Despite the order that was made on Friday, May 14, to have its doors locked from the outside, the Church of God in Aylmer in Ontario still had its Sunday service.
On Sunday morning, May 16, Pastor Henry Hildebrandt led a service outside of the church at 10:30 a.m. The Church of God at Aylmer posted on Facebook the building "may be locked, but our God deserves all honour, glory, and praise."
A live stream was posted to YouTube and its Facebook page, which CBC News reports had 200 to 250 churchgoers present at the service without masks. In a court ruling on Friday, Ontario Superior Court Justice Bruce Thomas instructed that the church remain closed until the provincial government permits public indoor gatherings at a 30% occupancy rate.
Pastor Hildebrandt apparently commented on the locked doors during his sermon, saying that churchgoers are at the service today "because we have the authority of God on our side."
The church and its two pastors are now looking at $117,00 in legal fees, which is a jump from the $69,000 reported on Friday.