United Methodist Beliefs: Saints
"I’ve known saints. They are people who have been role models for us." As part of the Reflections on our Faith series about the teachings of The United Methodist Church, the Rev. Don Underwood, pastor of Christ United Methodist Church in Plano, Texas talks about saints in the United Methodist tradition.
Do you have questions about the meaning of some of the terms and teachings of The United Methodist Church? In this series, we ask clergy to share their understanding of topics. No preaching, just conversation.
The Rev. Don Underwood, Christ United Methodist Church: “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 saints 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 saints, I think, in our tradition. I’ve known saints. 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 Saint 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 saints 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.”
View entire series Reflections on our Faith.