According to a new report, four pastors at a Canadian megachurch are facing 38 accusations of sexual misconduct.
The church, The Meeting House in Oakville, Ontario, held a meeting last week during which leaders shared dozens of accusations of abuse, CBN News reports. The Meeting House hired victim advocate Melodie Bisell to help them handle the allegations.
"To date, our victim advocate Melodie has received 38 inquiries. She's documenting each story and is committed to advocating on their behalf," Jennifer Hryniw, a member of the Board of Overseers, said during the meeting. "The inquiries are not all unique or separate, but they do represent allegations, disclosures and concerns relating primarily to clergy sexual misconduct, harassment and abuse by Kieran Naidoo, Dave Churchill, Bruxy Cavey and Tim Day."
Earlier this month, the church's former primary teaching pastor Bruxy Cavey was arrested and charged with sexual misconduct.
Cavey, 57, worked at the church from 1996 to 2021.
In 2021, Naidoo, a former youth pastor at the church, was arrested and charged with sexual exploitation. In 2014, Churchill, a former youth pastor, was charged with sexual assault and sexual exploitation. Meanwhile, Day was accused of sexual misconduct.
"We've also heard stories 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," Hryniw said. "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."
Hryniw said the church has created a subcommittee to address the misconduct reports, and a second subcommittee has been formed to update church policies.
"It's time-consuming for a small group of volunteers, and we're learning as we go. What I can tell you is that we are trying to tread carefully and faithfully," she said. "We're also prayerfully seeking understanding and not treating these stories as separate, unique and distinct situations but as a narrative that unfortunately is woven through our story as a church."
Photo courtesy: ©Getty Images/Chuang Tzu Dreaming
Amanda Casanova is a writer living in Dallas, Texas. She has covered news for ChristianHeadlines.com since 2014. She has also contributed to The Houston Chronicle, U.S. News and World Report and IBelieve.com. She blogs at The Migraine Runner.