Celebrities Who Found Religion was originally published on blackamericaweb.com
1. Cheryl ‘Salt’ James
After leaving the pioneering female rap group Salt ‘n Pepa, Cheryl James said that she was born again and started a career in gospel rap – most notably on Kirk Franklin’s 1997 hit, “Stomp.” She did join ex-partner Sandy “Pepa” Denton for both a reality show and string of performances, but has substantially altered her more provocative lyrical content.
Following the failure of her solo debut album, Hot Coko, and the shelving of her sophomore effort, Coko of SWV famed returned to her Christian roots and later resurfaced as a born-again Christian and gospel singer. While she has since rejoined the group that made her famous, she refuses to perform their sexually explicit hits like “Downtown” and “Can We.”
After the disappointing sales of his 1999 sophomore album, Double Up, Mason “Ma$e” Durrell Betha announced that he was born again and turning his life over to God. He became a preacher, then returned to rap — only with a more light-hearted sound. Years later, he sought to join 50 Cent’s G-Unit fold and rap in a style associated with his famous moniker, “Murder Ma$e.” He still preaches.
4. Tiger Woods
In an effort to rebuild his image, Tiger Woods has started to speak more openly about his Buddhist beliefs. He also now wears a religious bracelet saying, “It’s Buddhist, it’s for protection and strength and I certainly need that.”
5. Joseph ‘Rev. Run’ Simmons
After his success as a part of the pioneering rap group Run DMC, Rev. Run decided to become a member of Zoe Ministries and was later ordained a minister. Now a reality TV star, he uses his public platform to share his faith.
In 2001, he revealed that he had become a Jehovah’s Witness. Those who questioned his seriousness had those questions answered once it was revealed he took on the door-to-door conversion efforts associated with the faith –- even at the home of a Jewish family before the start of Yom Kippur.
7. Chris Tucker
Tucker wouldn’t sign on for the sequels to play Smokey in the ‘Friday’ sequels because he had become a born-again Christian after doing the film Money Talks and no longer approved of the character.
She stated that became addicted to crack cocaine in the late ’80s, and after almost dying from from the effects of years worth of drug use, she became a born-again Christian, and went back to being known as Denise Matthews.
9. Al Green
Green said his wake-up call happened after his girlfriend doused him with a pan of boiling hot grits while he was taking a shower and then took her own life. He would go on to become an ordained minister at the Full Gospel Tabernacle in Memphis in 1976. For years he would exclusively record gospel music before returning to his R&B roots decades later. Reverend Al is still an active minister.
10. Todd Bridges
Todd recently authored a book that tackles his dark past, the Diff’rent Strokes star said he had been a long-time drug abuser has said that his ex-agent molested him as a child. He cites Christianity as his salvation.