In a letter to members of his church — Saddleback Church in Lake River, California — Warren said his son had suffered lifelong bouts of depression and suicidal thoughts:
Warren is known as a vocal opponent to gay marriage, having equated it with pedophilia and incest. The pastor has also had ties to supporters of Uganda’s so-called “Kill the Gays” bill, though he later denounced it after facing mounting pressure. Recently, Warren compared homosexuality to a simple temptation like “punching a guy in the nose.”
The coroner has declined to release the cause and manner of Matthew Warren’s death pending an autopsy. Another pastor will preach in Pastor Warren’s place on Sunday as part of a previously planned sermon series, said Saddleback spokeswoman Kristin Cole.