(SALT LAKE CITY) — American Idol 2007 runner-up David Archuleta announced before a hometown crowd in Salt Lake City that he planned to take a break from music to serve a full-time, two-year mission for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints.
“It’s not because someone told me that I’m supposed to do it, and not because I no longer want to do music, but because it’s the feeling that I’ve felt I need to do this with my life,” Archuleta, 20, said to a crowd that showered him with applause and cheers.
An emotional Archuleta seemed astounded at the crowd’s support and wiped away tears. He did not announce where he would be headed.
A spokesperson for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints said he did not know where Archuleta would be serving, but said, ‘We’d leave the decision to reveal that information up to him.”
The singer rose to fame as one of the youngest-ever contestants on American Idol and came in second to David Cook. Archuleta has since released three albums.
The church operates 350 missions around the world, according to its website.
Archuleta’s mission is expected to begin shortly after the start of the new year.
Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio
Amy La Porte, CNN
Faith Karimi, CNN Newswire
Madison Park, Tiffany Ap and Emanuella Grinberg, CNN