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Katy Perry On Strict Christian Upbringing: 'I Didn't Have A Childhood'

Katy Perry Vanity Fair

First Posted: 05/03/11 05:00 PM ET Updated: 07/03/11 06:12 AM ET

Ostentatious and sexually charged in her public persona, Katy Perry's serious side comes out when interviews turn to her well documented religious upbringing. Raised by Christian missionary parents, Perry lived within an evangelical world that, as she tells Vanity Fair in their June cover story, she now realizes was closed-minded and limited.

"I didn't have a childhood," Perry tells the magazine. "I was always scared I was going to get bombed when I was there... I didn't know it was more than that, that it was for women and their needs. I didn't have insurance, so I went there and I learned about birth control."

Perry tells Vanity Fair that she wasn't allowed to use the words "Devil Dog" or "Dirt Devil," and that her family was "very non-accepting." Now married to Russell Brand, a practicing Buddhist, Perry often flaunts her sex appeal; her breakout hit, after all, was called "I Kissed A Girl."

It's a juxtaposition and evolution that Perry has discussed before; in 2009, she gave an account of her changing worldview to Beliefnet:

"I was raised with certain ideas... But I definitely am now, as an adult, and in a whole new world, in a world I didn't even know existed, I definitely have different perspectives and am very much not a poster child for anything perfect or organized or cookie cutter. I have had my own relationship and my own beliefs and I'm continually on an upward search with all of that, and I really don't know the answers nor do I like to impress them on anybody else."

Perry's mom is now shopping a book about raising the star in which she says that she thinks Perry could become a great televangelist.

"I recognized the psalmist gift in her performance. Yet she sang out, 'I kissed a girl, and I liked it,' while thousands joined her. One part of my heart soared... the other part broke for the thousands of hungry souls being fed something that didn't nourish their spirit, but fed their flesh."
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Filed by Jordan Zakarin  |