Salvation vs suicide
September 10 is observed as World Suicide Prevention Day, a day set aside to raise awareness of the risk of suicide and to raise funds for prevention activities.
In an article published on the ALL4WOMEN website in September 2018, it was stated that 23 people committed suicide every day and 460 attempted suicide in South Africa.
According to the South African Depression and Anxiety Group (SADAG), 75% of people who commit suicide tell someone first. This means everyone may have the opportunity to help prevent the suicide of a loved one, if they listen to them or know the signs of a suicidal person.
As part of the prevention measures, SADAG launched a free online suicide prevention chat with mental health experts. The initiative is focused on helping suicidal people, identifying warning signs and assisting people with how to deal with the aftermath of losing a loved one to suicide.
To create awareness of the suicide pandemic that affects both adults and young people, the Universal Church holds services and events that are aimed to teach people how precious their lives are to God.
In an edition of Stop Suffering, published on 30 September, Bishop Marcelo Pires, who oversees the work of the Universal Church in South Africa, said once you kill yourself, your soul will go straight to hell.
"The devil will convince you there is no way out. He will persuade you that ending your life will finish off your problems. Again, that is a lie. Once you have killed yourself, your soul will go straight to hell," he said.
If you know someone you think may be suicidal or needs help, please contact the Universal Church’s helpline on: 0861 330 320.