Former “American Idol” contestant Kenedi Anderson has announced her next act.

In a TikTok posted Friday, she shared that she’ll be serving an 18-month mission for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

“Surprise!!!” she wrote in the caption for the post, which revealed that she has been assigned to the Hawaii Honolulu Mission.

Kenedi Anderson on ‘American Idol’

Anderson, who is from Virginia, appeared on “American Idol” in early 2022.

Then 17, she blew the judges away with her audition and was awarded a platinum ticket that allowed her to go straight to the Hollywood round and stay safe during early eliminations, as the Deseret News previously reported.

“My head is spinning,” judge Luke Bryan said after Anderson’s audition, later adding that he believed she might be the “biggest star” the judges had ever seen on the show. “No doubt, top 10.”

As Bryan predicted, Anderson did well on the show, impressing the judges with her performances of “Lean on Me” and “Talking to the Moon.”

But after making the top 24 on her season of “American Idol”, she chose to drop out for personal reasons.

  • “This has been one of the hardest decisions I’ve ever had to make, but I know it’s necessary,” the singer wrote on Instagram, as the Deseret News reported at the time. “I’m so grateful to ‘American Idol,’ the judges, the producers, the amazing contestants, and all the fans who have supported me. Thank you for giving me such an amazing opportunity to share my voice, chase my dreams, feel so much joy and happiness doing what I love, and make lifelong friends along the way.”
She unexpectedly dropped out of ‘American Idol.’ Now the show’s judges are speaking out

Kenedi Anderson: Why did she leave?

Soon after her surprise departure, the “American Idol” judges reflected on her time on the show.

“We were heartbroken,” judge Lionel Richie told USA Today, adding that Anderson’s potential “was unbelievable.”

Bryan wished her the best, adding that he was “heartbroken” about her decision.

“These kids, they got a lot coming at ‘em,” he told USA Today. “I think, potentially for her career, her being a part of our family is as good as the route or the way to the top can be. But, if you’re having doubts and anxieties and other things ... we’re heartbroken as a show because she was so dynamic and great.”

Since leaving the show, Anderson has continued to share her music online and build her social media following. She has more than 500,000 followers on TikTok and nearly 200,000 followers on Instagram.

Kenedi Anderson religion


Anderson explained why she wants to serve a Latter-day Saint mission in a June 6 Instagram post.

“Dedicating 18 months of my life to serve my Lord and Savior is the least I can do after all God has blessed me with,” she wrote, adding, “I truly believe that this is where I’m supposed to be in my life right now and what I’m supposed to be doing.”

Anderson clarified that serving a mission will not bring an end to her music career.

“I am taking a break to focus on what God has called me to do, but I will be back before you know it! And you better believe that I’ll be working harder than ever to put music out for y’all,” she wrote.

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