7 Religious Characters Who Aren’t Crazy

"All alone - Sam Winchester" | Art by Lasse17. Used with permission.
Last week, we listed the religious villains who are crazy and terrifying because of their fanaticism. But today, we’re talking about the characters we love who demonstrate a peaceful, loving faith in a deity beyond their understanding. I love it when faith is depicted as something that real, logical, and smart people choose, despite opposition from society.

1. Leliana, Dragon Age

As a member of the Chantry and worshiper of the Maker, Leliana is devoted to her faith. In the first game, you have the option to make fun of her faith or support it, but she remains true to her religion whatever you do. She’s also a wise, useful party member and plays a pivotal role in Dragon Age: Inquisition as the Inquisition’s spymaster and adviser.

In the cloister, away from the fuss and the flurry of the cities, I found peace. And in that stillness, I could hear the Maker.” —Leliana

2. Suvi Anwar, Mass Effect: Andromeda

Suvi is a scientist and a believer in a higher power, a combination you don’t see often in science fiction. It’s refreshing hearing her describe science as bringer her closer to something greater than herself. She’s willing to logically discuss her faith if you don’t agree with her, and appreciative if you do.

“I’ve had to defend what I believe so often and I have to admit, I’m a little tired of it. Whenever I meet someone who feels the same, or just understands, I really appreciate it.” —Suvi

3. Shepherd Book, Firefly

Shepherd is a refreshing type of science fiction missionary, because he doesn’t try to force his faith on others and isn’t a fanatic. He’s simply present, caring for the crew as he can, and he even struggles with his faith and morals as the crew of the Serenity encounter situations that aren’t black and white.

“I believe there’s a power greater than men, a power that heals.” —Shepherd

4. Shirley Bennett, Community

Shirley is one of the sweetest characters on Community, and her faith definitely isn’t perfect. She has her flaws just like everyone else, including intolerance and a holier-than-thou attitude that almost always backfires. I like that the show is willing to deal with these struggles, making a space for Shirley to grow in her faith and demonstrate compassion.

Shirley: “Uh, Annie, I didn’t know you weren’t, uh, Christian.”
Annie: “Yep. One might even say I’m Jewish.”
Shirley: “Oh, tha-that’s good for you. Tha-that’s wonderful. I respect all religions of the world.”
Abed: “I’m Muslim.”
Troy: “Jehovah’s Witness.”
Britta: “Atheist.”
Shirley: “The Lord is testing me.”

5. Sam Winchester, Supernatural

Sam is often the moral voice of reason in Supernatural, wanting to think the best of people. He also believes in God, praying for help in a hospital chapel in Season 11. Even with all the terrible things that happen to him, Sam still believes God cares and is a foil to Dean’s bitterness.

“But if you know evil’s out there, how can you not believe good’s out there too?” —Sam

6. Nightcrawler, X-Men

Nightcrawler is a devout Catholic who becomes more vocal about his faith in his later comic appearances. The X2 film also treats his faith with respect, with Storm appearing fascinated by his beliefs instead of repulsed.

Odd how even in the face of tragedy, there are often such wonders—such miracles—to be found.” —Nightcrawler, Excalibur Vol 1 71

7. Seeley Booth, Bones

Booth is a Catholic with a respect for life despite his violent past. His faith and perspective on morality is often at odds with Bones’ objective view of such ideals, creating some interesting conversations between the two.

Brennan: “They believe in the same saints you do. And prayer. What they call spells, you call miracles. They have priests.”
Booth: “We don’t make zombies.”
Brennan: “Jesus rose from the dead after three days. [Answers phone] Brennan.”
Booth: “Jesus is not a zombie, right?! I shouldn’t even have to tell you that.”

Who would you add to this list?


Allison Alexander

Allison Alexander

Art Director at Geekdom House
Allison is like Galadriel, offering wisdom where needed but turning treacherous as the sea when competitive games are involved. She manages Geekdom House's arts initiatives, including their magazine and choir. She spends the rest of her time writing, playing D&D, and exploring Hyrule, Middle-earth, or a galaxy far, far away.
Allison Alexander

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