Another pastor lost to suicide

The High Point Enterprise reports…

“A High Point congregation is mourning the death of its senior pastor, who took his own life over the weekend.

Pastor Robert McKeehan, the senior pastor of Community Bible Church, died Friday evening, and news of the 42-year-old pastor’s suicide sent waves of shock and grief through the body of the Johnson Street church.

“As you can imagine, there’s been a lot of grief and a lot of numbness,” said Richard Curtis, chairman of Community Bible’s elder board. “We’re sad, of course — we’re going to be poorer for the loss — but we’re also trying to help people understand that even though this is not the path we would’ve chosen, God is sovereign, and we’re still going to praise and worship our God.”

During an emotional service Sunday morning, church leaders tried to make biblical sense of how a pastor could take his own life. “The reality is we can never understand exactly how and why that happened,” Curtis said. “Just like those they lead, pastors are human and subject to all the same trials, emotions and struggles.”

Rob Black, pastor of adult ministries, spoke during the service and pointed the congregation to Deuteronomy 29:29, which says, “The secret things belong to the Lord our God, but the things revealed belong to us and our children forever.”

“Why Robert took his own life is always going to be one of the secret things,” Curtis explained. “What God has revealed to us, however, is the promise we hold onto in Romans 8:28 — ‘We know that in all things God works for the good of those who love Him.’ God has proven that to our church in the past when we’ve had difficult times, so we know that certainty will again prove true as we move beyond the question of why.”

Following the service, other pastors on the church’s staff made themselves available to parishioners who wanted to talk about McKeehan’s death, Curtis said. Active and former elders did likewise. “Many of them came back from trips they were on for spring break so they could be there for our people,” he said.

Out of respect for McKeehan’s family, church leaders said they would not publicly discuss the specifics of the pastor’s death.

McKeehan and his family — his wife, Elizabeth, and their two children, John and Scarlett — came to Community Bible Church in November 2010. According to Curtis, the new senior pastor quickly felt at home with his new congregation.

“He was an incredibly gifted teacher of God’s word,” he said. “The vision of our church is broken people becoming whole in Christ, and Robert was the type of pastor who related that well to our congregation. They knew he lived out that statement. They knew he needed Christ to make him whole, and they knew they could look to him as someone who could understand and help them.”

According to Curtis, it will be a few weeks before Community Bible begins the process of seeking a new senior pastor. The church currently has seven other pastors on staff who will lead the congregation in the interim, and all of the church’s various ministries — from a drug and alcohol recovery center to a community-wide men’s Bible study to a unique ministry partnership with Parkview Village Elementary Expressive Arts — are expected to continue, Curtis said.

Meanwhile, condolences and messages of support from other area churches and individuals continue to pour in at the church.
“We very much appreciate the support we are receiving from the community,” Curtis said.

“I think it is testimony to how many people and churches Robert had touched. That is one of the most positive things he brought to (the church) and something we are committed to continuing.”




*In the US, the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline is a 24-hour, toll-free suicide prevention service available to anyone in suicidal crisis. If you need help, please dial:

1-800-273-TALK (8255)

In Australia, the Lifeline number is 13 11 14.


2 thoughts on “Another pastor lost to suicide

  1. His suicide age: 42, leaving… two young children, wife… His ending words in last sermon were…

    “Father…You are working out this incredible [a word God would not want used in sermon*… meaning the design is not capable of credibility? NOT GOOD!] design. Father we just long for the day when you show it to us… In Jesus Name we pray…” He prays this last Sunday… kills himself on Friday…

    His spirit is really stressed out, and it’s like all the truths he reads from the bible and the preaching… he can’t believe. He taught mainly that God has eternal security.. for everything… “even death can’t separate us from God’s love” etc.

    Suicide… not good.

    He went to Dallas Seminary… (ugh)

    Robert MkKeenan, dead thru doctrine-driven failings? A soul damaged thru bipolar-doctrines that damage teachers of such.

    Doctrine-Driven Suicides, Who & What is the Insouciant Cause?
    By Robert Winkler Burke
    Book #10 of In That Day Teachings
    Copyright 12/12/13

    Doctrine-Driven Suicides, who’s to blame?
    Seminaries of ease? Gatekeepers who please? [i.e. from a lousy seminary… rapture, eternal security… creates suicide faith? i.e. “not even death can separate..”]
    Pastors now killing themselves… in fame!
    Nowhere to go, when in trouble… no ease! [That’s why ITDTs are more orthodox… such teachings line up with admonition against security thru suicide…]

    Inside they know they sell fear,
    Now they’ve got it!
    Inside they know they sell greed, (Spirit Adultery causes Adultery Acts, duh!)
    Now they’ve got it!
    Inside they know they sell slouch, (Recalcitrance causes Recompense, uh huh!) [Slouch is eternal security, or rapture… from seminary… causing suicide?]
    Now they’ve got it!
    And it all redounded onto them, ouch!
    Now, they’ve got it?

    Meanwhile, back at the In That Day ranch,
    Mark 16:20 signs to the extreme positive… enrichingly abound!
    Cut back to imploding church empires without chance,
    Because not one Churchianity leader: inquisitive… is around!

    Everywhere church news is full of,
    Big reverse Mark 16:20 signs showing the universe’s disfavor,
    For eyes to see, not Hypnotoad ruled of,
    But obviously, the universe throws up churchianity’s… flavor.

    Pastors get in trouble because through glaringly bad doxie,
    Cheap thinking, self-art and unquestioned sales-hypno-tactics they succeed,
    Then bad redounds (not Christ-in-You) by their own moxie,
    Bigger idiot pastor intervention, they don’t… but high teachings they need!

    Inside they know they sell fear,
    Now they’ve got it!
    Inside they know they sell greed, (Spirit Adultery causes Adultery Acts, duh!)
    Now they’ve got it!
    Inside they know they sell slouch, (Recalcitrance causes Recompense, uh huh!)
    Now they’ve got it!
    And it all redounded onto them, ouch!
    Now, they’ve got it?

    Doctrine-Driven Suicides, who’s to blame?
    Seminaries of ease? Gatekeepers who can do nothing but always please?
    Pastors now killing themselves… in fame!
    Too bad “In That Day Teachings” have no name. Truth has a freeze!

    What’s so bad with mindfully eliminating,
    Bad doxies – crazy doxies – whereby hirelings sell ethereal meth!
    Shepherds dance with demons gyrating,
    Until In That Day & Christ-in-You honored…wolves court death!

    Western Enlightenment would fix much,
    So would be a great awakening day of shenanigan-illuminating dénouement,
    In That Day Teachings explain such,
    When’ll gatekeepers-publishers-shepherds see: magnum opus improvement?

    Inside they know they sell fear,
    Now they’ve got it!
    Inside they know they sell greed, (Spirit Adultery causes Adultery Acts, duh!)
    Now they’ve got it!
    Inside they know they sell slouch, (Recalcitrance causes Recompense, uh huh!)
    Now they’ve got it!
    And it all redounded onto them, ouch!
    Now, they’ve got it?

    From Book Two of In That Day Teachings…

    *Words God Hates – One of God’s names is the Word. Not surprisingly, there are certain words in the English language that He detests. “Cute” is one of them. It has been abused and has become an upside-down opposite word. Jesus said let your yea be yea and nay be nay. (Matthew 5:37) The reason? Words are so absolutely powerful, they must not be used to mean opposite things, else the soul becomes bi-polar damaged. Thus, a mocking “That’s cute” really means a foul epitaph. Often instead of encouraging a manly thing the word is used to disparage it, to geld whatever righteous and valiant spirit appeared. (This is not to disallow the double entendre. Rather, it is to disallow the use of the word “cute” in mocking God or godly spirits in others.) Another word is “stuff.” When used nebulously, the not-so-hidden meaning is excrement. “Rapture” is best not mentioned because it is the Isaiah 28:8 vomit on the table doctrine. If you need to refer to it, just say “fly away escapology doctrine.” (It was used in this book for clarity and I did break this rule in using it.) The word “scary” is often breathed with a spineless, whispered spirit that is the exact opposite of “…God has given us a spirit of power, love and sound mind.” (2 Timothy 1:7) Nothing is “scary” to a person of God; we fear only Him and nothing else. Newspaper editorialists use the word to disparage things that might be righteous, such that an anti-abortion ruling, they would say, is “scary.” Another word to avoid is “ghost” when prefaced by Holy. The King James mistranslated it, and the reference to the Third Deity is Holy Spirit. To confirm this, just listen to a wrong spirited preacher harp and gleefully repeat the “HG” word as a sort of devilish mantra. If you have ears to hear, you will be convinced that the Father and Son don’t want to hear it anymore. However, I’ll venture a guess that the Holy Spirit is so humble (since he promotes Jesus and not Himself) He allows the HG word in songs because it rhymes with so many other things. Still, if you have ears to hear, it doesn’t sound right in songs either. Use the words “Holy Spirit.” Recall that Jesus warned that He would allow Himself to be blasphemed, but there would be no forgiveness for intentionally blaspheming the Holy Spirit. (Luke 12:10) Another word to avoid is “incredible.” Often it is used in televangelism to advertise their “incredible” wares. Would God that was not the truth! Another bad word is “whatever.” Used with a sarcastic spirit in reference to anything good, it means, basically, an epitaph against all things godly. Other words: “unbelievable”, “cool,” and using “crazy” as a positive thing. Using “guy” or “guys” to describe a man or men. “Relative” or “expectations” or “relational” when used as buzz-word preacher topics. The above-mentioned words are not extent. If you are careful to obtain and keep ears to hear in the spirit, you will be taught what words God hates in any language.


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