Vandalia United Methodist Church

From the Pastor's Study

A Reference Letter

Dear St Peter:

I am writing in reference to Jonathon Smith who will soon be seeking admission to the kingdom of heaven. Jonathon has not necessarily led an exemplary life and feels that a letter of support from his pastor might help him through the admission process.

I have known Jonathon for about thirty-four years since I was first appointed to serve his church in rural Illinois. Although my tenure there was only six years, we have kept in touch regularly through emails and occasionally with visits for our lives’ milestones.

Jonathon was not the most regular attendee at worship; however, during the confirmation process, when attendance was required, he found that he could be present at worship and Sunday School each week. Jonathon joined the church at the conclusion of classes. Regretfully, his attendance became irregular when he started attending college. His school years were a time for stretching his boundaries and testing the waters for a variety of activities. It’s only by God’s grace that he hasn’t arrived at your door sooner.

Jonathon would be the first to admit that he has not always been the best example of Christian living. He is known to lose his temper, and you might say that on occasion he has spoken in “tongues.” He can be quite impatient and at times parties just a little too much. It’s likely that life gets in the way of any opportunity for growth in his faith. Like a lot of people, Jonathon blames the lack of time when it’s really a poor choice of priorities.

However, like a lot of people, his faith has become more important to him since he got married and started having children. It seems that the seeds of faith sown in his youth began to take root once the responsibility of fatherhood began to weigh upon him. Deep down, Jonathon has a good heart and strives to do good. He has really good intentions. He is always willing to lend a hand and can be quite generous.

You know as well as I, St Peter, no matter what sins we have committed nor what intentions we possess, only one thing matters when it comes to entrance to God’s kingdom. And based upon that, I know you will be welcoming Jonathon into paradise. I know for a fact that Jonathon has welcomed Jesus into his heart and He is his Savior.

Sincerely yours,


9:30 AM Worship Service
10:40 AM Sunday School

First United Methodist Church of Vandalia :: 618.283.3684