TheBlaze’s Carly Hoilman contributed to this report.
Last year, TheBlaze brought you a list of 10 notable celebrities who are openly Christian. While critics generally charge that there aren’t many “believers” or genuine religious adherents in Hollywood, some would argue against this claim, noting that there are certainly some in the entertainment industry who embrace Christ’s teachings.
Regardless of the exact numbers, there are surely more than 10 celebrities who live by Christian doctrine, so we thought we’d bring you yet another round of Jesus-friendly singers and actors. And here they are:
Angus T. Jones
Last November, you may recall Angus T. Jones’ headline-making comments about a television show that, until recently, he starred in. The “Two and a Half Men” actor landed himself in hot water after he publicly attacked the program, calling its contents “filth.”
In a YouTube video that quickly went viral, Jones shared the testimony of his Christian conversion with “Forerunner Chronicles,” an Internet ministry. But what stunned critics is that he insulted the show and urged viewers not to watch (sentiments he delivered after his conversion).
Since, he has been let go from the program, despite an apology he made in the wake of the scandal. You may remember that TheBlaze covered Jones’s apology and his struggle in moving forward with his controversial career (read the story here).
Stephen Baldwin, the youngest of the famed Baldwin brothers, is no stranger to talking about his faith. The actor has shared his struggle of being a Christian in Hollywood in interviews with “Good Morning America,” among other outlets.
And once, on a “Nightline” episode, Baldwin, a born-again Christian, explained that the Sept. 11 attacks had a transformative impact on him — and on his world-view. In fact, he traces his coming to Christ back to that tragic event.
In addition to acting, Baldwin also has extensive radio experience. In 2008, he linked up with conservative talk-radio host, Kevin McCullough to create “Baldwin/McCullough LIVE,” a radio show that airs every Saturday (read more about his evangelical roots — and career — on his official website).
Rock star Alice Cooper is also a Christian — a fact that might surprise some fans. Born Vincent Furnier, the musician was apparently the son and grandson of Christian evangelists. But that doesn’t mean that his road to faith was an easy one.
Despite his relatives theological views and his own religious-infused upbringing, the performer struggled with alcoholism, but faith helped bring him back on track. In fact, he has actually helped other performers overcome addiction since facing his own demons.
In a 2012 interview with the Huffington Post, Cooper shared that he believes in taking the Bible literally and that every word of the Christian texts is, in his view, true. Cooper also founded the faith-based Solid Rock organization — a group that is devoted to “enriching the lives of teens through music, dance, and self expression.”
Recently in the news for his Tony-nominated performance in “Lucky Guy,” Academy Award-nominated actor Tom Hanks is also a Christian. A bio on Beliefnet reveals, “While his starring role in the book-to-screen Da Vinci Code films may have raised eyebrows, Tom Hanks firmly believes in God.”
The actor has apparently been exposed to Catholicism, Mormonism and the Church of the Nazerene. His wife, Rita Wilson, is Greek Orthodox. It’s unclear which denomination he currently belongs to, but Hanks has shared that he is a church-going Christian.
Singer Donna Summer may no longer be with us (she passed away in May 2012), but she was a devout Christian who was known for her ground-breaking musical accomplishments. After becoming a born-again believer, she separated herself from sexy imagery and other related themes that were seen, through a Christian lens, as too worldly.
“History is history, you can’t unwrite it,” she once told an interviewer, according to the Telegraph. “I accept that’s where I was then, but I consider myself beyond that point and forgiven by God. But I also recognize that was the song (‘Love to Love You, Baby’) that brought me my first success, so he must have known that would happen.’”
Upon her death, Summer’s former publicist, Michael Levine told ABCNews.com that, “God, spirituality and religion — she was very sincere about that part of her life,” and, “She had a weekly Bible study at her house.” The article also says that Summer declared herself a born-again Christian in 1979 — a time during which she was monumentally successful.
Sherri Shepherd, actress, comedian, and co-host of The View, is very outward about her Christian faith. Like many others, she has a complex religious history, as she grew up with a mother who was Jehovah’s Witness, and a father who converted (from a Christian denomination) and joined the faith to keep their family together.
Her father was eventually cut off from the church for questioning some of the teachings of the elders. It was this event that led to Shepherd’s eventual severance with the faith. Convinced that she was hell-bound after her departure, Shepherd found herself caught up in irresponsible spending and unhealthy relationships.
In an interview the The Examiner, she described how a period of grief and despair led her to attend a Christian Mega church in Los Angeles, an experience that proved to be life-changing.
Considering her personal challenges — she experienced a failed marriage, the loss of a child and other related problems — her faith has sustained her.
Tyler Perry’s career has been a fascinating one to observe. His most recognized character, “Madea,” has been taken from a fixture in random, touring plays to a monumental money-maker on the big screen. The actor, screenwriter, author and director has made a name for himself in Hollywood, advocating for family values and diversity.
Despite his success, Perry believes in being outward about his faith. During a discussion with Beliefnet, he said, “I’m not afraid to have a character say, ‘I am a Christian,” or ‘I believe in God,’ because I think they represent real people on this earth.’”
And in another Beliefnet interview, Perry explained that he reaches unbelievers through his character Madea: “She’ll never be a Christian. She is a disarmer to invite people to come in and see the movie. And then, I’ll have other characters represent that too. I don’t want to just do movies to do movies. I want to do movies that inspire, motivate and change lives. And long as I’m doing that, I feel like I’m doing the right thing.”
While you may not recognize his name out-right, Ralph Winter is yet another Tinseltown Christian. Perhaps best known for producing “Star Trek,” “The Planet of the Apes,” the “X-Men” series, and “The Fantastic Four,” he has also produced films under the Christian genre, such as the “Left Behind” series.
Before the release of “X-Men: The Last Stand,” Winter told Beliefnet, “I have been placed in this job for a purpose, and I am just trying to make great movies and keep my eyes on Him…It is definitely all God’s hand that I get to do this. And who knows how long this will last? He may choose someone else.”
Judging by his consistent success, the individual whom CBN once referred to as “God’s Billion Dollar Man” does not appear to be going anywhere anytime soon.
In a 2012 interview with Piers Morgan, former rapper and actor, Mark Wahlberg explained, “My faith has allowed me to overcome a lot of things.”
Wahlberg, who spent time in jail as a teenager, has overcome many barriers — poverty and crime, among others. In fact, he calls his time behind bars after assaulting two individuals a wake-up call that led him to take positive steps to improve his life.
The actor, a Roman Catholic, is more than open about his faith, as he has claimed that it was the single more important element in his life that has led to restoration. In fact, he goes to church daily.
“My faith has really allowed me to overcome a lot of things — and hard work. You know, nothing comes easy…especially when you’ve got your back against the wall and you’ve got a lot going against you,” he told Morgan.
Today Wahlberg is married with four kids — two daughters and two sons. He’s involved with various charities, such as The Mark Wahlberg Youth Foundation, Taco Bell Graduate To-Go and The Elevate Hope Foundation, which work to help inner-city youth.
Actress Angela Bassett is yet another performer who believes in Jesus Christ’s divinity. While she’s not as open as Tyler Perry, she has addressed her faith in media and she once gave voice to Queen Esther in “The Bible Experience” (audio Bible).
She attends West Angeles Church of God in Christ and once told the L.A. Times the following:
“When you realize that every breath is a gift from God. When you realize how small you are, but how much he loved you. That he, Jesus, would die, the son of God himself on earth, then you…you just weep. Loving God is like my being black. I just am. [No one says] ‘You know what? I’m gonna be blacker today!’ It’s my culture. It’s not something I put on or take off or show more. You just communicate that in the way you live your life.”
So, there you have it. Ten more Christians in Hollywood.
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