July 29, 2020


A Prayer


Teach us, Ruler of the universe,
to see people by the light of the faith we profess,
that we may check in ourselves
all unrighteous judgements, all presumptuous claims,
that, recognizing the needs
and rightful claims of others,
we may remove old hatreds and rivalries
and hasten new understandings,
that we may be tributes of excellence
to the treasury of common humanity;
through Jesus Christ the Lord. Amen.
     From The United Methodist Book of Worship #519



July 22, 2020


A Prayer
For Holiness of Heart
 
Lord, I want to be more holy in my heart.
Here is the citadel of all my desiring,
where my hopes are born
and all the deep resolutions of my spirit
   take wings.
In this center, my fears are nourished,
and all my hates are nurtured.
Here my loves are cherished,
and all the deep hungers of my spirit
   are honored
without quivering and without shock.
In my heart, above all else,
let love and integrity envelop me
   until my love is perfected
and the last vestige of my desiring
   is no longer in conflict with thy Spirit.
Lord, I want to be more holy in my heart.

        From The United Methodist Hymnal #401



July 15, 2020


A Prayer

Thanks be to thee, O Lord Jesus Christ,
for all the benefits which thou hast given us;
for all the pains and insults
which thou hast borne for us.
O most merciful Redeemer, friend, and brother,
may we know thee more clearly,
love thee more dearly,
and follow thee more nearly,
for thine own sake. Amen.
        From The United Methodist Hymnal #493


July 8, 2020


A Prayer For Safety
 
Almighty and merciful God,
of your bountiful goodness
keep us from all things that may hurt us,
that we,
being ready in both body and soul,
may cheerfully accomplish
those things you command;
through Jesus Christ our Savior. Amen.



July 1, 2020

A Prayer

 

O God, keep our whole country

under your protection.

Wipe out sin from this land;

lift it up from the depth of sorrow,

O Lord, our shining light.

Save us from deep grief and misfortune,

Lord of all nations.

Bless us with your wisdom,

so that the poor may not be oppressed

and the rich may not be oppressors.

Make this a nation having no ruler except God,

a nation having no authority but that of Love.


From The United Methodist Hymnal #429
 


June 21, 2020

For Purity


O Lord, this solemn prayer comes from deep desire,

may our lives be as pure as candle fire.

Let our every breath dispel the world's gloom,

let our spirit glow so brightly that darkness meets its doom.

May we be faithfully drawn to learning

as the moth is drawn to the candle's burning.

May our lives be devoted to serving the needy

and to loving a sorrowful, ever suffering humanity.

Lead us away from the path of temptation.

O Lord, let truth alone be our destination. Amen.

(Traditional Children’s Prayer, Pakistan, Alt.)

from The United Methodist Book of Worship


June 17, 2020


A Prayer for Fathers


Holy God, we give you thanks for our fathers
and all of those who have been like a father to us:
   for their faith,
   for their love,
   for the time spent with us,
   for their encouragement,
   for their affirmation,
   for their hopes for us,
   for their humanness.
This we pray in the name of him who called you Father
and who calls us to be your children.

June 10, 2020

A Prayer for Justice
 
Almighty God, you created us in your own image.
Grant us grace fearlessly to contend against evil,
  and to make no peace with oppression.
And, that we may reverently use our freedom,
  help us to employ it in the maintenance of justice
    to the glory of your holy name;
through Jesus Christ our Savior. Amen.


From The United Methodist Book of Worship



June 3, 2020


A Prayer Of Susanna Wesley
 
You, O Lord, have called us to watch and pray.
Therefore, whatever may be the sin against which we pray,
make us careful to watch against it,
and so have reason to expect that our prayers will be answered.
In order to perform this duty aright,
grant us grace to preserve a sober, equal temper,
and sincerity to pray for your assistance. Amen.
 
From The United Methodist Book Of Worship

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May 27, 2020


A Prayer During Exile
 
Hello, Jesus.
As you know, back when I was growing up I wasn’t always -
as in never -
the most attentive Sunday School student.
There were important things my friends and I needed to discuss.
The score of our last little league game.
The outlandish expectations of our elementary school teachers.
The difficulties in raising our parents.
You will be happy to know that some of the Sunday lessons did get through.
I remember hearing about the Exile:
the destruction of the Temple,
the people of God forced to relocate.
We are now living in a time of exile.
We may go to the same house on the same street in the same neighborhood,
but the same isn’t the same.
Staying home when possible,
limited-sized groups when staying home isn’t possible,
physical distancing,
face masks.
During the Exile, the people of God were not afraid to be honest -
brutally honest -
in their conversations with God.
Their prayers were sad.
Their prayers were angry.
And God did not turn away.
God listened.
As we make our way through this time of exile,
let us not be afraid to speak to you honestly
about what we are experiencing.


Pax,
Pastor Chuck

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May 20, 2020


Hello, God.
This academic year has certainly turned into one for the books.
Learning to learn from home.
Now it is coming to an end.
We have three persons graduating from high school this year.
Olivia Hollingsworth.
Xandria Ramirez.
Siri Ramnarine.
You already know how special each of them is.
I hope the journey of faith they began with us will continue throughout their lives.
I hope they will continue to seek to know you better,
to trust you deeper,
to grow in their love of neighbor until they love like you.
Of course, no matter where life takes them, they will always be in our hearts.
Just as they will always be in yours.
 
Pax,
Pastor Chuck


May 13, 2020


Hello, God.


As you have noticed, people are starting to get out again.

They are going to restaurants.

They are going to the beach.

Some are excited.

Others are worried that it is too soon.

Those getting out do not always practice physical distancing.

They risk infecting someone who will infect someone who will infect someone

who might quite possibly die.

Just before his passion Jesus prayed “Not my will, but yours.”

Let me not forget that your will is the well-being of each and every person.

The young ones and the not-so-young ones.

The tall ones and the short ones.

The rich ones and the poor ones.

The brown ones and the white ones and the black ones.

The frightened ones and the angry ones and the bored ones.

Let me remember the importance of observing safe practices when I am out.

Not my will, but yours.

 

Pax,

Pastor Chuck

 

May 6, 2020

 

A Prayer For The Grocery Store Employee

 

Jesus, back in high school I worked part-time at a grocery store.

The money I made paid for gas for my car, dates on the weekend, albums and concerts.

I remember managers who assigned me to tasks I did not want to do

and scheduled me for days I did not want to work.

Then these things seemed so important.

Now they seem hardly worth mentioning.

It is more than age and maturity.

It is a pandemic.

Those who stock the shelves and work the registers

face the possibility of contracting a virus that can be deadly.

You summon me to remember that it is not just about me:

me and my convenience,

me and my wants.

You summon me to remember to do what I can to love those who keep us in groceries:

to practice proper hygiene,

to wear a mask in public,

to be grateful to them for what they do.

Keep me from thinking admiring you is what you desire.

Let me hear clearly your call to follow you and love others as you do.

 

Pax,

Pastor Chuck

 

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April 29, 2020

 

A PRAYER OF THANKSGIVING


O God, we give you thanks for health care workers.

Many of them labor without proper protective gear.

Many of them lack the instruments they need to restore our health.

Many of them are not able to go home to loved ones

because they work to make us well.

We are awed by their dedication, by their courage, by their compassion.

We do not take them for granted.

We lift up to you our gratitude for who they are and what they do.


Pax,

Pastor Chuck

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April 22, 2020


A PRAYER FOR SURVIVING PHYSICAL DISTANCING

 

O God, practicing physical distancing is hard.

We are used to constant connectivity.

We are accustomed to readily available distractions.

Can it be that we are afraid to be still and look inside and see who we really are?

Can it be that we are more comfortable with the person we present to the world

than the person who inhabits our skin?

O God, show us how this time of physical distancing, as difficult as it can be,

can be a spiritual discipline.

Enable us to step back and look at ourselves and see ourselves as you see us.

What is it that we are after and how well does that match what you want us to have?

We know that practicing physical distancing is the loving thing to do right now.

But that does not mean it is easy.

It is not.

Help us to know that this difficult time, as much as any time,

is an opportunity to better know you and our true selves.

 

Pax,

Pastor Chuck


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April 12, 2020


Dear friends in Christ:


Hallelujah, Jesus is risen! Thank you for helping us to make Holy Week so memorable this year. Remember that you can re-watch our services at any time on Facebook, YouTube, and the homepage of the church website.


Peace be with you,

Ellen


April, 8 2020


Dear friends in Christ:


We are praying for you all during Holy Week. Tomorrow, on Holy Thursday, we will have online worship at 7:00 PM. On Good Friday, we will be posting videos every half hour from noon until 3:00. On Easter Sunday, worship will be online at 9:00 AM.


We would love for you to join us on Zoom tonight! Click here for the link to join the meeting or enter Meeting ID 307-021-617.

If you want to join in by calling, you can dial 346-248-7799 and enter Meeting ID 307-021-617.


Peace be with you,

Ellen



April 1, 2020


Dear friends in Christ:


    The Eucharist (Holy Communion, The Lord’s Supper) is an important part of our faith. It is one of the two sacraments, baptism being the other, recognized by the people called Methodist. Unlike baptism, which happens only once, the Eucharist is something we are encouraged to do often. With the start of a new month and the coming of Holy Week, it was something in which we would partake often in the near future. Since we cannot gather at the present time, what are we going to do?


    Celebrating the Eucharist online is something which violates our understanding of the sacrament. Therefore, we will not be celebrating the sacrament at this time. There are other ways (online worship, reading the scriptures, prayer) in which we can experience the presence and love of God and I encourage you to participate in them at this time.


     Several persons have asked how they can stay current on their estimate of giving. If you are not set up to give electronically, you can donate through the church website or by sending payment through the mail. If you have questions about giving through the church website, please contact our IT Director, Ellen Thornburg.


In the 1500s, when the “Black Plague” was ravaging the land, Martin Luther wrote the following as to how to live and act:


"I shall ask God mercifully to protect us. Then I shall fumigate, help purify the air, administer medicine and take it. I shall avoid places and persons where my presence is not needed in order not to become contaminated and thus perchance inflict and pollute others and so cause their death as a result of my negligence. If God should wish to take me, he will surely find me, and I have done what he has expected of me and so I am not responsible for either my own death or the death of others. If my neighbor needs me however I shall not avoid place or person but will go freely as stated above. See this is such a God-fearing faith because it is neither brash nor foolhardy and does not tempt God." 


Pax,

Rev. Chuck Weber



March 26, 2020


Dear Friends in Christ:

 

We are excited to start hosting church-wide Zoom meetings on Wednesday evenings at 6:00 PM. Join us on April 1! Click here for the link to join the meeting. If you do not have a device with a webcam, you can join the meetings by phone, by calling 978-261-7610

and then entering the pin 956093841.

 

If you are new to video chat, we are hosting a beginners' practice Zoom session on Monday, March 30 at 6:00 PM. On Monday, if you have trouble joining the meeting, you can call the church phone number at 281-326-1970 and we will help talk you through it! Click here for the link to join that meeting.

 

The Meeting ID for both of these sessions is 406-116-5494.

 

Peace be with you,

Ellen



March 23, 2020

 

Dear friends in Christ:

 

Grace to you and peace. I wanted to give you an update about the church.

 

Main campus and Senior Center closed.

The main campus of the church and the Senior Center are closed this week. All programs and meetings are canceled. Unless there is vital business that needs your attention, we ask that you avoid the buildings. Based on the information I have received, this may extend for a number of weeks. We will update you weekly.

 

March 29 worship will be on the church website and the church Facebook page.

We will be worshiping electronically this week. Again, this may extend for a number of weeks. We will update you regularly.

  

Facebook Questions.

Each day we will post a question on our website and Facebook page. Take some time to answer the question and look at the answers of others. You might learn something new about yourself and them.

 

Giving.

Several of you have asked how you can keep current with your estimate of giving during this time of social distancing. If you are not set up to give electronically, you can give (a) on our website or (b) by sending a check by regular mail (3300 Lakeside Dr., Seabrook, TX, 77586).

 

Make use of Zoom or FaceTime or some other audio/visual platform.

One of our adult Sunday School classes is meeting through Zoom. If you are part of a class or group that cannot meet at this time, consider trying it. Our IT Director, Ellen Thornburg (ellen@seabrookumc.org), would be glad to assist you.

 

I encourage you to check our website and our Facebook page regularly to find out what is happening and how you can stay connected.

 

Pax,

Rev. Chuck Weber

 


March 20, 2020

 

Dear friends in Christ:

 

Grace to you and peace.

 

This afternoon I participated in a conference call with Methodist Hospital System.  Methodist Hospital System has done a good job of keeping the pastors of the Texas Conference up to date in regard to COVID-19.

 

The biggest takeaway I had from the meeting is the importance of social distancing.  Delaying social distancing for just a day can statistically affect the spread of COVID-19 in a detrimental way.  Jesus calls us to love one another.  Right now loving one another means practicing social distancing.

 

This will affect how we operate in several ways.  First, we will be worshiping electronically beginning this Sunday.  A service will be posted on our website and on our Facebook page Sunday morning at 9:00 a.m.  I cannot say at this time how long we will be worshiping this way.  It was suggested that we be prepared for eight weeks and not be surprised if the timeline is extended.

 

Second, the main campus and the Senior Center will be closed.  There are some things which will need to be done.  Preparing electronic worship and classes.  Paying bills.  Please refrain from stopping by, even if a staff member is working.  Phone messages will be checked daily.  If you need assistance, please use email or leave a phone message.  If you are the chairperson of a committee that has pressing business, please use email or consider meeting through a platform such as Skype (Ellen Thornburg, our IT staff member, can help you if you need assistance).

 

The biggest challenge we face is keeping social distancing from becoming social isolation.  We are engaged in conversations to address this.

 

Another takeaway from the meeting involved what to do if you think you are infected with or have been exposed to COVID-19.  If it is an emergency situation, use the established emergency network (such as calling 911).  If it is not an emergency situation, call your health care provider first and establish a course of action.

 

Speaking on behalf of the entire church staff, we love you.  We miss being with you.  We are praying for you.  We look forward to the day when we can all gather together safely in the same space.

 

Pax,

Rev. Chuck Weber



March 20, 2020

 

Dear friends in Christ:

 

Grace to you and peace.

 

This afternoon I have another conference call with Methodist Hospital System.  I will soon put out an eblast with anything new I have learned.  I thought it best to go ahead and get out a list of things you can be doing.  So, here it is.  Things you can do.

 

Do not under-react.  (A) Practice social distancing.  (B) Wash your hands often.  (C) Do not assume that you are part of a demographic that is unaffected.  You are not.  And even if you personally are not affected, you can contribute to spread.

 

Do not over-react.  (A) Do not hoard.  (B) Consider what you hear.  There is a lot of information - and misinformation - floating around.  (C) Be understanding.  Our schools are having to rethink how to educate during this time.  We are having to rethink how to be church at this time.  Some things will work and some things will not.

 

Consider ways to stay connected.  We can post a sermon or a Sunday School class on Facebook or on our website, but church is about more than information.  It is relationships.  Consider ways to maintain those relationships.  Phone calls.  Texts.  Emails.  Do a Bible Study or book study as a group over the computer or phone.

 

Be grateful.  There are a lot of people - medical personnel, grocery store personnel, to name some - who are working very hard to take care of us.

 

Be mindful.  A lot of people are not getting a paycheck right now.  A lot of people will not have jobs to go back to when this is past.  We will be called upon to help.  After Cain killed Abel, God stopped by and asked Cain where Abel was.  Cain answered with, “Am I my brother’s keeper?”  The answer is yes.  We are our brothers’ and sisters’ keeper.

 

Be Christian.  I have already received emails and flyers from different church and para-church groups asserting that COVID-19 is God’s punishment for gender equality or reproductive rights or (fill-in-the-blank).  That is not how God works.  At least, not the God who made God’s self known in Jesus Christ.  As we continue our Lenten journey and watch as the shadow of the cross draws closer, we are reminded that God suffers with us and for us.

 

At this time I am not sure when we will be able to worship together again in the sanctuary.  I am sure that I am ready for it.  I look forward to a big “welcome home” Sunday.  Until then, keep checking your emails, the church website, and the church Facebook page.  You can reach me at chuck@seabrookumc.org.

 

Pax,

Rev. Chuck Weber


 

March 17, 2020

 

Dear friends in Christ:

 

Because of the importance and necessity of social distancing at the present time, we will be worshiping electronically this Sunday. Worship will be posted on our Facebook page and on our website at 9:00 AM on Sunday morning.

 

In addition to worship, Kim Barnett, our Director of Children’s Ministry, will post a Sunday School lesson for children. Our Director of Youth Ministry, Katie Richey, will post a Bible study for our youth.

 

We are working on a way to keep our Prayer List up to date during this time of social distancing. If you have something you would like this family of faith to remember in prayer, you may get that information to us in several ways.

 

Visit our website at: www.seabrookumc.org/prayer.

 

Send us an email at info@seabrookumc.org.

 

Call the church office at 281-326-1970.

 

“Let all that I am praise the Lord; with my whole heart, I will praise his holy name.” (Psalm 103:1)

 

Pax,

Rev. Chuck Weber

 


March 16, 2020

 

Dear friends in Christ:

 

Here is the first - and certainly not the last - church email you will receive this week. As a new work week begins, there is some information I wanted to share with you.

 

 

Because of the importance of, and need for, social distancing, all programs and meetings at the church this week are canceled. This includes the main campus and the Senior Center.

 

Do not assume the staff will be on campus this week. Unless they need to be here, I will be instructing them to work from home. Of course, any staff member who is ill will remain home.

 

Let me conclude with what you can do at this time.

 

Avoid unnecessary visits to the main campus and Senior Center.

 

Check on persons who, because of age or health, are high risk when it comes to the Coronavirus.

 

Remember that God is with us. This does not mean God will do our work for us. It does mean God will walk with us as we do our work to care for each other and our neighbor.

 

Pax,

Rev. Chuck Weber

 


March 14, 2020

 

Dear friends in Christ:

 

The following events will not be meeting this week:

 

03/14 Saturday Choir Rehearsal

03/15 Confirmation

03/15 Sunday School

03/15 Tween Time

03/15 Sunday Night Youth

03/16-03/20 Children’s Day Out

03/16-03/20 Good Start Breakfast

03/16-03/20 All events at the Senior Center

03/16 Book Club

03/16 Children’s Council

03/17 Love Circle

03/17 Missions Committee

03/18 Christian Meditation

03/18 Bells Rehearsal

03/18 Wednesday Choir Rehearsal

03/19 Praise Band Rehearsal

03/21 Confirmands Mission Trip to Conroe

 

 

The Youth Glow Party on March  27 and the Spring Market on March 28 have also been canceled.

 

Peace be with you,

Ellen

 

 

March 13, 2020

 

Dear friends in Christ:

 

In light of the current national health concern, I wanted to let you know what will and will not be happening at Seabrook United Methodist Church this Sunday. 

 

We will have worship at 9:00 AM and 11:15 AM.  I would urge you, however, to seriously and prayerfully consider whether or not to attend, especially if you fall into the high risk category in regard to Coronavirus.  Services will be streamed live on the church Facebook page and website.  After they are streamed they will be posted.  A big part of Jesus’ ministry involved healing the sick.  We want to keep you safe and healthy.  Therefore I encourage you to consider participating electronically.

 

There will be no youth gathering or tweeners gathering Sunday afternoon.

 

Please watch your emails from the church about this coming week and Sunday, March 22.

 

During this time we are committed to keeping our campus clean.  We are sanitizing highly touched surfaces regularly.  Staff and volunteers will wash their hands regularly and stay home if they are sick.  Hand sanitizer is located around the church.

 

I encourage you to pray for those whose lives are impacted by the current situation and think about ways you can be a neighbor to others.

 

God is with us and I have every confidence we will be with and for each other.

 

Pax,

Rev. Chuck Weber


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