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‘God Is in Control and Calling the Shots’: How Actress Patricia Heaton’s Faith Shaped Her Life

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We’re always filled with joy when Patricia Heaton shows up on our TV screen, but her lifestyle off-screen also warms our hearts.


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Everybody Loves Raymond was a beloved and ubiquitous sitcom in the 1990s and 2000s. We fell in love with the whole Barone family, including the loving (yet ever-exasperated) Debra Barone, played by Patricia Heaton.

While working on Everybody Loves Raymond, Heaton nabbed Emmy Awards for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series in 2000 and 2001, as well as many other awards and nominations over the years.

Heaton has been a main staple on other network sitcoms since the finale of Everybody Loves Raymond. We loved her as Frances “Frankie” Heck on ABC’s The Middle and as Dr. Carol Kennedy on CBS’ Carol’s Second Act. Heaton has also established herself as an amazing cook on the Food Network program Patricia Heaton Parties, which won a Daytime Emmy for “Outstanding Culinary Program” in 2016.

While there are many talented actors in Hollywood, few are as outspoken about their faith as Patricia Heaton. We wanted to take a moment to explore the reasons why we love Heaton as much off-screen as we do on-screen.

She’s a Deeply Committed Christian

Heaton was raised in a devout Catholic family. In fact, her sister is a Dominican nun in Tennessee. However, her faith became her own when she entered adulthood, she’s always been very bold about her relationship with Christ. In fact, she’s so bold about her faith that she declares that “Jesus saves” in both her Twitter and Instagram bios. 

Like so many of us, Heaton struggles with trusting God. Acting is a particularly grueling profession and during work droughts, Heaton needed to find faith that God’s plan was the best plan. Speaking to Catholic World Report in 2017, Heaton explained that “once I realized that God is in control and calling the shots, it enabled me to relax.”

She Cares About Kids

While Heaton has leveraged her influence for many noble causes over the years, we love how consistent she is in supporting the well-being of children. If you scroll through her Instagram feed, you realize that nearly half of her posts are dedicated to elevating awareness for World Vision, in support of the charity’s child sponsorship efforts in developing countries.

Additionally, she’s a very rare pro-life voice in Hollywood, advocating on behalf of the unborn. Because speaking about polarizing issues has become incredibly difficult in our current political climate, Heaton explained that she’s “stepped back from politics… I pray to the Holy Spirit, ‘Help me to love.’ It’s important in this time.”

A Devoted Wife and Mother

Heaton has ample personal experience to draw on as she plays America’s favorite wife and mom on TV. She married David Hunt, a British actor and director, in 1990. Together they have four sons: Joseph, Samuel, David and John. They divide their time between LA and England.

She’s an Author

Given Heaton’s success hosting Patricia Heaton Parties on the Food Network, it makes sense that she would publish a cookbook. Patricia Heaton’s Food for Family and Friends released in 2018 and contains 100 delicious recipes that are easy, practical and rooted in Midwestern values. This wasn’t Heaton’s first book. Her 2002 memoir Motherhood & Hollywood, How to Get a Job Like Mine offered a hilarious and vulnerable look into her shockingly relatable life as a busy working mom.

She’s Bringing the Party into Your Home

If you’re a fan of Patricia Heaton Parties and want to bring her signature touch to your next house-party, the Patricia Heaton Home Collection for sale in Walmart may be exactly what you’re in the market for.

Or, perhaps you want to join forces with Heaton in her support of World Vision’s life-saving work as you begin making your holiday gift purchases. Check out her high-end artisanal Opportunity Collection. She explained that “each piece serves as a reminder that when we empower people to recraft their future, they can become agents of lasting change for their families and communities.”