Sign up for Meridian’s Free Newsletter, please CLICK HERE
On August 9, the Church released a letter outlining how Church members can better “take an active role within their communities to minister to those who have thoughts of suicide or who are grieving a loss.” The letter includes resources to help Latter-day Saints understand Church teachings about suicide, how to recognize warning signs, how to help someone in crisis, and how to support loved ones grieving a family member who has taken their own life.
In the letter, the Church clearly outlines LDS doctrine regarding suicide, stating:
“Through His Atonement, Jesus Christ experienced the fulness of mortal challenges so He could know ‘how to succor his people according to their infirmities’ (Alma 7:11–13). James E. Faust taught: ‘Since the Savior has suffered anything and everything that we could ever feel or experience, He can help the weak to become stronger’ (“The Atonement: Our Greatest Hope,” Ensign, Nov. 2001, 22).
“Mortal life is a precious gift from God—a gift that should be valued and protected (see Doctrine and Covenants 18:10; M. Russell Ballard, “Suicide: Some Things We Know, and Some We Do Not,” Ensign, Oct. 1987, 6–9).
“When someone takes their own life, only God is able to judge their thoughts, their actions, and their level of accountability. Suicide need not be the defining characteristic of an individual’s eternal life (see 1 Samuel 16:7; Doctrine and Covenants 137:9; Dale G. Renlund, “Grieving after a Suicide Loss,” video at suicide.lds.org).”
In the letter, the Church encourages members to begin having honest and direct conversations about suicide, especially those who show warning signs.
To read the full article on LDS Living, click here.