Past events

Facts on depression

We receive a lot of calls from pastors who struggle with depression. Below are symptoms of depression and what to do if you suspect depression has invaded your life.

Common symptoms of depression

  • Feelings of discouragement or sadness
  • Loss of interest in activities that used to be enjoyable
  • Difficulty concentrating, focusing or remembering
  • Unusual fatigue and lethargy
  • Eating too much or too little
  • Sleeping too much or too little
  • Unexplained aches and pains
  • Thoughts of suicide or death

Depression can exhibit different symptoms in males and females

For example, men may tend to:

  • Become angry and irritable
  • Turn to sports, TV, sexual activities or alcohol to mask feelings
  • Feel embarrassed and fearful of depression
  • Want to maintain a strong, male image.
  • Have a problem-solver approach to depression

If you think you may be depressed…

  • Visit your family physician. He/she can determine physical and emotional causes of your depression and talk with you about anti-depressants or other relevant medication.
  • Make an appointment with a counsellor. If you need a referral to a Christian counsellor, please call us at 1.888.525.3749.
  • Share your burden with an individual or two that you are close with – a fellow pastor, your spouse, a good friend. Ask them to pray for you.
  • Consider whether you need to take a sabbatical. Many pastors who struggle with depression find that time off work can be helpful.
  • Learn about self care and depression (see below for resource suggestions).
  • Rest. Take a Sabbath day each week and get 8 hours of sleep per night.
  • Eat fresh and healthy food, in smaller portions. Exercise for 15 minutes each day – a walk around your neighbourhood will do wonders in increasing your endorphin levels.
  • Be patient. Just as it took time to become depressed, it will take time to feel yourself again.
  • Let the Lord minister to you. Read the Psalms or other favourite Scriptures. Ask Him to help you – even if it is just a simple one-sentence prayer that you whisper throughout your day.
  • Call us at the Clergy Care Network. We offer a listening ear, encouragement, referrals and consultation - 1.888.5.CLERGY.

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