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Each year, over one million people end their lives by suicide. All death unsettles us, but suicide causes a very distinct set of emotional, moral, and religious scars. It brings with it an ache, a chaos, a darkness, a stigma that only one who has survived it can understand. Through powerful first-hand experience, this video offers hope to those who have experienced suicide loss.
RONALD ROLHEISER, a Roman Catholic priest and member of the Missionary Oblates of Mary Immaculate, is President of the Oblate School of Theology in San Antonio, Texas. He is a bestselling author, and his weekly column is carried by more than 80 newspapers worldwide.
KAY WARREN, co-founder of Saddleback Church with her husband, Rick, is an international speaker, best-selling author, and Bible teacher. She is best known as a tireless advocate for people living with mental illness, HIV & AIDS, and the vulnerable children left behind. Kay is also an Executive Committee Board Member of the National Action Alliance for Suicide Prevention. Her children are Amy and Josh, and Matthew who is in Heaven, and she has five grandchildren.
MARJORIE ANTUS is a Secular Discalced Carmelite, as a member of Our Lady of Mount Carmel community in Washington, DC. She is president of her local affiliate of the National Alliance on Mental Illness. Marjorie lives in Manassas, Virginia, with her husband, John, and their son, John Paul.
“A beautiful film on a most anguishing subject . . . courageous, raw, and unflinchingly honest.”—Aaron Kheriaty, MD, Associate Professor of Psychiatry, UC Irvine School of Medicine
“As one who still experiences the pain of my son’s suicide and the gratitude for his life, I am thankful for two courageous mothers who walk through their hurt to help others live our lives after death. To watch them is ‘a severe mercy,’ but they offer healing that only comes from remembering what death cannot take away. Full of compassion and hope, this film gives us a chance to see tragedy from a higher, deeper place.”—Dr. Joel C. Hunter, former senior pastor, Northland Church Managing Chair, Community Resource Network, Managing Chair, Central Florida Commission on Homelessness
“Those of us who have lost a loved one to suicide can feel alone and hopeless, lost in our grief. This powerful resource offers meaningful encouragement and hope through the stories and wise counsel of other survivors. It reminds us that we are not alone on this journey, as God remembers both us and those we lost.”—Albert Y. Hsu, author of Grieving a Suicide
“Sooner or later, all of us face the towering challenge of a family member, neighbor, or friend who takes his/her own life. The sense of loss, guilt, and darkness can seem strangling. While an easy answer is not to be expected or found, wise people can help restore a sense of focus and hope. Listen to some of them on this very enlightening production!”—Timothy Cardinal Dolan, Archbishop of New York
“Suicide almost invariably is an illness that takes a person out of life against his or her will. You don’t choose to die by suicide in the same way that you don’t choose to die by cancer, or heart attack, or stroke. It’s not a free choice. The analogy would be somebody who is on fire and jumps out of an open window. They’re going to die, but they can’t stay in the fire. They’re too bruised to be touched.” —Ronald Rolheiser
“I see it as one of my missions to knock down the wall of stigma everywhere I can, but particularly among people of faith. I think that the church has misunderstood suicide for a very long time. People don’t understand mental illness, they think that it comes from a character defect, that people are weak. Part of the stigma is not understanding that suicidal thoughts generally come from a place of brokenness, a place of hopelessness. Rather than judging or putting a heavy burden on already burdened people, we serve them so much better if we walk alongside them in compassion, encouragement and support.”—Kay Warren
“In the first few months after Mary died, I woke up every day in darkness. There was no escaping this darkness . . . it seemed that not only was Mary gone, but God was gone as well. Eventually, after many months, I had a perception of light shining in the darkness that gave me hope. It was from the gospel of Luke, about the tender compassion of God that shines on those who dwell in darkness and in the shadow of death, and guides their feet into the way of peace. I gradually perceived divine compassion shining through the shadow of death that lay over my family, and I was strengthened to the point of wanting to stand firm, and not run.”—Marjorie Antus