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Is Father Stu Based on a True Story?

What are the odds that Father Stu is based on a true story?

After getting across this intriguing movie a lot of individuals are wondering about the story behind Father Stu. There’s no better time than now to know a little about this movie.

Stuart Long travels to Los Angeles in search of wealth and publicity after an injury terminates his professional boxing career.

He befriends Carmen, a Sunday school teacher who seems impervious to his bad-boy allure while struggling by as a supermarket cashier. To win her over, the long-time agnostic begins attending religious services in order to impress her.

However, a motorcycle accident causes him to consider if he can utilize his new opportunity to assist others, leading him to the unexpected revelation that he is supposed to be a Catholic priest.

Yes, we’re going to address the concern of the readers regarding it being a true story. Let’s explore that.

Is Father Stu Based On A True Story? Let’s Explore The Truth Behind The Movie

Let’s clear any misconception. The movie is based on the true story of boxer-turned-Catholic priest Father Stuart Long (1963–2014), who suffered from inclusion body myositis.

Father Stu is a biopic, and it’s evident that it’s based on a brilliant story. It is, in fact, an inspiring movie that is well worth watching. Mark Wahlberg’s outstanding performance enriched the content of the story.

Wahlberg poured “millions and millions of dollars” of his own money into the production, owing primarily to the shoot’s running late and the licensing to the song.

The Real Story Of Father Stuart Long

We already know a little about Father Stuart Long from the movie’s synopsis. Stu was a sports player that tried wrestling and then football before beginning to participate in boxing in his early twenties with strong pro ambitions.

His illness had poured water into his dreams, and he had been through a lot. Before getting onto the devastating part let’s go through a little about his life.

Father Stu was born on July 26, 1963, in Helena, Montana, and attended Carroll College. But his ambitions could not come true because he had to go to Los Angeles due to severe jaw surgery.

As a result, he was forced to abandon his preferred boxing career. He considered acting a new beginning. Stu appeared in a few advertisements and as an additional in movies, but he never scored the major role he desired.

Long chose to leave the movie business after having some poor experiences with casting agents and talent management agencies. But that wasn’t everything.

Long worked as a manager for seven years, but then things took a turn.

Father Stuart Long Nearly Escaped Death

The personality worked as a manager for almost seven years before being involved in a terrible bike accident in which he barely lived. He certainly fell in love with one after every hardship he went through.

Cindy was a devout Catholic who went to church, and this is where his road to becoming a father commenced. Cindy embraced Father Stuart’s marriage proposal, but she had one condition.

She stated that he would need to be baptized as a Roman Catholic first. And, obviously, the personality did it out of love. In the 1990s, he got baptized.

The Baptism Changed Father Stuarts Long Life

Stuart felt something the moment he was baptized. He stated that he just knew that he was going to be a priest.

“When I was baptized, at the very moment the priest is pouring the water over my head, I didn’t hear the voice of God or see a big banner come down from the sky or anything, I just knew that I was gonna be a priest.”

His decision of him surprised everyone. After settling on a career path, he taught at a Catholic school, worked in economically depressed areas, obtained a Master’s degree in philosophy, and received his priestly preparation at Mount Angel Seminary in Oregon.

Father Stuart Long’s Diagnosis

Long’s life was altered once more when he has undergone tumor removal surgery on his hip around that time. However, he was eventually diagnosed with inclusion body myositis (IBM), a rare and incurable autoimmune condition.

Muscular inflammation, weakness, and atrophy define this progressive muscle condition. IBM worsens gradually. Weakness appears steadily (over months to years) in an asymmetric way and develops steadily, eventually resulting in severe weakness and muscle loss of the arm and leg.

Long was unable to perform daily tasks and had to rely on crutches to walk. The individual died in 2014, and he did mention the condition and the life he experienced. He served God till the day he died.

“The struggles of this disease helped me and help others to learn the way that we should have been living all along.

And sometimes, with people like me, there’s an extreme example, we need things like this to be able to make those changes and decisions in our life that are gonna help us to become better people, to become the people that God has created us to be when he sent us to this planet.”

After learning the true story behind the movie, you will be able to see it from a much clearer perspective. You are welcome to share your thoughts in the comments area.

Ayman Bhorania
A Writer By Heart. Ayman Is Captivated By Movies & Shows, And She's Writing It Here. If She's Not Writing, You Will Find Her Watching Shows, Or Probably Playing Games!


  1. The movie was excellent! Mark Walberg was fantastic. His performance was incredible and left my husband and I in tears.

  2. I give this movie 5 stars. Only Mark Wahlberg could play this so well. He has the athletis body to play a fighter &, most importantly
    , is a devout Catholic. Way to go Mark!

  3. Such a touching, awesome movie about this true ‘lover of Christ”
    He is happily in the Presence of the One he fell in love with!
    God Bless his family and those who loved him so much!
    This nation needs many times over the likeness of Father Stu who walked in the likeness of his Savior that he came to know so intimately! Thank you Jesus for this Godly man who represented you so well!


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