The family was upset that the pastor never eulogized the late singer. The pastor has since responded by offering an apology and by clarifying that he does not regret his comments. Stating that the singer epitomizes the change that is needed within the black community.
The family of the late Aretha Franklin says they found the eulogy delivered by Rev. Jasper Williams Jr. at the iconic performer's funeral Friday to be "very, very distasteful," but the "old-school" pastor is standing firm by his remarks.
In the 50-minute eulogy delivered at the late singer's star-packed funeral Friday, Williams declared that "black lives do not matter" so long as black people continue to kill themselves and criticized raising children in fatherless homes.
"Black lives must not matter until black people start respecting black lives and stop killing ourselves," said Williams. Part of the problem, he suggested, was that the large percentage of homes without fathers in the black community has resulted in young men without adequate upbringing. Raising children without "provider" fathers and "nurturer" mothers, he said, was "abortion after birth."
Speaking on behalf of the family, the late singer's nephew, Vaughn Franklin, told AP that Williams' eulogy "caught the entire family off guard."