The youngest son of prominent US evangelical preacher Rick Warren has died after a long struggle with mental illness, the pastor’s church says.
Matthew Warren, 27, committed suicide on Friday following years of battling depression, a statement from the Saddleback Valley Community Church said.
The statement paid tribute to Matthew Warren as “an incredibly kind, gentle and compassionate young man whose sweet spirit was encouragement and comfort to many”.
Warren, the author of the multimillion-selling book “The Purpose Driven Life,” said in an email to church staff that he and his wife had enjoyed a fun Friday evening with their son before Matthew Warren returned home to take his life in “a momentary wave of despair.”
“Only those closest knew that he struggled from birth with mental illness, dark holes of depression, and even suicidal thoughts,” Warren wrote.
“In spite of America’s best doctors, meds, counsellors and prayers for healing, the torture of mental illness never subsided.”