RE: Langley church fined a second time for ignoring COVID ban on gatherings, Jan. 4, www.langleyadvancetimes.com[
I admire the courage of Dena Fyfe, who filed a complaint against Riverside Chapel in spite of taking “flak on social media.” She is abiding by her convictions, even when it hurts.
But I also admire the courage of the Riverside members.
They, too, are abiding by their convictions, even when it hurts.
I don’t see the “blatantly obvious” character of their civil disobedience as a negative; rather, I see it as an indication of the strength of those convictions.
They could avoid the fines by attending a clandestine meeting elsewhere, but instead they are willing to sacrifice for what they believe in, and do it publicly.
The article failed to highlight the irony of a church being ticketed for being open, while a beauty parlour is open adjacent to it.
It’s pretty difficult to argue that a beauty parlour is more essential than a church, especially considering the protections for religious practice in the Charter.
True, this particular church may not have been following provincial health guidelines, but many churches have been following them – and they are closed, as well.
It has been argued that religious gatherings are more risky from a health perspective than businesses like beauty parlours, but no one has been able to produce any evidence to support that claim.
In the absence of such evidence, it is wise for all of us to take a deep breath (through a mask, perhaps) and
Kent Dykstra, Surrey
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