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‘Lost's’ Eko delivers a prayer — for real

Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje offers invocation to Hawaii state senate
/ Source: The Associated Press

One of the actors of the ABC series “Lost” left behind his star power to promote a different type of strength among local lawmakers — harmony and hope.

Dressed in a simple gray suit draped with a single strand of maile leaves, Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje, a devout Buddhist, quietly delivered the traditional daily prayer before the state Senate on Wednesday.

“I thank you very much, deeply, from the root of my heart because I believe this is what my mission is in life to share this practice and to create dialogue with others,” Akinnuoye-Agbaje said.

Akinnuoye-Agbaje plays the character of Mr. Eko, a former African drug lord who had taken on the identity of a Roman Catholic priest. The series is filmed in Hawaii.

Akinnuoye-Agbaje read the 23rd Psalm, which is also the title of the “Lost” episode during which Eko’s violent past and struggle for redemption are revealed.

Akinnuoye-Agbaje was invited to deliver the invocation by Sen. Fred Hemmings, R-Lanikai-Waimanalo, after the senator saw the episode featuring Eko’s story.

Though the show has been sweeping up awards, including a Golden Globe last month for best television drama series, Akinnuoye-Agbaje called his appearance before the Hawaii Legislature “the pinnacle” of his career.

“This to me is the greatest reward because it’s based upon my faith,” he said in an interview following the invocation.