Bishop Apologizes for ‘Too Friendly’ Hug With Ariana Grande at Aretha Franklin Funeral


The bishop who presided over Aretha Franklin‘s funeral service has apologized to Ariana Grande after he botched her name and appeared to get a bit handsy onstage.

After Grande performed A Natural Woman during the funeral on Friday, Bishop Charles H. Ellis III greeted Grande with an awkward touch.

He also made a remark about how he needs to brush up on the younger generations because when he saw her name he thought it was a “new something at a Taco Bell.”

Both Grande and the audience appeared to laugh at the remark, however, the Bishop has since apologized for getting “too friendly.”

“I personally and sincerely apologize to Ariana and to her fans and to the whole Hispanic community,” Ellis said in his apology, according to AP. “When you’re doing a program for nine hours you try to keep it lively, you try to insert some jokes here and there.”

Turning to the awkward touch, Ellis also said that was not meant to be anything more than a greeting.

“I hug all the female artists and the male artists,” Ellis told. “Everybody that was up, I shook their hands and hugged them. That’s what we are all about in the church. We are all about love.”

He added: “It would never be my intention to touch any woman’s breast. … I don’t know I guess I put my arm around her. Maybe I crossed the border, maybe I was too friendly or familiar but again, I apologize.”

[image via screengrab]

Have a tip we should know?

Filed Under: