This week, the singer shared photos showing her being baptized in the Jordan River and visiting Jerusalem’s Western Wall and the World Holocaust Remembrance Center. While she called the trip “magical” and said it filled “the God-sized hole in my heart,” she’s now distancing herself from it after receiving backlash. The criticism was that she’s supporting the country amid its ongoing — and long-standing — conflict with Palestine.
In a message Lovato shared on her Instagram Stories Wednesday night, she apologized to those she offended. She emphasized that the free trip was “not a political statement,” and said sorry for not being “more educated” on the matter.
“I’m extremely frustrated,” she wrote. “I accepted a free trip to Israel in exchange for a few [social media] posts. No one told me there would be anything wrong with going or that I could possibly be offending anyone.”
Lovato continued, “With that being said, I’m sorry if I’ve hurt or offended anyone, that was not my intention. Sometimes people present you with opportunities and no one tells you the potential backlash you could face in return.”
She said it was “meant to be a spiritual experience for me, NOT A POLITICAL STATEMENT and now I realize it hurt people and for that I’m sorry.”
Lovato also apologized for not being “more educated” on the topic “and thinking this trip was just a spiritual experience.”
She added that she was “going against all advice” to apologize “because it feels right to me and I’d rather get in trouble for being authentic to myself, than staying quiet to please other people.”
It ended with, “I love my fans, all of them, from all over.”
The backlash had clearly taken a toll. Soon after she posted, “I’m exhausted.” That was followed by a post that said, “And by exhausted: Don’t wanna talk about this anymore,” including with “friends / family.”
Before the controversy, Lovato seemed to have an amazing visit. On Tuesday, she told her fans, “I am an American singer. I was raised Christian and have Jewish ancestors. When I was offered an amazing opportunity to visit the places I’d read about in the Bible growing up, I said yes. There is something absolutely magical about Israel. I’ve never felt such a sense of spirituality or connection to God…something I’ve been missing for a few years now. Spirituality is so important to me.”
She also visited the Shalva National Center, a non-profit organization for children with disabilities, and bonded with a baby.
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