Source: Shutterstock

Pastor Notices Boy Who Is a Carbon Copy of Him at a Church Service and Follows Him — Story of the Day

Karabo Baloyi
Feb 25, 2022
07:00 A.M.
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James Peterson was an example of kindness and righteousness for church visitors. He often preached about forgiveness and honesty. He was the ideal pastor, father, and husband, but parishioners knew nothing about his past. 


James Peterson was conducting a Sunday morning church service. As the congregation’s pastor, it was his job to lead the parishioners in prayer and preach the day’s sermon. He stood up and walked to the stage at the end of the worship to begin the prayer. But when he looked up, he noticed a young boy in the crowd who looked exactly like he did.

While staring at the boy who was looking back at him, he asked another church leader to lead the prayer. He suddenly rushed off the stairs heading towards the boy. But as soon as he saw this, the boy darted into the crowd and ran out of the church. James looked for him everywhere on the church premises but couldn’t find him.

A pastor's life was turned upside down when he saw a familiar face in the middle of a church crowd. | Source: Shutterstock


James’ wife, Miranda, asked him why he decided to run off the stage at the end of the service. “You’ve never done that before; people were surprised,” she said.

“It was nothing, I thought I saw someone I recognized, but I was wrong,” he replied.

Thinking nothing of the incident, Miranda prepared dinner, and everyone went to bed. While asleep, James was woken up by his doorbell ringing. Worried that it might be one of his parishioners in trouble, he rushed to the door.

As soon as he opened it, he saw the boy in the church service earlier that day. “Hi, I’m Bobby, your brother’s son,” he said. “I know you probably don't want to see me, but I just have a few things to tell you, then I’ll be on my way.”


James was in bed when he heard the doorbell ring | Source: Cottonbro/Pexels

James was shocked; he had no idea that his estranged brother had a son. Before responding, Miranda rushed down the stairs to ask what was happening. She saw the boy standing at the door and asked him to come inside. She prepared tea for everyone and asked Bobby how she could help. 


“Miranda, I have something to tell you,” he said. He told her about his twin brother, Edward. James and Edward were born to wealthy parents in their 50s who did not think they would have children so late in their lives. “Our parents wanted us to follow in their footsteps, so they set us to business school,” James said.

While they were in business school, James felt the calling to become a pastor and no longer wanted to be in business school. When he told this to his brother, Edward promised to keep the information from his parents because he knew they would react badly. 

When James opened the door, he saw the boy who was in the middle of the church crowd earlier that day. | Source: Pexels


Edward helped James with all his school assignments until they graduated. He knew his kind-hearted brother would make a wonderful priest and aimed to support him. When the brothers turned 21, their parents died in a car crash and left their business to both of them.

James did not want to take over the business, so Edward took on the leading role. Everything was going well until the brothers had a huge fight about the company's direction. They both remained stubborn about their opinions and spent months not speaking to one another. 

“We hadn’t spoken in three months when I received the news that Edward had been arrested for fraud,” James said. “I went to visit him once in jail, but instead of forgiving and reconciling, I told him that his arrest would damage my reputation as a pastor.”


Edward had been in jail and James came to visit him once. | Source: Pexels

Miranda could not believe what she was hearing and Bobby knew the story of how they became estranged. “He was falsely arrested,” he revealed, and James was shocked to hear this. He truly believed his brother had become a criminal. 


“He tried to explain that he was innocent, but you didn't listen to him,” Bobby explained. “His business rivals framed him so that he would lose everything.”

“I had no idea; I did not believe him,” James said and started crying. 

Bobby continued to explain. “When he left jail, he started his life afresh and got a job working at a cafe. He met my mom there, Bettie.”

“Well, that sounds like good news, right?” Miranda said.

“Yes, for a while,” Bobby replied. “Their relationship went well, and I was born. When I turned 10, he was diagnosed with cancer, and the doctors said he wouldn’t have long to live.”


James chose to not visit his brother in jail because it would harm his reputation as a pastor. | Source: Pexels

While Edward was bedridden in his final days, he told his son about James and how their relationship unraveled after his arrest. Meanwhile, Bobby’s mother left Edward as soon as she heard about the diagnosis. She refused to support him through it and moved away.  


Miranda turned to James and started shouting at him. “What hypocrisy! You never even told me you had a twin brother. Even worse, you refused to forgive him despite you preaching forgiveness and honesty in church!” She demanded that James fix this issue immediately. 

James was ashamed of his actions. He was heartbroken that his brother died before they could reconcile. “How can I fix this?” he asked his wife. He had no idea how and he considered resigning from his ministerial position.

James decided to resign from being a pastor because he was so ashamed of his actions | Source: Pexels


The following Sunday, James stood before the congregation and confessed his mistakes. “I didn’t know how far-reaching the consequences of my actions would be,” he said. While he admitted this to the church, his wife stood by him and encouraged him to be honest.

“I have decided to resign from my pastoral position. I was meant to be a true leader, but I hid all these things from you for so many years,” he said. But the congregation would not accept his resignation. 

“You preach about forgiveness; would we not be the hypocrites if we refused to forgive you?” one lady in the church asked. 

With that, James accepted the kindness of his congregation and remained in his position. He decided to adopt Bobby, and they all lived as a family. He continued to preach about good values and regularly visited his brother’s grave with his nephew.


So what can we learn from this story?

  • Honesty often leads to better results than we think. If James had been honest with his wife and the church, he would have been able to move on with his life without feeling shameful.
  • Forgiveness improves our relationships. After the congregation forgave James for his past actions, he was able to move forward and become a better adoptive father to Bobby.

Please share this story with your friends; it might inspire people to share their own stories or help someone else. 

If you enjoyed this story, you might like this one about a pastor who taught a rich man a lesson after trying to humiliate a poor man in church. 

This account is inspired by our reader's story and written by a professional writer. Any resemblance to actual names or locations is purely coincidental. All images are for illustration purposes only. Share your story with us; maybe it will change someone's life. If you would like to share your story, please send it to