces for years. Now he's on tour in the US. Here’s what the media needs to know.
“The kind of garbage has no place in Canada. No one should face this abuse.”
Canadian Anti-Hate Network
Artur Pawlowski, a hate preacher based out of Calgary, Alberta, runs the Cave of Adullam, also known as Street Church, a far-right, anti-2SLGBTQ+ religious space. Since 2005, Pawlowski has become known for holding loud outdoor events in which he feeds the houseless population while proselytizing his specific, and bigoted, brand of religion. In more recent years, he, along with his brother Dawid Pawlowski, have become fixtures in the far-right protest movement.
His hate is primarily directed at the 2SLGBTQ+ community, by holding protests, disrupting Pride events, and supporting legal battles of fellow hatemongers. In 2013, he blamed flooding in Alberta on the 2SLGBTQ+ community: “(God) is weeping for the perversions of homosexuality which includes the walking out the pride of their abominations in the streets of our cities.”
Pawlowski also targets the Muslim community. Another 2013 post authored by Pawlowski states, “those Muslims and their message is un-Canadian...if we will not stand up for our values today, their [sic] will be no police and courts that will protect our rights tomorrow. It will be Sharia law and if you will not to submit [sic] to that wicked evil dictatorship you are dead.”
Lately, he has become a prominent voice in the Christian nationalist and anti-lockdown movements, even making the jump to a US tour -- backed by religious groups -- which began this past June.
In 2010 he lost his charitable status for Kings Glory Fellowship -- another church run by Pawlowski -- for breaching the rules under the Canadian Revenue Agency, namely his anti-abortion and anti-2SLGBTQ+ protests, and a lack of clarity regarding how they use their finances.
Street Church has always loudly opposed the 2SLGBTQ+ community.
"Last year alone, Calgary's streets were flooded with people of wrong sexual preferences during a homosexual parade of over 30,000 attendees," a website for the 2014 “March for Jesus” said, according to reports.
"None of them were embarrassed the slightest to publicly even present their nakedness in front of families, and in front of future generations to openly proclaim and manifest that they are not ashamed to declare the name of their master (Satan)."
Pawlowski also organized a protest in support of Jesse Rau, a city bus driver who was fired for breach of conduct after he refused to drive a bus decorated for Pride Month in 2015. Rau was a member of Pawlowski’s congregation.
A mainstay in his rhetoric is the idea that Christians are persecuted. In 2017 Pawlowski sued the Brooks Medieval Faire Society for refusing him a booth at the event due to his views the year prior. Pawlowski told the media, “Christians are under attack in this country, it’s just a fact.”
The passing of M-103 -- a non-binding motion that called on the Canadian government to condemn Islamophobia, and arguably the moment which birthed the current anti-Muslim movement in Canada -- jumpstarted Pawlowski’s activities with formal hate groups.
On April 13, 2018, Pawlowski organized the “Canadian Patriots Reception and Conference,” in Calgary. Keynote speakers included former MP Rob Anders, anti-Muslim activist Sandra Solomon (who was introduced by Joe Deluca of the Worldwide Coalition Against Islam), anti-2SLGBTQ+ and anti-abortion zealot Bill Whatcott, and notorious anti-Muslim vlogger Kevin J. Johnston. Members of organized hate groups including the Northern Guard and Soldiers of Odin, some of whom were overt antisemites, attended in support.
A protest was scheduled for the following day -- featuring many of the same hatemongers -- but was met with a sizable counter.
Pawlowski has maintained friendships with many high-profile Islamophobic individuals, such as Kevin Johnston, and he and his brother regularly share their content to groups such as World Coalition Against Islam on social media.
On his website, Pawlowski wrote, “This was a Church vigil called ‘In Defence of Christianity’ Thouse [sic] homofascists and antifa-fascists just proved our point that there is a need to defend Christianity in this Godless and perverted nation!”
PressProgress reported that same year that Pawlowski’s website stated that homosexuals are “not ashamed to declare the name of their master (Satan) and in the same way not concerned with provoking greatly the wrath of the Living God.”
In 2019 Pawlowski vocally objected to a rainbow crosswalk in Calgary. According to CBC, "This is a lie from the pit of hell, perverted symbol that God has given to us.… They are using it to laugh at God, to shake their fingers at God saying, 'we don't care about your law, we don't care about you,’” Pawlowski said in a video on Facebook.
Pawlowski has been a fixture in the anti-restriction and anti-mask protest scene, primarily in Alberta. In February 2021, he co-organized the Jericho Torch March, which co-opted imagery from the infamous 2017 Unite the Right protest in Charlottesville. His brother Dawid was also arrested for assault.
In late March, Pawlowski and Brad Carrigan organized a protest outside a grocery store which was enforcing health restrictions, leading to the harassment of store owners and patrons. His brother Dawid wore a Star of David armband -- an early adopter of the now prevalent and antisemitic trend of comparing WW2-era Jews and Holocaust victims to those who oppose health measures.
By April Pawlowski went viral for his “get out” video, in which he berates an Alberta Health Services employee and by-law officers for arriving at Cave of Adullam to enforce health measures (which he had been flouting since the onset of the pandemic,) calling them Nazis and Gestapo.
In June he began touring the US with FEC United, an American religious group with its own, private armed militia. Taking the opportunity to appear on Steve Bannon’s show War Room, Pawlowski railed against the alleged encroaching communism in Canada.
He told Bannon that law enforcement came for him because he was feeding the houseless community, and if he stopped feeding them, they “will come for their head,” and break into the houses of those enforcing the health orders. Pawlowski refers to the mayor of Calgary as a “homosexual, Muslim mayor,” and says “the government hates Christianity.”
He also met with Mike Flynn and Arthur Schaper who runs MaxResistance, an anti-immigration and anti-2SLGBTQ+ group that includes overt white nationalists and is described by the Southern Poverty Law Center as a hate group.
While travelling the US, Pawlowski was found guilty of contempt of an Alberta court for repeatedly breaching health orders on June 28.
On August 8, Pawlowski appeared in Portland, OR along with Proud Boys -- who have been listed as a terrorist entity in Canada -- providing security, according to media reports. Patriot Prayer’s Joey Gibson and Tusitala “Tiny” Toese also provided security.
After the event, far-right demonstrators beat and maced people, and one individual patrolled downtown Portland with an assault rifle for 17 minutes with no police intervention.
Both events resulted in violence.
Pawlowski’s US tour is ongoing.