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“The Fellas” Dedicate the Last Man Mob of the School Year to the Memory of the Late Ratibu Jacocks

Submitted on Behalf of Terrance Stone

TheFellasIn honor of William Henry Jacocks, a longtime Rialto resident and active community member who with his wife, former Assemblywoman Wilmer Amina Carter, founded the Inland Area Kwanzaa Group, “The Fellas” dedicated their last Man Mob of the year to his memory. The Man Mob is a group of men from the local Inland Empire community who are interested in engaging and supporting the students at our schools.  Some are fathers, entrepreneurs, educators, college alumni, community and civic leaders, business owners, fraternity members, ministry groups, retirees, and current college students.  The me, show up to local schools, give hi-fives, tell the students to have a good day, encourage them to study hard, and let them know that they are supported by their community.  The goals are twofold: encourage and motivate students to succeed, and show them examples of positive, professional men of color.TheFellas5

The Man Mob is not just for students—it is for parents, teachers, school administrators and staff as well.  Indeed, before we visit a school we try to identify a teacher who has positively impacted children the most.  Once we get a consensus, we try and give that teacher a gift (e.g., certificate, hat, thank you card) to recognize their hard work, diligence and commitment to our students.  We work with superintendents, principals, district administrators, and school board members to plan and coordinate our meetings.  We invite them and let them know that we are coming to have a fun, safe, and joyful experience.

Lesford Duncan, a Child Abuse Prevention Coordinator for the San Bernardino County Children’s Network, was the first to propose the Man Mob idea in the fall of 2015.  Mr. Duncan saw a post on social media wherein a well-dressed group of African American fathers in Atlanta were hi-fiving elementary students who were entering the school building.  He suggested that the Fellas coordinate something similar here in the San Bernardino area.  It was then that several members of The Fellas (Jonathan Buffong, Terrance Stone, Hardy Brown, Ed Brantley, Keith Hosea, Joseph Williams, Alex Avila, Mars Serna, and Dr. Wil Greer, Charles Brown) organized the first Man Mob, which took place on August 17th, 2015, at Del Vallejo Middle School in San Bernardino.

The experience was so positive that they decided to do it again at more schools.  Since then, The Fellasgroup has held a Man Mob during every month of the 2016-2017 school year, and we are TheFellas3inspired by the rise of additional groups.  Mars Serna and the Emerging Men of Fontana, Frank Kelley and the PACK Coalition Man Mob of the High Desert, and Corey Jackson of Moreno Valley have all held fantastic events, and fully represent the Man Mob spirit.  We are hopeful that the ongoing encouragement, across cities and schools, will have a ripple effect on children’s confidence, school engagement, and achievement.

The success of the initial Man Mob led to requests from a number of school leaders and teachers to come out and visit their school.  We knew early on that we would need a strategy for choosing schools that could most benefit from a Man Mob.  We also wanted to get organized, and make best use of our busy participants’ time and energy.  To do this, The Fellas came together and looked at school data from across the Inland Empire.  They identified schools with some of the greatest numbers of low-income and African American students, had several discussions, and added a sample of the schools to our 2015-2016 calendar.  Though the Fellas  have tried to stay true to our initial selections, we added some schools and a university along the way to be as responsive to demand as our time would allow. “The Fellas wanted to give tribute to the late Ratibu Jacocks, because we knew that this is something that he would proud of, matter fact, he would probably be the first person in front of the line giving a hi five!” Jonathan Buffong. Another program that is honoring the namesake of Ratibu is the Ratibu Shadidi Literacy Program. Dr. Wil Greer, Assistant Professor Educational Leadership & Technology at CSUSB has designed this opportunity to help African American boys in grades K-5 read at or above grade level. Please contact wgreer@csusb.edu for morning information.

“The Devil Made Me Do It!”

Lou Coleman

Lou Coleman

By Lou Coleman

Did He? Liar! If you are a Christian, Satan has no authority over you. You can’t say, “The devil made you do it.” [1 Cor. 10:13] There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it.

Listen; before I go any further, I want you to know that God has entrusted me with a ministry where there are No Corners-cut, No Pacifying, and No Round about Away.  Rebuke- Correction- Hope, in that order exactly!

I tell you, we always want to blame someone else. If you insist that the devil made you do it… What’s the solution? Bind the devil! Cast out the evil spirit! You see the devil’s wiles are easily defeated by knowing and believing the truth of God’s word rightly divided [2 Tim 2:15; 1 Thess 2:13]. Nobody else is responsible for your inward craving other than you… James says you are drawn away “of your own lust”—it is the direct agent. Lust of the flesh—living to please the senses; it feels, looks, tastes or sounds good. Lust of the eyes—living for material things; I want, I must have things in life. Lust of your life—proud of your life which leads to easy offenses, rebellion, etc. The devil does not make you sin! The devil lies, the devil tempts, but sin comes from the lust for it inside of you. Paul says evil is present in him [that is in his flesh] even after his salvation [Romans 7:21]. James, in another dispensation, defines sin as coming from every man’s lust not from God or the devil [James 1:13-15]. You sin because of your lust for it. You have a nature that is sinful. You have a natural taste for it. I tell you, nobody wants to take responsibility for their inappropriate actions. It is human nature to pass on the blame to someone else. But God wants us to go beyond the human, natural thing and become much more supernatural in our life.

Take Responsibility. The power to sin does not come from the devil, but from your old man. When you pass on the responsibility for sin, you pass on the need for the cross of Christ, and become religious in your behavior. Do not blame the devil. The devil did not make you do it. You sinned.  Take responsibility for your sin. Tell the truth, you did it because you wanted to do it. That’s the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth….

I want you to know that God created and fashioned us in such a way that Satan cannot, in any way, physically force us to do something, nor can he overtake our body and make it act against our will. Satan can only plant thoughts into our minds and try and deceive us. He cannot make us act on those thoughts. It is our choice how we will act on the thoughts and feelings in our minds and hearts. Besides, to give credit to Satan for our actions is to deny the power of God within us to act for ourselves.

So where do we get the strength and power to banish Satan from our minds and hearts? Where can we find protection? How can we stay safe from deception and lies and temptation all around us? We’ve already looked at the most crucial element: knowing God’s Word and hiding it in our heart. The second way to resist temptation is to understand how temptation works. We are tempted when desire and opportunity come together. Think of every time you gave in to a temptation. It always happens at the intersection of desire and opportunity. So when you feel the desire to sin, ask God to remove the opportunity. When you have the opportunity to sin, ask God to take away the desire. Remember, God will always provide a way of escape. Look for it. And remember, Satan can tempt us to sin, but he cannot make us sin. He can goad and press but never force us.

San Bernardino Native Supports One of Navy’s Most Versatile Combat Ships

Petty Officer 1st Class Clarence Jones

Petty Officer 1st Class Clarence Jones

SAN DIEGO – A 1998 Pacific  High School graduate and San Bernardino, California native is serving in the U.S. Navy as part of a team supporting one of the country’s most versatile combat ships.

Petty Officer 1st Class Clarence Jones is a gunner’s mate and a member of Commander, LCS Squadron One which supports both variants of littoral combat ships based in San Diego.

As a Navy gunner’s mate he is part of a training team for littoral combat squadron, specializing in training Navy boarding teams and weapons systems aboard ships.

“Even though I’m shore duty, it still gives me an opportunity to go out to the field and train crews of LCS ships,” said Jones. “I enjoy training others to do their job effectively for when they go out to the fleet.”

The LCS platform has a unique manning concept called “3-2-1,” where three crews serve aboard two different littoral combat ships, one of which is deployed.  This innovative manning concept allows the LCS to spend more time forward deployed without overtaxing the crew, according to Navy officials.

Designed to defeat threats such as mines, quiet diesel submarines and fast surface craft, littoral combat ships are a bold departure from traditional Navy shipbuilding programs. The LCS sustainment strategy was developed to take into account the unique design and manning of LCS and its associated mission modules.

“I have a pretty good chain of command, when stuff needs to get done it will get done,” said Jones. “Leadership looks out for their junior sailors, to where junior sailors look up to their chain of command.”

According to Navy officials, the path to becoming an LCS sailor is a long one.  Following an 18-month training pipeline, sailors have to qualify on a simulator that is nearly identical to the ship.  This intense and realistic training pipeline allows sailors to execute their roles and responsibilities immediately upon stepping on board.

“Sailors that work aboard this platform are expected to be capable of performing a variety of tasks to assist in the completion of the LCS mission,” said Capt. Warren R Buller, Commander, LCS Squadron One. “The training that is required of our sailors is rigorous and difficult. This ensures that they are mission ready to defend and protect America at all times.”

As a service member supporting the LCS mission, Jones explained they are building a legacy that will last beyond their lifetimes. Sailors know how important it is for the Navy to develop new war fighting capabilities to continue their success on the world’s oceans.

“When I joined the Navy, I came in with the idea to serve my country the best that I can,” added Jones. “When I took the oath, I took every word seriously, and I plan on carrying out the oath until the day I retire.”

Through innovative planning, the design of systems, and crew requirements, the LCS platform allows the fleet to increase forward presence and optimize its personnel, improving the ability of the Navy to be where it matters, when it matters.