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Justin Bieber: "I Don't Have to Go to Church"

The Winnipeg Free Press reported this week that 17-year-old pop heartthrob Justin Bieber indeed is a Christian but focuses more on praying and talking with God rather than attending church. He told V magazine that “a lot of people who are religious, I think they get lost. They go to church just to go to church…I focus more on praying and talking to Him. I don’t have to go to church” In a FOX News report, Cathleen Falsani, author of a book on Bieber’s life, said, “His is a nuanced articulation of faith, which, to my ear, speaks both to how genuine it is and how it is evolving and becoming his own.”

Bieber made headlines when he recently got a tattoo of Jesus on his left calf. He is just one of several young celebrities right now who are public about their Christian faith and willing to share it with fans, including the Bronco’s Tim Tebow and pop singer Demi Lovato. Ann Neuman at New York University’s Center for Religion and Media called the public faith of these young people “not bad brand marketing…Bieber’s godliness makes him particularly safe and acceptable to tweens and their parents.”

What impact do you see these stars having on young Christians? Could they be making it cool to be a believer, or could they be just using their faith as a marketing tool to gain the trust of young people and their parents? Leave your thoughts in the Comment section below.