Atlanta Megachurch Pastor and Philanthropist Makes Big Waves in Music!
Philanthropist, gospel artist and megachurch pastor E.Dewey Smith has been in ministry for over 30 years. He started preaching at 17 years old and commenced his pastoral ministry at 19. When Smith started his journey, it was a very different time in ministry. Today, ministers and people in leadership are struggling more than often. This conversation is critical right now due to there being an influx of people in leadership struggling with mental health, anxiety or depression. There have recently been many leaders who failed in their fight against mental health issues including one that hits close to home for Smith. One of his best friends and colleague Rev. Teddy Parker Jr. Smith believes there needs to be an open and honest dialogue about the struggles faced even in high status positions. Many times, Smith has had to deal with trauma and how it affected him. He had to endure the death of his mother, sister, god-mother and college best friend all in the span of thirty days he found himself hitting a brick wall trying to be the “strong pastor”. He remembers feeling like he had to live up to being “a man of God” in his community even while being lost. Recognizing what he needed at that time in his life made him want to help others going through hard times. He decided to open a counseling center for those struggling. “Haven House” a fully staffed, professional and licensed counseling center that addresses the emotional and mental health concerns of people in the community. Smith has continued to help uplift and empower different communities by being heavily involved in prison reform, re-entry programs, human services, community development and starting Tabitha House.
A few of those in the public eye who struggled with mental health ,depression or anxiety include the late Hyattsville Mayor, Kevin Ward and young pastor, Steve Austin who was the founder of a mental health advocate group. Former Miss USA Cheslie Kryst who no one suspected she’d be dealing with mental health issues. One of Smith’s best friends Rev. Teddy Parker Jr. who committed suicide one Sunday morning before church service. A recent survey showed 38% of pastors have actually considered leaving ministry. This goes to show that even leaders in ministry aren’t immune to suicidal thoughts or mental health issues.
• President Joe Biden pledges to provide additional support to black and brown communities and also signs off on The American Rescue plan to transform how mental health is perceived and treated
• “More Pastors Embrace Talk of Mental Illness”
• “Pandemic’s Toll on Mental Health Continues to Increase”
E. Dewey Smith has launched several initiatives that have had positive community impact. He remains steadfast in his journey to serve. Currently his new album “Your Presence is a Gift” sits at the Top 10 on Billboard because he continues to speak life through his music as well. Using his strengths as an artist and philanthropist to send an important message to the world.
Your Presence is a Gift is currently available on all streaming platforms