Most celebrities try to strike while the iron is hot, making as much money and promoting their career as much as they can while they’re popular. But David Archuleta has his mind on other things–the singer and devout member of the LDS church is going on his two year mission trip.
While other Mormon celebrities, like Jon Heder and Aaron Eckhart, did their missions, it was before they became famous. The singer David gets compared to the most, Donny Osmond, was exempted from his mission requirement because the Church thought he could do more work publicizing the faith by being a celebrity.
At a concert in Salt Lake City last night, David made the announcement to the crowd. “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,” he said in explanation. He hasn’t announced where he’s will be sent.
As for whether David will get special treatment, it’s not clear. Mormon men who go on mission have little contact with their loved ones, only having permission to call their families twice a year (on Mother’s Day and Christmas), and they have no say in where they are sent or with whom they’re paired. It’ll be interesting to see where he gets sent and whether people recognize him–Prince, a devout Jehovah’s Witness, used to ring doorbells in his native Minnesota to proselytize, but people kept recognizing him and he was eventually assigned elsewhere.