LAKE FOREST, Calif. – Evangelist Greg Laurie filled in for Saddleback Church Pastor Rick Warren during worship services over the weekend and is the first of a string of well-known Christian leaders scheduled to speak from the pulpit while Warren continues to grieve his son's passing. The list of pastors planned includes Francis Chan, Mark Driscoll, Pete Wilson, David Platt, Craig Groeschel, Wilfredo De Jesús, and Doug Fields.
During the sermon series featuring the pastors, they are scheduled to answer the question, "What Does it Mean to Follow Jesus?" Chan, an author and popular speaker at Christian conferences, is planned for next weekend at Saddleback.
Prior to his weekend sermons at the church, Laurie told The Christian Post he wanted to give a message of hope amid grief. The Harvest Crusades founder, who said the untimely loss of his son nearly five years ago gave him a "new ministry," spoke at Saddleback just a little more than two weeks since the suicide death of Warren's 27-year-old son, Matthew. Christopher Laurie died, at age 33, in an automobile accident in 2008. more >>
Pastor Rick Warren and his wife, Kay, have started a petition on the Saddleback Church's website to raise awareness and lower the stigma of mental illness. Their 27-year-old son took his own life about two weeks ago after a lifelong struggle with depression and mental illness.
"Join Kay and I, and the Saddleback Family, in our effort to urge educators, lawmakers, healthcare professionals, and church congregations to raise the awareness and lower the stigma of mental illness… and support the families that deal with mental illness on a daily basis," says the petition, which carries a picture of Matthew Warren, who shot himself on April 5.
"Matthew was just one of about 11.4 million American adults that suffered from severe mental illness in the past year," the petition says. "In fact, one in five Americans experiences some sort of mental illness." more >>
LAKE FOREST, Calif. – Every Man Ministries founder Kenny Luck launched a nationwide set of conferences addressing the need for Christian men to engage more actively in society and impact culture in a positive way at Saddleback Church.
More than 700 men attended the IGNITE conference Saturday hosted at the megachurch that is led by Pastor Rick Warren in Orange County. At the outset of the event, Luck led the men in prayer for Warren and his family, whose son, Matthew, took his own life a little more than a week ago after a lifelong battle with mental illness.
"If you didn't believe we were in a battle with evil before, we are in a bare knuckle brawl with evil now," said Luck before praying. "The lines are being drawn and you can see it in culture." more >>
It's an incredible tragedy that mega-pastor Rick Warren's son committed suicide recently. Our prayers are with the family through this difficult time. His son was 27 and struggled for years with mental illness.
While many well-wishers have tried to give solace to the grieving family, others have heaped scorn---especially through the means of social media.
One person from Cincinnati posted this: "Either there is no God, or God doesn't listen to Rick Warren, despite all the money Rick has made off of selling false hope to desperate people." That same person told Warren he should "abandon primitive superstitions and accept the universe for what it is-a place that is utterly indifferent to us." Talk about kicking a man when he's down. more >>
Pastor Rick Warren sent a letter of appreciation via his newsletter over the weekend to everyone that prayed for his family in the aftershock of the suicide of his 27-year-old son Matthew a little more than a week ago.
A private memorial service was held last week for Matthew Warren, who died from a self-inflicted gunshot wound on Friday, April 5. He had struggled with mental illness since birth, said Warren, who is the lead pastor at Saddleback Church in Lake Forest, Calif.
During the week, the response to the Warren family tragedy not only garnered sympathy and condolences from around the world, but also online vitriol from the well-known pastor's detractors. more >>
Christian psychologist and author Dr. John Townsend, an expert on Christ-centered recovery for mental and emotional health issues, will be speaking at Saddleback Church in Lake Forest, Calif., for all five worship services this weekend, just a little more than a week since the death of Pastor Rick Warren's son, Matthew.
Townsend told The Christian Post in an exclusive interview on Friday that he had already been asked to speak at Saddleback prior to the tragedy in order to talk about an upcoming feature-length movie that includes the church's Celebrate Recovery program as part of the film's story. He said he now plans to include some of his thoughts about what the Warren family is going through.
Matthew Warren's death was ruled a suicide by a self-inflicted gunshot wound occurring on Friday, April 5. He was 27-years-old. more >>