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Canada: Police show up in huge numbers to keep congregants from attending church services for COVID violations

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Around 400 protestors reportedly gathered outside GraceLife Church in Alberta, Canada on Sunday after it was closed last week for violating local COVID-19 health orders.

Alberta Health Services (AHS) said it “physically closed” the building and will be preventing access to it until GraceLife “can demonstrate the ability to comply with Alberta’s Chief Medical Officer of Health’s restrictions.”

Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) officers barred congregants’ access to the church Sunday.

According to reports, RCMP erected a three-layer fence around the church last Wednesday.

In response, churchgoers gathered outside to sing hymns and read bible versus.

In a video circulating on social media, hundreds of police officers are seen surrounding GraceLife church on Sunday.

https://twitter.com/RealCanuckNews/status/1381335392541151233

RCMP issued a statement Sunday saying there were on the scene to preserve “peace” and “maintain public safety.”

“The RCMP uses necessary measures to protect the fundamental freedom of peaceful assembly and freedom of expression, to promote the safety of all citizens, to enforce laws and to maintain peace and and order,” the statement read.

In an email obtained by FaithWire, GraceLife Pastor John MacArthur praised the church members as they have begun meeting privately to hold worship services “amid a continued government crackdown on their freedom.”

The church is meeting at an undisclosed location and broadcasting its services on YouTube.

“Amazing to have an underground church in Canada,” said MacArthur. “This because the government of Alberta triple-fenced the church in and locked it so people couldn’t get there.”

MacArthur said the government has “no legitimate reason” to shutdown GraceLife Church noting the church’s attendance is still 15% of its facility’s total occupancy.

MacArthur pointed out that of the 4.4 million people living in Alberta, the province has recorded 2,013 COVID-19 deaths, more than half of which were people aged 80 years and older.

MacArthur said despite the intense restrictions, he is thankful for the “massive outcry” of support for the Canadian church.

Follow Annaliese Levy on Twitter @AnnalieseLevy

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Study finds harmful levels of ‘forever chemicals’ in popular bandage brands

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A new consumer study tested several brands of bandages and found higher levels of fluorine in bandages from Band-Aid, CVS Health, Walmart, Rite Aid, Target and Curad, which contain harmful levels of “forever chemicals,” also known as PFAS.

The study by Mamavation and Environmental Health News revealed that out of 40 bandages from 18 different brands, 26 contained organic fluorine, an indicator of PFAS.

“Because bandages are placed upon open wounds, it’s troubling to learn that they may be also exposing children and adults to PFAS,” said Dr. Linda S. Birnbaum, the study’s co-author and the former director of the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences and National Toxicology Program.

News Nation reports that the study found the chemicals present in the adhesive part of the bandages. Mamavation said some brands likely used the PFAS in bandages “for their waterproof qualities.”

“It’s obvious from the data that PFAS are not needed for wound care, so it’s important that the industry remove their presence to protect the public from PFAS and opt instead for PFAS-free materials,” Birnbaum said.

According to the study, the chemicals are linked to several health effects, including “reduced immune system, vaccine response, developmental and learning problems for infants and children, certain cancers, lowered fertility, and endocrine disruption.”

While the exposure risk to PFAS through the skin isn’t clear, skin exposure “poses similar health risks” as eating or drinking food contaminated with PFAS, according to a previous study by the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health.

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