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Saddleback pulling for Sabrina Sloan on ‘American Idol’

LOS ANGELES (BP)–Sabrina Sloan, one of 10 females remaining in this season’s “American Idol” competition, grew up singing at Saddleback Church.

“She’s incredible and we want her to win,” Saddleback pastor Rick Warren said.

At recent worship services at the Southern California congregation, Warren joked: “Don’t even think of coming back to Saddleback next weekend unless you’ve voted for Sabrina 100 times this week!”

Sloan’s mother, Mary Scherff, was a longtime staff member at Saddleback Church.

“Of course, I’m about to pop with pride over Sabrina, who has been like another daughter since she was tiny,” said Warren, who officiated at her wedding to Chip Sloan.

Warren described Mary Scherff as “an indispensable long-term staff member at Saddleback for years. She ran all kinds of ministries and orchestrated Saddleback’s huge 25th anniversary celebration in Angel Stadium in 2005.”

After Sloan performed “I Never Loved a Man (The Way I Love You)” in last week’s competition, American Idol judge Randy Jackson said, “We’ve finally got ourselves … a competition. That’s the way to put it down!”

Sloan, who calls Studio City in Southern California home, graduated from Northwestern University in Evanston, Ill., in 2001 with degrees in theater and communications studies.

On the American Idol website, Sloan said her greatest challenge in life came just one week after 9/11 when she moved to New York City and lived in a cockroach-infested closet apartment to pursue a singing career. She landed a role in a touring musical and subsequently moved to Southern California. Sloan traveled to Minneapolis to audition for the American Idol competition.

“I’m now living my dream and am confident that anything is possible with faith and diligence,” she said on the Idol website.

Sloan said her mother is one of her heroes because she has lived her life by faith. Sloan’s grandfather, Leroy Anderson, was a pastor in Buffalo, N.Y.

Listing her personal goals, Sloan said: “To provide for my family, to be able to support those in need around me and around the world, and to make music I am proud of.”

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  • Manda Gibson