Artists In The News - Amy Grant
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Are Amy Grant and Gary Chapman Divorcing?

You could call them the first couple of contemporary Christian music. However, the honeymoon is over. On December 31, 1998, Amy Grant and Gary Chapman publicly announced their impending separation. On March 4, Amy filed the divorce papers.

According to many in both the CCM world and mass media, this marriage would last about six minutes. Instead, Amy and Gary were married for sixteen years. The couple has three children: Matthew, 11; Millie, 9; and Sarah, 6.

Rumor about an impending separation/divorce began circulating in 1995 while the couple toured together on Amy's "House of Love" tour. Gary dismissed the rumors in an interview with Annie Calovich of "The Witchita Eagle." "'The thing that saddends me most is rumor,' he {Gary Chapman} said at the time. 'We have been apparently on the edge of divorce since we got married.' He went on to add that the marriage was on firm ground." The fact that this marriage has collapsed has fans disappointed and confused.

Amy and Gary's divorce also has managers and marketers concerned. When the public learned of CCM singer Michael English's affair in 1994, many Christian retailers pulled his recordings from store shelves. English is not the first artist to find themselves alienated from the Christian music scene. Sandi Patty and the group First Call also had albums pulled after extramarital affairs were revealed. Would Christian retailers pull both Amy and Gary's albums because of their divorce? So far, there are no indications that they will be left out of the Christian music scene. With a new Amy Grant album due out near the end of the year, it is expected that Amy will recieve a flock of Doves next year.

But with all of this talk about album sales and Dove awards, we're all forgetting about the people involved. This isn't the end of a business deal; it's the end of a family. Amy Grant and Gary Chapman are two real, hurting people who are divorcing. However, most of the pain will be felt by the couple's three children. These children will have no more Christmas celebrations, no more Easter egg hunts, and no more Thanksgiving dinners together as a family. Let's forget about all the "material" aspects of this divorce. Let's pray for Amy, Gary, Matt, Millie, and Sarah.

"I don't know what to say to you
Tears are on your face
You don't know how we'll make it through
Such a lonely place
But if you could read my mind, you'd understand
Even in times like these I'm wanting
Nothing other than our love."

"Our Love" as recorded by Amy Grant.

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