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.”
This message was preached at the Community Bible Church in High Point, NC, by Pastor Robert McKeehan on Sunday, April 6th, 2014, five days before he committed suicide on Friday, April 11.