Men's Breakfast Report, January 2011

The Men’s Breakfast Group met Saturday, January 8th.  Our Featured Guest was supposed to be Diana Escamilla, director of the Brazoria County Youth Home.  She was unable to come because she has been suspended from duties.  She took a few of her charges out New Years eave to shoot off some fireworks.  One of the youth later accused her of providing drugs to the the youth and doing drugs herself with them.  Our prayers are with Diane while she fights these false accusations. 

As a substitute, Tom Sharon, pastor of our church, talked to us about the Freeport ministerial alliance.  Tom is president of the alliance, which consists of many of the local ministers.  The alliance is a loose association without a budget. 

The most visible activities of the ministerial alliance are the community worship services.  There are the fifth Sunday services which occur on the fifth Sunday of any month with a fifth Sunday.  These have become more popular since the collections have been designated for some community benefit.  The other community service is the Easter sunrise service held at the Freeport Park followed by the pancake breakfast at the Methodist Church.

Service ministries have helped bring the group together and give it focus.  The Backpack Ministry where backpacks of food are given to homeless students on Fridays so they can have food over the weekend is an example.  The Ministerial Alliance has enabled the Backpack Ministry to succeed by getting all the churches to contribute since the expense would be too great for any one church.  Another project has been the House of Hope where BL and Brenda George have remodeled an old house to provide housing for children too young for the Brazoria County Youth Home.  The ministry has made it possible for volunteers from all over to participate in the remodeling.  The Ministry has also worked on hurricane Ike recovery.  Several repairs have been coordinated through them.  The Alliance has also started a jail ministry where ministers conduct services at the Freeport Jail and provide chaplains to the police and fire departments.  The chaplains are on call at all times.  A recent occasion where chaplains were called in was the fatal accident at the port.  One chaplain was called in to support the family of the victim and Bobby Fuller, director of the Pot Ministry, helped with the coworkers of the victim. 

The question was raised about relations with other religious organizations, in particular the Black Ministerial Alliance and the Catholic Church.  The Black Ministerial Alliance, now called the Texas Coast Ministers Association, overlaps with the Freeport Ministerial Alliance and coordinates with them on projects.  The Catholic Charities also works with the Ministerial Alliance.  The Catholic Charities provided all the back office support such as accounting and administration, for the hurricane Ike recovery efforts.   In general, talking divides the churches but work and service unite them.

As usual, the men had an interesting discussion and a good breakfast.  The next meeting will be on Saturday, February 12th.