'American Idol' Star David Archuleta Says God Told Him to Come Out

by Emell Adolphus

EDGE Media Network Contributor

Tuesday August 31, 2021
Originally published on August 31, 2021

"American Idol" finalist David Archuleta came out as gay earlier this year, and now he is opening up more about his decision to finally live in his truth.

As reported by NBC, Archuleta, a practicing Mormon, says it was God who compelled him to finally come out, and he couldn't believe the overwhelming positive response he received from the people in his religious community.

"I was shocked, because I thought, 'OK, this is probably going to be a bigger deal, maybe I'll get 30,000 or 40,000 likes, if that,' because I know this is a controversial topic and a lot of people have assumed things about me and tried to label me in the past," Archuleta told NBC's Today.com. "But it exploded. I didn't realize all the media outlets were going to talk about it, but the way that they did, it was so respectful."

Unsure if the LGBTQ+ community would embrace his staunch religious beliefs, Archuleta says he was equally unsure if his religion would embrace his sexuality.

"A lot of conservative Christians follow what I do because that's my own upbringing, and I'm still involved in that community," he said. "But everyone on both sides ... I was just amazed at how supportive and loving everyone was generally, for the most part, and for me, it was just a huge tender mercy."

Struggling with his attraction to men at a young age, Archuleta says he was "ashamed to feel that way."

"Just growing up in a religious household, the idea was, 'Oh this isn't OK. It's not right,'" he said, adding that he carried those feelings of shame into is superstardom as an "American Idol" star.

"In terms of my feelings and my attractions, I thought if I'm there and I'm not focusing on anything else but serving God, then this must be the solution to fixing why I feel the way I feel," he said. "Because I'm really trying hard to fix this. I really love God, and I really want to be close to him and do what he asks me, and so if he didn't want me to have feelings for guys, I didn't want to have them."

Archuleta didn't win the seventh season of the singing reality show, placing second to David Cook, but he did become a household name while still struggling with his sexuality. After putting out successful songs and garnering a loyal following, he decided to take a break from music.

In private, Archuleta says he started to come to grips with his sexuality and slowly began to come out. Then he prayed about revealing his sexuality publicly.

"When I had that prayer, God just said, 'David, you know I trust you, right? I want said to post about what you're going through right now,'" Archuleta says. "And it was just so clear what I needed to say. I knew exactly what I needed to say, but I feel uncomfortable saying it, because I like to keep to myself — especially with this kind of stuff. But I just knew I had to."