Hollywood actor Jim Carrey has become a viral hit after his rousing speech about the power of forgiveness was posted online. Carrey is currently in the midst of a legal battle with the husband and mother of his former Irish girlfriend Cathríona White regarding his culpability in her death, and he spoke about how his faith has helped him to forgive.
The “Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind” actor was speaking to former convicts at Homeboy Industries, an organization that “provides hope, training, and support to formerly gang-involved and previously incarcerated men and women allowing them to redirect their lives and become contributing members of our community.”
“You are heroes to me, and I admire you,” Carrey told the crowd.
“When you stepped through these doors, you decided to be a part of this family. You made a decision to transcend and to leave darkness behind, and it takes a champion to make that decision.”
The 55-year-old actor mentioned his own faith in his speech, outlining how it has helped him to overcome recent difficulties in his life.
“Ultimately, I believe that suffering leads to salvation. In fact, it’s the only way,” Carrey said.
“We have to somehow accept, not deny, but feel our suffering and feel our losses. And then we make one of two decisions: We either decide to go through the gate of resentment, which leads to vengeance, which leads to self-harm, which leads to harm to others. Or we go through the gate of forgiveness, which leads to grace.”
“Your being here is an indication that you’ve made that decision already,” Carrey added.
“You’ve made the decision to walk through the gate of forgiveness, to grace—just as Christ did on the cross. He suffered terribly and was broken by it, to the point of doubt and a feeling of absolute abandonment, which all of you have felt.
“And then there was a decision to be made, and the decision was to look upon the people who were causing that suffering, or the situation that was causing that suffering, with compassion and with forgiveness. And that’s what opens the gates to heaven for all of us.”
Carrey will appear in court in 2018 over the death of his Co. Tipperary-born former girlfriend Cathríona White as a result of a lawsuit taken out against him by White’s family. The case has been put forward by White’s estranged husband, Mark Burton, and her mother, Brigit Sweetman, who claim the “Dumb and Dumber” star played a role in the Irish make-up artist’s death.
Cathríona White, 30, from Cappawhite, Co. Tipperary, was found dead in her rented home, in the Sherman Oaks area of Los Angeles, on September 28, 2015, just days after a second break-up with the comedic actor. She had been dating Carrey on and off since 2012.
Suffering leads us to a decision, and Jim Carey explains the choice at Homeboy Industries. Incredible. https://t.co/YpWYB2PMRo— Mark Sole (@markgsole) July 23, 2017
On learning of her death, Carrey said, "She was a truly kind and delicate Irish flower, too sensitive for this soil, to whom loving and being loved was all that sparkled.” He acted as one of the pallbearers at her funeral in Tipperary after which White’s similarly estranged mother called him “a very nice man.”
Sweetman has since changed her tune, however, launching legal action against the Canadian actor and accusing him of providing the prescription drugs Ambien, Propranolol and Percocet, on which White overdosed.
Although Carrey’s lawyers have described the claims as “malicious” and “predatory,” Judge Deirdre Hill of Los Angeles Superior Court ruled in June that the trial would go ahead, setting a date for what could be a 20-day trial for April 26, 2018.
“What a terrible shame. It would be easy for me to get in a back room with this man’s lawyer and make this go away, but there are some moments in life when you have to stand up and defend your honor against the evil in this world,” Carrey said in a statement when the original complaint was made.
He was invited to appear at Homeboy Industries by Jesuit Priest Father Greg Boyle. Jim Carrey's speech was really from his heart. ??— Terry Marvin (@terrymarvin63) July 21, 2017
“I will not tolerate this heartless attempt to exploit me or the woman I loved. Cat’s troubles were born long before I met her and sadly her tragic end was beyond anyone’s control.
“I really hope that someday soon people will stop trying to profit from this and let her rest in peace.”
Cathríona White was reportedly undocumented and had been living and working in LA as a makeup artist for a number of years. She first met Carrey on a film set in late 2012 and they dated for several months before breaking up in March 2013.
In May 2015, the couple reconnected, while White was seeking a divorce from Burton. They were seen together around New York before a second split in September 2015.
According to details of the autopsy report acquired by the Daily Mail, White had taken prescription medication from Carrey’s home a few days before her death. The official toxicology report states she died from an overdose of prescription drugs including propranolol (a beta blocker used to treat high blood pressure), zolpidem (a sleep aid sold as Ambien), and painkillers oxycodone and oxymorphone.
The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline operates 24 hours a day, 7 days a week at 1-800-273-TALK (8255).
In times of crisis, you can also text START to 741-741 to be connected with a trained crisis counselor via the Crisis Text Line.