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The Magazine of The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America

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Bullying and suicide

While helping answer the National Student Anti-Bullying Hotline's 3,000 daily calls, teen "peer mediators" have intervened in several suicide threats.

But if a direct link between bullying and suicide exists, it has yet to be proven, says Jerry Weyrauch, a member of Lutheran Church of the Resurrection, Marietta, Ga. Weyrauch and his wife, Elsie, started the Suicide Prevention Advocacy Network after they lost their daughter in what was ruled a suicide.

"Suicide is much more complex than just a single thing like bullying, but bullying can be a continuing factor," Weyrauch says.

Congregations and individuals seeking ways to help prevent suicide can find them in the ELCA's suicide prevention statement, available from Augsburg Fortress, Publishers (800-328-4648), or free online at www.elca.org/dcs/suicide_prevention.html.




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