Back in the 90’s, Hollywood really took to heart the saying, “Two heads are better than one.” It seemed the media was awash with both real twins, like Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen, and fake ones, such as Lindsey Lohan in The Parent Trap. One such set of twins that made their mark on Hollywood was Tia and Tamera Mowry. Still in the spotlight, Tamera Mowry-Housley now openly shares her Christian beliefs on Fox’s daytime talk show The Real.
Tamera certainly isn’t new to the Christian faith. The twins grew up in a Christian home and, according to an article by Christianity Today, used to “play church” with friends from the neighborhood. Their messages focused on: Be good, and love your neighbors as you love yourself. Tamera recalled, “It wasn’t anything deep because at that age, of course, we didn’t understand everything.” She added later, “But I think I was about 15 or 16 when I realized: You know what? I have to be real for Christ. And that’s when you grow.”
In addition to growing in their faith, Tia and Tamera grew in their Hollywood success. In 1994, when the twins were 16 years old, their show Sister, Sister aired on ABC and launched them to stardom. Later picked up by Warner Brothers, Sister, Sister was the story of twins who were separated at birth and found each other as teenagers. The show captured the attention of 90’s youth and won the twins the Kids’ Choice Award for Favorite Television Actress three years in a row.
Of course, being in the spotlight also comes with a unique set of pressures. Tamera revealed to the LA Times that although she had a wonderful childhood, interviewers often didn’t want to report on that. One interviewer treated her like a “fake and a phony” when Tamera, 16 years old at the time, didn’t produce any negative facts about her life. Tamera remembered, “She said, ‘Let’s be real here.’ I said, ‘I am being real.’ Do you know how much that hurt me? People look at us like we’re fake because, you know, we’re so happy at times. Like what is wrong with being happy? What is wrong with having a happy childhood? What is wrong with having a wonderful family? People will say, ‘We only want you on the cover of this magazine if you tell us about your problems. Did you ever really, like, scratch your sister real bad, like, make a huge scar on her face? Or were you on drugs?’ When you say no, they’re not interested in you. Like, what’s wrong with being a great role model? I think society needs to start praising the good. They’re always praising the people on crack. They need to start praising the ones who are off crack.”
Despite the pressures of Hollywood, both Tia and Tamera continued to live their lives on the straight-and-narrow. Tamera went on to act in other movies and shows including Seventeen Again, Hot Chick, Strong Medicine, and Roommates. In the Christianity Today interview, she shared that she doesn’t have to announce that she is a Christian on sets, they simply know something’s different about her. The cast and crew of Strong Medicine labeled it as “a different aura.” Tamera explained, “We’re supposed to be known by our walk with Christ. You know a person by their fruit.”
For Tia and Tamera, being celebrities isn’t just about fame and fortune. “We use our celebrity status to speak about God, because, you know, you’re everywhere when you’re on TV,” Tamera said to the LA Times, “That’s how God is using us. So we’re on a talk show, and we start talking about our lives.”
Although this type of evangelism often comes with public persecution, Tamera doesn’t seem to be worried about it. “The Bible says you will be persecuted. We go into Christianity thinking that, so when it happens, I just know that I am doing my job,” later adding, “People may persecute me, but it’s not going to stop me.”
Currently, you can watch Tamera on Fox Network’s daytime talk show The Real hosting alongside Adrienne Houghton, Loni Love, Jeannie Mai and Tamar Braxton. On the show she is real and honest about her faith, as well as her mistakes. Always a supporter of abstinence before marriage, Tamera revealed on the show that one of the hardest things for her to do was to forgive herself after she had relations with her husband, Fox News correspondent Adam Housley, before they were married. She confided to her fellow hosts, “I waited until I was 29; however, I had made that pack with myself and with God, so it really messed me up you guys, when I, you know…” After hearing her co-hosts support her and talk about God’s forgiveness she declared, “Most importantly, He knows my heart and I think in all of it I had to learn that God, He doesn’t see things in a legalistic manner. You don’t really have to earn His love, He loves you just as you are.” After losing her virginity, Tamera and Adam decided to stay celibate until they were married three years later.
However, she did share a piece of relationship advice in an interview with Ebony Magazine, “But if you want to be celibate, definitely don’t live together [laughs] because that makes it harder for you. Have people around you to keep you accountable! Surround yourself with people who support your decision, because they’re only going to root you on. Make that covenant with God and with each other and just let go. God is going to see you through the difficult times. Whenever you’re feeling discouraged just pray together. Like I said it’s not going to be a perfect journey, but you just have to keep God the center of your relationship.”
Tamera and Adam have been happily married now for seven years and have two children, Aden and Ariah. Tamera wrote a message to her husband on Instagram saying, “We’ve been through ups and downs, through thick and thin. People always ask what makes our love our love. Persistence, forgiveness, unconditional love, honesty, communication, but most importantly our relationship with God:) You love me anyhow @adamhousley and I thank you for that.”
From teen starlet, to talk show host, to wife and mother, Tamera has stayed a wonderful and shining example of a Christian in Hollywood. She summed up her outlook on life to Essence Magazine when she said, “I know my priorities: God, family and work … When those things are in check, the work will flow.”