Mark Wahlberg doesn’t want to ‘force’ religion on his children; instead, he hopes they will find their own faith.
Ella, 18, and Grace Margaret, 12, are his daughters, and Michael, 16, and Brendan, 13, are his boys.
Mark Wahlberg explains how he plans to teach his children about his religious beliefs.
The 50-year-old actor appeared on Today on Thursday morning to discuss his upcoming film Father Stu, in which he plays Stuart Long, a real-life boxer-turned-priest, which is set to enter theaters on April 15.
As a Catholic, Wahlberg sees connections between the film and his own life, which is why he’s so enthusiastic about the project. He doesn’t want to instill his ideas in his children, Ella, 18, and Grace Margaret, 12, as well as sons Michael, 16, and Brendan, 13, whom he has with wife Rhea Durham.
He joked to Hoda Kotb, “They think Dad’s insane, and he’s dull.” “Even with my beliefs, though, I do not force it on others. They are aware, however, that Dad cannot begin the day without praying, reading my Scripture, or attending Mass.”
“And maybe, rather than imposing it on them, they’ll say, ‘Well, if it works for Dad, maybe it’ll work for us,’ and they’ll gravitate toward it on their own,” Wahlberg continued.
Father Stu isn’t the first picture to strike a chord with the Oscar nominee.
Last year, Wahlberg told Fox News that being a father influenced his approach to his film Joe Bell, which portrayed the tale of an Oregonian man who pushed awareness about suicide prevention and anti-bullying after his 15-year-old son Jadin committed suicide after coming out as gay.
“I want to make sure that people, especially parents, are listening to their children and hearing what’s going on with them,” the actor said. “I want to make sure that they love them unconditionally and support them and really root for them and cheer them on in whatever they decide to do, as long as it’s positive and productive.”
Wahlberg drew on his personal experiences with his children to create the on-screen interaction between Bell and his son Jadin.
“I just felt like diving right in wanting to really understand who Joe was, wanting to make sure that the family knew what our intentions were because it’s obviously an overwhelming amount of responsibility when telling a story like this and knowing how would it affect [Bell’s widow] Lola, how would it affect [Bell’s widow] Lola,” he said back in July, “and I just felt like diving right in wanting to make sure that the family knew what our intentions were because it’s obviously an overwhelming amount of responsibility
“Hopefully, it will provide some healing and, more importantly, it will save other families from going through the same tragedy,” Wahlberg added.