Christian singer McKenna Breinholt – who was adopted as an infant – made it to the top seven on American Idol’s season 22.

Breinholt auditioned for the show by singing Zach Williams and Dolly Parton’s song “There Was Jesus.” During her tryout, she shared her story with judges Luke Bryan, Lionel Richie and Katy Perry – who all expressed admiration for Breinholt’s smoky voice.

After Breinholt turned 21, she sat down with her family and asked them to share what they knew about her birth family.

McKenna’s mom was named Amy Ross Lopez – a musician who had performed locally in Bisbee, Arizona who has since passed away.

“I instantly knew where I got my ear from and where I got my voice from. It just all clicked,” Breinholt said.

She told the judges that she had recently come into contact with her birth family – and unsurprisingly, they all sing well. Though Breinholt had talked with them via FaceTime, she hadn’t met them in person.

“My birth family was looking for me for the last eight years,” Breinholt said. “Knowing I have another family out there’s who is equally excited to know and love me was amazing.”

Unbeknownst to her, Breinholt’s birth family – her aunts, an uncle and her grandma – had come to hear her try out for Idol – leading to a heartwarming reunion.

Breinholt’s audition – which you can watch below – now has over 1.4 million views.

“I found my birth family last summer (all in God’s timing) and just recently was able to meet them face to face,” Breinholt shared in a Facebook post on January 30, referring to her audition. She also shared a video explaining more about her adoption story.

“When our sister, Amy, was 25, she placed her baby up for adoption. It was a high-risk pregnancy,” the video explains.

“We were scared it would break her body and her heart, but Amy knew what she was doing. She knew the right family from the moment she saw them. They named her McKenna. It was an immediate divine connection. Amy said it all felt bigger than any of them and any of us. It was a closed adoption. Locked up tight.”

But after Breinholt’s reunion with her birth family, her adoption isn’t closed anymore. She shared, “My entire family and I have been so ecstatic ever since finding them and being able to connect with them. I have an extra 2 aunts (Lindy and Katie) an uncle (Matt) AND grandmother (Ranelle).”

Breinholt made it to the top seven on American Idol after being “saved” by judge Katy Perry, who chose her over eighth-place finisher Kaibrienne Richins.

On May 5, Breinholt was eliminated from the competition along with Julia Gagnon, who was also adopted after being born in Guatemala.

There are two episodes left of the show’s 22nd season; the penultimate episode will be aired on May 12, while the show’s grand finale will air on May 19. There are five contestants left – Jack Blocker, Abi Carter, Triston Harper, Will Moseley and Emmy Russell.

The month of May is designated National Foster Care Month, bringing awareness to the more than 391,000 children currently in the foster care system.

At Focus on the Family, we care deeply about all children who are in foster care. James 1:27 says, “Religion that is pure and undefiled before God the Father is this: to visit orphans and widows in their affliction, and to keep oneself unstained from the world.”

This May, check out our available foster care and adoption resources below.

Currently, the United States has more than 391,000 children in foster care. Focus on the Family’s Wait No More program helps inspire families to become involved in the lives of waiting kids, whether through adoption or in a different way. You can learn more about Wait No More.

Additionally, you can listen to the Focus on the Family Broadcast “Changing the World Through Adoption.” Focus’ Vice President of Communications Paul Batura discusses his book Chosen for Greatness, and how adopting his three sons has changed his life for the better. You can listen to the broadcast here.

Related articles and resources:

Wait No More

Changing the World Through Adoption

Resources: Foster Care & Adoption

Counseling Consultation & Referrals

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‘There Was Jesus’: Singer on ‘American Idol’ Surprised on Stage by Birth Family

Photo from YouTube.