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Nov 03, 2019 | Rev Dave Buerstetta

A Place for Sinners and Saints?

Who — or what — is a saint? What characteristics do saints share?


In this era of advanced analytics, are there formulas and metrics we can use to determine sainthood? Like, MAR: Miracles Above Regular. i.e. How many more miracles can this person contribute than regular people?

Or how about Goodness Over Delinquency? e.g. “Do you think this person is a saint?” “I don’t know, what’s her GOD score?”

Is it more about good accomplished or bad avoided?


Or is that too convoluted and we just know a saint when we see and hear one?


How about sinners? How do we decide who qualifies as a sinner?


Those terms “saint” and “sinner” are all over our scriptures, our hymns, our sermons, our Christian vocabulary…and yet they also seem to be two of the most ambiguous words we use regularly. Our gospel lesson this week is no exception: Luke 19:1-10.


Yet and still, this Sunday, November 3rd, Woodridge UMC celebrates All Saints Day. Why?

Yes, to remember those from our congregation who died this past year and celebrate all they meant to us.

Might it be more than that too? Might we use All Saints Day to reflect on how the language we use to describe people affects our ability to recognize their true identity?

How might All Saints Day help us better understand ourselves, our calling from God, and the community we are continually building?


Pastor Dave will wrestle with those questions and more this Sunday, November 3rd, in his sermon, “A Place for Sinners and Saints?”


All are welcome here!


"I learned that the definition of a saint in the United Methodist Church.  It parallels the "All are welcome" or all inclusive philosophy.  I like it!" - Sandy