American Idol judge Katy Perry
reached out this week to a contestant rejected by his family because
of his sexuality.
Jeremiah Lloyd Harmon was among the
hopefuls flown out to Hawaii to perform in front of a live crowd. In
the audience was Harmon's boyfriend, but his parents were missing.
Harmon, the son of a preacher who was
working as a janitor in his dad's church, said that his parents do
not accept him being gay.
“I'm no longer working as a janitor
at my dad's church,” he said. “I decided to move out and that
was a difficult choice to make. I felt like it was the healthiest
thing for me to do. Being a part of this show has been good for me in
one way, but it has also been a big challenge for me. … I know that
this isn't just my experience, and if I can be open about it and
vulnerable, maybe that could bring hope to somebody else.”
Perry sat down with Harmon after he
performed an acoustic version of Fleetwood Mac's “Landslide.”
“You're a pastor's kid. I'm a
pastor's kid. We have a lot in common,” Perry
told Harmon. “I don't know about you, but for me I felt like I
was always being watched … and then I started to find my true
“Can you imagine when my first single
was “I Kissed a Girl” and my parents how they reacted? It was
difficult for me because I felt very alone in what is supposed to be
a really exciting time in my life. It's taken some time, but we've
all come around to agree to disagree.”
“I just want to say from one pastor's
kid to another that I see you. And I love you. And I accept you. And
I'm so proud of you. I'm just excited that you're going to continue
the journey with us to the top 20,” Perry said.