The misleading claim originated in an article (archived here) published by UpliftingToday.com in September 2019 under the title "Former Atheist Brad Pitt Becomes A Christian As He Recovers From Alcoholism". It opened:
Brad Pitt is known for being one of the biggest Hollywood stars alive today, and for many years, he was also an atheist. However, recent struggles of his that include addiction and a painful divorce from Angelina Jolie have led to him finding God.
For years, Pitt pushed all questions of faith aside in favor of life's many worldly distractions. It was only during his divorce from Jolie that he started to change and value the real blessings of life, including his children.
"I gotta be more -- I gotta be more for them," Brad said amidst his divorce. "I have to show them. And I haven't been great at it."
Pitt remembers sleeping on a friend's floor for weeks following his divorce because he was simply "too sad" to stay in the family's home all alone. These kinds of struggles are what softened his heart and allowed him to find God.
This is what social media users saw:
In GQ's 2017 cover story titled "Brad Pitt Talks Divorce, Quitting Drinking, and Becoming a Better Man," Pitt describe his religious upbringing in a strict Christian home, including the charismatic Christian practice of "speaking in tongues" during church services.
I grew up in caves. We had a lot of caves, fantastic caverns. And we grew up First Baptist, which is the cleaner, stricter, by-the-book Christianity. Then, when I was in high school, my folks jumped to a more charismatic movement, which got into speaking in tongues and raising your hands and some goofy-ass shit.
In 2019 cover story titled "Brad Pitt Is Still Searching," Pitt is quoted talking about his spiritual journey from a Baptist, charismatic Christian, agnostic, athiest, and then to spirituality:
"Oh, man, I've gone through everything. Like, I cling to religion. I grew up with Christianity. Always questioned it, but it worked at times. And then when I got on my own, I completely left it and I called myself agnostic. Tried a few spiritual things but didn't feel right. Then I called myself an atheist for a while, just kind of being rebellious. I wasn't really. But I kinda labeled myself that for a while. It felt punk rock enough. And then I found myself coming back around to just belief in--I hate to use the word spirituality, but just a belief in that we're all connected."
Pitt does not say anywhere in either GQ interview that he has returned to Christianity or found God in the wake of his failed marriage. He speaks of returning to spirituality, but does indicate it was related to the divorce.
The UpliftingToday.com article adds context and details to Pitt's story to make it appear that his divorce from Angelina Jolie was the trigger for this, but that is never said by Pitt.
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