Rare is the time when you see somebody in Hollywood embrace God. Rarer still is when they’re embracing Jesus himself, but that is exactly what actor Andrew Garfield (Amazing Spider-Man, Hacksaw Ridge) has done!
The movie Silence, directed by Martin Scorsese tells of the story of missionaries who were bringing the Gospel of Jesus to Japan at a time when Christianity was OUTLAWED.
Garfield plays a young Jesuit priest in the film and recalled his research into The Spiritual Exercises of St. Ignatius Loyola which involves a biblical meditation to bring one closer to Jesus:
He fell silent…clearly moved to emotion. He clutched his chest, just below the sternum, somewhere between his gut and his heart, and what he said next came out through bursts of laughter: “God! That was the most remarkable thing—falling in love, and how easy it was to fall in love with Jesus.”
I suddenly came to appreciate the authenticity with which he experiences the joy of love and the sorrow of its frustration, the pain of its absence. “I felt so bad for [Jesus] and angry on his behalf when I finally did meet him, because everyone has given him such a bad name. So many people have given him such a s— f–ing name. And he has been used for so many dark things.”
The depth of the experience of the Exercises was enough. And then making the film felt very, very deep, deeper than any other artistic experience I’ve ever had, but it wasn’t as deep as the experience of the Exercises, but it was still by all intents and purposes very damn deep. And now the film is coming out and I’m back in Shallow-ville. And I’m trying to reconcile that.”
“It brings me so much consolation. It’s such a humbling thing because it shows me that you can devote a year of your life to spiritual transformation, sincerely longing and putting that longing into action, to creating relationship with Christ and with God, you can then lose 40 pounds of weight, sacrifice for your art, pray every day, live celibate for six months, make all these sacrifices in service of God, in service of what you believe God is calling you into, and even after all of that heart and soul, that humble offering…that humility…even after all of that someone is going to throw a stone and dismiss it. It’s a wonderful, wonderful grace to be given, to be shown. And it’s a huge consolation to know that no matter how hard I work someone is not going to like me. There is going to be at least one person that says that I’m worthless. It’s wonderful!”
So amazing. How often do we see that, especially in the making of a Hollywood film? This is something to see and hopefully it opens more doors for people to open up about their faith.
Be sure to tell others about this! It’s such a great story when people realize Jesus is not what they’ve been told by their religious hating fans and acquaintances!