A large group of Antifa carrying shields and melee weapons attacked a group of Evangelical Christians congregating for a prayer and worship event at the waterfront in downtown Portland, Ore. Video recorded at the scene showed children and families running away as black-clad Antifa militants tore apart the sound equipment and assaulted attendees with pepper spray and projectiles.
The event was announced last month by a Christian ministry featuring firebrand Canadian preacher Artur Pawlowski. The Calgary pastor gained notoriety earlier this year for speaking out against lockdown measures that targeted places of worship. In response to the announcement of the worship event, Portland Antifa groups and activists on Twitter organized a direct action.
“Welcome to Portland, you won’t like it here, pastor,” tweeted Portland Antifa member Melissa Lewis.
Shocking video recorded at the violent event show dozens of armed Antifa members in black bloc and riot gear moving in to physically confront attendees of the event. One of the Antifa members sprayed a congregant with an unidentified, gas-like substance that is suspected to be pepper spray. The congregation took several steps back to avoid injury.
“Where is your god now?” an Antifa member can be heard saying in the video. After pulling apart the sound system, the Antifa toss the equipment into the Willamette River.
A woman can be seen panicking as she and her fellow parishioners backed away to avoid further altercation.
“They threw a flash bomb into a group of kids,” said a female attendee who spoke to a videographer at the scene while the injured were being treated. An Antifa account on Twitter later posted that they stole the Christian attendees’ food and water.
Saturday’s assault follows a string of attacks on Christian houses of worship in Portland by Antifa.