Shia LaBeouf Officially Joins the Catholic Church, Has Interest in Becoming a Deacon

Shia LaBeouf
Steve Granitz/WireImage

The actor was previously immersed in Catholicism as he prepared for his role in the 2022 film 'Padre Pio.'

Shia LaBeouf is embracing his role as a man of faith. The 37-year-old actor became an official member of the Catholic Church on Sunday as he received the sacrament of confirmation. 

According to Catholic News Agency, LaBeouf was confirmed by the Diocese of Winona-Rochester, Minnesota. The ceremony took place at Old Mission Santa Inés Parish in Solvang, California, where LaBeouf previously trained for his role in the 2022 film Padre Pio

The Capuchin Franciscans-Western American Province announced the news on social media, sharing a photo of LaBeouf smiling alongside several members of the church. 

"We are thrilled to share that our dear friend Shia LaBeouf has fully entered the Church this past weekend through the sacrament of confirmation! 🙌🎉 The Capuchin Franciscan friars are overjoyed to welcome him into the fold and witness his deep commitment to his faith journey," the group shared on Facebook. "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." 

Additionally, LaBeouf's confirmation sponsor, Capuchin friar Brother Alexander Rodriguez, told CNA that LaBeouf is striving to become a deacon "sometime in the future." Deacons are members of the clergy that assist bishops and priests. 

"He just spontaneously said, 'I want to become a deacon,' and he still feels that way," Rodriguez told the outlet. 

LaBeouf and Rodriguez worked together on Padre Pio, which tells the story of the Catholic saint of the same name. LaBeouf played the role of the titular St. Pio of Pietrelcina -- a 20th-century Italian saint who is known for having received the stigmata -- while Rodriguez appeared as a friar in the film. 

Shia LaBeouf attends the premiere of Amazon Studios "Honey Boy" at The Dome at Arclight Hollywood on November 05, 2019 in Hollywood, California. - Rich Fury/Getty Images
Padre Pio during the mass at the Sanctuary of Saint Pio of Pietrelcina 1966. - Archivio Cicconi/Getty Images

LaBeouf's formal confirmation comes more than a year after he first revealed his intention to convert to Catholicism. 

The actor, whose mother is Jewish and has previously discussed having both a bar mitzvah as well as a baptism growing up, revealed that he was drawn to the Catholic faith while filming Padre Pio. While preparing for the project, LaBeouf lived in a monastery alongside Capuchin Franciscan friars.

"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," LaBeouf explained in an August 2022 appearance on Bishop Robert Barron's YouTube series, Bishop Barron Presents. "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.'"

It was there, and through learning more about the religion for the role, that he felt he had permission to not only convert but gain a sense of "hope" that allowed him to "find his way."

"It was seeing other people who have sinned beyond anything I could ever conceptualize also being found in Christ that made me feel like, 'Oh, that gives me hope,'" LaBeouf said. "I started hearing experiences of other depraved people who had found their way -- in this -- and it made me feel like I had permission."

Rejecting the "method actor" label, LaBeouf noted that he does nothing half-heartedly. 

"I feel a whole lot, I've got a big heart. I don't know if I'm a method guy -- and I think some of that stuff is ridiculous," LaBeouf said.

"I like to be immersive," he continued. "I like all immersive experiences, not just acting. That's probably why I like Catholicism as well. I like adventure, and that requires full immersion."