(LifeSiteNews) — Social media mega-influencer Russell Brand has unexpectedly announced that he wears a crucifix and is seeking a more intimate union with God.
“The reason I wear a cross is because Christianity, and in particular, the figure of Christ, it seems to me, [is] inevitably becoming more important as I become more familiar with suffering, purpose, self, and not self,” Brand said in a X video this week.
Why I Wear A Cross!
I’m interested to hear what YOU think, let me know. pic.twitter.com/kMcyYgvl7o
— Russell Brand (@rustyrockets) January 21, 2024
Brand, 48, has starred in many unsavory films during his acting career. Known for his eccentric personality and public battles with substance abuse, he has focused his energies in recent years on his hit podcast Stay Free with Russell Brand, which has 1.81 million subscribers on Rumble, making it one of the most watched shows on the platform.
A former longtime Buddhist, Brand told his viewers that he has been reading the Bible “a lot more” now. He’s also been delving into Protestant pastor Rick Warren’s best-selling book The Purpose Driven Life.
“When I grew up, Christianity seemed like it was either really irrelevant and old fashioned and sort of dusty.” Then, “they tried to modernize it.”
Both of those styles didn’t appeal to him, he said. That has changed as of late.
“I suppose it takes a certain amount of adulthood — and it might be different for all of us — for me it seems that it’s taken quite a lot to recognize that you need, I need a personal relationship with God.”
“It occurred to me that if instead of always talking to myself inwardly, I could replace one of those voices with an indwelling God,” he added.
Similar to podcaster Joe Rogan, Brand has used his show to fight against political correctness, COVID-19, media bias, and wokeism, among other topics, earning him many conservative fans.
His unvarnished analysis resulted in him being attacked by mainstream institutions in September 2023 when his YouTube channel was demonetized after reports surfaced that he had been accused of serious misconduct by several women in the 2010s, charges which he has strenuously denied.
Brand said at the time that efforts to cancel him reveal a high level of “collusion between Big Tech and government” to “silence independent media voices.”
Born in Essex, England in 1975, Brand has two children with his second wife. From 2010 until 2012, he was wed to American pop singer Katy Perry.
In his video this week, Brand asked viewers to share with him their thoughts on his spiritual development.
“It says in Galatians, ‘It is our job to die, so that as Christ died on the cross, he might be reborn in us.’ I’m very interested to hear what you think, because for me, my heart is open,” he remarked.
Thousands of persons responded to Brand’s video, including former Donald Trump adviser Michael Flynn as well as Robert F. Kennedy Jr., both of whom are Catholic. Flynn said that his own faith has grown “stronger” as he has aged while Kennedy simply replied, “brilliant!”