Actress Jennifer Garner surprised Allure writer Danielle Pergament in a recent profile on the “Party Down” star. In an in-depth interview entitled “Jennifer Garner: I’m Not Good at Being Fake,” she admits that she would like to go to divinity school.
“I would have really liked being a minister,” she told Allure. “My mom thinks I still will be.” That would be a big career change for the A-list actress whose life has been the subject of public scrutiny for the better part of the last 25 years.
But Garner has developed a reputation for being one of Hollywood’s “nice” celebrities, so becoming a minister might actually be a natural progression. Garner told the Allure writer that she often attends church with her three children, Violet, 17, Seraphina, 14, and Samuel, 11, the eldest of whom teaches Sunday school.
Garner says religion was always part of her Charleston, West Virginia, upbringing. “I grew up in such a lovely church in the United Methodist Church, and the minister was like the den parent,” she said.
Garner gave a surprising reason she’d like to study religion—she likened it to acting.
“What I like about the study of religion, it reminds me of the study of theater—it’s really a liberal arts education,” Garner said. “You have to understand history, geography, literature. It’s art, it’s everything. I don’t know anything about Hinduism, Islam, so many other religions, and I wish I did. That feels like a sign of respect.”
She believes that by having a better understanding of religions, we get a better understanding of people.
“I think the more you engage, the more you learn about different ways that people believe and worship, the more you can sit next to anyone and be a neighbor,” she said. “There’s such value in that to me.”
The actress’s admission about her love for religion feels part of a growing trend among Hollywood’s most popular actors. Mark Wahlberg was adamant about Catholicism’s power in his life during a February 22 (Ash Wednesday) interview on the Today show, where he appeared with a cross on his forehead.
“I don’t want to jam it down anybody’s throat, but I do not deny my faith,” Wahlberg said. That’s an even bigger sin. You know, it’s not popular in my industry, but I cannot deny my faith. It’s important for me to share that with people. But, I have friends from all walks of life and all different types of faiths and religions, so it’s important to respect and honor them as well.”
Actor Chris Pratt made headlines recently while promoting his new film, “Guardians of the Galaxy Vol.3” for his strident remarks about people who have a problem with his faith. Pratt has received a backlash on social media over rumors that he attended a church that has been condemned for its anti-LGBTQ views.
“That’s nothing new, you know?” Pratt told Page Six. “That’s the way it is—nothing new. Two thousand years ago, they hated him too,” he added, in reference to Jesus Christ.
“If I was of this world, they would love me just like that, but as it is, I’ve chosen out of this world. That’s John 15:18 through 20,” Pratt said.
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