New Hope Ministries in Lakewood, Colorado is under a lot of fire for having the nerve to cancel a woman’s funeral services just 15 minutes after it was supposed to start, because the family wanted to post a picture of their deceased daughter and her girlfriend.
The family of Vanessa Collier, 33, who accidentally shot herself while cleaning her gun on Dec. 30, wanted to display a picture of her proposing to her wife and after reviewing the pictures the day of the services, the Church would not have it and asked the family to edit it out. When the family refused, after an hour long open casket viewing, the ministry stopped the rest of the services right in its tracks! The family argues that the pictures were given a week prior for reviewal and the Church should have cancelled it long before the service was supposed to take place.
According to the Denver Post, “The memorial could not continue, Pastor Ray Chavez said, as long as pictures of Collier with the love of her life, the spouse she shared two children with, were to be displayed. Chavez said there could be no images of Collier with her wife, Christina. There could be no indication that Collier was gay.”
The decision sparked so much outrage that a protest in the name of Vanessa Collier began on Tuesday afternoon, where many supporters gathered outside of the church to protest ” Dignity in Death” . They screamed for an apology and bashed the pastor for his shameful actions.
Signs at the protest read, “You will not find Jesus at New Hope but you will find hypocrisy,” and another saying “Indignity in death.” On the other hand faithful church goers believe that the church was right in what they did with one woman saying, “Pastor Ray stood for what he believed in and he stood for God’s truth. He’s not wrong, he’s right in what he did.”
Even though it was extremely last minute, the family was able to finish the services across the street at the Newcomer Funeral Home.
I find this one to be out right crazy and blatantly disrespectful! WWJD, What Would Jesus Do, Ya’ll! We pray for the family and friends as well as the church who would do such a terrible thing and think its in the name of God. Let’s talk below what do you think about this hypocritical mess?!
-TSR STAFF – DEBRA O. @the_ebony_issue on Instagram and @TSR_ebony_issue on Twitter!