Mental Health and Suicide

“Whoever suffers mental illness always bears God’s image and likeness, and has an inalienable right to be considered a person and treated as such.”

-St. Pope John Paul II

“Persons with mental illness often suffer in silence, hidden and unrecognized by others,” said the Bishops in the statement.  “Consider this stark contrast: a person with a medical illness—such as cancer—will usually receive an outpouring of sympathy and support from their parish and community; a person diagnosed with a mental illness—such as depression, crippling anxiety, or bipolar disorder—frequently experiences isolation and inadequate support, often because of the unjust social stigma of mental illness.  This should not be so in our civic communities, and cannot be so in our Catholic communities.” – Hope and Healing: A Pastoral Letter from the Bishops of California on Caring for those who Suffer from Mental Illness Addressed to All Catholics and People of Goodwill

If someone is facing suicidal thoughts:
Call 1-800-273-TALK (24 hours)

For mental health help: 
Call 1-800-854-7771 (24 hours)
Department of Mental Health

For addiction and substance abuse help:
Call 1-800-662-HELP (24 hours)
Substance Abuse & Mental Health Services Administration

Didi Hirsch Hotline

Catholic Therapists:


Pray for Those Experiencing Mental Illness and Suicidal Ideation
Educate Your Parish about Mental Health
NAMI – National Alliance for Mental Illness


Educate Your Parish about Suicide
Suicide is the second leading cause of death among young people aged 15-24, and the suicide rate for girls aged 10-14 has tripled in recent years. The truth is that 90% of people who have died by suicide suffered from depression or another diagnosable mental health condition. If you recognize someone in your parish struggling, you can support them. Be a good friend. Talk to them, pray with them, ask them if they’ve thought about suicide, and suggest they reach out for professional help. There is hope and healing in Christ, who loves each of us beyond measure. And we can be His hands and feet to our brothers and sisters with mental illness. Share information with your parish, school, and family about suicide and mental health.

Educate Students with Respect Life Week Curriculum

Our annual Respect Life Week includes information for TK-12 on mental health, suicide, and including a high school handout which discusses these topics.


Keep these Phone Numbers on Hand
Keep the Suicide Prevention Lifeline in your phone: 1-800-273-TALK (8255)
Keep the Department of Mental Health  number in your phone: 1-800-854-7771

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