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Mainstream entertainer Adrienne Bailon has finally broken her silence after it was recently reported by celebrity news sites and confirmed by Israel Houghton, multi-Grammy Award winning gospel singer, that they were dating after he recently finalized his divorce to his former wife of over 20 years.
Bailon, 32, had stayed mum as photos of her in a bikini on the beach in Mexico with Houghton, who is also the worship leader at Lakewood Church (currently on indefinite leave), circulated, sparking allegations that they were dating just a month after the gospel singer had publicly announced in February that his marriage was legally over. But during a recent episode of "The Real," Bailon addressed her new relationship for the first time.
"Yes I am dating, his name is Israel Houghton as some of you guys may know. I think I'm more than anything grateful that I have a platform like this, where I can be with my girls. The show is called 'The Real,' it is a place where we can speak about the truth," the TV personality and "The Real" co-host said. "With that being said, the man pictured here is not married. Praise God."
Bailon continued, "He had actually put out a statement. He is single, number one. The other thing people were saying was that I was the cause of the divorce, which I think any divorce is obviously a sad thing. People have to go through it, [it] takes time to get through that sort of thing, and I think no one put that time together. I think people see an announcement was made at the top of the year and then they see these photos and then they think well let's put this together but this is why I'm grateful for things like this because it allows you to set the facts straight and God forbid the facts get in the way of a really juicy story. I'm going to say the truth and the truth of the matter is he isn't married. He obviously is divorced."
Houghton addressed his divorce in an open letter posted on Facebook in February, where he publicly repented of his wrong doing. "It is with a collective heavy heart that we announce that after over 20 years of marriage and a long separation, Meleasa and I are officially divorced," he wrote.
"Several years ago I failed and sinned in my marriage," he confessed. "Though this is new to many, it is not new to us as we have been working through this for over 5 years. Although we tried, the challenges in our relationship have proven too much to overcome."
Bailon was pegged as the reason for 44-year-old Houghton's divorce when the beach photos surfaced, but the actress maintained that she didn't even know him at the time of his personal failure, and said that the public blaming her for a marriage ending was "obviously hurtful."
The two first worked together on the 2013 flick produced by Houghton, "I'm in Love with a Church Girl." During promotional tours for the film, Bailon said she was a fan of Houghton's music.
Bailon ended her relationship with ex-fiance Lenny Santiago back in September 2015, and Houghton announced his legal split from his former wife, Meleasa, of 20 years, in late February of this year.