For many years upon entering the doors of the Mount Vernon Baptist Church in the Unionville Community, you were greeted by the pleasant personality of Deacon Charles Johnson, the captain of the Ushers Board at the church. He was always on duty, always prompt, and always serving. He was the only male child of the three children of the late Reverend Benny Johnson and the late Mrs. Annie Bell Johnson. Right after graduation from Ballard Hudson High School, he volunteered for military service in the U.S. Air Force, where he served twenty years and retired in 1971. When he was twenty years old, he married his high school sweetheart, Lettie Marcus, and they were happy with two beautiful young girls. Deacon Johnson was then blessed with three boys and he once remarked that he didn't know why he was blessed with three boys in a kind of sudden way.

The history of mankind is replete with man learning and assuming the task of sending children to be educated. Deacon Johnson has done an outstanding job of sending all of his children to school. All three of his sons went to the Air Force Academy and are now officers. Even though children are sent away to learn, the real task is at home. Getting them ready, both physically and mentally, for learning and studying is to add value to their lives and their future. Many parents fail to see both sides of the equation. Dressing them well is only a simple and small task. However, the real work is in making sure that 1) children eat well, a balanced diet so that their minds will function properly for learning; 2) children get the proper rest and go to bed on time so that they will be alert to learn; 3) children get the proper exercise, play and participate in activities that will build good social relationships, sound bodies and sound minds; and 4) study their learning tasks, homework is the most important work done as it gives you an opportunity to monitor and encourage your child’s development. Those are the things that Deacon Johnson has done well.

On this Father's Day we have a wonderful example of the toil given by parents for the things they "hoped for" in their children. We particularly focus on their boys because we lose so many African American males to gangs, streets, drugs, jail and death. On Sunday, August 30, 2009, Deacon Charles and Sister Lettie Johnson had the wonderful occasion to witness their youngest son Jeffery promoted to the rank of Lt. Colonel in the U. S. Air Force. Deacon Johnson, a retired Air Force Master Sergeant himself, is probably the proudest dad in all the country with his three of sons ranking officers in the USAF. He has to his credit: A full bird Colonel (David Johnson), a Lt. Colonel (Jeffery Johnson), and a Major (Mark Johnson), which are all made possible because, as father, Deacon Charles Benjamin Johnson followed the instructions of the Lord to "train up a child in the way he should go." He kept them in church and before the Lord and demonstrated to them godly ways both in serving and in giving. He had things hoped for in his children and now he can enjoy the sweet savor of his success and the evidence of things that he did not see. His daughters, too, have done well, one is a contract negotiator with the USAF and the other is a principal in Augusta, Georgia. Our hats are off to this outstanding father who has certainly set the pace for making a difference in the lives of African American children.


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Deacon Charles Johnson To Be Honored
On Father’s Day At Mt. Vernon Baptist Church

L to R: Lt. Colonel Jeffrey Johnson, Retired Colonel David Johnson,
Deacon Charles Johnson and Major Mark Johnson.