A pastor with a megachurch in Southern California who advocated for mental health and talked openly about his depression took his own life Monday, his church and family said.
Jarrid Wilson served as an associate pastor at Harvest Christian Fellowship Church, in Riverside, California, for roughly a year and a half, the church said in a statement. He also co-founded the mental health charity Anthem of Hope and had been vocal about his mental illness on social media, as well as in his work as a pastor.
Wilson was survived by his wife, Julianne, and two sons, Finch and Denham. Julianne Wilson remembered her husband with a series of photos on Instagram, calling him "loving, giving" and "kind-hearted."
“No more pain, my jerry, no more struggle. You are made complete and you are finally free. Suicide and depression fed you the worst lies, but you knew the truth of Jesus and I know you’re by his side right this very second,” she wrote.
“Suicide doesn’t get the last word. I won’t let it,” she added.
Wilson was 30, Christianity Today reported. One of his last tweets before his death focused on mental health.
“Loving Jesus doesn’t always cure suicidal thoughts. Loving Jesus doesn’t always cure depression,” he wrote, in part.
The young pastor's death sent shockwaves through the Harvest family.
Greg Laurie, a senior pastor at the megachurch, called Wilson a "vibrant" leader who was "always serving and helping others" and asked the community to keep his family in their prayers.
“Sometimes people may think that as pastors or spiritual leaders we are somehow above the pain and struggles of everyday people," Laurie said in a statement. "We are the ones who are supposed to have all the answers. But we do not.”
If you or someone you know needs help, please contact the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255, anytime.