Rick Warren and his wife Kay are opening up about their son’s suicide. On April 5, Matthew Brown committed suicide. The 27-year-old struggled for years with mental illness, including severe depression.
On the day of his son’s death, Warren released a statement to his Saddleback congregation. He described Matthew as kind, thoughtful, and empathetic toward others.
He said his son had a brilliant mind. However, he also revealed that Matthew suffered from “the torture of mental illness.” He explained that his son was courageous. Unfortunately, the illness eventually ended his life.
Rick Warren avoided the spotlight following the tragedy. As reported by CNN, he is now ready to discuss Matthew’s mental illness and his untimely death.
Warren and his wife will honor Matthew by helping other families struggling with mental illness. Returning to his pulpit at Saddleback, Warren discussed his family’s dedication to “comforting others” who face similar issues.
In recent sermons, Warren has stated that asking for help and using medication are not sins. He also suggests turning to God for support.
The sermons were part of a series, each focusing on a stage of grief. His topics included shock, sorrow, struggle, surrender, and sanctification. The final sermon in the series will focus on service.
Rick Warren contends that God uses pain to point to a purpose in life. As reported by Charisma News, Warren explains his theory:
“Don’t waste your pain; let God heal it, recycle it, utilize it and use it to bless other people… to touch other people, you need to be honest—with God, yourself and others—and you need to be vulnerable.”
Warren and his family have turned their grief into a mission to remove the stigma from mental illness. He believes that awareness and acceptance will help families cope and heal.
Rick Warren is determined to turn his personal tragedy into something good.
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