This is a story of redemption, reconciliation, and love. This is how the power of faith helped unite a father and daughter who had previously never seen each other in their entire lives.
Following a DNA test and much genealogy research, a 45-year-old woman came to the conclusion that her birth father is Phil Robertson. The woman didn't want to find her father for financial gain, but rather to finally answer burning questions she had her entire life. "I knew growing up that I was different," the woman said on the "Unashamed with Phil Robertson" podcast.
Two or three years ago, her oldest son was gifted a DNA test. Once he received the results, his family noticed that the DNA test didn't match up with the heritage that they were told over the years. Then Phyllis did her own DNA test, and after a little digging, she narrowed down who her father could be – to Phil Robertson.
Phyllis, who has done mission work around the world, wanted to let her father know that he has a daughter, but didn't want to disrupt his life or bring conflict to his marriage with his wife, Miss Kay Robertson. She decided to deliver a letter to Phil, and he could decide if he wanted to pursue a relationship with her.
She visited the Louisiana church where Phil is an elder. But the meeting almost never happened; Phyllis had second thoughts about finding her father. "At one point I cried; I was like, 'I don't know if I can do this,'" she said.
Phyllis, with her husband encouraging her, mustered up her courage and ventured into the church. That's where she saw her father for the very first time in her life. Phil just happened to be preaching that day.
She didn't confront Phil at the church. Instead, she sought out his son, Jase Robertson. Phyllis didn't reveal her identity; she thanked Jase for the church service and gave him a letter to give to his father.
Although Jase said he would give the letter to his father, that didn't exactly happen. Weeks later, Al Robertson saw a letter for Phil and mentioned it to Jase, and he remembered he received a letter much like it.
The letter from Phyllis let Phil know that she believed that he was her father after the results of a DNA test. Jase pointed out that the Robertson family receive letters about long-lost relatives regularly, but they usually end with someone requesting a $10,000 check from the reality TV stars.
However, this letter was different, seemingly special and genuine to the Robertson brothers. "We both concluded, this isn't one of these frivolous things, it looks like it may have some merit," Jase determined. "She's a Christian, and she's not looking for anything."
"We had to pursue it," Al added.
Phyllis is 45 years old, and her birth occurred at the end of Phil's phase of boorish behavior. "You were born, and he [Phil] was born again in the same year," Jase noted of his father's religious rebirth.
Phil's entire lifestyle changed once he found Jesus. He was no longer a womanizing, hard-partying, drug-abusing man after he devoted his life to Christ.
Phil does not hide the fact that he lived a sinful life many decades ago before he discovered his faith. In his book "The Theft of America's Soul," Robertson wrote:
"For the next several years, I spiraled down into my own desires, into booze and pills and easy women. The hippie movement was on and, though I was no hippie, I enjoyed the fruits of their sexual revolution, all the while leaving Miss Kay at home to tend to the children by herself. By the time Miss Kay left me, I'm sorry to say I was a regular whoremonger. And without Miss Kay to stand in the way of my sexual appetites, I did what I wanted, with whom I wanted, and I did it all in the name of freedom."
Phil is not proud of his former rock-and-roll lifestyle, but he has grown as a person since his partying days.
"I learned a lesson way back when I was getting on my feet, individuals who have, in fact, repented don't mind talking about their past sins," Phil said during the newest episode of "Unashamed." "But a lot of people who have not repented, they keep them tight, they won't be honest with others or themselves. The repentant, they don't mind talking about their past lives because they know it's been taken care of by the blood of Jesus."
Phil's nephew, Zach Dasher, spoke with Phyllis over the phone to see if there was validity to her claim. After speaking to her, Zach told Jase, "She's not after anything" and that her intentions were pure.
Jase came to the same conclusion after talking to Phyllis and said, "There is no ulterior motive."
"There's a 45-year-old woman out there who doesn't know who her dad is, and she's looking; even if it's not dad [Phil], she needs to know," Al said.
Jase understood that this was a "life-changing situation" and that the only way to know the truth would be through a DNA test. Phil agreed to do the DNA test, and the families waited days for the answer that could change the lives of many.
"We're all praying about it. It was weird because when you're praying about something like this, it's a truth that's already there. She was either dad's daughter and our sister or she wasn't," Al said on the "Unashamed with Phil Robertson" podcast. "You could only pray for the truth. Just praying for the truth to be revealed."
The DNA test results came back as a 99.99% match. When Phil learned that the DNA test was a match, he reacted by saying, "Bring her on down."
Phil quoted Romans 8:28 when he found out he has a daughter: "And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose."
"God is a God that restores broken people. I was a broken mess, a slave to my desire," Phil told TheBlaze. "God redeemed me 45 years ago, but He didn't stop there. 45 years later, God is continuing to restore me. He has brought me to my long-lost daughter, and I love her."
On the next episode of the "Unashamed with Phil Robertson" podcast, Phyllis makes her debut to explain what made her seek out her biological father and what she plans to do next now that she knows the truth. Plus, the Robertson boys talk about how it feels to have a sister, and Miss Kay reveals that she knew that someone from Phil's turbulent past would find him.