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Jaci Velasquez Divorced

  • Mark Moring Copyright Christianity Today International
  • 2005 8 Aug
  • COMMENTS
Jaci Velasquez Divorced

Less than two years after her 2003 wedding made the news, Christian/Latin music superstar Jaci Velasquez's marriage has ended in divorce.

Velasquez and Indiana native Darren Potuck were married on August 16, 2003, in Franklin, Tennessee. But their marriage later "took a turn," Velasquez told Christian Music Today in an exclusive statement.

"When my husband and I started out as newlyweds, we were like all newlyweds, wanting that dream marriage," Velasquez said. "Somehow, things took a turn and we have ended up in divorce."

Velasquez did not elaborate on the reasons for the divorce.

A Word Records spokesman said Velasquez and Potuck had worked to save their marriage, and Velasquez alluded to that in her statement.

"I sought counseling," said the 25-year-old singer, "but the painful truth is that our marriage didn't work out. I've had such a difficult time with this. My heart hurt so badly that I felt like I wanted to crawl under a rock and just die. I can't say that I have ever felt such pain before. My heart literally felt like it was breaking in half."

Velasquez referenced "Lay It Down," the second radio single from her new album, Beauty Has Grace, to describe what she's now experiencing. The lyrics to that song include these lines: "All of my hopes and my dreams and my best laid plans / Are slowly slipping through my folded hands."

"I am learning how to live out the words of 'Lay It Down' daily and experiencing God's love, grace and mercy like never before," she said. "My God is so awesome, I can feel him lift me up every time I feel like it's all too much for me."

Velasquez further said she has not discussed the divorce "because it is clearly too painful. I am still in the healing process and ask for your prayers and consideration for my privacy."

In a 2004 interview with Christian Music Today, Velasquez had described her husband as "the greatest, the funniest, and the coolest guy you'll ever meet. … Any girl wants a guy that will be hers forever, and that's how I feel with him."

Velasquez, a Grammy nominee and multi-platinum selling artist in both the Christian and Latin markets, recently moved to London, but is still making appearances in the U.S. She will appear at the Soul2Soul Honors 2005 event August 26 in Louisville, and she will appear at a Nashville Hecht's department store August 27 in support of the M·A·C AIDS Fund

She is currently working on her next CD, an all-Spanish for the Latin market. Velasquez is also the founder of her own Christian music label, Apostrophe Records

Her divorce is the highest-profile divorce in Christian music since Amy Grant's 1999 divorce from Gary Chapman. Grant—like Velasquez a Word Records artist—later married country music superstar Vince Gill.

After Grant's divorce became public, many radio stations stopped playing her songs and many Christian retailers refused to stock her albums. But Grant has made a comeback in Christian music circles in recent years, especially with her two hymns albums, Legacy (2002) and Rock of Ages (2005).

Regarding Velasquez, a Word Records representative said the label is "not concentrating on radio or retail sales. We love Jaci, and we're concentrating on Jaci and helping her work through this."

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