The Baptist Pillar © Brandon Bible Baptist Church 1992-Present www.baptistpillar.com
"...The church of the living God, the pillar and ground of the truth."
I Timothy 3:15
Norman Lafleur, Missionary to Quebec
Being French Canadian myself, I should have expected it! In July 1996, my family and I moved to this area called the Outaouais (oo-ta-weigh), consisting of 3 major sister cities along the Ottawa River: Hull, Gatineau and Aylmer. Like the rest of Quebec, the Outaouais is overwhelmingly Roman Catholic.
With more than 200,000 people and no Independent Baptist Church, the task was formidable, but my hopes were high. Maybe, things would be different.
We targeted November 10, as the opening day for the Eglise Biblique Baptiste de l'Outaouais. After an extensive search, we leased a beautiful chapel affiliated with a non denominational funeral cooperative. I designed and wrote a new French tract and the invitation for our opening day; we had 25,000 printed. Ads were placed in local newspapers and notices were sent to several newspaper, radio and TV bulletin boards.
On Saturday, November 2, six Independent Baptist Churches sent more than 80 people to help distribute 16,000 invitations and tracts. Arrangements had also been made to have special music. Everything seemed to be in order when on Thursday afternoon, I received a call from the president of the funeral cooperative in regard to the chapel that we had leased.
Several local Roman Catholic priests had called her to voice their objection to the chapel being leased to a Baptist group. Other angry Catholics flooded their office with calls threatening to withdraw their memberships from the Funeral Cooperative and cancel their pre-paid funeral arrangements, at a great loss to them, unless the Baptists were ousted. Some callers threatened an area wide boycott of the funeral home.
The president informed us that these groups were planning to "picket" in front of the chapel on our opening day. In a gesture of feigned concern, the local Roman Catholic Bishop contacted the president to warn her that he was not able to keep control of his troops.
When my family received a death threat, I realized that my phone number needed to be changed. In the end, with financial and religious pressure proving too great for the funeral cooperative, the president asked us if we would find another place to hold our meetings. It was now late Friday afternoon, two days before our opening service!
We started praying and we called supporting pastors to pray. The Lord did provide us with the grace and the "space." I was able to rent a conference room at a hotel for our 1st official service. Despite the obstacles the Lord did send us a visitor on our opening day.
The cooperative did partially compensate us for some of our out of pocket expenses, but they could do nothing to undo the set-back of relocating just 2 days before our 1st service. And so, after our Grand Opening day, I found myself back at square one.
Nothing has changed! As you can see, where Roman Catholicism holds a majority, religious freedom is in a very precarious position. The situation that I have described for you is a typical scenario for other Independent Baptists in Quebec.
Has the Roman Catholic Church changed? NO! It is still a deceptive system of works that leads men and women to hell. Their new 1992 Catechism teaches the same heresies that Christian churches have opposed for centuries:
Having been raised Roman Catholic, I understand that the only thing that changes from time to time, is her mask. She changes it to fit the occasion. It remains therefore, that Roman Catholics still need to be genuinely born again.
Yakima Bible Baptist Church, Dave Brown, pastor.
6201 Tieton Drive
Yakima, WA, USA 98908
60, boul du Mont Bleu, app 2
Hull, Quebec, Canada,