For much of the 80s and 90s, Kirk Cameron held sway as one of the most beloved teen stars in America. Popular for his portrayal of the mischievous but adorable Mike Seaver on the hit ABC sitcom – Growing Pains, he received several awards. He was also featured on the cover of numerous teen magazines and even featured in a popular Super Bowl commercial.
Cameron was thus well on his way to becoming a bona fide movie star when something momentous happened. That momentous happening was his conversion to Christianity and since then, he has not relinquished it. He has gone on to become an evangelical Christian and shares his beliefs with others, no matter the controversy it will raise. Cameron also remains an actor but is now focused on faith-based projects.
Unforgettable Days as Teen Heartthrob, Mike Seavers
Kirk Thomas Cameron came into this world on the 12th of October 1970 in Panorama City, California. Blessed with natural good looks as well as talent, he delved into acting when he was just a child. His first professional gig was a spot in a TV commercial when he was nine. After that, the young boy went on to garner appearances in several movies and TV shows including Goliath Awaits, Bret Maverick, Beyond Witch Mountain, Herbie, The Love Bug, Lou Grant, Starflight: The Plane That Couldn’t Land, Two Marriages, and More than Murder.
Kirk Cameron got his deserved breakthrough in 1985 when he was cast in the TV series, Growing Pains. Growing Pains was an ABC sitcom that revolved around the Seavers family residing in New York. The family features dad, Jason, a work-from-home psychiatrist, mom, Maggie, a lady who recently goes back to her job as a reporter and their four kids. Kirk Cameron portrayed the role of one of these kids, specifically the couple’s eldest son named Mike. His character has a nose for sniffing out trouble and considers himself to be a ladies man.
Growing Pains aired from 1985 to 1992 during which Cameron rose to become the center of attraction in the show. He featured in all 166 episodes and received multiple award nominations for his performance on the show. They include two Golden Globe nominations for best supporting actor in a series, miniseries or TV film (1987 and 1989). He also went on to win several of them including the best young actor in a TV series at the 1986 Young Artist Award, and favorite young TV performer at the 1988 and 1989 People’s Choice Awards.
His Conversion To Christianity Modified His Growing Pains Role
By the third season of Growing Pains, Kirk Cameron had become one of the most popular teenagers in America. He regularly cruised around in bullet-proof limos and private jets. Notable personalities also courted him to hang out with their children. The young man was simply living large and wanted nothing that would rain his parade. He therefore naturally had an atheist mindset and looked set to maintain that into adulthood. He, however, experienced a major turnaround following an encounter with a girl in 1987.
The then-17-year-old Cameron was smitten by the girl and was prepared to go to great lengths to woo her, including following her to a church program. He however got more than he bargained for as he was entranced by the gospel message that was shared in the church. The message made Cameron realize that he was bound for eternal doom if his death were to occur at that moment. He, therefore, resolved to study more and converted to Christianity.
Kirk Cameron’s conversion to Christianity occurred at the height of his Growing Pains fame and his newfound faith had an instant impact on him. He stopped using curse words. He also refused to partake in scenes that were too racy or too adult. As a result of this, the scriptwriters had to re-work scenes and create new dialogues. This predictably caused tension between Cameron and his castmates but they all held on and successfully brought the show to a wrap in 1992.
Founding The Way of the Master Ministry
Since finding a new life in Christ, Kirk Cameron has become an evangelist and co-founded The Way of The Master Ministry. This is an outreach ministry that converts souls through TV shows, radio shows, print publications as well as online mediums. One of their most popular programs is The Way of the Master TV show. This is a family-friendly reality talk show in which the panelists tackle some of the toughest questions about the bible and God. The show debuted in 2004 and has been named the best religious program on multiple occasions.
Kirk also goes on the road to deliver faith-based teachings. For instance, in 2020, he embarked on a 32-city tour titled Living Room Reset. The conference focused on marriage and parenting and involved concerts and messages about strengthening families. It was held in churches across the United States.
Another means through which Cameron is spreading the gospel is his primary occupation of acting. He has veered away from mainstream Hollywood and concentrated on movies that promote faith and family. Some of them include the Left Behind film series, The Miracle of the Cards, Mercy Rule, Connect, Extraordinary, Saving Christmas, and Fire Proof.
Fire Proof is a 2008 indie drama in which Cameron plays the role of a firefighter who is a hero in his community but is facing marital troubles at home. His wife eventually serves him divorce papers and he embarks on a 40-day plan to win her back. Fire Proof performed well at the box office, grossing $33 million on a budget of $500,000. It also spurned a whole lot of mainstream Christian films such as War Room and God is Not Dead.
Kirk Cameron’s Beliefs have Caused Some Controversies
Cameron’s Christian beliefs have not been without controversy. Back in 2011, he appeared on the CNN show, Piers Morgan Tonight, to promote a documentary about America’s founding fathers known as Monumental. In the course of the show, he was asked about marriage equality and he went on to describe homosexuality as being unnatural, detrimental, and ultimately destructive to the foundations of civilization.
The comments fetched him a blowback from several TV stars including his Growing Pains father and sister, Alan Thicke, and Tracey Gold respectively. He was also rebuked by GLAAD, the non-profit LGBT media monitoring organization. They described his beliefs as out of touch with that of most Americans. They also bashed him for creating the impression that faith-based communities are not accepting of gay people. Despite the wave of condemnation, Cameron stuck to his guns and maintained that he had received thousands of supportive emails and comments.
Cameron Has A Famous Sister best known as D.J. Tanner
Kirk Cameron hails from a family of six. His father’s name is Robert while his mother’s name is Barbara. The actor also has three sisters namely Bridgette, Melissa, and Candace Cameron-Bure. Candace is also a popular actress as well as a media personality. She has appeared in several movies and TV series. She is however most popular for her role as DJ Tanner on the ABC sitcom, Full House. Full House was about a widowed father who has to raise three daughters with the help of his brother-in-law and best friend.
The series ran from 1987 – 1995 and Candace played the role of the eldest daughter, D.J. Her character was quite popular and in 2015, Netflix tapped her to appear in a spin-off titled Fuller House. In it, she plays the lead role of a widow who is raising three sons alongside her best friend and sister. Asides her work as an actress, Candace has also co-hosted the popular daytime talk show, The View. She is married to the professional hockey player, Valeri Bure with whom she shares three kids.
Sharing Faith and Family with Chelsea Noble
Kirk Cameron is married to actress Chelsea Noble. Noble is a native of Cheektowaga, New York, and was born on the 4th of December 1964. She commenced her career in 1988 and has gone on to feature in TV series such as Seinfeld, Kirk, A Little Piece of Heaven, Days of Our Lives, and Full House. She has also appeared in movies such as Instant Karma, Mercy Rule, and Left Behind: The Movie.
Cameron and his wife first met on the set of Growing Pains when she portrayed his love interest, Kate MacDonald. They were quite taken with each other and subsequently commenced a relationship. The two tied the knot on the 21st of July 1991 and have been together ever since. Kirk Cameron and his wife are both devout Christians. In fact, the actor refuses to kiss any woman that is not his wife. Therefore, when he is shooting a kissing scene, his wife acts as a sort of body double.
Cameron and his wife have six children; two are their biological kids while four were adopted. Their names are Anna, Isabella, Luke, Jack, Olivia, and James. As one can imagine, having such a large brood is quite tasking and could affect the relationship between the couple, in order to avoid this, Cameron and his wife exclusively have breakfast with no third party presence every Tuesday morning. They also periodically escape to the guesthouse on their property to enjoy some couple time.