Demetria Devonne Lovato is an American singer, songwriter, and actress. She began her career in 2002 on the children’s television series Barney & Friends, before rising to prominence for portraying Mitchie Torres in the Disney Channel musical television film Camp Rock and its sequel Camp Rock 2: The Final Jam.
Lovato posted photos from Israel on Wednesday featuring her being baptized in the Jordan River, visiting the Western Wall in Jerusalem, touring the Yad Vashem Holocaust memorial and museum. She also met with members of the Shalva band at the Shalva Center.
In her post from the Jordan River, the singer mentioned her Jewish ancestry. “There is something absolutely magical about Israel. I’ve never felt such a sense of spirituality or connection to God,” she posted.
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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…to be baptized in the Jordan river – the same place Jesus was baptized – I’ve never felt more renewed in my life. This trip has been so important for my well-being, my heart, and my soul. I’m grateful for the memories made and the opportunity to be able to fill the God-sized hole in my heart. Thank you for having me, Israel 💗
The singer celebrated a year of sobriety in July after a nearly fatal drug overdose last year. During her time in Israel, she also visited the Western Wall, the holiest site in Judaism, Yad Vashem, the Holocaust memorial and the Shalva National Center, which provides care for children with special needs.
“This trip has been so important for my well-being, my heart, and my soul. I’m grateful for the memories made and the opportunity to be able to fill the God-sized hole in my heart. Thank you for having me, Israel.”
After praising Israel, she immediately received backlash from outraged pro-Palestinian activists online.
Lovato issued an apology Wednesday to her fans, and then deleted the post shortly thereafter, “I’m extremely frustrated. I accepted a free trip to Israel in exchange for a few posts. No one told me there would be anything wrong with going or that I could possibly be offending anyone. With that being said, I’m sorry if I’ve hurt or offended anyone,”
“Sometimes people present you with opportunities and no one tells you the potential backlash you could face in return. This 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,” she added.
It is unknown as to who funded her trip.
She has disabled fans’ ability to comment on her posts (with 74.5 million followers), most likely due to the slew of negative reactions she received.