"A long road back" for Rourke

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Friday 16, January 2009 | Category:   Prayer and Spirituality

When Mickey Rourke accepted a Golden Globe award recently for best actor in the film The Wrestler, he said, “It’s been a long road back for me.”

(By the way, Mickey’s not afraid to use some colorful language, so be forewarned if you’re a “younger or more sensitive viewer.”)

After roles in the 1980s-era movies Diner, The Pope of Greenwich Village, and others, his life went downhill. Arrested for various misdemeanors, he tried a career as a professional boxer, and like many aspiring fighters got the stuffing knocked out of him, to the point of disfiguring his face. By 1998 he was contemplating suicide.

Then he turned to a Catholic priest, who suggested he pray to Saint Jude, the patron saint of people in difficult and even desperate situations (“hopeless causes,” the phrase usually associated with this saint, always seemed wrong to me because if people were feeling truly hopeless they wouldn’t be praying in the first place).

Rourke wrote a reconciliation letter to his ex-wife, tucked it behind a statue of Saint Jude, and lit a candle. These days he has a statue of the Virgin Mary in his living room and talks about “turning the other cheek.”

"I let my past destroy me.” Rourke said. “I was walking around my adult life with my fists clenched, pointing the finger at everyone but me. But I finally opened my hands and said, Wow! This is a lot easier than walking around with smoke coming out of my a--."


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Reprinted with permission from PrepareTheWord.com. ©TrueQuest Communications.


  1. Posted by: Joel Schorn 10 year Time Ago

    Update: While Mickey will probably not be returning to the boxing ring in the future, his past experience will not bar him from professional wrestling. Rourke told the entertainment news show "Access Hollywood" that he will compete in "Wrestlemania 25." Rourke's performance as down-and-out Randy "The Ram" Robinson in Darren Aronofsky's "The Wrestler" earned him a best actor Oscar nomination as well as a Golden Globe award. Rourke performed his own stunts in the movie. He will compete against wrestler Chris Jericho. True to the tradition of professional wrestling, the two have begun trading taunts, insults, and other recriminations. Rourke said he was getting wrestling tips from legends "Rowdy" Roddy Piper and the Wild Samoans.




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