Amazing Grace: Jennifer Hudson Forgives Her Family’s Killer

Singer and actress Jennifer Hudson told Oprah on Sunday’s Oprah’s Next Chapter that she has forgiven the man who was convicted of murdering her mother, brother, and nephew back in 2008.

Hudson’s estranged brother-in law William Balfour was convicted of the murders in July, and will spend the rest of his life in prison. He broke into the family’s home in Chicago, Illinois, killed Hudson’s mother Darnell Donerson, her brother Jason Hudson, and her 7-year-old nephew Julian King who was found in the back of an abandoned SUV three days later. Despite the horror or this grisly crime and the great personal loss suffered by Jennifer Hudson, she stated that she forgives Balfour because his tough upbringing left him emotionally damaged, and that he was so mentally unwell that he was too far gone to get help, reports StarPulse.

“Yes (I forgive him) ’cause I feel like for the most part it’s not his fault, it’s… how he was brought up,” she said on Oprah’s Next Chapter. “We tried to offer love, but you were so far gone, that you couldn’t even see that. A lot of things came out, that we didn’t even know about, from his upbringing, which is like he never had a chance.”

Despite the judge’s declaration that Balfour has “the heart of an arctic night” and a soul “as barren as dark space,” Hudson believes that a good upbringing would have made a difference in Balfour’s life.

“You never had a chance,” she said regarding Balfour. “Had you had the love my mother gave us, or the background, you know, that some have, then you would’ve stood a chance.”

In a bonus clip, Hudson further explains the upbringing that she had as a child, which influenced her decision to forgive Balfour and pity him.

“I always say the greatest gift our mother gave us was introducing us to Christ and bringing us up in church,” Hudson explained in a bonus clip on “I feel like that’s the base, that’s the foundation and that’s what keeps me doubtless and grounded and I think of it every day.”

Could you put yourself in Jennifer Hudson’s shoes? Could you forgive your family’s killer?