Liam Neeson stopped going to confession after being shamed by a priest – TheFantasyTimes

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By Jitin Gambhir

Liam Neeson stopped going to confession after being shamed by a priest

Liam Neeson has refrained from going to confession for over 56 years due to a distressing encounter with a priest regarding his masturbation habits. The renowned actor revealed this during an appearance on the “Conan O’Brien Needs a Friend” podcast. Neeson explained that as a teenager, he confessed to a missionary from Africa who was visiting his hometown in Northern Ireland. He had learned the appropriate terminology for self-pleasure, such as “masturbate” and “masturbation,” and thought it was harmless to mention it.

At the age of 15, Neeson recounted to the priest that he had engaged in masturbation after a heated argument with his family members. Unfortunately, instead of offering guidance or understanding, the priest reacted with outrage. Neeson vividly described the priest’s booming voice as he berated him, causing even the elderly women praying outside the confessional to overhear their conversation.

The priest’s reaction was extreme, with statements like, “The grass will grow over the palm of your hand before you’re 21! Stop that evil practice!” This experience deeply affected Neeson, and he humorously admitted that it was the last time he ever sought confession. He jokingly mentioned that his “d—k” had even shrunk by the time he left the confessional.

Interestingly, Neeson’s name was inspired by a local priest, adding an ironic twist to his story. The actor has always been known for his candid storytelling, and this revelation about his past is just another example. It is worth noting that last year, Neeson confessed to falling in love with a woman who was already in a relationship while filming “Blacklight” in Australia. However, he did not provide further details about her identity or whether she was one of his co-stars. Neeson has kept his love life private since the tragic death of his wife, Natasha Richardson, in a skiing accident in March 2009. The couple was married from 1994 to 2009 and had two sons together, Micheál (28) and Daniel (26).

Liam Neeson hasn’t been to confession for over 56 years after allegedly being shamed by a priest for masturbating.

The “Taken” actor explained during an appearance on the “Conan O’Brien Needs a Friend” podcast that he made the confession when he was a teenager – to a missionary that traveled from Africa to his hometown in Northern Ireland.

“So we start, and I had learned how to pleasure myself at home, onto the sheets, right? I had looked up the appropriate word,” Neeson, now 71, recalled, pretending to look at a phone. “‘Masturbate?’ ‘Masturbation?’ OK. That seems harmless enough, I’ll say that.”

The then-15-year-old told the priest that he had gone to his room and “masturbated” one day after getting into a big fight with some of his family members.

Liam Neeson
The “Taken” star says he confessed to masturbating — only to be shamed by his priest.
GC Images

However, he says the priest — who had a “booming” voice — began screaming at him so loud that the “old women just outside the confessional kneeling down and saying their prayers” could “hear everything.” 

“‘You what?!’ This guy, literally, I mean, he almost said things like, ‘The grass will grow over the palm of your hand before you’re 21! Stop that evil practice!’ He’s shouting this!” Neeson explained.


“That was the last time I ever went,” Neeson said with a laugh, noting that by the time he left his “d—k” had “shrunk.”

Liam Neeson
The actor says the religious leader was screaming so loud that people inside the church could hear their conversation.
Getty Images

Neeson, who was ironically named Liam after a local priest, has always been known for his candid storytelling.

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Last year, the Irish actor admitted that he fell in love with a “taken” woman while filming “Blacklight” in Australia.

“I loved Melbourne, I loved our Australian crew,” the action star said on the Australian morning talk show “Sunrise” in February 2022. “Every department was superb but they were their own people, do you know what I mean?”

Liam Neeson younger in black and white.
Neeson, who was 15 at the time, has not gone back since.
Getty Images

“They had a great sense of humor,” he added. “I made a couple of pals and fell in love once while I was there, but she was taken.”

However, Neeson didn’t divulge much more information into the mystery woman’s identity — or whether or not she was one of his co-stars.

Neeson has kept his love life out of the public eye ever since his late wife, Natasha Richardson, tragically died in a skiing accident in March 2009. The former couple were married from 1994 to 2009, and share two sons: Micheál, 28, and Daniel, 26.

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