October 25, 1984
Katheryn Hudson was born in Santa Barbara, California, the proud daughter of two pastors, Maurice and Mary.
She grew up in the church and was very active in the children’s ministry and youth group, frequently using her musical talents to praise God and bless others.
She grew up listening to gospel music because her parents were concerned about the lifestyle being advocated by secular music.
When she was 15, Katheryn was singing in church when she was discovered by some Nashville people with record company ties. They brought her back to Nashville to hone her vocal skills in hopes of signing her to a record deal.
15 Years Later
Flash forward 15 years and humble gospel singer Katheryn Hudson is worldwide pop sensation Katy Perry. She is the first woman and only the second artist ever (next to Michael Jackson), to have five #1 singles from the same album.
Katy Perry has fans from every pocket of the world, including me…whew, that feels good to get off my chest! Now I don’t have to make my Spotify profile private every time I want to jam out to Roar.
But seriously, Katy Perry’s no Jon Foreman. She’s not a brilliant lyricist or musical visionary. She’s a very talented pop musician that sings repetitive pop songs with little to no real musical depth.
I enjoy listening to Katy Perry because she reminds me why I enjoy being a pastor…
You see, Katy Perry is a representation of sorts for lots of people. She grew up in the Church, yet grew apart from it as she matured into adolescence and early adulthood. Now, an almost 30-year old, like seemingly every almost 30-year old I know, is still affected by her faith background but is interested in exploring what she feels is a more significant spiritual journey than the one she was given as a child. Essentially, she’s on a journey to make her faith her own.
Perry has recently described her current state of faith as “a connection with a power bigger than me. It’s important…My God has changed over the years. I believe there’s this ‘bigger than me’ thing that’s looking after me. The terms of what I believe are still up for debate because I’m still on a journey and I don’t even know if I’m going to get to my destination.”
On top of all her spiritual ambiguity, Katy Perry is a worldwide sex symbol. She is like virtually all celebrities in this regard. Hollywood knows what sells and it’s not vocal talent.
So why should a Christian pay attention to Katy Perry at all? For the same reason we should pay attention to all people, but especially those who are currently living life outside the abundant life Jesus came, lived, and died to offer all who follow him. You probably know people like Katy Perry. You might be like Katy Perry: spiritually confused and willing to change your life based on the current level of acceptance and attention you receive from those around you.
But you know what the Katy Perrys of the world DON’T need? They don’t need another pastor condemning their behavior of lifestyle. Jesus doesn’t even do that. For Katy Perry, that’s what parents are for!
For as many times as Katy Perry has worn too little dress and shown to much skin, she’s also written songs like “Wide Awake” which at times sound almost identical to my favorite passage of Scripture, Ephesians 2:1-10. For as many times as Katy Perry has found herself in the company of a man she has no business being with, she sings a beautiful live performance of “Firework” with an autistic 11-year old girl who idolizes Perry. (watch below)
VIDEO: (8-minutes, but start at 2:55 if you don’t have time to watch the whole thing).
We have two choices when we encounter the Katy Perrys of the world.
– We can condemn their failures.
– We can clarify the call of Jesus and extend them the grace we have so freely been given.
Which do you choose?