Clarence & Artis
To serve the present age, My calling to fulfill—Oh may it all my powers engage to do my Masters will! This Ole hymn of the church rings continuously in mind and in my heart. The “present age” is upon us every day! What we are now calling the present age is the new normal. Who would have thought that we would be having church over the Internet by Zoom, Skype, Facebook and other means. The Bible says, “Let us hold fast the profession of our faith without wavering; for He is faithful that promised; and let us consider one another to provoke unto love and to good works; not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another, and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching. Hebrews 10 23-25. We as a family have promoted love and good works and most of all we have assembled ourselves to do such.
Throughout the pandemic we have continued to maintain a strong weekly prayer line and have made contributions towards making our communities better. We have founded the Carner Family Scholarship Foundation, Inc., a foundation to provide scholarships to students and prepare them for the SAT and ACD testing. Providing educational opportunities is just one of our “calling to fulfill”.
Next Level Community Development Center - I am so honored to be a part of the best community development center in the Macon-Bibb Community. Next Level Community Development Center (NLCDC) is dedicated to educating, enlightening, and empowering students in Macon-Bibb. rm the world when they are given the incredible opportunities they need. Next Level programs are designed to help students become well-rounded people who excel in school and will succeed at college and in the workplace. Summer program, and E.L.I.T.E. Leadership Academy, students learn leadership and life skills, receive academic assistance, participate in amazing extracurricular experiences, and build strong relationships with their peers. Despite the pandemic, Next Level stepped up and showed out during the pandemic, serving the present age!
As for Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc., Epsilon Beta Lambda Chapter. When I first entered Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc., Epsilon Beta Lambda Chapter a transition of the ages was taking place. Notable Brothers such as Robert J. Williams, William (Bill) Hutchings, William (Bill) Odom, William Duvall and Willis B. Sheftall were becoming of age and were not being able to participate in active events of the chapter. Consequently, a new generation of Alpha Brothers were taking the reigns toward leading the chapter towards greatness. Chester Wheeler, Alveno Ross, Tim Jones, Albert Hall, Tommy Barnes, Rufus Johnson Joseph Lindsey and myself, Clarence Carner, Jr. were among the Brothers who moved the chapter “Onward and Upward”. I have been involved in several community projects to include: Anti-Violence Crime Project, Alpha Rites of Passage Program and the Debutante’ Cotillion Ball. I am still very proud to be a Life Member of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc., “my calling to fulfill”.
Being 77 years old is no joke! Sometimes aches and pains take over my day but I refuse to let health situations stop me from moving and doing the work that God has assigned me to do. Whether it be giving change to the beggar at an intersection or donating to a charity, I continue to serve the Middle Georgia Community with pleasure. “Oh, may it all my powers engage to do my Master’s will.”
Our communities are active again! People are attending sports events, concerts, and are back to shopping in our stores. Most of our children are back in school and most parents are returning to work in person. However, we can’t dismiss the new normal. Online shopping has greatly increased along with online learning. We have a surmountable amount of choices to keep us healthy and safe. We must make the right choices for our health’s sake. Be careful while in public. Maintain your distance. You might be saving your life.