December 2017

Depression and suicidal thoughts

Blessings to each of you my yokefellows in the GOSPEL.

Today, I attended the funeral of a 19 year old young man who took his own life. The family has chosen to share the cause of his death in hopes of helping someone else and bringing awareness to the increasing rate of suicide.

I share this with you because I want us as clergy to be on our guard.  Also, I firmly believe the types of mental health problems that come to the pastor’s office are generally the same as come to other mental-health providers.  According to Hall and Garfield (2013), building bridges between clergy and mental-health providers will assure the urban parishioner the best possible service:

Below is a list of resources provided by the family to help anyone who might be struggling with mental health issues, dealing with depression or Post Traumatic Stress Disorder.

National Suicide Prevention Hotline: at 1-800-273-TALK (8255) at any time day or night 24/7, to talk with someone who understands or go online at

Samaritans, Inc. serves the greater Boston and Metro West Communities in Massachusetts.  Befriending individuals in crises and is a dedicated non-denominational, not-for-profit volunteer organization focused on reducing the incidence of suicide and educating the community about effective prevention strategies.  Samaritans, Inc. serves more than 100,000 people each year.  The services provided focus on suicide prevention, intervention and postvention.

Hotlines:        (617) 247-0220

                        (508) 875-4500

                        (800) 252-TEEN – Teen line

                        (877) 870- HOPE – Statewide

Roxbury Presbyterian Church Social Impact Center Cory Johnson Program for Post – Traumatic Healing.  Thursday night programming Call 617-445-2116 for more information.

Boston Emergency Services Team (B.E.S.T.) under the leadership of Boston Medical Center and with the support of the Massachusetts Behavioral Health Partnership, provides a comprehensive, highly integrated system of crisis intervention and treatment services to the greater Boston area; to children, adolescents, adults, including the elderly, the homeless, and the mentally ill. If you or someone in your family is in crisis, please call 1-800-981-4357 for guidance. This toll-free number can be used 24 hours a day, seven days a week to obtain services. Staff at the one 1-800-981-HELP Call Center will provide support, information, referral, our range and in person evaluation.

- Immediate information and referral
- Psychiatric evaluation
- Crisis intervention in treatment (including psychopharmacology)
- 14 bed short term Community Crisis Stabilization program (Up to 3–5 days stay).  Referral for

   ongoing treatment.