‘She Backing Away from the Church?’: Former Disney Star China McClain Baffles Fans with Her Twerk Challenge After Declaring She’d Only Be Pursuing ‘God’s Work’

Actress China McClain, best known to many for her roles on Disney’s “A.N.T. Farm” and Tyler Perry films and television shows, has resurfaced after years of maintaining a relatively low profile.

The former child star sparked a flurry of commentary when she indulged social media users by joining in on singer Tyla’s viral water challenge. The series of twerking and waist-winding moves has been all the rave, especially on TikTok, and inspired hordes of people to attempt recreating the seductive dance. McClain, like many other users, put forward her best efforts in the short video she shared with her 17.2 million followers.

Former Disney star China McClain baffles fans with her twerk challenge years after leaving fame to pursue God’s work. (Photos: @chinamcclain/Instagram and TikTok)

“This is the type of stuff i’m doing at 4am,” she captioned the clip of herself flawlessly pulling off the dance that has turned countless others into a source of laughter. Fans were quick to applaud her ability to nail the choreography, with comments stating that she “ate” the challenge up.

A few struggled to grapple with the fact that McClain is no longer the sharp-witted kid that graced television screens. “The babies are GROWN. We are old y’all,” read one comment. Now 25, the actress has posted herself dancing to other trending sounds on TikTokT as well as costume videos, reminding people of her evolution throughout the years.

But one aspect of her growth is still baffling to some individuals. “She backing away from the church? I remember when she left the industry & began her religion cult-like mission.. many were concerned.. my sis, coming back?” asked one person on social media after seeing her water challenge.

“She quit black lightning just to do this?” asked a second person. In November 2020, ahead of the fourth and final season, McClain announced her departure from the CW’s “Black Lightning” where she played Jennifer Pierce, aka Lightning.

“This industry, for what it is and everything that people look to and praise, it’s not important,” she said in a 13-minute Instagram video. She would confide that she planned on “doing God’s work now, and I’m not doing anything else.”

Among the comments about her twerking, McClain’s supporters were quick to come to her defense. One person who wrote, “Y’all talking about wasn’t she into God. She’s literally doing the SAME tiktok dance many of your faves are doing. Ciara always speaking about God, pregnant & a wife & did it last week. I’m not understanding the selective outrage.”

Though McClain is selective when it comes to taking on new projects, she continues to be a member of the Disney family. She most recently reprised her role as Uma in the 2021 animated film “Descendants: The Royal Wedding.” She also remains a cast member on “House of Payne” as Jazmine Payne, having appeared in all 22 episodes of season 12 this year.

Trending NOW:

Never miss a story — sign up for ATLANTA BLACK STAR’S free daily newsletters to stay up-to-date on the latest developments from top news headlines to celebrity news.

Back to top