The Meeting House, one of Canada's largest megachurches, has revealed that its former teaching pastor, Bruxy Cavey, who was recently arrested and charged with sexual assault of a former parishioner, was not the only pastor to engage in sexual misconduct.
In a town hall meeting with the congregation on June 7, the church named at least three more former pastors involved collectively in at least 38 reports of misconduct.
"To date, our victim advocate Melodie [Bissell] has received 38 inquiries. She's documenting each story and is committed to advocating on their behalf," Jennifer Hryniw, member of the church's overseers board, said during the meeting.
Hryniw named former youth pastors Kieran Naidoo and David Churchill and Tim Day, who served as senior pastor at The Meeting House for 14 years, among the other offending clergy.
Naidoo was arrested and charged as part of a large-scale child pornography investigation by the Ontario Provincial Police in 2012. Last year, he was again arrested and charged with sexual exploitation.
In 2014, Churchill was charged with sexual assault and sexual exploitation.
"The inquiries are not all unique or separate, but they do represent allegations, disclosures and concerns related primarily to clergy sexual misconduct, harassment and abuse by Kieran Naidoo, Dave Churchill, Bruxy Cavey and Tim Day," Hryniw said.
"The cases of Kieran Naidoo and Dave Churchill have gone to court, and convictions were laid. And as you are aware, we are currently underway with two investigations where Bruxy Cavey and Tim Day have been named."
Hryniw noted that other disclosures involving previous leaders and staff at the church engaged in "sexual misconduct, adultery and troubling emotional abuse" were also reported.
"In almost all of the responses, individuals have suffered spiritual harm," she said.
The church also received reports of "brave individuals who have tried to address the culture of immorality in the past, and they felt shut down and alienated by the church."
"Each story we've read causes us deep grief. But we know it's only a fraction of the pain that the victims, both men and women, have experienced," she said. "These aren't new or recent incidences of harm and they do come as a surprise to the overseers and to many in this church family. We're thankful that for many of us, this hasn't been our experience of the church. But that doesn't mean that any of us can afford to ignore them."
Police in Hamilton, Ontario, announced in a statement that they arrested the 57-year-old Cavey on May 31 after an investigation into reports of a sexual assault that occurred while he served as primary teaching pastor at The Meeting House from 1996 to 2021.
The church is headquartered in Oakville and has multiple campuses in the Greater Toronto area.
"Hamilton Police believe that there may be more victims and encourage anyone with information to come forward," the police statement reads. "Hamilton Police want all survivors of sexual violence to know that we believe them and we will respect their choice when and how they report an incident."