Ecclesiates 3:1 - There's an opportune time to do things, a right time for everything on earth:
A Right Time for Birth
Ben Jones, Jr. was born on September 24, 1949, in Birmingham, Alabama to the late Catherine Saxton and Ben Jones, Sr. Ben fondly known as "Butch" was raised in a loving and supportive family. His parents instilled in him strong values. Early in his life he was taught to fight for what he believed in - so much so that at age 14, during the civil rights era Ben chose to skip school to participate in the children's march and was arrested. His remarkable courage is memorialized in a photograph which is on display in the Civil Rights Museum in Birmingham. He later participated in the march from Selma to Montgomery and heard the prophetic and powerful words of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
A Right time to Plant
He received his primary education in the public school system in Birmingham, Alabama. He left high school to join the Army and served in the Vietnam War.
Throughout his life he had a zeal for life long learning as evidenced by his numerous degrees. He holds a Doctorate of Ministry Degree at Virginia Union University School of Theology, a Master's of Divinity Degree from Howard University, a Master's Degree in Social Work from Columbia University and a Bachelor of Science Degree in Psychology from Brooklyn College.
Dr. Jones was ordained in 1996 to preach the gospel. From 1996 until 1999 he was the Minister of Missions and Outreach at the New Psalmist Baptist Church.
In 1996, Dr. Jones became the first African American recipient of the David H. C. Read Preacher and Scholar Award. This national competitive award is given to a graduating seminarian that demonstrates the greatest promise as a preacher and a scholar. As a result of his selection, he was invited to preach at the historic Madison Avenue Presbyterian Church in New York City.
A Right Time to Love
Ben was raised in a close and loving family. Each year they gathered in various cities throughout the southeast to celebrate family, food and fun. Some family members went on his honeymoon!
On December 24, 1983 Ben Jones, Jr. married his soul mate and best friend, Mary Parnell. Ben and Mary shared a sincere and loving marriage. They experienced what many only dream of - a marriage filled with unwavering love, deep devotion, open and honest communication and lots of laughter and joy.
He was the proud father of two daughters, Nia Elisa Jones and Imani Elise Jones. He was a loving and devoted father – spending endless hours talking with his girls about the joys and trials of growing up and making good decisions.
A Right Time to Reap
In 1999 he was called to pastor at the Little Ark Baptist Church (LABC). On Wednesday nights he led an anointed bible study designed to help all participants to have a personal encounter with the word of God. He instituted a discipleship ministry, which encourages scripture memorization and living the life of a true disciple of Christ. Under his leadership the church begun its first Prison Ministry and Food Bank Ministry to touch the lives of those outside of the congregation, and he started a Church Endowment Fund. He served as coordinator for the Dahlgren Site of the Evans-Smith Training Institute, which is an approved satellite location of the Virginia Union University, Samuel Dewitt-Proctor School of Theology. Recently, through Dr. Jones' leadership, LABC completed the purchase of property adjacent to the church for development of a community center.
Early in ministry, Dr. Jones established the Exodus Family Institute to support and empower families through various services.
Dr. Jones' ministry touched lives in the community and all over the world.
A Right Time to Embrace
Dr. Jones' embraced life to the fullest!
A Right Time for Death
Early in the morning on Monday, May 18, 2009, God called Dr. Jones to his resting place in Glory. His life has been a testament to his perseverance, unyielding dedication to help others and his steadfast love for his family and friends.