Ad blocker interference detected!
Wikia is a free-to-use site that makes money from advertising. We have a modified experience for viewers using ad blockers
Wikia is not accessible if you’ve made further modifications. Remove the custom ad blocker rule(s) and the page will load as expected.
| This article does not cite any references or sources.
Please help improve this article by adding citations to reliable sources. Unsourced material may be challenged and removed. (June 2007)
This page lists individuals in history who were at least nominally raised in the Roman Catholic faith and later rejected it or converted to other faiths. One study estimates that 10.1% of people in the United States describe themselves as former Catholics in some sense. Although a small majority converted to another religion a substantial minority of them are counted as currently unaffiliated. According to Catholic canon law, only a formal act of defection renders a person an "ex-Catholic". Many individuals on this list, and in that study, are therefore still Catholics in the eyes of the Catholic Church.
Note: The title is a shorthand, the list actually refers to those who leave the Roman Catholic Church or any Eastern Catholic Church in communion with it. Individuals like Eddie Doherty who were allowed to transfer from the Latin Catholic Church to an Eastern Catholic Church are therefore not counted as "ex-Roman Catholics" for the purpose of this list, while Eastern Catholics who convert to a religion not in communion with Rome do.
Individuals who converted to other denominations and faiths
- Rod Dreher, writer who converted to Catholicism and then to Eastern Orthodoxy
- H. Tristram Engelhardt, Jr., philosopher and bioethicist
- Tom Hanks, actor who converted to the Greek Orthodox Church after marrying his wife
- Karl Matzek, artist who joined the Eastern Orthodox Church
- John Anthony McGuckin, scholar, poet, and priest of the Romanian Orthodox Church
- Alexis Toth, Ruthenian Catholic Church priest who converted to Orthodoxy and became a saint in the Orthodox Church in America
Anglicanism and churches in full communion
- Gregorio Aglipay, Filipino priest who joined the Philippine Independent Church
- Madeleine Albright, former US Secretary of State
- The Very Revd Miriam Byrne, Irish Catholic nun who became a cathedral provost in the Scottish Episcopal Church
- Alberto Cutié, priest who converted to the Episcopalian Church after been discovered of having an active 2 year affair with a divorcee woman
- Matthew Fox (priest), priest who became an Episcopalian
- Jim McGreevey, former Governor of New Jersey, who became Episcopalian
- The Rt Revd Michael Nazir-Ali, Bishop of Rochester, raised Muslim but baptised in the Roman Catholic at school and received into Anglicanism at age 20
- Autumn Phillips, received into the Church of England before marrying Peter Phillips
- Kevin Rudd, Prime Minister of Australia
- The Most Revd Katharine Jefferts Schori, first woman primate in the Anglican Communion
- Josette Sheeran, director of the United Nations World Food Programme and former editor with the Washington Times, left the Catholic Church to join the Unification Church and later joined the Episcopalian Church.
- Joris Vercammen, Archbishop of Utrecht, spiritual leader of the Utrecht Union of Old Catholic Churches
Independent Catholic Churches
- Malcolm Broussard, Texas priest who joined Catholic sect led by William Kamm
- Manuel Alonso Corral, Palmarian Catholic Church (anti)pope
- Clemente Domínguez y Gómez, Palmarian Catholic Church (anti)pope
- Sinéad O'Connor, joined Palmarian Catholic Church
- Godfrey Silvester Shiundu, Kenyan priest who joined Reformed Catholic Church
- Joseph Liu Xinhong, excommunicated for accepting ordination by the CPCA
- Joseph Ma Yinglin, excommunicated for accepting ordination by the CPCA
- John Calvin, French religious reformer
- Charles Chiniquy, American anti-Catholic writer
- Hugh Hewitt, law professor, author, radio talk show host, blogger; became a Presbyterian after growing up Catholic in Warren, Ohio
- Dorothy Lucey, news reporter on Good Day LA, converted to the Presbyterian Church (USA) 
- Huub Oosterhuis, Jesuit who became a member of the Dutch Reformed Church
- Georges Sada - Raised in the Chaldean Catholic Church, which is in communion with Rome. He is the President of the National Presbyterian Church and chairs the Assembly of Iraqi Evangelical Presbyterian Churches. (Also a Senior Warden at an Anglican Church)
- Tom Tancredo, U.S. Representative (Colo.-6), potential candidate for U.S. President in 2008, now Evangelical Presbyterian
- Marie Cavallier (now Princess Marie of Denmark), converted upon marriage to Prince Joachim of Denmark
- Friedrich Heiler, religious scholar in High Church Lutheranism. (Dispute about whether he truly left Catholicism)
- Katharina Luther, former nun who married Martin Luther
- Martin Luther, excommunicated by papal bull Decet Romanum Pontificem
- Tim Pawlenty, current Republican Governor of Minnesota
- Marcelo Crivella, senator in the federal government of Brazil
- J. Regina Hyland, a pioneer in the field of Animals & Religion
- Edir Macedo, founded the Universal Church of the Kingdom of God
- Efraín Ríos Montt, a former de facto President of Guatemala
- Mark Finley, pastor and speaker emeritus of It Is Written (Adventist TV program)
- Roger Morneau, author of A Trip Into The Supernatural and the Incredible Answers To Prayer trilogy
- Marianne Thieme, Dutch politician
- Walter Veith, is a scientist, author and speaker known for his work in nutrition, creationism and other Christian topics
- Stephen Baldwin, actor converted to non-denominational Christian
- Bob Enyart, Christian talk-show host, pastor of a non-denominational Christian church.
- Johannes Gossner, priest, became Protestant, probably Lutheran
- Bill McCartney, Colorado-based American evangelical/conservative activist
- Sarah Palin, former Governor of Alaska, converted with family as a child to non-denominational Protestant
Atheism, agnosticism, or non-religious
This section contains people who rejected Catholicism in favor of a non-religious philosophy. In accordance with canon law, the Roman Catholic Church considers them "lapsed Catholics" rather than "ex-Catholics."
- Steve Allen, actor, TV show host, writer, pundit (Humanism)
- George Carlin, American comedian (staunch atheist)
- Jimmy Carr, British comedian
- Luigi Cascioli, former Italian priest who argues that Jesus never existed
- Pat Condell, atheist comedian
- Marie Curie, Nobel laureate in chemistry and physics
- Theodore Dreiser, American writer (Socialism and possibly Christian Science)
- Janeane Garofalo, American comedienne (Freethought advocate).
- Seth MacFarlane, writer, creator, producer for Family Guy, American Dad, etc; grew up Catholic but as an adult began to embrace atheism.
- Zoran Milanović, Croatian politician and newly elected leader of Social Democratic Party of Croatia (SDP)
- Joyce Carol Oates, author, critic (atheist)
- Chris Rush, American comedian who considers himself spiritual rather than religious.
- Dan Savage (1964—) author and sex-advice columnist Despite his atheism, Savage considers himself Catholic "in a cultural sense."
- Omar Sharif, actor and bridge player; an Egyptian Melkite Catholic who converted to Islam, but is now an atheist
- Julia Sweeney, atheist comedian on the advisory board of the Secular Coalition for America
- Laurie Taylor (sociologist)
- Jerome Tuccille, author of Heretic: Confessions of an Ex-Catholic Rebel
- Penelope Cruz, actress
- Patrick Duffy, actor
- Alanis Morissette, singer-songwriter
- Hwang Woo-Suk, South Korean scientist
- Joan Crawford, American actress
- Doris Day, American actress
- Philip Kerr, 11th Marquess of Lothian, British Ambassador
- Keith Ellison, first Muslim to serve in the United States Congress
- Everlast, Irish-American rapper and guitar player
- Anthony Green, educated at Ampleforth College, a famous Catholic monastic school
- René Guénon, French philosopher
- Diana Haddad, singer raised in the Maronite Church
- Murad Wilfred Hofmann, diplomat
- Ingrid Mattson, president of the Islamic Society of North America. (She abandoned Catholicism years before her conversion to Islam)
- Matthew Saad Muhammad, boxer
- Peter Murphy, lead singer of Bauhaus
- Vinnie Paz, also known as Ikon the Verbal Hologram; American rapper for the underground hip hop group Jedi Mind Tricks
- Abraham ben Abraham, Polish Talmudic scholar (conflicting stories though)
- B'nai Moshe, a Peruvian community of Inca descent which embraced Judaism
- Bishop Bodo, deacon
- Campbell Brown, an American television news reporter, currently an anchor and political pundit for CNN and a former co-anchor of NBC's Weekend Today
- Aharón Calderón, a former monk of a Catholic monastery in South America, he converted to Orthodox Judaism. 
- Yisrael Campbell, comedian
- Kenneth Cox, priest
- JoAnn Fay, a nun who converted to Orthodox Judaism in 1980
- Aaron Freeman, journalist and comedian
- Thomas Jones
- Cameron Kerry, politician and brother of U.S. presidential candidate John Kerry
- John King, an American journalist and the host of CNN's State of the Union
- Anne Meara (1929 - ), American comedian and actress, partner and wife of Jerry Stiller
- Timothy Olivieri, deacon who converted to Reform Judaism
- Armando Quiros, priest who converted to Orthodox Judaism
- Mary Doria Russell, American author
- Jews of San Nicandro, Roman Catholic proselyte community to Judaism in Italy 
- John David Scalamonti, priest who converted to Orthodox Judaism in 1972
- Joseph Abraham Steblicki
- Karen Tintori, an American author of fiction and nonfiction
- Géza Vermes, priest, Biblical scholar, and an expert on the Dead Sea Scrolls 
- Mare Winningham, American actress
- Whoopi Goldberg, American actress, comedienne
- Madonna, American entertainer
- Claudio R. M. Costa
- Isabelle Collin Dufresne- later known as Ultra Violet, one of the Warhol Superstars
- Brigitte Boisselier, mostly known for her association with Clonaid and the Raëlian Church, raised as a Catholic in Champagne, France, holds a doctorate in physical chemistry from the University of Dijon in France and another one in analytical chemistry from the University of Houston
- Tom Cruise, American actor 
- Katie Holmes, American actress
- Jenna Elfman, American actress
- David Miscavige leading figure in Scientology 
- John Travolta, American actor, in 1975
This section lists ex-Catholics who do not fit any of the above categories. In accordance with canon law, the Roman Catholic Church considers certain of these people (those who have not converted to another religion) to be "lapsed Catholics" rather than "ex-Catholics." Many of these people either have converted to new religious movements.
- Chester Brown, Canadian cartoonist
- Fidel Castro, excommunicated (Communism is essentially his system of belief)
- Jack Clayton, British director who identified himself as an "ex-Catholic"
- Robert Crumb, X-rated American cartoonist
- Irene Dailey, American actress who became a Unitarian
- Christopher Durang, American playwright
- Rosario Francesco Esposito, joined Freemasonry
- Edward Gibbon, converted to Catholicism at Oxford University, a year later under threat of being disinherited, returned to Anglicanism
- Heather Graham, American actress (Transcendental Meditation)
- Harry Hay, British-born American homosexual activist, founded the Radical Faeries
- Ammon Hennacy, an American pacifist, Christian anarchist, vegetarian and social activist
- Anne Jackson, American actress of Irish and Croatian extraction; married to Eli Wallach
- Bill Keller, New York Times editor who said he was a "collapsed Catholic"
- Richard Lugner, excommunicated, he is a successful Austrian entrepreneur in the construction industry, and a Viennese society figure
- Emmanuel Milingo, excommunicated, former Zambian Roman Catholic archbishop
- Conor Oberst, singer-songwriter
- Rosie O'Donnell, American comedian and actress
- Paul Provenza, Italian-American comic .
- Pacheco Pulgo (barker, turned jeepney driver)
- Jean Jacques Rousseau, converted to Catholicism upon moving to France, rejected it for Calvinism upon moving back to Geneva
- Martin Scorsese, Italian-American director
- Orson Welles, legendary American filmmaker and actor
- List of people excommunicated by the Roman Catholic Church
- List of people who converted to Catholicism
- List of former atheists and agnostics
- List of former Christians
- List of former Latter Day Saints
- List of former Muslims
- List of former Protestants
- ↑ Changes in American religious affiliation - Pew
- ↑ Danish Prince Weds French Catholic
- ↑ 403 Forbidden
- ↑ Adherents.com
- ↑ Reid, Robert William (1974). Marie Curie. London: Collins. p. 19. ISBN 0-00-211539-5. "Unusually at such an early age, she became what T. H. Huxley had just invented a word for: agnostic."
- ↑ Seth MacFarlane - Celebrity Atheist List
- ↑ http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wQGoFM-d-qU
- ↑ "If Osama bin Laden were in charge, he would slit my throat; my God, I'm an atheist, a hedonist, and a faggot." Skipping Towards Gomorrah: The Seven Deadly Sins and the Pursuit of Happiness in America, Dan Savage, Plume, 2002, p. 258.
- ↑ Savage declared in his syndicated sex-advice column: "I'm Catholic — in a cultural sense, not an eat-the-wafer, say-the-rosary, burn-down-the-women's-health-center sense. I attended Quigley Preparatory Seminary North, a Catholic high school in Chicago for boys thinking of becoming priests. I got to meet the Pope in 1979 ...." Savage Love (column), The Village Voice, April 12, 2005.
- ↑ Interview: Omar Sharif (English translation) - El Mundo on 2002.
- ↑ Amazon.com
- ↑ Belleville News
- ↑ Hamodia Magazine, Shavout issue, June 1, 2006, "From the Monastery to Meah Shearim: The Story of an Unlikely Chassid", by Michael Freund
- ↑ From the Monastery to Meah Shearim: the story of an unlikely Chassid
- ↑ http://www.people.com/people/archive/article/0,,20073218,00.html
- ↑ http://www.bejewish.org/index.php?option=com_jd-wp&Itemid=31&p=21
- ↑ O'Toole, Lesley (2006-12-22). "Ben Stiller : 'Doing comedy is scary'". The Independent. http://enjoyment.independent.co.uk/film/features/article2092609.ece. Retrieved 2006-12-22.
- ↑ Barnes & Noble.com - Books: Spiritual Homecoming, by Armando Quiros, Paperback
- ↑ Interview
- ↑ Literati.net
- ↑ Judaism - Reflections on Giur
- ↑ ,  , ,  , 
- ↑ Buy.com - Providential Accidents: An Autobiography : Geza Vermes : ISBN 9780847693405
- ↑ Clonaid chief backpedals on baby proof, Associated Press. 9 January 2003. Retrieved 22 April 2007.
- ↑  "RD: You were Catholic originally. Cruise: Well, we went from Episcopalian, to atheist, to Catholic..."
- ↑  "In 1990 Cruise renounced his devout Catholic beliefs and embraced The Church Of Scientology claiming that Scientology teachings had cured him of the dyslexia that had plagued him all of his life."
- ↑ David Miscavige: A Biography of, and resources on, David Miscavige, Chairman of the Board of Religious Technology Center
- ↑ Scientology Effective Solutions
- ↑ http://www.playboy.com/articles/orson-welles-interview/index.html