According to the World Health Organization, depression is the leading cause of disability worldwide. In the United States, it has become an epidemic – with suicide rates increasing across the country for people of all ages.
Many people who live with depression experience suicidal thoughts. If you are having suicidal thoughts, it is important to seek professional help from a counselor or psychiatrist to address the mental and physical roots of these thoughts. But in addition to mental and physical treatment, many people of faith want to have some spiritual tools to help fight against these dark thoughts.
Recently on Father Simon Says™ a listener called in to ask what prayers would be best to fight against the suicidal thoughts he is experiencing.
“If you do feel increasingly harassed by these thoughts, you should go to counseling,” Fr. Richard Simon responded. “There is a group called Catholic Therapists that you can find on the web. Now, short of that, what is a good prayer to say?”
“I would say the Prayer to Saint Michael,” he said. “I really would, because it’a a very demonic thing. The devil wants to devour us. Scripture tells us that the devil is a devourer, and a liar, the father of lies.”
Father Simon also recommended another powerful prayer, saying, “A wonderful prayer that is about the giving of life that the devil hates is the Hail Mary. I’m not an exorcist, but I have assisted at exorcisms, and the devil hates the Hail Mary.”
The caller went on to explain how difficult it is for him to say the Creed each day at Mass, because the thought of eternal life doesn’t sound appealing when your earthly life is so difficult.
“That’s a good point,” Fr. Simon acknowledged. “But remember that eternal isn’t unending, it’s timeless. What eternity is isn’t just an endless passage of time. It is to behold the Beloved. It is to fall in love, on steroids.”
“If you’ve ever fallen in love, all you need to do is just look at the person you love,” he continued. “That’s what heaven is, forever. To behold the Beloved. So when you say the Creed, realize that life without end means the vision of someone you love, who loves you right back, forever.”
If you or someone you love is having suicidal thoughts, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline. The Lifeline provides 24/7, free and confidential support for people in distress, as well as prevention and crisis resources for you or your loved ones. Just call 1-800-273-8255.
Listen to the full conversation below:
Father Simon Says airs weekdays at 2:00 p.m. Eastern/11:00 a.m. Pacific on Relevant Radio®.