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The Religious Affiliation of Actress
Joan Crawford


Born Catholic. Later she became a devoted convert to Christian Science.

From The Biography Channel (http://www.thebiographychannel.co.uk/new_site/biography.php?id=203):

In retirement, Joan became a Christian Scientist, and seemed to grow closer to her children. She died of pancreatic cancer in May 1977, in New York City, and is interred at Ferncliff Cemetery, Hartsdale, New York, USA.
From a brief biography of Joan Crawford (written by Ed Stephan) on "The Divas" website (http://home2.planetinternet.be/verjans/Acting_Divas/Stories/Bio_Joan_Crawford.htm, viewed 16 December 2001):
Horrified by a photo taken of her in 1974, she retired completely, devoting herself to Christian Science...
From: Stephanie Jones, "The Best of T" page on "The Best of Everything: A Joan Crawford Encyclopedia" website, posted March 2004 (http://www.joancrawfordbest.com/t.htm#trog; viewed 18 July 2005):
Trog. Warners, 1970. Directed by Freddie Francis and produced by Herman Cohen, 93 minutes. In her last picture, Joan plays "Dr. Brockton," a scientist hoping to rehabilitate a rampaging Missing Link. The budget for the film was so low that Joan used a car for a dressing room and provided her own wardrobe (aside from the lab coat). Says Joan in CWJC: If I weren't a Christian Scientist, and I saw Trog advertised on a marquee across the street, I think I'd contemplate suicide.
From: Stephanie Jones, "The Best of C" page on "The Best of Everything: A Joan Crawford Encyclopedia" website, posted March 2004 (http://www.joancrawfordbest.com/c.htm#christianscience; viewed 18 July 2005):
Christian Science. A spirituality and health movement founded by Mary Baker Eddy. (Eddy's ideas on the subject were first published in 1875, in her book Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures; four years later her Church of Christ, Scientist was founded in Boston.) Joan became a follower of Eddy's teachings in the 1930s, and continued to be influenced by its practices until her 1977 death. Said Joan in CWJC:
I can't say that I'm [a] strict [follower]. I do things a really disciplined Scientist wouldn't do, but I firmly believe that the body can cure its ailments through faith instead of medication or surgery. I realize there are times when one must have a doctor, but we can take care of most things ourselves, with faith and prayer and patience. I think Science would be a wonderful answer to the drug and dope problems we have today. I think it would have been of great help to people like Tyrone Power, Marilyn Monroe, and Judy Garland, who made drugs a way of life. It also teaches you moderation. I should really practice more strictly...but I've done wonders, at least as far as a certain peace of mind is concerned, to carry it this far.
From: Stephanie Jones, "The Best of R" page on "The Best of Everything: A Joan Crawford Encyclopedia" website, posted March 2004 (http://www.joancrawfordbest.com/r.htm#religion; viewed 18 July 2005):
Religion. (See also Christian Science.) Joan made it known that she preferred not to discuss religion or politics. But in CWJC, she says:
I believe in God, but I don't think He cares a hell of a lot about whether a person is a Catholic, Protestant, Jew, or Moslem, as long as that person has a record rolled up that includes more good marks than bad ones. I think Roz Russell [i.e., Rosalind Russell] is the best example of a practicing believer; her Catholicism is very strong, but she doesn't impose it on others. Not like Loretta Young and Irene Dunne; those ladies seem to be rehearsing to play the next Virgin Mary. I think faith is wonderful, but when you try to impose it on others, it's irritating and boring. Like those Hari Krishna asses with their shaved heads and funny gowns, or so many of the cults that have come along in the last few years. Have faith, but don't become a hooker, is about all I can say....

...part of me believes in Predestination--you know, someone up there is pulling the strings, whatever will be will be. Yet I know this isn't true because I can look back and realize how many times a decision was totally in my hands; I had to make a choice and nobody Up There was telling me what to do. Besides, I don't think that someone Up There has time to make all our nit-picking decisions for us....We all have regrets--I can't imagine even Hitler without them...But when you consider time and place and circumstance...could any of us have done differently? I guess that's where Predestination comes in. At the time we can only do what we are capable of doing.

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Webpage created 24 June 2005. Last modified 18 July 2005.
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