What a year it has been!
It has and will continue to be our great honour to bring you the other side of the story. Throughout the year, we often found ourselves the only media outlet covering these international, headline-making stories. When other media did show up, they often skewed the facts.
I am so proud that Rebel News is truly independent, we don’t have to spin stories because we aren’t beholden to anyone. As Ezra often says, follow the truth wherever it leads you.
I wanted to take a moment to reflect on the year that has passed by looking back at five stories that will stick with me for the rest of my life.
I had the great privilege of jumping into the deep end when I started with Rebel News.
Pastor Artur Pawlowski was arrested mere weeks after I started with Rebel News for daring to open his church in defiance of COVID-19 protocols. We launched our SaveArtur.com campaign and our coverage of the Polish pastor's ongoing trials and tribulations went on to garner international attention and headlines.
Pastor Artur was not the only principled man of God who was arrested for opening wide the doors of his church.
Pastor Tim Stephens, despite his reserved and composed demeanour, also drew the ire of overzealous health officials in Alberta. One of the moments that will always be etched in my mind was my first encounter with Raquel Stephens, Pastor Tim’s wife. She looked me in the eyes and said with great emotion, thank you for not twisting out story. That moment affirmed in me a commitment to principled and fact-driven journalism that other media outlets seemingly forgot as they vilified the good Pastor Tim. We were on hand when they took him into custody.
All the overbearing restrictions, goalpost moving and pastor arrests did not sit well with Albertan’s, and week after week we were on hand to cover protests in and around Calgary as folks took to the streets to voice their opinion and to stand for freedom.
We also brought out the billboard truck a few times for our ShameOnShandro.com and NoClimateEmergency.com campaigns. It is always fun to confront folks with the truth in places they might not expect it… like rolling down the road.
One of the absolute highlight moments of the year was asking Premier Jason Kenney if vaccine passports were coming to Alberta. While his response aged like milk, we put his broken promise that there would be no vaccine passport in Alberta on display on our billboard truck for all to see.
One of the most memorable experiences of the year was undoubtedly our RepairTheChurch.com campaign. I was invited by Ruby Starlight to visit her grandfather’s church on Tsuut'ina First Nation territory. This was during the height of the church arsons and vandalism that plagued Canada after the discovery of unmarked graves at residential schools across Canada. Ruby said it would be nice to see the church restored. We knew that we could help, especially with the support of our loyal viewers.
I would be remised if I did not take a moment to thank my videographer, editor and friend K2.
From sleeping on a church floor to eating gator tail, there is very little this man will not do to get the stories out to you. He brings a dedication and artistry to both filming and editing videos that literally garnered a “your production quality is skyrocketing” comment from a Calgary police officer.
I am very much looking forward to even bigger and better things from K2 in the new year.
Finally, I want to thank your, our viewers and supporters for making what we do possible.
Without your support we wouldn’t be able to bring you any of these stories. You are every bit as much a part of this team as K2 and I. To you and your families, I hope you had a blessed Christmas, and I wish you the very best in the New Year. We are just getting started.