Benny Hazlehurst

Recent news from Elaine Sommers (Co-chair Accepting Evangelicals)

14th January 2019

It is with great sadness that I report the death of our Founder and first Director Benny Hazlehurst, whose long illness with cancer ended on Boxing Day. We send our condolences to Benny’s wife Mel and her family. I and other AE trustees will be attending the funeral in Dorchester this week. 



Throughout Benny’s illness he maintained his energy, humour and love. His departure from us will be especially hard for Mel and the family, and we pray that God will give them the comfort and strength they need to deal with all the events and responsibilities in the coming weeks and months. 

On a personal note, I loved Benny’s positive vibe, informality, wisdom and vision right from our first meeting. It was he who drew me into the AE fold and made me eel at home in the band of brothers and sisters which he had gathered around him. I can honestly say that he remains one of the very small number of people who inspired and guided me on the path which now occupies me in my retirement –  to be a voice for all LGBT people who have been marginalised or excluded by evangelical churches, and to have the boldness to reach out and engage with conservative evangelical Christians. 

To read a beautiful tribute by Tracey Byrne of OneBodyOneFaith, go to:


You can read Benny’s personal blog at

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