"There are plenty of traditionalists who never trusted him to begin with, and for them, they'll probably look at the divorce as further evidence that he's just a Hollywood nihilist and not really one of them," Noxon said.
Gibson's soon-to-be ex-wife does not share his Catholic beliefs, though their seven children are part of the church, according to Noxon. In 2004, the actor told Australia's Herald Sun that, because she's not a traditionalist Catholic, Robyn Gibson is probably going to hell.
"There is no salvation for those outside the church," Gibson said. "I believe it. ... Put it this way: My wife is a saint. She's a much better person than I am. Honestly. She's, like, Episcopalian, Church of England. She prays, she believes in God, she knows Jesus, she believes in that stuff. And it's just not fair if she doesn't make it. She's better than I am. But that is a pronouncement from the chair. I go with it."
But before that, Robyn Gibson could give him one hell of a divorce battle. Because the two didn't sign a prenuptial agreement before their 1980 marriage, she stands to inherit half of his estimated $900 million fortune. Among his list of assets: a $15 million island in Fiji, a $12 million home in Malibu, and, of course, that $42 million church.
ABC News' Luchina Fisher contributed to this report.