Denzel Washington was born on December 28, 1954. He grew up in Mount Vernon, New York, as a youngster. Washington’s father was deeply devout and served as both a Reverend and Pentecostal Minister, so he was taught the virtues of Christianity from an early age by his mother who worked as a beautician and spent much of her time supporting her husband and the church. Washington’s mother worked as a beautician while also providing support for her spouse and the church.

Growing up in Mount Vernon, Washington spent a lot of his time in the church. He admired his father and the message he delivered to the congregation, and he wanted to make him proud. Denzel’s faith waned as he got older – just like it does for many teens and young adults. God became a doubt for him, and he began spending less time in church and more time with “bad” people in town.

When he was fourteen, Denzel’s parents divorced. He had been on the verge of heading down the wrong road for some time, but their breakup pushed him over the edge. The young Denzel found himself involved in more fights and committing more offenses as a result of their split. His academic performance began to fall off, as well as his conduct. That is why his mother decided to send him to Oakland Military Academy.

After his tour at the academy, Washington rediscovered God again. When he returned home after his time at the tough-knocks institution, a woman predicted that he would preach. Taking her words as a kind of oracle, Washington enrolled at Fordham University, where he studied medicine and also excelled on the basketball team.

Medicine did not create a fire in Washington. He made the decision to take a semester off school in order to discover what he loved most in life. That’s when he discovered acting, and he found his life’s work.

Denzel Washington returned to Fordham University as a master’s student in Arts in Journalism. He was soon cast in the Hollywood Box Office films “Carbon Copy,” “Crimson Tide,” and, eventually, “The Hurricane.” When he starred in “Training Day,” Denzel cemented his reputation as one of his generation’s finest actors by winning the Best Actor Oscar.

Washington was an ever-devout believer throughout his career.

“There’s never been a time where God didn’t direct, protect, and correct me…. There may have been times where I was less than faithful to Him, but He had faith in me.”

He’s also used his religious mind to benefit his marriage with Pauletta Pearson. Although they’ve had their fair share of issues and arguments, they have stayed together for years.

“I think that you have to really work at it. You should not give up on each other,” he said. “It’s a commitment. It’s not all honeymoon. It doesn’t last forever.”

Nonetheless, Washington always puts God first since he believes everything will be taken care of by God.

“You pray for rain. You got to deal with the mud too,” he said. “That’s a part of it.”

Over the decades, his unwavering belief in God and his devotion to reading the Bible have aided him in Hollywood.