Former “Cheetah Girl” Adrienne Bailon remained quiet about her relationship with Grammy Award-winning gospel singer Israel Houghton — until Thursday. The co-host of the syndicated talk-variety show “The Real” didn’t comment on their connection directly, but she tweeted a message shared by Joel Osteen’s Lakewood Church, where Houghton was suspended.
After Houghton’s suspension went viral, rumors swirled that he was fired from the church, were he served as a minister for five years, because he cheated on his ex-wife, Meleasa, with Bailon. But apparently this was not the case. “We can confirm that Israel is on indefinite leave, but it is important to clarify that we still consider Israel to be a part of the Lakewood family and that his employment has not been terminated,” Lakewood Church said in a statement Thursday.
Though Bailon, 32, didn’t add any commentary, Houghton professed his admiration for Osteen and the Texas megachurch. “I truly love @joelosteen and my gracious Lakewood family,” he wrote on Twitter on Thursday. “Here is their official statement. I have not been fired.”
Houghton, 44, maintained that his 20-year relationship to Meleasa was over before he became intimate with Bailon, who formerly dated “Keeping Up With the Kardashians” star Rob Kardashian.
"It seems to be simple math that I had not even yet met Adrienne during the time my marriage was falling apart,” Houghton posted to Facebook on Tuesday. "Adrienne is a woman of integrity and character. ... Most of all she is a true friend, and she should not be blamed for my past indiscretions.”
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