Samuel and Madelaine Emerson. (Surrey RCMP photos)

UPDATE: Cloverdale pastor responds to charges of sexual assault against son

Randy Emerson’s son Samuel Emerson is facing 25 charges, including 13 counts of sexual assault

For eight years, Samuel Emerson was a pastor at Cloverdale Christian Fellowship Church, also known as “Cloverdale Church.”

His last day as a pastor came on May 18, when RCMP “showed up at the door of the church” and led him out in cuffs, said Samuel’s father, Randy Emerson, who is the current pastor of Cloverdale Church.

In a media release issued Tuesday afternoon, Surrey RCMP revealed that they received several allegations of sexual assault against Samuel Emerson and his wife Madelaine on May 17, 2017.

The South Surrey couple – who have five children – were arrested the next day.

Samuel Emerson, 34, has been charged with 13 counts of sexual assault, 11 counts of being in a position of authority and touching a person for a sexual purpose, and one count of sexual touching of a person under the age of 16.

Madelaine Emerson, 37, has been charged with one count of sexual assault, one count of being in a position of authority and touching a person for a sexual purpose, and one count of threats to cause death or bodily harm.

The alleged assaults occurred between 2015 and 2017.

Surrey RCMP explained the 4½-month delay in announcing the arrest that “there was no investigational or public safety need to report out on this matter.”

The day of the arrest, Randy Emerson wrote on Facebook: “If you know us and our church please pray. We are under attack like never before and we need the accuser of the saints to be silenced and Truth prevail.”

Two days later, he wrote, “Thank you to everyone who is praying for us and expressing love at this time. You are making a difference. This is a time when we must not believe with our eyes and ears but with our spirits. Let God be true and every man a liar. Can’t be specific at this time but your prayers are making a difference.”

Randy Emerson and his wife Christine started the Cloverdale Christian Fellowship Church, which celebrates its 25th anniversary this Sunday.

“Sam, being our son, was a part of the church right from the beginning,” he told the Cloverdale Reporter on Wednesday. “If I’d seen anybody go out that way, it’s traumatizing. Any of our staff taken away (in cuffs) would be tough… Being my son, it was it just the cherry on the ice cream, you know?”

The couple was not previously known to police, and they were later released under “strict conditions… sufficient to alleviate any safety concerns,” an RCMP spokesperson said.

One of those conditions is that Samuel and Madelaine cannot have contact with the church, according to Randy.

No mention of Samuel or Madelaine is on the church’s website, but according to his social media accounts, Samuel was a pastor at Cloverdale Church, and worked with Youth Church Cloverdale.

Randy said that Samuel worked “in every ministry of the church,” which includes the youth ministry.

Samuel Emerson’s work as a pastor also took him to other churches in Surrey, including Life Church in White Rock. In a Facebook post in September 2016, Life Church wrote, “This Sunday we welcomed young Pastor Sam Emerson from our sister church in Cloverdale, B.C.”

“Sam grew upon our church, and had some very important insights to share,” the post reads.

READ MORE: ‘We grieve for the victims’: Cloverdale churches respond to recent charges against Surrey pastor

Following the arrests, Sunday services at Cloverdale Church were subdued for “almost two months,” said Randy.

“People were in shock for the first while,” he said. “It was very, very difficult and very quiet and subdued. For the last couple of months we’ve been building towards something lively and full of life again. For awhile it was just, like, everybody was just staring off into space.”

The congregation went from a crowd of around 250 people to 50 people.

“People just left,” said Randy. “These are people, some of them that we’d worked with for 25 years.”

“They were ripped out of our relationships just immediately. And they wouldn’t talk to us. At all. Afraid, and I don’t know what for,” he said.

“As I understand it, none of the allegations occurred at the church,” said Randy, “which is where we work very hard to keep it safe here. We’re even reviewing those policies and protocol to see if we can tighten everything up.”

Randy said that Cloverdale Church’s safety protocols are “pretty typical.” They include criminal record checks for staff. No minor is left in a room unsupervised with an adult if the minor and adult are “opposite genders,” he added.

“As far as we know nothing happened [at the church],” said Randy. “And I can’t control stuff that happens off the property and on people’s own time.”

The Cloverdale Church continues to be active in its work. “We continue to do the things that we’ve always done, but it’s on a much more subdued level,” said Randy. ”We’ve pulled back, but we’re not stopping.”

Surrey RCMP have said the investigation into Samuel and Madelaine Emerson is still ongoing, and that they believe there may have been other victims.

They are asking that any potential victims come forward to speak with police.

Surrey RCMP as that anyone with more information call 604-599-0502, or, if they wish to remain anonymous, to contact Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS.



editor@cloverdalereporter.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

 

This photo, captioned “Epic first night back in the warehouse” shows Samuel Emerson speaking to Youth Church Cloverdale in September 2012. (Samuel Emerson / Instagram)

Comments are closed

Just Posted

Setting sail to fight kidney disease

Trail’s annual Kidney Walk included an opportunity to raft down the Columbia River

MP Cannings spared brunt of Ottawa tornadoes

MP Richard Cannings was spared the impact of the tornadoes that hit the Ottawa region

Castlegar walk raises thousands for local Alzheimer’s support

Castle Wood Village fundraiser shows astounding support in community, organizers say

IRM reports small sulphuric acid leak at Waneta reload

IRM states a small volume of less than one cup and three dime-sized drips were leaked from carrier

Columbia Basin RDI: Exercise Your Right to Vote

Voter turnout statistics from the Columbia Basin Rural Development Institute

AFN national chief suggests moving Trans Mountain pipeline route

Perry Bellegarde said many Indigenous communities believe in the need to diversify export markets

U.S. worker charged after video shows him spitting on cusomer’s pizza

Jaylon Kerley of Detroit is charged with a felony count of food law violations

Andrew Weaver congratulates New Brunswick on electing first Green caucus

Election win means there are now three provincial Green Party caucuses in Canada

Around the BCHL: Merritt’s Matthew Kopperud nets Sun Devil scholarship

Around the BCHL is a look at the BCHL and goings-on throughout the junior A world.

Father, 9-year-old son killed in crash along B.C. highway

RCMP say family of five was hit head-on by a pickup truck north of Williams Lake

2 B.C. police departments won’t use new saliva test to detect high drivers

The Dräger DrugTest 5000 is designed to find THC, the high-inducing part of marijuana

Canada aiming for the moon, and beyond, with new space technology efforts

With an eye on future lunar exploration, Canada’s space agency is calling on companies to present their ideas for everything from moon-rover power systems to innovative mineral prospecting techniques.

New Brunswick Premier meets with lieutenant-governor as Tories, Liberals vie for power

New Brunswick Premier Brian Gallant said the only other leader he had spoken with since results came in was Green Leader David Coon.

Trudeau looks to restart Canada’s UN charm offensive in New York City

Freeland says the question of job retraining in the 21st century — and the uncertainty that surrounds it — is the federal government’s central preoccupation.

Most Read