Actor Chris Pratt has finally addressed claims that his church is homophobic in a recent story on Instagram.
Pratt is a relatively new member of Zoe Church in Los Angeles, a Christian church modelled after the Hillsong Church. Hillsong’s global pastor once said that his church is “not a church that affirms a gay lifestyle”.
Alex, a former member of the Hillsong Church criticised its anti-LGBT+ teachings in an interview with The Daily Beast:
“Gay people need to know that when they go to Hillsong, they have to go to the back of the bus. Hillsong is hip and attractive and contemporary, but there’s certainly nothing contemporary about what LGBT people will face if they want to be a leader in the church or offer themselves up for service.”
On February 8, Juno star Ellen Page retweeted a clip of Pratt talking about his spirituality in an interview with Stephen Colbert.
“Oh. K. Um. But his church is infamously anti lgbtq so maybe address that too?”
Page later added:
“If you are a famous actor and you belong to an organization that hates a certain group of people, don’t be surprised if someone simply wonders why it’s not addressed.”
Oh. K. Um. But his church is infamously anti lgbtq so maybe address that too? https://t.co/meg8m69FeF
— Ellen Page (@EllenPage) February 8, 2019
The former Parks and Recreation actor responded to claims made by Page and others on Instagram.
In his story, Pratt said:
“It has recently been suggested that I belong to a church which ‘hates people’ and is infamously anti-LGBTQ. Nothing could be further from the truth. I go to a church that opens their doors to absolutely everyone.”
He spoke about how the church supported him through his divorce:
“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. 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.
“My faith is important to me but no church defines me or my life. I am not a spokesman for any church or any group of people. My values define who I am. We need less hate in the world and not more.”
Despite Pratt’s claims, the Hillsong Church – with which Zoe Church has links to – has made it clear that the church does not “affirm a gay lifestyle”. In 2015, Hillsong’s global pastor Brian Houston said:
“Hillsong Church welcomes ALL people but does not affirm all lifestyles. Put clearly, we do not affirm a gay lifestyle and because of this we do not knowingly have actively gay people in positions of leadership, either paid or unpaid.”
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