Previous Episode:
The Parting
Next Episode:
The Pin Up


John Walton is concerned that Jim Bob is getting a bad reputation because he has been running around with bad company since Olivia left home. Corabeth is very nearly a victim of Jim Bob's reckless driving when he nearly runs into her outside Godsey's Hall. Being Corabeth, she heads straight to the Walton home to tell John just how fast and recklessly his son was driving. Jim Bob hears the tail end of her complaints and defends himself by saying the brakes weren't working. John orders him to fix them. Jim Bob does so, but just jacks the car up so that he can get under the car to look at the brakes, and suddenly the jack gives way with Jim Bob underneath. The family is able to move the car off Jim Bob and he escapes unhurt, but believes it is a sign from God to do something constructive with his life and to stop with the wild ways.

And so, Jim Bob decides to become a preacher. This is announced to both Jim Bob's family and the church congregation, by the new minister on Sunday morning. Jim Bob receives a lot of teasing from his family about his newly chosen career, but continues to believe that he is meant to become a minister. He does run into trouble though, when he goes to enrol in ministry courses, and finds that he needs to have an undergraduate degree first!

He returns home and gives all his worldly possessions to his brothers and sisters, then decides to leave home to spread the word of the Lord. On his way he runs into his old friend, who is drunk, and tricks Jim Bob into fighting with him in the Church, then ridicules him for being "holier than thou". At the Walton house, they have found the note Jim Bob left for them, and Grandma is left feeling guilty that she may have encouraged him to leave. John goes searching for Jim Bob and Jim Bob finally tells him that he has been feeling guilty over so many things that have happened to his family: his Mama and Grandma getting sick, and Grandpa's and Curt's death. He feels responsible for these things, and thinks that if he were a better person, none of them would have happened. With John now realising where Jim Bob's problems are coming from, he is now able to comfort his younger son and reassure him that these things were nobody's fault.

Recurring Role

Guest Cast

  • Nolan Leary as Rev. Bradshaw


  • NOTE 1: Corabeth claims that her brother Albert, is a minister.
  • NOTE 2: The Reverend Bradshaw, the new minister on Waltons Mountain, is introduced in this episode.
  • NOTE 3: During this episode, Grandma gives Jim Bob a bible which has the following inscription: "To our beloved Esther on the day of your baptism, July 11, 1883. Love, Mama and Papa."

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