Christian Favorites Break Into 'American Idol' Top Ten

NEW YORK – Christian artists were able to breathe easy this week as they all moved into the top 10 following the American Idol poll results show that aired Wednesday.

Stephanie Edwards, who was a surprise cut according to many, was the next person booted from the show, leaving Christian-backed contenders Jordin Sparks, Melinda Doolittle, Chris Sligh, and Phil Stacey to sing another week among the remaining contestants.

For the thousands of Christians supporting their favorites on the show, it is a relief to see the four all selected as quality choices.

Encouraging news for some, Phil Stacey was not part of the bottom vote-getters this week, which he had been in the previous week's performance. Only Chris Richardson, 22, and Edwards, 19, were announced as the lowest among the national poll.

The theme for this week's show was the "British Invasion," which was noted as helping out the male performers, who have been labeled as poorer singers compared to the women on this season.

Each of the four remaining Christian favorites have strong faith-based roots, getting their start singing with the church. Most of them have attended a Christian university to hone their skills, and many have connections to the Gospel Music Association (GMA), the largest network of artists and industry leaders that promote all kinds of gospel music.

American Idol has continued to bring in dominant ratings during its sixth season. Throughout the season, the number of viewers per telecast has ranged from 26 million to 37 million.