"American Idol" season 7 runner-up David Archuleta is putting music on hold for two years while he embarks on a Mormon mission. The 20-year-old Murray, Utah native revealed his call to serve at the Salt Lake City stop of his My Kind of Christmas Tour, telling the crowd, "I would like to make a special announcement: that I've chosen to serve a full-time mission."
Slightly overwhelmed with emotion and fighting back tears, Archie, as he's affectionately known, explained to an audience of over 2,000 at Abravanel Hall why he felt a two-year mission was his calling at this juncture in his life. "It's not because someone told me I was supposed to do it and not because I no longer want to do music anymore," he said. "It's because it's what I feel I need to do next in my life. It's the same feeling that I've always tried to follow in my life -- the feeling that's allowed me to have the opportunities I've had, the challenges and the blessings, too. And I've learned to trust that feeling and answer when it calls. That's the reason why I know I have to do this in my life."
It's unknown where Archuleta will be called to serve, but like other LDS (Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints members), he will be expected to adhere to a strict set of rules, which includes a dress code (dark trousers, white dress shirts, and ties are usually required) and a daily schedule -- typically up by 6:30 a.m. and proselytizing by 10:00 a.m. Young men and women on a mission are generally allowed only two phone calls in a year, both to their mother, on Christmas Day and Mother's Day.
One concert date remains on Archuleta's Christmas run. On Wednesday, he performs at the Vilar Performing Arts Center in Beaver Creek, Colorado.