How David Archuleta's Coming Out Led To His Mother Leaving The Mormon Church

David Archuleta has come a long way since his days on American Idol, and his mom is now following him every step of the way.

The Things/September 12, 2023

By Jarrett Newman

David Archuleta publicly came out as a member of the LGBTQ community in June 2021, after privately coming out to his family in 2014.

Archuleta struggled with his sexuality and attempted to align his career with the teachings of the Mormon church, but it didn't feel right for him.

While initially hesitant, David Archuleta's mother eventually left the Mormon church to support her son and has chosen to prioritize their family bond over religious obligations.

David Archuleta has come a long way since his American Idol days. It's taken a while for the singer to embrace his sexuality as a member of the LGBTQ community but, sometimes, things are worth the wait. But look at Archuleta now: he's in incredible shape, releasing new music, and stepping away from the Mormon faith to live his truth.

While support has poured in from fans after his coming out, it has not been entirely the case for "Crush" singer— specifically when it pertained to his mother who was a devout member of the Mormon church. The clouds have recently parted for Archuleta though as his mother came around to support him and, what's more, is she actually left the church to do so. From his stepping away from the Mormon faith to his mother supporting him, here's everything we know about David Archuleta's coming out story.

When did David Archuleta come out?

Crowd's of female fans had swooned when David Archuleta, who finished second on the seventh season of American Idol, went on to release his 2008 smash single "Crush". Most of them envisioned the singer to be lending the heartfelt lyrics toward them, but they would soon be mistaken when Archuleta came out in June of 2021 in an Instagram post as part of the LGBTQ community. The singer had previously come out to his family privately in 2014, previously identifying as asexual.

Before the post, Archuleta had recalled to People that he was at dinner with his then-fiancée when he froze at the table — and found himself suffering a paralyzing anxiety attack. "I was panicking. I didn't move for 30 minutes. I was thinking about having to be her partner and being intimate," Archuleta told People. "She said, 'What the heck is going on?' I was like, 'All I know is I can't be around you. I need three weeks. I'm going to work really hard. I'm going too fast. I'm going to pray.'"

Despite his success following the release of his single "Crush", Archuleta stepped away from the spotlight in 2012 to embark on a two-year mission for the church. After returning, the singer attempted to aligned his career with the teachings of the church— but to no avail. He was even previously engaged to three women before breaking off those separate engagements, he revealed.

"No matter how hard I tried to marry a girl, it wasn't right. And if you talk to my exes, they'll tell you it was rough," says Archuleta, who adds he's on "good terms" with his most recent ex. "I'm sure other people who've been in that situation can relate. People who are queer, who've tried to get married just to do the 'right' thing, it ends up not being a very good thing, and it's not very healthy for either participant of the relationship."

Archuleta also opened up about how (at 30) his first time kissing a man had allowed him to truly understand the context of his song "Crush" entirely, which he had released fifteen years prior. "It felt effortless," Archuleta says of the kiss. "I was like, 'Oh, so this is what it feels like to like someone.' Now I see why everyone relates to my song."

Did David Archuleta's Mom Have Trouble Accepting His Sexuality?

David Archuleta's mother initially hadn't been supportive of the singer's coming out. After meeting with a church leader, Archuleta decided to take a step away from the Mormon faith and embrace who he was as a queer man. His mother (Lupe Marie Mayorga), who was a devoted member of the Mormon church, was not as embracing as he wished initially.

"My mom had a hard time accepting my journey. At first, she said, 'DA, I love you, but I love God more. And marriage is between a man and a woman.' And I'm like, 'Mom, I understand.' Because that's what I believed up until a month before coming out," Archuleta told People.

Archuleta explained that, although she didn't support him wholeheartedly, she still agreed to "learn beside him" as he navigated his experience.

"And I said, 'Mom, I don't need you to accept everything about my journey immediately," he continued. "I just want you to be willing to walk along with me in this journey to learn alongside me. And she said, 'Okay, I can do that.'"

David Archuleta's Mother Left The Mormon Church To Support Him

If there's one thing that David Archuleta learned, it's that patience is truly a virtue— especially when it came to his mother, who decided to leave the church to support her son. Amid attending the 2023 Project Angel Food’s Lead with Love 4 fundraising event, Archuleta took the time to talk about how his mother, Lupe Marie Mayorga, has reached the point where she doesn’t want to abandon family just to please religion. For her, following God and accepting her son are not at all mutually exclusive.

"My mom said, 'I'm going to step away from the church.' And I was like, 'What?' And she just said, 'If you're going to hell, we're all going to hell together,'" the singer shared. "She just kind of said it in a funny way."

"It was sweet that she said, 'I'm with you wherever you go,'" he continued. "That was really sweet."

His mother Lupe also opened up about leaving the Church of Jesus Christ and Latter Day Saints after she decided "God is not here."

“I invited David to come to sacrament meeting with me, and he came a few times, but then he stopped because he said, ‘It hurts too much to be there, Mom.'”She continued, “For some reason, I couldn’t understand why he was saying that, but then it hit me how the LGBTQ has been really not welcome in this church, ‘We love you, but you’re not welcome to participate in all the blessings because of who you are.’ Some talks have been really hurtful towards them, and I didn’t get it then because I was so committed to stay and obey.”

"It wasn’t an easy decision to leave. “I cried many nights at bedtime, and my husband is a witness to this because I was feeling so much pain to see my child suffer so much,” she continued. “I sat in church in sacrament meeting one day and looked around and then said to myself, ‘God is not here.'”

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