"Office" Star Speaks About Religion, Gives Crowd Second-Hand Baha'i

Hundreds of UC Irvine students packed into Crystal Cove Auditorium to see actor Rainn Wilson from the popular television show “The Office” on June 4.

Wilson, who plays Dwight Shrute, a hapless assistant to the regional manager on the show, was invited by the Baha’i Club of UCI to talk to students about the Baha’i perspective on human rights.

“I feel like Bono!” Wilson said as he graced the stage. His enthusiasm was met with uproarious applause and endless camera flashes from the crowd.

Attendees fixated on every movement and noise he made, laughing especially at Wilson’s persistent badgering of and irritation with the audio-visual technician who could not resolve the continuing sound shortage issues with the microphone.

“I’m going to kill that guy,” Wilson joked. “Baha’i kills AV on campus after talking about world peace. Details at 11.”

{josquote}Although members of the Baha’i club sharply rebuffed a request by the New University to speak to Wilson, the amiable actor notified his fellow Baha’i members that he would not mind responding to press inquiries.{/josquote}

Although distracted, Wilson captivated his audience by extending his comedy into an explanation of his faith and its emphasis on overall social justice. He quoted from the founder of the faith, Baha’u’llah and spoke about the multicultural unity of other world religions as an aspect of Baha’i.

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