“Perhaps the greatest charity comes when we are kind to each other, when we don’t judge or categorize someone else, when we simply give each other the benefit of the doubt or remain quiet. Charity is accepting someone’s differences, weaknesses, and shortcomings; having patience with someone who has let us down, or resisting the impulse to become offended when someone doesn’t handle something the way we might have hoped. Charity is refusing to take advantage of another’s weakness and being willing to forgive someone who has hurt us. Charity is expecting the best of each other” Marvin J. Ashton

When I admire the wonders of a sunset or the beauty of the moon, my soul expands in the worship of the Creator.” Mahatma Gandhi

When my friends Bishop Josephine and Tommy Ridgley invited me to join them for dinner at Carson’s Creekside 1110 Beech Drive in Middle River, I didn’t hesitate to accept the invitation to a new restaurant. The first thing I noticed was the beautiful sunset painting a magnificent landscape on the water. The restaurant is an ideal place to dock your boat or eat on the deck among the ducks that wander about the grounds. The fried oysters were delicious and padded to perfection and the servers were prompt and courteous. This is definitely on my return list.

Dr. Marie Washington, her daughter Jackie Washington, Rainier Harvey and I were in Prince George’s County for an event honoring Maryland’s Governor Hogan and Lt. Governor Rutherford hosted by Dr. Wilbur Wilson. We decided to look for a restaurant in Prince George’s county. The young people know what to do, Jackie googled a restaurant called “SoBe Restaurant and Lounge” in Lanham. Our server William Redd had the charm of a southern gentleman, very knowledgeable in assisting us in our menu selections. I ordered the shrimp, corn and crab bisque and lamb chops, others ordered southern fried chicken and crab cakes. The ambience was excellent, the food superb and the service was top-notch. They also feature live jazz. For more information go to www.soberestaurantandlouge.com or contact the GM Chris at chris@sobedc.com

Chances are ’cause I wear a silly grin the moment you come into view. Chances are you think that I’m in love with you… Guess you feel you’ll always be the one and only one for me; and if you think you could, then chances are your chances are awfully good.” Johnny Mathis

Sending a bouquet of pink and green flowers of love to newlyweds Diosa and Rhonda Cylburn on their wedding day.

“Three little words oh, what I’d give for that wonderful phrase to hear those three little words… Three little words, eight little letters which simply mean I love you.” Nat King Cole

Sending “love and happiness” to Beverly and John Carter, Latonya and Charles Queen and a special anniversary wish to Darlene and Robert Williams celebrating their 45th wedding anniversary “cruisin” the Mediterranean Sea.

“He is like a man, which built a house, and digged deep, and laid the foundation on a rock: and when the flood arose, the stream beat vehemently upon that house, and could not shake it: for it was founded upon a rock.” Luke 6:48

Happy fourth anniversary to Pastor Purcell Wylie and the Carpenter’s House as they continue to be servants unto God.

We’re singing, happy birthday to my sister Karen Johnson, Chase, my grandsons Damien Richard Lee and Gregory Warren Packer Jr, Colin Daniels, Keith Pennick, Donna Briscoe, Aloha McCullough, Janet Jones, Dana Petersen Moore, Karen Hill, Beatrice Williams, Steward Beckham, Dyra Johnson, Rod Womack,  Deenen Fassett, Cletis Parker, Delegate Bilal Ali, Annie Hall, Judy Rainey, Sabrina Tapp-Harper, Joe Ann Otis, Sophia Blake, Dorothy Marshall, James “Dickey” Harris and Wendell Rawlings.

Sending bouquets of violets to Dr. Marian Davis Foster, Maxine Gaskins, Dr. Ann Emery, Dr. Lavenia Fitzpatrick and my neighbor Ernestine Jolivet.

“…and, like a horse unbroken, when first he feels the rein, the furious river struggled hard, and tossed his tawny mane, and burst the curb, and bounded, rejoicing to be free…” Thomas Babington McAulay 

The death of three of my young friends within 24 hours of each other reminded me of the poem “Horatio at the Bridge,” a story of a young soldier tasked to protect the bridge during wartime despite many obstacles he was victorious in his determination to win that even his opponents cheered for him. I’ve known each one and their families for 30 to 40 plus years, watching them become outstanding citizens in their community.

Christopher Byrd (Brother Musab Musharif), son of Dr. Eugene and Laura Byrd fought and won a great health battle over a year ago that changed the eating and health attitudes of his family and friends. He single handedly made us conscious of our bodies by encouraging good health and exercise decisions. His matter of fact demeanor was so encouraging to others especially his nephews and sister Cimmon.

Marie “Mimi” Geddie, daughter of Elaine Morton and the late Neal Morton, the wife of Anthony and the mother of two teen-agers, fought a strong battle until the end. Her award winning smile and awesome spirit remained intact despite her illness and discomfort as she fought the dreaded disease that was consuming her body.

Troy Madison Belton son of Gloria and the late Darrell Belton died 11 years to the date of his father’s death. Troy was a veteran and committed family man, who courageously fought the disease that consumed his body. His calm demeanor and his shy, but warm spirit embraced everyone he encountered.

“I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith.” 2 Timothy 4:8

I loved and mourn them as if they were my own. Their spirit shall live on through eternity. My regret is they are “gone too soon

Keep Nathan and Joanne Rollins in your prayers on the death of Nathan’s mother Ann Elizabeth Rollins.

Breast Cancer awareness month!