An unidentified thief posted a lengthy apology after stealing American flags from a Fourth of July tribute set up by an Alabama church to honor its veterans, and now the congregation is inviting the remorseful robber to attend a Sunday service.
The thief ultimately returned the stolen flags to First Baptist Church in Grand Bay and fessed up to his or her crime in a note left behind, according to WPMI-TV.
“I’m sorry for taking the flags,” read the handwritten note from the thief. “I did not mean any disrespect. … I was drinking and had a dumb idea. … I myself do not own an American flag and think they will stop being made soon.”
The yet-to-be-revealed robber continued, “I had no idea that there were names of fallen heroes [attached to the flags], which makes it even worse, as if stealing from the church wasn’t bad enough to begin with.”
Royce Dubose, pastor of First Baptist Church, told the local news outlet the congregation was simply planning to replace the four stolen flags.
“You could tell whoever took them was very, very upset with themselves,” he said, adding his church members “don’t want to know” who is responsible for taking the American flags “not because we’re angry at them but because we don’t want to embarrass them.”
In a public Facebook post, the church members invited the thief to visit “anytime.”
“Praise God our stolen flags from First Baptist Church in Grand Bay were returned with a note of apology,” read a post on the church’s Facebook page. “We would like to let whoever it was, since you didn’t sign your note, know that your apology is accepted and you are invited to attend our church services anytime.”