It is hard to keep a secret in Hollywood. Yet, there are things about celebrities that we would never imagine could be true — things like their religious affiliations. Many of the stars that we watch daily are in fact, religious. But, as you’ll see in this list, you wouldn’t guess it in a million years.
From red carpet appearances to high-profile roles, it can be hard to get a sense of the personal lives of many celebs. So, if you are a movie fan, get ready to find out your favorite stars are religious. Are you ready for your jaw to drop? Then join us in our list of 12 superstars you didn’t know are actually religious.
#12 Richard Gere
You may know Richard Gere from such movies as Pretty Woman and Runaway Bride. However, did you know that he is a Tibetan Buddhist? Yep, and he proudly proclaims his religious beliefs as well. He is an active advocate for Tibetan freedom, too. Have you noticed his laid back demeanor? Gere says he owes his patience to his religion and daily meditation. Yet this one is easier to believe than some of the others on our list.
We know this one surprises you. It floored us as well. but yes, Madonna is a religious celebrity. Raised Roman Catholic, later on in her career she converted to Kabbalah, a branch of Jewish mysticism. In an interview with Rolling Stone magazine in 2013, she revealed it to the world. In pursuing her religion, she says she hopes to learn the secrets of the universe.
#10 Tom Cruise
Many may know from the headlines that Tom Cruise is a member of the Church of Scientology. Yet, many do not know that he credits the church for eliminating his anxiety and dyslexia. He has suffered from these conditions since he was a child. Cruise claims that the religion has made his life better as a whole.
#9 Stephen Baldwin
Baldwin became a born-again Christian after the 9/11 terror attacks. Most didn’t know that before that, he was a practicing Roman Catholic. He credits Christianity for helping him clean up his life. Not only that, but now he stands in front of crowds as an advocate. He has campaigned to shut down such businesses as adult book stores and liquor shops.
#8 Donnie and Marie Osmond
Donnie and Marie have been in the media since they were young teens. But, what shocks most people is that they are Mormons. They have been a part of the Church of Latter-day Saints since their debut in the spotlight. To this day, they go door to door promoting their church.
#7 Kirk Cameron
Cameron has been a star since his early teens when he played in the 1980’s sitcom Growing Pains. He is better known for his role in the Left Behind movie series about the biblical end times. He has been an active Christian since he was 17 years old. He has been a controversial advocate against homosexuality and the theory of evolution.
#6 Chris Tucker
Tucker converted to Christianity shortly after his role in Money Talks. That was his hit movie, released in 1997. Shortly after his conversion, police arrested him in Georgia for speeding. When the officer asked why he was speeding, Tucker claimed that he was late for church. As if that wasn’t shocking enough, Tucker says he turned down many roles due to them conflicting with his beliefs.
#5 Natalie Portman
Natalie was born in Israel and she is a believer in Judaism. Her family moved to America when she was young. Here she attended a Jewish day school. She graduated from Harvard and from there she went to The Hebrew University of Jerusalem. She has been a strong advocate for Israel and continues her Jewish faith.
#4 Mark Wahlberg
This next star needs no introduction. Mark Wahlberg has always been a Roman Catholic. However, he wasn’t always as diligent as he is these days. From his childhood, he has earned a rap sheet longer than his arm. Yet, he owes the Catholic Church for turning his life around. He goes to the church every day. But when he can’t make it, he prays in his room. He has Christian artwork in his home that are replicas of the ones at the Vatican and he owns bottles of holy water.
#3 Julia Roberts
Julia Roberts like Richard Gere starred in Pretty Woman and Runaway Bride. But what you probably didn’t know is she is religious as well. She grew up in a Catholic and Baptist family. However, when she got older, she embraced Hinduism. In interviews from 2011, she told people she considered herself an avid Hindu. She attends temple service with her family and they chant and pray to multiple gods.
#2 Denzel Washington
Denzel, considered by most to be a “superstar,” is also religious. He says he is a born-again Christian. When he was a teen, he became famous. He says he always considered being a preacher. He contributes to multiple charities including the rebuilding of a Los Angeles church he calls home. He also says he reads his Bible every day. Like Chris Tucker, Washington has turned down questionable roles that compromise his beliefs. Maybe that explains why he is always wearing a cross necklace.
#1 Stephen Colbert
Stephen Colbert made it to the number 1 spot because, well, our jaw dropped. No one could ever guess without knowing that Colbert is a practicing Catholic. Colbert says his parents raised him to honor the Catholic church and faith. However, Colbert says his dad told him to never refrain from challenging a priest when something they say or do is not right. Colbert says he has had to do that on multiple occasions throughout his career. Many of us have seen this and it never crossed our minds.
Ah, the signs were all around us. Yet, it totally slipped our minds. We hope you are as surprised as we are. Even though we live in the 21st century, some things still surprise us to the point of feeling the need to spread the news. So start spreading the news, we don’t mind. You might want to have this list available just in case they “boo” you out of the room. We are sure these celebrities don’t mind either. They have been telling reporters for years. Yet, somehow we all missed the memo. Where is TMZ when you need them?