Rick and Kay Warren of California’s Saddleback Church will be hosting a free 24-hour mental health conference online today (Oct. 10). The “24 Hours of Hope” event intends to "encourage individuals living with mental illness, educate and support their families, and equip church leaders for compassionate and effective health ministry."
More than thirty experts will explain eating disorders, anxiety, crisis management and holistic care Christian Today reports.
Rick and Kay Warren’s son committed suicide in 2013; his lifetime battle with mental illness prompted the pastors to plan the conference for the public.
"The day he [Matthew] died was the absolute worst day of our lives, and many people have asked us how we got through those darkest days of our despair, our grief and our sorrow, and the answer is Jesus Christ," Rick Warren said.
“It was our faith in him, our family, our church, our small group, our friends. You see, we weren't made to go through the worst times of life on our own, and if you're in pain right now, any kind of emotional or mental pain, you need other people in your life – you need the Church."
Kay Warren said, "We want to create awareness of the struggle that 450 million people around the world experience as they live with a mental illness and dispel the stigma so that they can get the help that they need.”
To listen to the online conference, visit www.mentalhealthandthechurch.com.
Publication date: October 10, 2014