Beliefnet
Watchwoman on the Wall

………………TRAGEDY STRIKES

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Posted Saturday, April 6, 2013

Megachurch Pastor Rick Warren said today that his 27-year-old son had committed suicide after a lifelong battle with mental illness.

Matthew Warren – (undated photo from Saddleback Church)

Matthew Warren was found dead of what appeared to be suicide by gunshot in his home in Mission Viejo, Calif., said Supervising Deputy Dan Aikin of the Orange County Sheriff-Coroner’s Department. The estimated time of death was 10 a.m. on Friday morning.   The sheriff’s department was called to the home at about 5:15 p.m., Aikin told NBC News. An autopsy is scheduled for Tuesday.

“No words can express the anguished grief we feel right now,” Warren wrote. “Our youngest son, Matthew, age 27, and a lifelong member of Saddleback, died today (According to the Sheriff the suicide occurred Friday, not Saturday).  But only those closest knew that he struggled from birth with mental illness, dark holes of depression, and even suicidal thoughts. In spite of America’s best doctors, meds, counselors and prayers for healing, the torture of mental illness never subsided,” Warren wrote in the letter to the Saddleback congregation.

After a “fun evening” as a family, Warren said his son took his life “in a momentary wave of despair at his home.”

Warren said he marveled at his son’s courage to keep on living in his darkest moments despite his pain.

Barack Obama and Rick Warren call each other friends.  Warren has published best sellers on the “Purpose Driven” lifestyle. Warren’s church has at least 20,000 members.

Rick Warren is followed by many and referred to as “America’s Pastor”, but others say he’s a false leader, including many conservative Christians.

“I’ll never forget how, many years ago, after another approach had failed to give relief, Matthew said, ‘Dad, I know I’m going to heaven. Why can’t I just die and end this pain?'” Warren wrote. “But he kept going for another decade.”

Warren denied his affiliation, preaching that Christianity and Islam should be combined into Chrislam, but met often with Islamic leaders and hosted meetings that discussed Chrislam causing consternation among many Christians.

Saddleback Church said in a prepared statement, “At 27 years of age, Matthew was an incredibly kind, gentle and compassionate young man whose sweet spirit was encouragement and comfort to many. Unfortunately, he also suffered from mental illness resulting in deep depression and suicidal thoughts.”

Oft time Critic of Rick Warren on his TV Show, “Jack Van Impe Presents” http://www.JVIM.com

Jack Van Impe criticized Rick Warren for preaching on combining Islam and Christianity, called Chrislam.

Regardless of what anyone thinks of Rick Warren, the suicide of his son is tragic.  Keep the Warren family in prayer.

Rick and Kay Warren have been married for over 30 years.  They have two older children, Amy and Josh.

Remember, when you pray, God can turn any tragedy into victory.  Will God all things are possible.  [Matthew 19:26]

 

Read more: Jack Van Impe Ministries: http://www.jvim.com/

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