Pastor and mental health advocate Jarrid Wilson dies of apparent suicide

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Jarrid Wilson, 30, died Monday, according to a statement from Harvest Christian Fellowship Church in Riverside, where he was a pastor.

"It is with the deepest sadness and shock that I have to report that Jarrid Wilson went to be with the Lord last night," Harvest Christian Fellowship Church pastor Greg Laurie wrote in the statement. "Sometimes people may think that as pastors or spiritual leaders we are somehow above the pain and struggles of everyday people. We are the ones who are supposed to have all the answers. But we do not."

In 2016, Wilson and his wife, Juli Wilson, founded Anthem of Hope, described on its website as a "faith-centered organization dedicated to amplifying hope for those battling brokenness, depression, anxiety, self-harm, addiction and suicide."

Jarrid Wilson talked openly about his own struggles with depression. He discussed the issue in his 2017 book, "Love is Oxygen: How God Can Give You Life and Change Your World," according to The Washington Post. In a 2018 blog post, Wilson wrote that he "struggled with severe depression throughout most of my life, and contemplated suicide on multiple occasions."

“Loving Jesus doesn’t always cure suicidal thoughts,” Wilson tweeted not long before his death. “But that doesn’t mean Jesus doesn’t offer us companionship and comfort.”

Many took to social media to post tributes to Wilson, including his wife.

"Suicide doesn’t get the last word. I won’t let it. You always said 'Hope Gets the last word. Jesus gets the last word,'" Juli Wilson wrote on Instagram. "I’ll do my best to continue your legacy of love until my last breath." 

Wilson is survived by his wife and their two sons.

If you or someone you love is struggling with suicidal thoughts, you can call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline 24 hours a day at 800-273-8255, or get more information at SuicidePreventionLifeline.org.

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