Unfortunately, if you’ve spent any time in the church, you’ve witnessed a preacher’s kid totally abandon his or her faith not only in the church, but sometimes even in God. Katy Perry is one such preacher’s kid, and she has no qualms about telling people why she’s left the faith.
The daughter of evangelical pastors Keith and Mary Hudson, Perry grew up attending church, being involved in the youth group, and singing on Sunday mornings. She is quick to attribute her time singing in church as a launching point for her career, but just as quick to point out the problems with the way she was brought up.
In an interview with Vogue several years ago, Perry shed some more light on her religious upbringing. In Perry’s house, church attendance was essentially required Sunday morning, Sunday night, and Wednesday evening. The family steered clear of cultural traditions like Santa Claus bringing presents at Christmas and anything having to do with Halloween. In addition, there appears to have been a political line of thinking she was expected to adhere to, which Perry communicates by saying “we watch[ed] Bill O’Reilly on TV.”
Perry even stood outside of a Marilyn Manson concert with her youth group to hand out pamphlets on how to find God. After going inside and listening to the music, though, Perry said she understood the artistic expression that was happening.
After growing up in this sheltered environment, Perry made an incredibly dramatic transition to eventually becoming a prolific creator of mainstream culture—the very culture her parents raised her to avoid. Perry says shaking the mindset of her youth is a process she’s still going through: “I still have conditioned layers dropping off of me by the day,” she tells Vogue.
In an interview with Marie Claire in 2013, Perry said, “I don’t believe in a Heaven or a Hell, or an old man sitting on a throne.” She does, however, “believe in a higher power bigger than me because that keeps me accountable.” Curiously, she even believes in the need to be accountable to someone or something. Perhaps even to a degree some church-going Christians do not subscribe. Again speaking to Marie Claire, she says “Accountability is rare to find, especially with people like myself, because nobody wants to tell you something you don’t want to hear.” By “people like myself”, Perry is referring to famous people who are used to others worshipping the ground they walk on.