Organist Death: Grieving Widow Speaks Of Evil

The widow of Alan Greaves, who died after being attacked on his way to a Christmas Eve midnight mass, said she has not stopped crying over her husband's death and the "evil that has been done".

Mr Greaves, 68, was discovered badly beaten near his church in High Green, Sheffield, on Monday.

The father-of-four died in hospital on Thursday after suffering serious head injuries in the attack.

Two Sheffield men - one in his 20s and the other in his 40s - were released on bail after being arrested on Saturday on suspicion of murder.

At the service at St Saviour's Mortomley and High Green Church, Mrs Greaves, a church community worker, thanked the couple's congregation for their support.

"I've never stopped crying for Alan, and I know that you've never stopped crying with me," she said.

"I've grieved over the evil that's been done, and I know you too have grieved over the evil that has been done.

"I have prayed for you, and I know that you have prayed for me.

"I want to thank you because I really have sensed your very deep love and affection for me.

"You were Alan's Christian family and he loved belonging to this church."

The Bishop of Sheffield, Dr Steven Croft, led the service at the church, where Mr Greaves was a lay preacher.

Dr Croft said Sheffield had lost a "shining light".

"There is a sense of shock and a sense of outrage, not just in this community but across the whole city of Sheffield," he said.

"Alan was the victim of a brutal attack as he was on his way to church on Christmas Eve, as he was walking to this church to bear witness to his deep Christian faith.

"There will be immense grief for those who knew Alan well, which includes many in this church and community."

He went on to speak of the love and support that has been offered to the family and also appreciation for the medical teams that tried to save Mr Greaves's life.

"And in the midst of all this, I am sure, many will be giving thanks for Alan himself, for all he showed us of God's grace and love," he said.

"There will be occasions in the future for many generous tributes to be given.

"Goodness is not as common as it should be and this community and this city have lost a shining light."

Dozens of people attended the church to hear tributes to Mr Greaves, with some having to stand because there were no seats left.

Detectives are still appealing for anyone with any information about the attack to come forward.

Police are treating Mr Greaves's death as murder but say the motive for it is unclear.

Canon Simon Bessant said Mr Greaves had been attacked 250 yards from the church and that his family had been at home.

"His wife wants justice but she doesn't want vengeance. She is not embittered but obviously she wants this person to be caught."

Mr Greaves had recently become a grandfather to twin boys adopted by his daughter in Mozambique.

He and his wife had recently set up a food bank and community project in the area where he was killed.

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