Reverend Teddy Parker, Jr.: When Depression Meets Faith

A congregation was recently saddened by the loss of their pastor. The truly shocking aspect of the tragedy was that he committed suicide as his wife and children waited for him to get to church, along with 800 members of his congregation.

READ: Why Are Black Men Killing Themselves?

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Rev. Teddy Parker Jr. was the pastor of the Bibb Mount Zion Baptist Church in Macon, GA. According to several witnesses, he confessed to his congregation that sometimes, “I don’t feel like God is hearing me.” Rev. Parker, Jr. was found by his wife Larrinecia after he died from a self-inflicted gunshot wound.

READ: What Depression Looks Like In Men

The pastor spoke of his personal struggle during a YouTube sermon called “Facing Your Storm with Confidence”:

“You know a lot of times, we feel like when we are going through stuff and it’s a lot that there’s nobody there with us. And guess what? God intends for you to feel that way. I know y’all been saved a long time. I know you super spiritual and you know you real holy but there are times in your life, not y’all but me. There are times in my life when I’m going through some stuff where I can’t feel God there,” he said. “I try to pray but I don’t feel like God is hearing me. I try to serve but I don’t feel like God is using me. And there are times in your life when God purposely withdraws from you, he doesn’t withdraw for the sake of leaving you but he withdraws so you can grow and mature.”

READ: 7 Surprising Habits That Cause Depression

Lakesia Toomer, who spoke for the church, said, “We consider this a private matter between the family and the BMZ church family. We kindly ask that the public respects our privacy at this time.”

If you know someone that is having issues with depression and suicide, please give them help here.