The bishop who presided over Aretha Franklin‘s funeral on Friday has since apologized via a statement to the for inappropriately touching singer Ariana Grande after her performance at the ceremony.
Grande sang Franklin‘s 1967 hit “(You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman” at the late musician‘s funeral in Detroit, Michigan, and afterwards Bishop H. Ellis III pulled her into an embrace, placing his hand on the side of her right breast and holding it there.
Viewers watching via livestream noticed immediately, and posted photos to Twitter, admonishing Ellis for his behavior.
Oh, and did we mention that Ellis also joked that Grande‘s name Not great!
From the AP:
“It would never be my intention to touch any woman’s breast. … I don’t know I guess I put my arm around her,” Ellis said. “Maybe I crossed the border, maybe I was too friendly or familiar but again, I apologize.”
He also apologized for the tasteless joke. From the AP, again:
“I personally and sincerely apologize to Ariana and to her fans and to the whole Hispanic community,” Ellis said. “When you’re doing a program for nine hours you try to keep it lively, you try to insert some jokes here and there.”
Men: Unable to keep their hands to themselves, even at a funeral.