The recent suicidal deaths of 3 prominent pastors over the period of just over one month has left many people wondering why this could happen to those who are often the ones to stop others from committing this terrible act. Now another pastor and singer, Marvin Sapp, has admitted that he might have gone that way too had it not been for his late wife.
The recent spat of suicides began with the Rev. Teddy Parker Jr. of Bibb Mount Zion Baptist Church,Macon,Georgia, on November 10, who shot himself in his own driveway just before he was supposed to be in church.
This tragic death was followed by former Pastor of Full Gospel Christian Assemblies International Church, Hazel Crest, Illinois, Ed Montgomery, who shot himself on November 30 in front of his mother and son, after claiming to hear his late wife’s voice and footsteps.
The third suicide of Pastor Isaac Hunter, from Summit Church,Orlando,Florida, took place on December 10. The pastor who believed he had become a burden to those he loved, according to an undated suicide note, shot himself in his apartment after admitting last year to an affair with another church staffer.
According to the 46-year-old Sapp, when his wife died three years ago, he might have gone the same way as these other pastors if his wife had not trained him to look after his own psychological well-being.
The gospel music singer/songwriter went on to say that he understood what these 3 pastors had gone through because he had faced a similar situation in his life after the death of his wife.
The former singer with the group “Commissioned” continued that pastors don’t have the chance to grieve like normal people after the death of a loved one because they are always on show to the general public. He added that the pressure of continuing their ministry sometimes just becomes too great a burden to bear.
According to the founding pastor of the Lighthouse Full Life Center Church,Grand Rapids,Michigan, when his wife, MaLinda Sapp, died in 2010, he and his three children sought counseling to help them through their grief. He added that they felt quite at ease doing this because his late wife had been a licensed psychologist.
The award winning gospel singer went on to say that many people don’t understand that pastors are not “Superman” and they are just as likely to suffer from depression as anyone else.