After some of his followers expressed concern, he clarified he was “unaware of some of [the church’s] policies and beliefs” and does not “endorse all of them.”
As “High School Musical: The Musical: The Series” star Joshua Bassett continues to surprise his fans with a recent shift toward religious commentary on social media, the young actor shared video from his recent baptism at a California megachurch.
On Monday, the 22-year-old singer shared a short video taken from a recent service at Bethel Church in Redding, CA, in which he’s seen on stage with a leader who asks about his decision to get baptized.
“Long story short, I grew up Christian and I ran the other way, as far as I could go in pursuit of truth and that only ended in addiction, depression, suicidal ideation, eating disorders, et cetera,” he said in the clip.
“And no other teacher gave me anywhere near the peace that Jesus Christ did,” concluded Bassett, as the congregation broke into cheers and applause.
In another video, he was then seen getting dunked under water on stage.
The responses to his post were mixed, as some expressed happiness and well-wishes for the young star, while others were concerned about the church’s beliefs.
Bethel had come under fire in the past for allegedly supporting gay conversation therapy, while Bassett’s followers also called out some of the verbiage on the church’s website regarding sexuality. While the church’s website admits it has failed “those who identify as LGBTQ” and says those in the community “are important and valuable to us,” it also states that “the multitude of possible gender identities and the normalization of same-sex sexual behavior points to a society that has abandoned the desire to accurately define and socialize humanity as a reflection of God’s image.”
The website also says LGBTQ labels “merely describe a subjective and often fluid experience that belies the objective truth of our male and female biology.”
In the past, Bassett has said he’s “part of the LGBTQ+ community.”
After seeing some of the online chatter about Bethel’s beliefs, Bassett addressed the criticism on Twitter as well.
“I visited this church and happened to get baptized here- i was unaware of some of their policies and beliefs, and do not endorse all of them,” he wrote. “my heart is for Christ and Christ alone!”
Bassett’s religious tweets started shortly after the new year, when he sent out a message on January 5 reading, “Jesus Christ is the only way. His death and resurrection are historically documented. turn away form hate, seek forgiveness and come home to Him.”
As some wondered whether he was hacked, the posts kept coming on his Instagram Stories, where he opened up about his spiritual journey.
“A few months ago I asked God to ‘send me a sign when I write the truth.’ I typed ‘Jesus is the way,’ nothing happened, then I added, ‘Jesus is the *only* way’ and the light turned on in my living room,” he claimed, via Rolling Stone. “I have also first hand encountered Jesus twice. The experience’s [sic] were richer and more vivid than anything in my entire life. I look forward to speaking about it soon.”
He then added, “For those concerned about me be sure of this: I’m better than I have ever been. The peace I feel is far beyond what I thought possible.”