There are a handful American singers who have successfully captured the hearts of millions with their singing skills. One of these people is Israel Houghton- a talented Christian music singer whose skillfully crafted songs spreads across the US states border.
Houghton isn’t just a singer, he is also a songwriter, producer and worship leader whose music is notorious for its cross-cultural style of Christian music that blends together jazz, gospel, rock and reggae elements.
The music star was born on May 19, 1971, in Oceanside, California, United States. He has released over 13 albums since 1997, 11 of which were released under his own music label Integrity but he came into limelight after the release of his album “Bigger Than My Imagination” which was described as “one of the year’s best worship albums” in the 2003 Christianity Today review.
Since then, the worship leader has made a name for himself reaching beyond the western borders.
Israel Houghton Wife, Divorce, Affair
Israel first got married in 1994 to Meleasa Houghton a well known American Gospel singer. The two met at Houghton’s ministry in Pittsburgh and they finally tied the knot after being best of friends for several months.
The two penned songs became parents to three children namely Mariah, Israel, and Milan and established a strong ministry together
But the marriage crashed twenty-one years after. The news about the marital break-up came as a shock to their fans not because it was unusual for celebrities like them to have issues, but for the fact that the marriage lasted for over two decades to be thrown out.
The couple made headlines when they called off their marriage in 2016. Israel Houghton broke the news on February 23 when he posted on his Facebook page that his 20-year marriage to Meleasa Houghton has ended because he had cheated.
“Several years ago I failed and sinned in my marriage. … Although we tried, the challenges in our relationship have proven too much to overcome. We have always handled our family and ministry with grace and generosity toward others, discretion, and privacy,” Houghton posted.
“I am in the process of restoration and I have repented for my actions. Although I am sincerely sorry and forgiven, I soberly realize that I will live with the consequences of my failings for the rest of my life,”
“As this has become a public matter I want to apologize to the many who have supported my ministry through the years. I’m sorry for the many who will be hurt to learn of my personal failure. I regret any pain or disappointment that this news may cause you. We thank you for your prayers and for allowing us to handle this privately with those who are set over us in this process,” Houghton concluded.
He also confessed that his marriage had been over for quite some time before it went public. Meleasa has not married since then but a few months later, Israel announced his relationship with his new wife who was then his girlfriend.
“It seems to be simple math that I had not even met Adrienne during the time my marriage was falling apart. Adrienne is a woman of integrity & character… Most of all she is a true friend, and she should not be blamed for my past indiscretions.” he said about his new love.
Adrienne Bailon – a daytime talk show host- and Israel Houghton were friends for years before contemplated dating and on 11 November 2016, they tied the knot at the Hotel Plaza Atheneel.
Speaking about his new-found love, Houghton said what he found most appealing about Bailon was that she encouraged and demanded honesty from the beginning of their friendship.
“That’s where our friendship really became something special,” he commented, adding that he was determined to be honest for his own good.
Although Houghton had separated from wife Meleasa for quite some time, there are speculations that he cheated on her with Bailon. But, Bailon denied this, saying she didn’t even know him at the time of his personal failure and said that the public blaming her for his marriage ending was “hurtful.
Israel Houghton Kids
Aside from the three children Israel Houghton had with his ex-wife, it’s been rumoured that the gospel singer had two other children outside marriage.
Houghton has, however, has admitted to being the father of one of the two rumoured children Kingston, but the courts are still waiting to determine whether he’s the father of the rest.
So far, he is the father to two daughters – Milan Houghton and Mariah Houghton, and tow son – Jordan Houghton and Israel Houghton Sonny.
His daughter Mariah Houghton 21 got married in 2016 to her 22-year-old groom Byron Rideaux.
The multiple Grammy award winner expressed how proud of his daughter he is when he posted a picture of them together and captioned it thus;
“Did I mention how proud I am of this young woman [Mariah Houghton]? Beautiful bride [and Byron Rideaux.]”
Israel Houghton Nert Worth
Israel has a net worth of $8 million which he gathered from his numerous albums, including his debut studio album Whisper It Loud which was released in 1997.
Israel has so far won six Grammy Awards; three for Best Pop/Contemporary Gospel Album and one for Best Traditional Gospel Album for Alive In South Africa.
He produced Michael Gungor’s album Bigger Than My Imagination. Houghton has also recorded the albums Nueva Generation, New Season, Real, Life From Another Level, Alive in South Africa, A Timeless Christmas, A Deeper Level, The Power of One, Love God, Love People, Decade, and Jesus at the Center: Live.
In an undated interview, Houghton spoke about his plans for his family and the people around him
“I’m more interested in building a legacy and a dynasty with my children and with spiritual sons and daughters that God gives me the opportunity to lead and to mentor and to inspire,” He said.