Private Memorial Service Planned for Rick Warren's Son

The memorial service for Matthew Warren, the son of Pastor Rick Warren who took his own life last Friday, will be a private one, Saddleback Church announced via its website.

"Since the Warren family is loved by so many, no building in Orange County is large enough to hold an open memorial service," church officials stated. "The family decided it was best to have a small, private service for their son."

The well-known Lake Forest, Calif., pastor "will speak publicly to our church family about the tragedy when he returns to preaching after a grieving period," they said.

Officials at Saddleback Church told The Christian Post that no further details about the memorial service will be released.

On Monday evening, Rick Warren posted through Facebook and Twitter: "Grieving is hard. Grieving as public figures, harder. Grieving while haters celebrate your pain, hardest."

The Orange County Coroner's Office confirmed yesterday that Matthew, the 27-year-old son of Warren, died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound last Friday.

"Pastor Rick and Kay have been deeply touched by your outpouring of love after Rick shared the news of their son Matthew's tragic death," the post on the church's website began.

The Saddleback Church community blog also included two ways for people to express their prayers, love, and support.

"You can write the Warren family an encouraging note here (Rick Warren's Facebook page)," the church stated. A request for "funny or serious" stories about Matthew Warren was also made.

The other suggestion for a show of support was to give to a fund established under Matthew Warren's name to help fight mental illness. An online method of contribution is established for church members.

A mailing address was given as well. The address: The Matthew Warren Fund at Saddleback Church, 1 Saddleback Parkway, Lake Forest, CA 92630.

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