Pastor Accused of Groping Ariana Grande Apologizes for Being ‘Too Friendly’
American singing legend Aretha Louise Franklin breathed her last in her home on August 16, 2018. The 76-year-old soul singer had been suffering from advanced pancreatic cancer for quite sometime before her demise. After a memorial service held on August 19, 2018, a funeral was arranged on August 31, 2018. As expected celebrities from the entertainment industry and politicians were present among Aretha’s friends and family at the funeral. Numerous artists like Stevie Wonder, Yolanda Addams performed to honour Aretha Franklin. However, what happened with pop singer Ariana Grande has become a topic of debate in America.
As singer Ariana Grande finished performing ‘You Make Me Feel Like A Natural Woman’, she was awkwardly greeted by Bishop Charles H Ellis III who officiated the funeral. Bishop is a senior pastor of a megachurch in Detroit who was accused of groping the singer Ariana Grande during Aretha Franklin’s Funeral.
Images and videos of those moments show that the Bishop’s hand was slowing creeping near Ariana’s breast by each passing moment as he groped her. At one instance Ariana tried inching away from the Bishop but the man pulled her closer to give her a ‘hug’—clearly, while groping her on International television.
In the video, one can see that Ariana Grande was uncomfortable as she tried to reply to the Bishop by laughing awkwardly and trying to dismiss the situation. If groping someone on international television was not enough, Bishop even made a joke about ordering an ‘Ariana Grande’ at the fast food chain Taco Bell.
Furious, many Twitterati have voiced their opinions after Bishop groped Arina Grande:
I can’t watch that clip of Ariana Grande getting groped by the pastor again. I feel so sick. Her body language says everything. She’s trying to move far away from him but clearly doesn’t feel like she can. Men are awful. All of them.
— Chrissa Hardy 🧟♀️ (@chrissahardy) September 1, 2018
Pissed off. Ariana being looked up and down, being joked about being a Taco Bell item, and being groped all while at a funeral. Absolutely disgusting. I feel terrible for her and so sorry this happened while she attended someone’s funeral, who she loved. Sickening #RespectAriana
— Eric B💧 (@ewood1211) August 31, 2018
There was nothing wrong with Ariana’s dress.
Worry about the fact that someone groped her. That’s sexual assault. In real time. On live tv. At a funeral. In front of thousands. Y’all worried about the wrong shit.
— Justice4NiaWilson (@Deviant_Phoenix) August 31, 2018
The people defending bishop Charles Ellis after he groped and assaulted Ariana on live tv shows how long we have to go before these church leaders, who have gotten away with rape for decades, are charged and incarcerated
— Jhobbs (@JJHobbs12) September 2, 2018
Pastor telling a story of his 28 year old daughter telling him who a 24 year old artist is while he’s groping said 24 year olds breast on national television? Nah, mate. Keep your apology. If you’re that bold on tv, you probably belong in jail. #ArianaGrande #RespectAriana
— Sam (@NotGreatGtsby) September 2, 2018
Groping someone is never an accident. His fingers, tightly holding her by her chest is no accident. @bishopche3 you have made people upset. #ArianaGrande #RespectAriana #RespectArianaAndAllWomen #BishopCharlesEllisIII #BishopCharlesEllis
— Khanak57 (@Khanakt57) September 2, 2018
This Ariana Grande thing has me sick. That man knew what he was doing and no one is calling out the obvious. How many innocent girls in his church has this sick man done this to in the past because he was all to comfortable doing it knowing he was on camera. #ArianaGrande #MeToo
— Robert Zavala (@RobbieZ9) September 2, 2018
While many voices are supporting and demanding respect for Ariana Grande many have decided to shame the pop singer for wearing a short dress to the funeral. Does this mean wearing a short dress is an invitation to get groped?
Y’all out here really worried about a dress…over groping? Like, didn’t we have the #metoo movement not too long ago? Did y’all forget? Do we need to have it again? What’s so hard to understand? A dress over being sexually assaulted? Ridiculous. #ArianaGrande
— san. (@sixsixsan) September 2, 2018
Looking at the outrage, Bishop Charles H Ellis III has ‘formally’ apologized to the singer.
“It would never be my intention to touch any woman’s breast. … I don’t know I guess I put my arm around her,” Bishop said. “Maybe I crossed the border, maybe I was too friendly or familiar but again, I apologise.”
Ellis further explained that he was hugging all the artists who performed during that nine-hour service, “I hug all the female artists and the male artists. 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.”
As for comparing Ariana to an item on Taco Bell’s menu, Ellis said, “I personally and sincerely apologise to Ariana and to her fans and to the whole Hispanic community,” However, justifying his words, Bishop said that to keep a programme lively for nine hours one has to insert some jokes here and there.
This was not all that pop singer Ariana Grande was subjected to on August 31st. Known for his sex scandals former American President Bill Clinton could barely take his eyes off of Ariana Grande as she performed. One can clearly see that the former president was leering up and down the young singer.