In the last month three pastors have been in the news for taking their own lives. This is noticeable because the deaths have come so close together.
- Rev. Teddy Parker Jr., 42, shot himself in his own driveway on Nov. 10 while his congregation was waiting for him to arrive to preach.
- Pastor Ed Montgomery, 40 took his own life on Nov. 30 after hearing his late wife’s voice and footsteps. This was done as his son and his mother had tried to talk him out of it.
- Pastor Isaac Hunter, 36, killed himself, on Dec. 10 a year after announcing an affair and giving up the church he started.
No one can say it's a race thing even those two of the pastors mentioned are black. One can't say it's an age thing because the pastors were not the same age. So, what's going on that provoked these pastors to kill themselves and leave their families and congregations behind?
The Schaeffer Institute that monitors church leadership reports the following concerning pastors:
- 70% of pastors are fighting depression
- 71% are burned out
- 70% admit that they don’t have someone to talk to about their problems
Jennifer LeClaire, Christian news editor at Charisma, believes that suicidal thoughts are put in people's minds by Satan. If a person, whether a pastor or not, allows those thoughts to mature and grow, those thoughts may be acted out. She says that most people suffering from depression are unable to see the demonic nature of their thought patterns.
If you are a pastor reading this, follow the advice in this article. If you are a church member with a pastor, pray for him or her. Also, check on your pastor to see what you can do to make his or her life much easier.