Hollywood actor Chris Pratt has responded to claims by other entertainment industry personalities that the church he attends discriminates against homosexuals and other people with alternative lifestyles.
The response, levied against actress Ellen Page and others, was anything but vague. The Guardians of the Galaxy star clarified that his church welcomes anyone who is willing to receive its spiritual message.
“It has recently been suggested that I belong to a church which ‘hates a certain group of people’ and is ‘infamously anti-LGBTQ.’ Nothing could be further from the truth,” Pratt said. “I go to a church that opens their doors to absolutely everyone.”
The actor, who achieved national fame for his role as Andy in Parks and Recreation and later as Peter Quill in the Marvel film series, went on to explain that the church was instrumental in helping him overcome one of the darkest episodes of his life. Pratt attends the Zoe Church in Los Angeles, which is based on the Hillsong megachurch in Australia.
“Despite what the Bible says about divorce my church community was there for me every step of the way, never judging, just gracefully accompanying me on my walk,” the Marvel actor added. “They helped me tremendously offering love and support. It is what I have seen them do for others on countless occasions regardless of sexual orientation, race or gender.”
Now, someone less familiar with Christian teachings may see this statement and be led to believe that the church Pratt attends is uniquely progressive. On the contrary, what the actor is describing here also describes the majority of churches in the United States. While it’s certainly true that most denominations do not condone homosexuality — or really any sexuality outside of a heterosexual marriage — the words of Jesus Christ are very clear: judgement is reserved for God alone. The message of Jesus is a message of peace, and Pratt has clearly absorbed this.
“My values define who I am,” Pratt continued. “We need less hate in this world, not more. I am a man who believes that everyone is entitled to love who they want free from the judgment of their fellow man.”
The Marvel star’s religious life came under fire after his recent sit down with late night television host Stephen Colbert, where Pratt discussed completing the Daniel Diet — a 21-day diet plan which aims to honor God inspired by the prophet Daniel. The conversation also touched on the challenges of celebrity life, and how Pratt finds the balance between his own values and the career which has brought him so much fortune.
You can watch the entire interview below.
~ 1776 Christian