Former pastor of Ontario megachurch faces 2 more sexual assault charges, police say

CBC (Canadian Broadcasting Corporation) [Toronto, Canada]

December 29, 2023

By Bobby Hristova

Bruxy Cavey was previously charged with sexual assault in June 2022

The former pastor of The Meeting House — an Ontario megachurch — is facing two more sexual assault charges, CBC Hamilton has learned.

Hamilton police Const. Krista-Lee Ernst told CBC Hamilton Bruxy Cavey was charged with two counts of sexual assault on Dec. 22.

Ernst didn’t say what prompted the new charges or provide detail about when the alleged assaults took place, but wrote in an email on Thursday afternoon that Cavey will appear in court in January. 

Cavey, who was the primary teaching pastor at The Meeting House and worked there from 1996 to 2021, was charged with sexual assault in June 2022. He was 57 when he was first charged.

The Meeting House church is headquartered in Oakville, Ont., but has locations throughout the province. It also streams its Sunday service at several cinemas in southern Ontario.

CBC Hamilton contacted Cavey and the church for comment but didn’t immediately receive a response. Cavey’s lawyer, Megan Savard​, replied by email on Thursday.

“It is unfortunate that a new and unrelated allegation has surfaced on the eve of Mr. Cavey’s trial,” Savard​ said.

“Mr. Cavey maintains his innocence and will vigorously defend against the new charges in court. In the meantime, he remains focused on and committed to clearing his name at his upcoming trial.”

Church investigation found ‘abuse of power’

A victim’s advocate for the church’s patrons previously said there were 38 allegations of sexual misconduct against a group of four former pastors, including Cavey. The Meeting House didn’t previously provide an updated number and the advocate, Melodie Bissell, no longer works with the church, she told CBC Hamilton by phone this week.

Back in 2022, when Cavey was initially charged, police said the allegation was reported in April of that year and the alleged sexual assault occurred in Hamilton. Cavey was arrested but released then with some conditions. 

Neither police nor the church confirmed at that time which location or locations Cavey has worked at over the years.

The Meeting House didn’t comment as the matter was before the courts, but was providing updates to the church community on its website.

In March 2022, the church and members of its “overseers board” posted online, saying it found Cavey had a sexual relationship with a woman that contravened church policies.

Former board chair Maggie John said the relationship went on for an “extended period of time … constituted an abuse of Bruxy’s power and authority as a member of the clergy, and amounted to sexual harassment.”

Cavey was reportedly 46 during the relationship and the accuser was 23, according to board member Jennifer Hryniw.

John said Cavey resigned at the church’s request on March 3 and lost his pastoral credentials days later with the church’s denomination, Be In Christ Church of Canada.

Hamilton police previously said it could not comment on the church’s investigation.

Cavey apologized for ‘affair’ in blog post

Cavey made a blog post on his website titled My Confession on March 8, 2022, related to the church’s investigation. The website and the post are no longer accessible.

In the post, he said “at the core of the allegations there is truth” and he apologized for having an “extramarital affair.”

“I was also irresponsible in my role as a spiritual leader and Christian clergy, which involves dynamics of power and influence and an expectation of exemplary conduct that makes me doubly accountable. I accept this responsibility with deep regret for my actions,” he wrote.

“I wish I had had the courage years ago to divulge what has now become publicly known through the bravery of the woman I was involved with. Although I had repented before God, I kept it a secret from others. I am sorry upon sorry for my cowardice.”

When asked about the blog post, police previously said it couldn’t comment on it.

Church ‘substantiated’ claims of sexual abuse

Months later, in August 2022, Bruce Miller, then co-chair of the board of overseers, said an investigation into allegations against Cavey “substantiated” two claims of “sexual abuse by a church leader.”

“In a third [claim], his actions have been found to be substantiated as sexual misconduct,” Miller said, adding that in one case the alleged victim was underage.

The church defines sexual abuse by a leader as “any sexualized behaviour that occurs within the church context and where one party has more power than the other.” That can include people who are paid or volunteer in leadership positions like pastors, Christian counsellors, youth leaders, deacons or Sunday school teachers.

The church also said it substantiated allegations against another former senior pastor who hadn’t been charged by police.

Jared Taylor, the church’s former communications pastor, said at the time the allegation involving a minor was reported to police, though it’s unclear if it was reported to police in Hamilton or Halton.

Hamilton police spokesperson Jackie Penman previously said the service’s investigation into Cavey concluded and there weren’t any additional charges. Halton police declined to comment.

It was unclear whether a new investigation led to the December 2023 charges and, if so, when that began.

Bobby Hristova is a journalist with CBC Hamilton. He reports on all issues, but has a knack for stories that hold people accountable, stories that focus on social issues and investigative journalism. He previously worked for the National Post and CityNews in Toronto. You can contact him at