Shia LaBeouf Is Confirmed Into the Catholic Church, Reportedly Plans to Become a Deacon
Scandal-plagued actor Shia LaBeouf has officially joined the Catholic Church, the Capuchin Franciscans of the Western America Province (based in California’s Bay Area) confirmed via Facebook. LaBeouf received the sacrament of confirmation on New Year’s Eve, making things official with the Church, according to a Facebook post from the friars, who wrote in the post that they were “overjoyed to welcome him into the fold and witness his deep commitment to his faith journey.” They hailed 37-year-old LaBeouf’s “incredible talent and passion in the entertainment industry” in their celebratory announcement. LaBeouf began his acting career as a young teen, rising to fame for his role on the Disney Channel’s Even Stevens, later breaking into blockbuster franchises like Michael Bay’s Transformers films and an Indiana Jones sequel. In more recent years, LaBeouf has attracted attention for his various performance art exploits, bizarre behavior, and legal troubles, including a 2014 arrest for disorderly behavior at a Broadway performance of Cabaret (LaBeouf was ordered to go to substance-abuse treatment, and a judge agreed to dismiss his case after six months of good behavior). After a 2017 arrest in Savannah, Georgia, stemming from a public outburst, prosecutors dropped a public drunkenness charge, while LaBeouf pleaded guilty to obstruction and no contest to disorderly conduct (he paid a fine, served probation, and was ordered to seek counseling). In 2020, he was charged with misdemeanor theft and petty battery stemming from a verbal altercation that turned physical, with a judge later dismissing the case after LaBeouf reportedly completed a 12-month diversion program. In 2021, his former partner FKA Twigs accused LaBeouf of “relentless abuse” and said in an interview, “it’s a miracle I came out alive.” LaBeouf denied the allegations. In 2022, LaBeouf once again made headlines for the gossip and speculation surrounding Olivia Wilde’s Don’t Worry Darling, to which he had been attached and either quit (his version of events) or was fired and recast, with Harry Styles filling in as male lead of the film (Wilde’s take). The director cited a “no assholes policy” while discussing the personnel change.
The friars’ post nodded at his troubled past, writing, “As Capuchin Franciscans, we believe in the transformative power of faith and the incredible impact it can have on one’s life. We are humbled and grateful to walk alongside Shia as he takes this important step in his spiritual journey.” The post said that his “decision to fully enter the Church is a testament to his sincere desire to grow in his relationship with God and live out the Gospel values.” After Twigs’s allegations became public, he said in the interview, “I had a gun on the table. I was outta here. I didn’t want to be alive anymore when all this happened. Shame like I had never experienced before—the kind of shame that you forget how to breathe. You don’t know where to go.” He had already been in touch with the Franciscan friars, but then moved into their monastery. “This was the last stop on the train,” he said. “There was nowhere else to go—in every sense. I know now that God was using my ego to draw me to him. Drawing me away from worldly desires. It was all happening simultaneously. But there would have been no impetus for me to get in my car, drive up [to the monastery] if I didn’t think, ‘Oh, I’m gonna save my career.’”
In another interview, he said that his mother’s death in August 2022 cemented his faith in God. Barron, too, shared a celebratory Facebook post featuring several photos of LaBeouf at his confirmation. LaBeouf, clad in a blue windbreaker, is seen in front of many robed clergy, including one wearing a brown beanie embroidered with “Capuchin” in script. “Friends, please join me and the Capuchin friars in continued prayer for Shia LaBeouf. Shia was fully received into the Church through the sacrament of Confirmation on New Year’s Eve,” Barron wrote. The actor’s confirmation sponsor, Brother Alexander Rodriguez, told the Catholic News Agency that LaBeouf hopes to take an active leadership role in the church by becoming a deacon “sometime in the future.” A deacon is an active part of the clergy, and assists at Mass, with the power to perform baptisms, funerals, and other rites, as well as service to members of the Church and the community. “He just spontaneously said, ‘I want to become a deacon,’ and he still feels that way,” Rodriguez said. Source