2006 Regular Session

To: Rules

By: Senator(s) Jackson (11th)

Senate Resolution 31


     WHEREAS, Reverend Carl Edward Thomas, long-time Minister, Pastor and Confidant of the New Covenant Missionary Baptist Church of Clarksdale, Mississippi, departed this earthly life and was promoted to glory on Tuesday, February 28, 2006, as a legacy of love and community service came to an end; and

     WHEREAS, Carl Edward Thomas was born on January 2, 1956, in Jackson, Mississippi, to Mrs. Mary E. Thomas and the late Reverend S.V. Thomas.  He was the ninth of fourteen children; and

     WHEREAS, during his childhood, he completed his elementary and secondary education in the Jackson Public School System.  A graduate of Murrah High School, Reverend Thomas earned a Bachelor's Degree in Psychology in 1978 from Tougaloo College, Tougaloo, Mississippi.  In May 1982, he received his Masters of Divinity Degree from Reformed Theological Seminary in Jackson, Mississippi; and

     WHEREAS, he confessed Christ as his personal Savior at an early age under the leadership of Reverend Oten McQuarter.  He accepted his calling at his parent's home in his prayer closet at the age of 16.  He committed to the teachings of the church and never wavered from the high calling.  This was followed by his call as Pastor in 1974 at the New Hope Grove Baptist Church in Ridgeland, Mississippi.  Former pastorates include:  the Mount Pilgrim Baptist Church in Camden, Mississippi, and the Chapel Hill Missionary Baptist Church in Clarksdale, Mississippi.  His ministry included a twenty-one-year span as Minister, Pastor, and Confidant of the New Covenant M.B. Church of Clarksdale, Mississippi, where he led his congregation into a new $1.7 Million worship center on October 24, 2004; and

     WHEREAS, his affiliations and community service included:  Moderator of the Coahoma County Baptist District Association; Member of the Clarksdale Ministerial Association; Member of the Coalition for Children and Public Education Committee; Congress of Christian Education for the General Missionary Baptist State Convention of Mississippi, Inc.; Member of the Board of Directors for the National Baptist Congress of Christian Education; President of the Mississippi Baptist Seminary; Member of the NAACP; Board of Trustees of the Northwest Regional Medical Center; Board of Directors of the Clarksdale/Coahoma Chamber of Commerce; Immediate past President of the Mississippi Baptist Congress of Christian Education; Headmaster of the Covenant House Christian Day Care Center; Former Executive Secretary of the General Missionary Baptist State Convention of Mississippi, Inc.; Former Staff Chaplin for the Mississippi Department of Corrections at Parchman, Mississippi; and

     WHEREAS, in 1985, Reverend Carl Thomas and a group of believers in Christ felt the need to find a new place to worship.  It is obvious that the group of believers were of the Baptist faith because they named the church the New Covenant Missionary Baptist Church.  The first organizational meeting was held on April 2, 1985, and included 87 charter members.  It was by faith that on Sunday, September 22, 1985, the first worship service was held.  Reverend and Mrs. James Williams joined the fellowship as the first new members.  Auxiliaries were soon organized, and the church undertook projects.  New Covenant Missionary Baptist Church has truly come this far by faith.  On February 26, 2006, Pastor Thomas preached his final sermon entitled "What is Preaching?" based on 1 Thessalonians 2:1-6; and

     WHEREAS, while at Tougaloo College, he met and married a loving, gentle woman, Geneva Randle of Baltimore, Maryland.  They were joined in holy matrimony on September 19, 1976.  The Lord blessed their union with two sons and one daughter.  Those left to celebrate his life and treasured memories are an adoring and devoted wife, Geneva R. Thomas; two sons:  Carl Marcque (Renita) Thomas, Clarksdale, Mississippi, and Rev. Edward Shermaine (Keisha) Thomas, Batesville, Mississippi; one daughter:  Lydia Ruth Thomas, Clarksdale, Mississippi; ten sisters; three brothers; three brother-in-laws; four grandchildren; three adopted sons; two godchildren; a host of nieces, nephews and other relatives; friends and his beloved New Covenant Church family; and

     WHEREAS, it is with sadness that we note the passing of this spiritual and community leader, whose encouragement and direction will be missed:

     NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED BY THE SENATE OF THE STATE OF MISSISSIPPI, That we do hereby commend the life and humanitarian service of Reverend Carl Edward Thomas, Pastor of New Covenant Missionary Baptist Church in Clarksdale, Mississippi, and express to his surviving family the sympathy of the Senate on his passing.

     BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, That this resolution be presented to Reverend Thomas' surviving family and be made available to the Capitol Press Corps.