Georgia Pastor Commits Suicide Just Months After Stopping Man From Killing Himself

ParkerMACON, GA — Funeral services were held on Saturday for a Georgia pastor who shot himself in the driveway of his home on November 10th as his family and congregation awaited his arrival to lead Sunday services.

Teddy Parker, 41, was the senior pastor of the 800-member Bibb Mount Zion Baptist Church in Macon, Georgia and was well-loved by his congregation. According to reports, although he preached about life’s storms, none of his congregation knew of his personal struggles with depression—only a few close friends.

“He was suffering with manic depression and he had some emotional issues that he had been dealing with,” personal friend Dr. E. Dewey Smith Jr. of the House of Hope Atlanta told reporters. “[He was] in treatment, but he just couldn’t step away from ministry.”

“You know a lot of times, we feel like when we are going through stuff and it’s a lot that there’s nobody there with us,” Parker once stated during a message entitled Facing Your Storm With Confidence. “I know y’all been saved a long time. I know you super spiritual and you know you real holy, but there are times in your life—not y’all, but me—there are times in my life when I’m going through some stuff where I can’t feel God there.”

“I try to pray but I don’t feel like God is hearing me. I try to serve but I don’t feel like God is using me,” he said. “And there are times in your life when God purposely withdraws from you. He doesn’t withdraw for the sake of leaving you but he withdraws so you can grow and mature.”

But members of Parker’s congregation never expected that their pastor would commit suicide.

“He was loving. You could feel his love,” Deacon Shawn Stafford said at the pastor’s funeral service on Saturday. “It wasn’t just an ‘I love you.’ He was a loving man. He didn’t have a selfish bone in his body. … He would give you anything and everything. … He would do without.”

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Stafford also told reporters prior to the service that Parker had talked a young man out of committing suicide just two and a half months ago. He said that Parker called the young man every day for nearly a month to see how he was doing.

However, when Parker failed to arrive at church the Sunday before last, his wife Larrinecia returned home to find him dead from a self-inflicted gunshot wound, according to Houston County Coroner Danny Galpin.

Smith told those gathered for Parker’s funeral that pastors need encouragement just as much as anyone, and said that sometimes they’re not always transparent about their struggles.

“As a church member, either you’re an armor bearer or a pall bearer—helping your pastor get to his destiny or carrying him slowly to his death,” he stated. “Pastors need someone to come alongside them and hold up their arms and ask, ‘How can I help?'”

Parker leaves behind two daughters, Kamry Tednae and Kerrington Tyier Parker. Funeral services were broadcast live over the internet.

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  • Trina

    Anxiety and depression are real and even Christians can suffer with it. A great book called “Emotionally Free” by Dr. Grant Mullen speaks to Christians and encourages the Christian community to not push it aside.

  • Luis Marioni

    We need to take mental illness more seriously and pay more attention to the details. God bless his family

  • Luis Marioni

    We need to be more aware that pastors have a high level of stress and church members need to lend a helping hand to our pastors , God bless his family

  • Michael

    We all hear birds sing but do we listen to it’s song. Did anyone listen to this pastor because he was telling err’ one something was happening to him.

  • Karate Kathleen

    I have bipolar depression (also called manic depression) and know what it’s like. Very isolating because if you admit you have it people think your admitting to being a “crazy person” and your not. It’s a mood disorder-it doesn’t mean you see or hear things not there, etc. But it does mean at times you “feel” all of your emotions very, very deeply. If your currently feeling laughter than that’s ok but if your feeling sad, then the sadness is darker than you can imagine. and you don’t want to/and can’t pull yourself out of it.

  • i am so sorry to hear about this pastor i am married to a pastor they are under stess and there wives to this world we live n today is stressful i will pray for the family n jesus name!

  • Prophet Alesia Graham

    So sad that a tragedy have to always come to wake people up. Pastors need prayer like everyone else and the problem is this no one is praying for the leaders. People just use the Pastors to carry their burden and when they fall short they give them a bad name. But we must remember to pray for our leaders every day so they can remain strong to pray for us. This man of God had the weight of 800 members upon his shoulders but who was pushing him in the spirit. One can put a thousands demons to flight and two ten-thousand how many demons can be put to flight if 800 are praying daily. This is a sad occasion for me and I pray that his death be a lessons to the rest of us so that his death will not be in vain as it is said some must die so that others may live this is truly a wake up call. To the family and the church members just be encourage for as bad as it make look there is glory in it for God for out of the eater came forth meat and out of the bitter came forth sweet. Shame on the rest of us if took a Pastor taking his life to remind us to prayer for our leaders this is the role of the intercessors those who pray in the Spirit for the church body according to Romans 8:26-39.