After years of being hounded for his supposed attendance of the Hillsong Church, much of which was rooted in opposition to the institution’s holding of “traditional Christian thought on gay lifestyles and gay marriage,” Guardians of the Galaxy and Jurrassic World star Chris Pratt has revealed that while he has never had any personal relation to the church, he declined to speak to the accusations in order to avoid “throwing a church under the bus”.
Pratt offered clarity on his faith during a recent interview with Men’s Health, broaching the subject by recalling the acceptance speech he gave at the 2018 MTV Movie & TV awards.
Therein, after winning the show’s Generation Award – an honor awarded to “beloved actors whose diverse contributions to both film and television have turned them into household names” – the actor told the crowd his “Nine Rules” for life, the sixth of which he declared as “God is real.”
“God loves you,” he added. “God wants the best for you. Believe that. I do.”
Reflecting on that speech, Pratt told interviewer Mickey Rapkin, Pratt asserted, “Maybe it was hubris. For me to stand up on the stage and say the things that I said, I’m not sure I touched anybody.”
“Religion has been oppressive as f–k for a long time,” he said, speculating as to why some felt uncomfortable with his speech. “I didn’t know that I would kind of become the face of religion when really I’m not a religious person.”
“I think there’s a distinction between being religious—adhering to the customs created by man, oftentimes appropriating the awe reserved for who I believe is a very real God—and using it to control people, to take money from people, to abuse children, to steal land, to justify hatred,” Pratt said. “Whatever it is. The evil that’s in the heart of every single man has glommed on to the back of religion and come along for the ride.”
Continuing on the topic of his faith, Rapkin turned to the claims of the actor’s Hillsong attendance, to which Pratt admitted, “I never went to Hillsong. I’ve never actually been to Hillsong. I don’t know anyone from that church.”
Asked why he didn’t just clarify that at the time, the actor responded, ““I’m gonna, like, throw a church under the bus?” before adding the caveat, “If it’s like the Westboro Baptist Church, that’s different.”
He also clarified that, as he was at the time the initial claims of his Hillsong attendance came out, he and his family non-exclusively attend the Zoe Church.
Though not strictly related to his religion, Pratt took a moment during his time with Rapkin to express frustration at the internet’s insistence on painting him as a secret villain.
Harkening back to his November 2021 Instagram post wherein he gave thanks for and celebrated his wife, Pratt explained, “I said something like, ‘Find someone who looks at you the way my wife looks at me.’ And then I gave her some s–t in the thing and said, ‘But I love you. I’m so thankful for my wife—she gave me a beautiful, healthy daughter. And then a bunch of articles came out and said, ‘That’s so cringeworthy. I can’t believe Chris Pratt would thank her for a healthy daughter when his first child was born premature. That’s such a dig at his ex-wife.”
“And I’m like, That is f–ked up,” he exclaimed. “My son’s gonna read that one day. He’s nine. And it’s etched in digital stone. It really fucking bothered me, dude. I cried about it. I was like, I hate that these blessings in my life are—to the people close to me—a real burden.”
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