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Saints surround us every day

saints mentor us

Saints have been defined as ordinary people who have done some extraordinary things. A United Methodist pastor from Texas explains.

DON UNDERWOOD
United Methodist Communications

Occasionally someone will ask me if we believe in saints in The United Methodist Church. And I say, “Of course we do.”

We don’t have them the way the Roman Catholics do. We don’t canonize people in our tradition. We don’t really have recognized saints. But we do have them, I think, in our tradition.

I’ve known some. They are people who have been role models for us. I think there’s something really powerful thinking about those who have gone before us, who have suffered the same kinds of challenges, have struggled with the same kinds of sins that we have and have received God’s grace.

And I love that song that we sing, ‘For All the Saints.’ I love the way Paul talked about saints in Hebrews—the great cloud of witnesses that surround us.

So I think that in the Wesleyan tradition we think about saintly people whose lives have inspired us–not perfect lives; maybe not lives in which they did anything extraordinary–but maybe ordinary lives that were lived with great faithfulness and courage. And we always look to those people as inspirations on our own spiritual journeys.

~ This reflection is part of the Reflections on our Faith series about the teachings of The United Methodist Church. The Rev. Don Underwood is the pastor of Christ United Methodist Church in Plano, TX.

November 1, 2021 is All Saints Day. It is a time to remember some of the saints who have influenced your life.