bronze Peter Parros On Art, Creativity & Spirituality
Skincare for Winter
Nonprofit “That Suits You” Dresses Men for Success
A Lifetime of Wellness 4- Week Plan to Get You Started
â€œCelebrate and embrace th
Photographer: Amina Touray Photography Makeup Artist: Crystal Watana Models (from left to right): Krystal Willis, Alicia Erby, Linda Walton, Angela Meryl, and Chelsy Gantt
he beauty of women of colorâ€?
ello Bronze Beauties! I hope you are having a fabulous 2017 so far. We’re ready to start off the new year with a great issue just for you! Actor Peter Parros of Tyler Perry’s The Haves and the Have Nots is our cover star this month. If you are a regular follower or subscriber of our blog, you would know that is where we featured part 1 of Peter’s interview a few weeks ago. If you haven’t read it yet, then make sure you do because in it he dishes on HAHN’s current new season, as well as his character on the show. In this issue, Peter gives us an intimate glimpse of his life and thoughts behind the camera. Definitely a must read!
Other issue highlights include a touching interview with Dr. Deborah Fowler, founder of Divine Appointment Deliverance and Healing International Ministry, who candidly shares how she transformed past pain into healing. An inspiring interview with Gerard Kersey Jr. reveals how his nonprofit “That Suits You” empowers men to dress for success. And a very interesting interview (especially for the ladies) with Marcia Chambers, a sexual health consultant who is changing the conversation about sex between men and women. Make sure you read our Beauty, Food, and Wellness features as well. As always, I am honored that you have allowed Bronze to inspire you. Happy reading!
bronze magazine Co-Owner/Editor In Chief Shawn Stuldivant Co-Owner
Publisher/Editor-in-Chief Photographer: Amina Touray @aminatphoto Makeup: Niehla O @niehlao Wardrobe stylist: Janel Styles @janelstyles77 Actor: Peter Parros @officialpeterparros Grey t-shirt design: Blissker - @blisskerfashion Website www.blissker.com Jeans: Cohen & Son - @cohensons
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Features Photographer Amina Touray Issue Design/Layout Shawn Stuldivant Writers (this issue) Alexis Alfred Sheron Brown Schane Flowers Amelia Moore Tanasia Patterson
CONTENTS February â€˜17 16
6 Dr. Deborah Fowler 11 Marcia Chambers 26 Gerard Kersey Jr.
How Trials and Pain can Inspire Ministry The Right Time, The Right Place Nonprofit Founder provides Struggling Men with Tools for Success
10 Skincare for the Winter Food/Recipes
Make Skillet Pizza with Brazi Bites
Health/Wellness to a Lifetime 24 4ofWeeks Wellness
Dr. Deborah Fowler: How Trials and pain can inspire ministry by Alexis alfred
Dr. Deborah Fowler is passionate about helping the people in her community. She is the founder of Divine Appointment Deliverance and Healing International Ministry, designed to exemplify God’s love and compassion to all. Through this organization, Dr. Fowler is able to connect with people on a spiritual level to aid in the healing process. God and ministry sets her soul on fire. “I love seeing families restored, people transformed and seeing them learn who they are so that God can be glorified in their lives. I love helping people that society has thrown away. She uses her life as a testimony- being able to overcome her own obstacles in her life, from abuse as a child to being in a toxic relationship as an adult, she is now in a place where she can speak openly and freely about her past, in hopes that it will help others.
“I love seeing families restored, people transformed and seeing them learn who they are so that God can be glorified in their lives.”
- Dr. Deborah Fowler
Q: Please tell me a little bit about your childhood. What was the environment like?
A: My home environment was very interesting. There was always something going on. There were 8 of us and my mother was a single parent who worked at night, so there was not a lot of supervision. We grew up in poverty in a gang infested neighborhood. We moved often because mom could not always pay the rent. There was always a lot of conflict in the house, especially racial conflict. My younger brother and I are mixed with African American and Hispanic, and my older siblings are Mexican and Irish. We all know in the early 60s there was a lot of racial division, which spilled over into our home. As a child, I was always sick and suffered from many different ailments. Our home environment was very abusive and often very violent. Mom worked hard to support us the best she could. There were good things that I remember, such as my mother teaching me to skate and crochet. Q: Did you enjoy your childhood? A: I have memorable moments in my childhood; however, there were so many things that happened to me and my younger siblings such as sexual, emotional, and physical abuse. This caused me to grow up with a lot of fear and anxiety. You’ve heard the saying, “home is where the heart is.” As a young girl and teenager I always wanted to be somewhere else. I grew up as somewhat of a loner and stayed and played by myself. When violence would break out in the house I would always find a closet or a place under a bed to hide because it was safer. I never wanted to be at home because there was always violence, which caused a lot of fear. I used to love to go with my Aunt Dorothy, who taught me early-on to help others with needs. Aunt Dorothy would take me with her to pass out bread to other children in poor neighborhoods. Q: Were you close to you parents and siblings? A: Unfortunately, I never knew my biological father, but loved my stepfather; He did not live in the house with us. He was my older sibling’s father but treated me just like I was one of his. Early on my relationship with my mother was not very good and I acted out in rebelliousness to get back at her. As I grew older I began to understand some of the struggles my mother dealt with because I began to deal with some of those same issues. But God restored our relationship. I was number 6 of eight children. I was closer to my 2 younger siblings and my oldest sister Arlene who was more like a mother to me. Arlene truly watched over me and would protected me. As a teenager, I went to live with my older brother, who taught me great life lessons and instilled in me a work ethic and principles that I use today and have passed on to my children. Q: How did this environment affect you growing up? A: Because of my upbringing, I believe it stagnated my development academically. I believe because it was so chaotic in the house and there was not much adult engagement with me, many of the things that children learn in those first few critical development years I missed. As an adolescent, because of the lack of supervision I grew 8
up fast and experienced things most don’t experience until adulthood. I struggled with low self-esteem, sadness, anxiety, and depression. By the age of 14 I went to live with my older sister Arlene because my mother’s husband was a pedophile who was trying to abuse me sexually, and I exposed him. Eventually I suffered a nervous breakdown. Arlene taught me many life lessons that brought me through some of the most difficult times in my life. For a short period I went back to live with my mother, only to one day come home from school and find my mother had packed up and moved without telling us. So from age 15 to 16 my younger sister and I were homeless and lived in a drug house; and if we did not get there by a certain time we would have to walk the streets until time to go to school. At an early age, I was partying and using drugs. Eventually I moved in with my brother and sister in-law, who taught me business skills and work ethic, which became very useful for the work that I do. Q: When did you know your purpose, and understand your calling in life? A: My older sister always told me, “You are different than everyone else.” I did not quite understand what she meant. But as I’ve become an adult, I understand more and more. I wear many hats today- Bishop, Mentor and CEO, but most of all, Servant. As a young girl I spent so much time alone. My grandmother would tell me, “Meha when you are scared, pray and talk to God.” So, when I was hiding under the bed or in the closet I learned to talk to God. I developed a relationship with God at an early age, where I would pray He would show me things, and things would happen. I have always just known when something was about to happen. All the prayer time came in very handy throughout my life. In 1997 I was called to full time ministry, eventually opening Divine Appointment Deliverance & Healing International Ministries. I remember as a teenager, a friend’s baby died and the priest did not show up to do the funeral. They asked me to do the funeral and I did. I believe God was at work then preparing me for ministry today. I’ve always had compassion and wanted to help others. Some memorable moments I believe shaped me into who I am today were when my uncle and grandmother, who were very active in their church, would take me with them to pray for people in the hospital. I used to visit my God Mother Nellie, who had a home for runaway teenage girls. I loved to visit with her and hear the stories she would tell about the lives of the young girls she would help. My aunt Dorothy would take me to give neighborhood children bread. So I guess amid all the chaos of my home life there were those that were training me for the work I do now. I believe everything that I experienced in my personal life prepared me for today and all that I do, and is deeply rooted in serving others and helping them find their God ordained destiny. Q: How did you come up with the vision for Divine Appointment Deliverance & Healing International Ministries? A: As a little girl when visiting my grandmother and uncle they would always take me to church. My uncles were Evangelists, always preaching the gospel. Over my lifetime, I have experienced many ups and downs, such
as my daughter’s near fatal accident when she was two, which changed me forever. I spent 27 years in an abusive relationship with my kids’ father and many other circumstances that I persevered through that many don’t recover from. I met my spiritual mentor, who taught me about ministry and God’s Kingdom. My mentor would bring ministry leaders to my house for prayer, which began Elijah’s Brook. This is a ministry for church leaders that are struggling in their calling. Then out of Elijah’s Brook came Divine Appointment Deliverance & Healing International Ministries. The ministry is 10 years strong now. Even though I grew up so rough, when I talk about it today, it’s like I’m talking about someone else’s life. I don’t live there anymore. I have always been drawn to help hurting people and wanted them to experience God and how He pulled me out of the dark places that I had lived for so long. The Lord has delivered my soul from that place of bondage I grew up in. Q: What is Bridge of Hope Community center, and what type of programs does it hold for the community? A: Bridge of Hope’s is a children, youth and young adult organization I established in 2010. Its mission is to enable individuals to achieve their God given potential in life. We focus on the whole person. Our goal is to change the community one heartbeat at a time by helping individuals secure education and economic self-sufficiency through programs, information, and access to resources. The core of Bridge of Hope is to train them in Godly principles, who He is and who He has called them to be. Nurture growth, increase self-esteem, improve decision making and provide effective lifelong tools. We serve ages 4 - 25 years of age and consider the deeper issues that cause behavior problems.
would ensure that young people that crossed my path would not have to experience the things I experienced as a young girl. Q: What words of wisdom do you live by? A: God is able, regardless of how bad things are they can always get better. If we draw to Him, He will give us the strength. Forgiveness is critical for individuals to heal from past hurts and succeed in life. You have to learn to forgive! As a young person, I did everything out of rebelliousness because I thought I was getting back at my mother, but was only hurting myself. Once I forgave, I was able to move forward. Q: Where do you see yourself in the next 5 years in regards to your ministry, your passions, and your own personal goals? A: In 5 years I plan to build a Kingdom campus that will house the ministry, a school of ministry and expand the program offerings of Bridge of Hope. I plan to write several books that will help ministry leaders, hurting parents with disabled children, youth and young adults. Dr. Fowler has two children that are very successful in their careers. Fowler makes sure that she shares her wisdom with her children. She will continue to expand her ministry and outreach to help people. Her words of wisdom that she leaves readers with is to “Obey words of wisdom, love yourself and be thankful for the little things.”
The vision came from my upbringing. I vowed that one day I
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Marcia Chambers: The Right Time, The Right Place
Marcia Chambers is a Sexual Health Consultant that is changing the way women and men talk about sex. By Alexis Alfred
She is the creator of S.W.E.L.L. (Sexual Wellness & Empowered Living Lifestyle, to empower women in every aspect of their lives. From a very young age, Marcia Chambers knew she wanted to be a doctor and help people. The Jamaican native migrated to the United States when she was 16- years-old. Upon her arrival to the states she had already graduated high school, but was very surprised to find out that her credits did not transfer over from Jamaica. She had to complete an extra year in high school before being able to attend college in the United States. Although this situation was not ideal, Chambers is a firm believer that the
Photos by Tanzie Johnson
universe puts people in the exact places they are supposed to be. While in high school in the United States, she met an army recruiter, where she had the idea to join the army to pay for medical school. She admits that since a young age, she's battled with image issues, so enlisting in the army was a “trial and error’ type of situation. Chambers was married when she went into the army, but got divorced not to long after. “It was a very toxic relationship.” Once she enlisted in the army she immediately realized how much she enjoyed it. She liked that she was able to travel to new places and connect with people BRONZEMAGONLINE.COM
from all over the world. Chambers has always been interested in different cultures from a young age, and emerges herself completely when traveling. She stayed in the army until it was time for war and when it was time for her to study medicine it did not work out because she struggled with organic chemistry. Chambers then decided to switch gears and go into the legal industry. “This is where I found that I liked talking, but I was still baring my own cross because my self-esteem was down. The toxic relationship kind of scared me in a lot of areas. It took a while for me to discover who I really am and to shed that layer that had grown because of that toxicity.” Years later, Chambers would go on to try her hand at many different things to be able to feed her daughter, get herself through college and put her daughter through private school. She worked in real estate and did everything in her power to make sure she put her daughter through college. Though working in real estate, Chambers started to notice a change not only in herself, but in her relationships with people. She started to talk to people on a more personal, concerned level. This is where she realized that many people suffer from physiological traumas like herself and they relate to people because of the trauma. She recalls a time when a woman she did not know opened up to her about being abused by her spouse. She understood that business is all about relationships. “Relationships are not in the box of mother and daughter, father and son, employee and employer, but it’s all of that and it’s how you relate to other people, and more so how you relate to yourself.” When it came to relationships, Chambers noticed that she had a fear of commitment. “I had already had a toxic relationship, I didn't want to have another one. Sometimes you have relationships where people who show signs of, ‘oh this could be bad,’ and I would leave.” Chambers would find herself dating often but would never allow herself to get into a serious relationship. When she started to reflect on her actions, she realized that “God or 12
the universe puts you in certain situations for certain things.” She realized that she wanted to heal people’s hearts, so she started with her own heart first. She started with taking pride in all that she had done for herself and her daughter. “I felt so accomplished, so my confidence and self-esteem was starting to come back. But I still suffered through other physiological traumas. My mother would always call me “fat,” and she would do this because that’s what she was used to. She thought that that would strengthen me, when in actuality it was only breaking me down.” When she started to focus on the healing of her heart, she took note of everything she had been through and how it made her the woman she is today. She admits that she would compare herself to other women all the time. “If I see a woman walking down the street portraying the image that I would like to portray- a nice curvaceous figure and walking with her head held high, then I’d notice the size of the woman and get concerned. I would ask my mother, or my daughter if she was with me, “Do I look like that?” I would do it constantly. One day my daughter told me not to ask her anymore.” This was a wake up call for Chambers, who then took time to reflect upon her actions and really acknowledge that she was struggling with self-esteem. She built up her self-esteem by repeating affirmations to herself in the mirror and getting to know herself. “When you say it, when you think it, the words start to become a part of you.” In healing herself she found her true purpose. S.W.E.L.L. (Sexual Wellness & Empowered Living Lifestyle) for Women came about for Cambers when she was still in real estate. “This is when the market started to take its turn. Another colleague of mine approached me and said, “Do you know we can make some extra money selling toys?” From that pointthey created their own business, found a distributor, and decided that they are going to have a niche for themselves. “We didn't want to be like everybody else
who just went out there and had passion parties and just sell the toys. We wanted to educate women on what the toys are for, what they can do for you and how they work, because we found that people go to these sex shops, they pick up something, and end up in the emergency room because they are using them incorrectly.” Chambers recalls that she started this venture in the beginning stages of the internet, and with having very little knowledge of the internet she remembers the labor intensive nights that went into this project. Chambers and her partner would go out and market themselves, get people to sign up for parties and give referrals. The two worked for a year before separating. Chamber explains, “I said to her, this could be so much bigger. She didn't want that so we decided mutually to dissolve it.” After that, people would ask Chambers to host parties, but she realized that she wanted to do more than that. She wanted to really educate those around her. After joining a speakers bureau and being told that there was no market for her if she wanted to talk about sex, she took matters into her own hands. She decided to research this market and found that there was not only a desire but a need for this type of dialogue between women. “Here I am,” she said, “developing something that’s all about women, all about empowering women, all about being able to have women gather
together and trust each other, all about women gaining that confidence in themselves, all about women learning about adult toys and how they are not only for a pleasurable benefit, but for health benefits as well. S.W.E.L.L. is all about women coming together in a community that’s safe and pure, talking with each other.” S.W.E.L.L. also has online courses that focus on different areas of sex, types of sex, and how there are toys and foods that can help. As for S.W.E.L.L.’ s future, Chambers plans on expanding her brand and her reach. She has just recently completed her first webinar, which allows her to reach out to people all over the world. She does a lot more traveling to help women who cannot find the time to take care of themselves. She plans on taking the group on international and local trips to help women carve out time to pamper and tend to themselves. “Women so often only focus on taking care of everybody else, while neglecting their own wants and needs,” she says. Chambers wants to continue to have open dialogue with the women of S.W.E.L.L., while also continuing to trust that GOD will put her in the right place at the right time, always.
How to make Skillet Pizza with Brazi Bites
Brazil’s most popular snack food Pão de Queijo can be had here in the U.S.A. and it’s called Brazi Bites! With their crispy crust, fluffy center and irresistible taste, Brazi Bites Brazilian Cheese Bread are great served alongside your favorite meal, enjoyed as after-school snacks, game day munchies, or party appetizers. Brazi Bites are 100% natural and use the perfect blend of only the finest, hand-picked ingredients – like fresh cheese, eggs and milk – with absolutely nothing artificial. And because it uses tapioca flour, it’s naturally gluten-free. Just 20 minutes in the oven creates delicious Brazi Bites, choose from 4 savory flavors, including Cheddar Parmesan, Garlic, Asiago, Zesty Pepper Jack, and 3 Cheese Pizza. Three Cheese Pizza flavor launched October 2016. www.brazibites.com Serves 2-4 Ingredients: 35 pieces of Brazi Bites thawed to room temp 1/4 cup garlic cloves 1/2 cup olive oil 8 oz fresh mozzarella 1 tsp dry oregano Fresh black pepper Mint for garnish Reduced balsamic 1 oz Parmesan 4 oz ricotta cheese 1 Heirloom tomato sliced Fresh basil sprigs
Preparation: 1) Make the garlic puree by simmering garlic cloves in oil until soft. Strain garlic from the oil and process in a food processor until smooth. Set aside, saving garlic oil. 2) Combine Parmesan, ricotta and 2 T. garlic puree until smooth. 3) Combine all Brazi Bites together and knead into one large ball. Set aside. 4) On a marble or stainless table surface, spread olive oil to keep dough from sticking. Drizzle olive oil on your hands too. 5) Next, coat a cast iron or round baking dish with extra virgin olive oil. Press your dough down into the pan and push it up around the sides about 1 to 1.5 inches. With a fork poke the pizza dough all over. Brush the dough with some of the garlic oil. 6) Add the Parmesan/ricotta mixture on top. Add fresh mozzarella. Sprinkle the dry oregano and on top. 7) Bake until the cheeses melts. and crust is golden, 35-40 minutes. 8) Add the fresh heirloom tomatoes and fresh basil. Drizzle reduced balsamic on top. Add fresh pepper. 9) Remove pizza from skillet and let rest for 3 to 5 minutes before slicing. Enjoy! Recipe from Brazilian Flair in the USA
Brazi Bites Chips and Guacamole Ingredients: 1 bag of Brazi Bites Brazilian cheese bread (use Zesty Pepper Jack for an extra kick) 4 large Haas avocados, ripe 4 roma tomatoes (pulp removed and diced) 1/2 red onion, finely diced 1 large jalapeño (seeds and ribs removed and minced) 1/2 bunch cilantro, chopped 1 T. garlic, minced juice of 2-3 limes salt
Preparation: For the Guacamole: 1) Cut avocados in half and remove the pit. Scoop out the fruit and place into a medium bowl. Squeeze a little lime juice over the avocados to keep from browning. 2) Mash the avocado to your desired consistency and add the tomatoes, onions, garlic, cilantro and jalapeños stirring the mixture gently. 3) Add salt and more lime juice to taste. Add more or less of your favorite ingredients to suit your taste. 4) Serve with crispy Brazi Bites “chips.” For the Brazi Bites Chips: 5) Follow the baking instructions on the back of the package. Let cool for a couple of minutes. 6) Cut each Brazi Bite in half and put cut side down on a sheet tray. Press down with your palm to flatten them out. 7) Bake again at 450F for 10 minutes or until crispy. 8) Serve with guacamole or your favorite dip! Recipe from Brazilian Flair in the USA
Peter Parros The Man Behind the Camera Written By Amelia â€œAmeliaismoreâ€? Moore Photographer: Amina Touray @aminatphoto Makeup: Niehla O @niehlao Wardrobe stylist: Janel Styles @janelstyles77 Actor: Peter Parros @officialpeterparros Grey sweater with hoodie: Michael Stars - @michaelstarsman Light blue jeans design: Cohen & Son - @cohensons www.cohensons.com All clothing provided by @mediaplaypr
ar too many times we see actors on-screen and think we know them personally, when the truth is, all we know is the character they play. Many of these talented thespians are about far more than just their physical attributes, or even the role(s) they portray. For this second half of our 2-part interview with actor Peter Parros (David Harrington on Tyler Perry’s The Haves and the Have Nots), we had a chance to talk to the person and creative behind the camera. Who is he? What drives his creativity, and what is next? You might be pleasantly surprised with the answers to these questions. In the end you will make your own conclusions, which Peter feels is the true purpose of art. With that said take the journey and enjoy…..
Amelia Moore: What is interesting about you as an actor is that you are also a writer. As an actor, you take someone else’s words and bring them to life. However, as a writer, you create the words that others bring to life. As an actor, do you ever find it difficult to act out words, when the writer inside of you might have other words you feel can express the moment better? Have you ever used your writing skills to create a stronger communication within a scene you have been asked to play? Peter Parros: Good Question. Well, in different situations I have. I don’t know if I should tell this story, but I will. I learned a lesson when I was doing ‘One Life to Live.’ I had serious issues with a scene we were doing. We were doing a drug story line. I didn’t feel like they were dealing with the issue responsibly,
or putting out a message that I wanted to put out in the world. I went to the producer and asked if they could work on it and change it because I didn’t feel comfortable with it because it was terrible. They didn’t change it and I said they have to change it or get someone else. They got someone else. Long/short of the story. I ended up on ‘As the World Turns,’ it was a restoration piece as the same character but with a Christian base. What I learned from that experience was, with anything that I have a serious problem with involving the script, instead of saying to change it I would write it and give it to the producer. With Tyler there are only minor word changes and not script changes. He does what he does well. With him it’s more of an approach rather than story direction change.
AM: What other writing are you doing? PP: I actually have two comic book series that I am working on right now. One is called Earth Bound Angel and the other is an existing property called, Kidz of the King. Kidz of the King is a Christian based comic and Earth Bound Angel isn’t Christian specific. They each are six comic books that will be turned into graphic novels. Earth Bound Angel is scheduled to be released late March. For Kidz of the King we just drafted the six stories because I’m writing it with other people. They should be out hopefully by late April and every other month for a year.
so Jesus Christ is my Lord and Savior; that is what makes life make sense for me. It’s what I think gives what I do significance. I had a really interesting conversation with my cousin recently about art and spirituality. What is the purpose of art beyond commerce, especially when you do it as a profession? We believe that art is something that elevates you as a person. It elevates your mind, and somehow it’s made to raise your humanity and your consciousness of God and spirit as well as your connection to each other. How do you bring all of that in a context, which is difficult for me sometimes as an actor, when you are not controlling the story? As one producer said to me, one-time actors are the low man on the totem pole. We are the prop to be moved by the writers, the producers and the director. When you spend most of your time
in that space, it’s a tremendous blessing as an actor to be in a role that you feel fills who you are spiritually as well as creatively. That’s great! As a writer, I have more ability to do that rather than as an actor. Yet as a writer, the question becomes how to present the stories in a way that you are not beating someone in the head with a message. They are entertained, yet their thoughts are stirred in a way that after they read or watch it they want to talk about it and get more information on it. Art is something that can expand you. There are a lot of ways to accomplish that goal. Drama can do that as well as comedy and documentaries. We humans are the only beings that create art. To me, art is something unique within us spiritually that is important to express.
AM: In my research I saw that you rely strongly on faith. How important is GOD to you? PP: God is everything. I’m Christian,
Blue /grey sweater with suede detail on shoulder: Michael Stars - @michaelstarsman Website www.michaelstars.com/mens-clothing. All clothing provided by @mediaplaypr
AM: Well said, I concur! Let’s expand on that creativity. You have your own production company. Outside of the Christian message, how important is family entertainment and the need to fill the generation gap with family viewing of programs? Is that a focus of your production company Ten Talents Productions? PP: Yes that is a focus. Kidz of the King is primarily geared toward a young audience. It’s extremely important to speak to young people. Reggie & Dionne Byers are the actual creators of the property. I’m co-writing it with the Byers. What drew me to that story is as a kid I grew up with the vision that all angels were white. So I used to think when you die everyone turns white. Kidz of the King is multicultural and diverse. Truth is African American, Faith is Hispanic, Zeal is American, Temperance is British, Love is Messianic Jewish, Wisdom is East Indian, Hope is Hawai-
ian, and Joy is Jamaican, so wherever you are as a child you have someone who can relate to you. When we say everyone is made in the likeness of God, everyone should see themselves in that image. As a kid, outside of church there should be options to inspire you. It’s important in entertainment that you have all these things that can portray power and strength beyond humanity. I also feel it’s important to have something biblical that young people can relate to beyond their humanity. Something that relates to their desire for power, strength or something more that again would turn them back toward God, back towards Christ. I feel that is what’s missing in entertainment more so now than ever. It’s unfortunate that the parent image is getting dumber and dumber. We had a show, Father knows Best. Yet now it’s the opposite. My example is my daughter. Now, when she was young she was the sweetest little girl. She was home schooled, has nice
friends, and then at one point she was really bad and was acting out. Well, during that time she was watching a show called Rugrats . The only girl in the show was Angelica and her behavior was really bad. Well, my daughter was copying her behavior because she thought that was how girls had to act. We had to have a conversation with her and give her a different model to follow. Which is why I was so drawn to Kidz of the King. I want kids to say they want to be like Love, or Hope or Joy. One thing I learned from Tyler is invest in yourself. I took the attitude that I’m going to make this happen. I got the rights, I got the people, we’re working and writing and finding the artist, and if I can get somebody to help with distribution great, but if not, I’m going to use my social media to sell the product. It’s key not to rely on the people that promise things and don’t come through. Instead, keep on pushing through the challenges until you do. This is a message to
anybody. I have had a lot of people that saw my stuff who were excited about it and then didn’t move in the direction as I thought they would. I will say this, if things came through the way they were planned, I would not be positioned the way I am now with this project.
vidual. I think we all realize that we are in a lifestyle that is not sustainable, especially as it applies to a global context. We can’t keep getting bigger and bigger and wanting more and more. I think younger people understand that concept and older people are realizing it as well. I think it starts with the spiritual, and then the rest will follow. Look at Tyler and Oprah. Both of them have a spiritual base to their success. When others weren’t doing it yet, they knew it was their direction. That change in direction made them successful and helped a lot of people think and act differently at the same time. Changing lives.
inner city children have to deal with daily. There was a scene where one of the kids gets offered to smoke a joint. The little girl refuses it and runs away. When I was shopping a deal for the DVD through a Christian book store, they refused to sell the DVD unless I removed that scene. Yet, to me that was an important scene and an important message that it’s okay to say no. They didn’t want to have kids introduced to this issue. They felt parents would be forced to address that issue. However, it’s an issue our children deal with if they live in the inner city urban life. That experience made me realize that there are gatekeepers that say this is the message that all Christians should get. Social media allows you to contact people and get out a message to its audience without anyone stepping in your way. Again, Tyler Perry is a great example. Critics didn’t like his movies, yet his audience loved his movies and made them #1 at the box office. I like social media because there are things that I have to say and there is no one that can get in between me and my audience. Once it’s out there you will
AM: Society as we know it has changed. Baby Boomers face many of the same challenges as their younger Millennials. What do you think is the cause of these parallel lives, even with them living in different eras? PP: Life as we know it is changing. I think technology has a lot to do with it, as well as the manner in which we get our information. People know times are changing, but they are somewhat lost in how to change with the times. Many think the change is outward, whereas I think it has to begin inward. If you know yourself, then you will understand how life changes affect you. When you look at our last two elections, both Obama and Trump campaigned for change. People know things have to change. However, we can’t change society if we don’t change the indi20
AM: Speaking of technology, at first you were someone who never used social media, and then life happened, and now you have become a guru at it. What is your take on social media? How important is it in today’s business? PP: Okay, well my take on it is, part of it goes back to Kidz of the King. I did a video and DVD on that initially. It was designed for an urban (city) audience. The show deals with real issues the
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know immediately what people think about your message. AM: Your dedication to the youth goes beyond writing, acting and producing. You actually created a youth sailing program. What motivated you to start Parros Sailing 4 Life? PP: I learned to sail in high school. I love the world of sailing because it puts you in touch with nature and your environment. You must be sensitive to the wind, the sun, the currents and everything else around you, and between you and your destination. Again, going back to the message in the Bible relative to how we live as moderns. Technology can disconnect us from Nature. We live in controlled environments. Despite the weather outside, we climate control our houses and our cars. But when sailing, you’re subject to the environment. You can’t control it, so you have to learn to work with it. There is a boat near mine and I love the name. It is called PP: Actors traditionally are gypsies. The first thing you should learn is the craft. If you want theatre, NY is the city. You should also be willing to travel. It’s either a touring company or NY if you want to make a living. For film and TV it’s a little different. Atlanta right now is becoming a big center for production. So I would say NY, L.A. or Atlanta. You got to learn the craft. Back to social media, there are so many ways to learn the craft that you can grow within the business. There are more internet shows that are landing network deals. Tell your message, relate to the audience, and do it as much as you can to develop your craft. The opportunities will either come to you, or through your work you will create them. AM: My last question. With all the things you have completed in your career, do you still want to be the black Arnold Schwarzenegger?
“It Depends.” Sailing is a great way to teach young people to be aware of their environment because your experience depends on so many variables. AM: What type of boat do you have? PP: I have two boats. Both are traditional sailboats. One is a 22ft boat and the other is 33ft. The 33ft boat is designed to sail around the world. There is a book I read years ago called, First you have to row a little boat. It is life lessons and guidelines for sailing. He writes about things like momentum. When you’re in a boat, if you are rowing and you stop, you will keep going in that direction. You have to do something actively to counter that momentum. When you are walking you just stop, that is the rules of land. But life is more like being in a boat. If you are taking life on a certain course, and you just say you want to take a different direction, even if you stop what you are doing your life is going to continue in that direction. (Laughter) PP: (Laughter) That’s funny! That’s funny how that keeps coming back. Let me explain. I always wanted to do action/adventure movies or roles. I wanted to be like Wesley Snipes. I wanted to do action and the thing is, a lot of them are not tall. I would audition for a lot of these roles, but I wouldn’t get them because I was too tall. I got Knight Rider because Hasselhoff was tall. Unless it was a lead role, I would never get cast for those roles. So to answer your question, the answer is, Yes! I still would love to do an action film. AM: It’s not often that after an interview with someone I take time to digest the knowledge given to me within the conversation. It was a delight to interview Peter, maybe because of his insight and respect for his craft and the people he works with. It might also be his reverence
You have to actively make an effort in the opposite direction for your life to change. Your life is going to be subject to conditions. Without getting technical on how a sail works when you sail, you can sail in any direction except directly in the wind. If you want to go in the direction of the wind you have to zig zag to get there. You keep in mind where you are going even though you are not heading directly there. Life is like that. Sometimes you say I want to get my bachelors in something but right now I have to work to get the money to pay for school. You have to work your way there. You have to deal with the conditions of your travel. However, as long as you stay patient and keep your eye on your destination, you will get there. There are a lot of life skills kids can learn through sailing. It’s a fun, learninng environment that now we are adding STEM within the program. AM: East Coast vs. West Coast as an actor. Which is best for what? and spiritual faith, understanding that his talent is a gift from God and with that gift comes a responsibility to cultivate conversation and insight. Maybe it’s his dedication to giving our youth a different message to learn and live life. Or, maybe it’s the diversity of the many characters he has played over the 30 years he has been an actor that captivates my attention. Whatever it is, I know Peter Parros is a name we are going to hear again and again until he decides to stop. Yet, like the sailboat he loves to sail, his momentum won’t be stopped so easily because he is looking forward with the wind on his back. Stay tuned for Moore! Til then, keep reading Bronze Magazine! Peace
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Four Weeks to a Lifeti What do you value? Depending on your lifestyle, answers will differ; however, there is one thing we all value. There is one answer we all agree on despite what statistics imply. This one thing we think about often, but we don’t get to attend to it regularly. This one thing is our wellness. Now let’s get clear, wellness is more than just your physical health. The World Health Organization reminds us that wellness is “a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being. It goes beyond mere freedom from diseases or infirmity and emphasizes the proactive maintenance and improvement of health and well-being .” Wellness is about being proactive--not reactive—and includes the attitudes, habits and activities that “prevent disease, improve health, enhance quality of life, and bring a person to increasingly optimum levels of well-being .” Your optimal well-being includes four major categories: physical activity, career, spirituality and relationships. Are you surprised that food wasn’t listed? Well, the truth is that our food choices are influenced by these categories. For example, have you noticed that when you become serious about an exercise program you become equally excited about eating better? This is because exercise releases chemicals that make you feel good and you are inspired to eat better. But if any of the four categories are out of whack—you have a job you don’t love, you’re not grounded in and connected to your belief system, your relationships are draining—it can drive you to the junk food aisle and your wellness is out the window. Unfortunately, many African American women don’t make time to prioritize their wellness. One main reason is because of lifestyle. Higher rates of African American women work and are heads of households than any other demographic. After working long hours, we come home to manage our responsibilities, eat what we can—many times outside food—go to bed, then repeat. On top of that, because so many of us are either heads of household and/or single, a good portion of our money goes to food, housing and transportation. To be clear, 66% of your money and almost 100% of your time is gone, yet you value your wellness . You want to be proactive, prevent disease and improve your quality of life, but can’t seem to find the time. It seems impossible, but guess what: it’s not. If you’re reading this right now, you can prioritize your wellness. Here’s how. First decide that your well-being is a marathon, not a sprint. Quick fixes to weight loss like timed challenges help jumpstart your journey, but they’re not enough because: 1) you need the attitude and behaviors that make your journey sustainable; and 2) wellness is about more than just weight loss. Second, commit to your marathon by connecting to past achievements. Think about something else you achieved like completing a degree, saving to buy a house, etc., then remind yourself that you’ve achieved long terms goals before, so you can do it again. Now that you’ve decided and committed, use this 4-week plan to begin your wellness journey. 1 Health promotion glossary update. (n.d.). Retrieved January 12, 2017, from World health organization website: http://www.who.int/healthpromotion/about/HPR%20Glossary_New%20Terms.pdf 2 Ibid. 3 African American women population. (n.d.). Retrieved January 12, 2017, from Black demographics website: http://blackdemographics.com/black-women-statistics/
by Sheron Brown P hD.
ime of Wellness WEEK ONE Take a few moments to journal/reflect on these questions: 1. Am I in the career I want? If not, what do I want and what can I do to begin movement toward that? 2. Do my spoken beliefs align with the way I live? If not, why not, and what can I do to begin to change that?
WEEK THREE Continue to journal this week and reflect on these questions: 1. What relationships are draining me? How can I cut back on how much energy I give to those relationships? 2. Am I involved in a regular routine of physical activity? If not, was I ever? What stopped it? What would I enjoy doing?
Sheron owns an integrative nutrition health coaching practice that specializes in helping women heal their bodies from conditions such as stress, diabetes, hypertension, anxiety, obesity and cardiovascular disease. As a yoga teacher, she integrates her love of the practice to help women improve their health and wellbeing. She is passionate about helping busy women prioritize themselves to improve their overall wellness. Connect with Sheron on Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter and request a complimentary consultation through her website at http://www.sweetedenbysheron.com.
WEEK TWO Be proactive about your snacks during the stressful workday. Pack snacks like apples, pears, dried fruit and nut mixtures, or grapes. These are all quick ways to keep your energy up in a natural, healthy way. Also, remember to drink water. Snacking this way can help you begin to crowd out foods that don’t serve your body well.
WEEK FOUR Start a physical activity. It can be what you wrote about or it can be as simple as walking, or even yoga. Both of these helps to burn fat, strengthen your muscles and improve your cardiovascular system…plus they are easy and fun. Week five and onward, continue to reflect and change, snack well and exercise. Before long you’ll see the thing you value become a regular part of your life and your wellness will be here to stay.
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Nonprofit Founder Provides Struggling Men with the Tools for Success by Tanasia Patterson
Gerard “PK” Kersey Jr. is a man on a mission. As the founder of the NYC based nonprofit organization That Suits You, Kersey empowers men and young men to dress for success. The happily married father of twin boys uses donations of gently used professional attire to provide deserving men with the suits they need for job interviews. He also provides suits to high school seniors for their prom and graduation. All they must do in return is attend a training on job readiness, which is also provided by Kersey’s organization. We caught up with Kersey to find out more about how he got started, how men benefit from his non-profit’s programs, and how the organization has grown.
Bronze Magazine: What made you want to start your organization? Gerard Kersey: I have worked for NY State for over 20 years and I have seen many men come to interviews and work dressed very unprofessionally. I have found that there were 2 reasons why this was so, because many men were never told the proper way to dress for work because they had no real male role models, and suits can be expensive. So, I wanted to help remove those barriers to help men get jobs and be promoted in order to take care of their families. BM: How many schools have you worked with thus far? GK: We have worked with several schools and colleges like John Jay College, Kingsboro, Medgar Evers, Borough of Manhattan Community college, etc. We love to give presentations and workshops to teach our young men about the importance of image.
tion? GK: Yes, we have men who have come back to say thank you. We have a few who have volunteered at some of our workshops and some have even donated some items. BM: What do the men learn during the training for job readiness? GK: We teach basic interview skills, (how to sit, speak, what to wear) but we also teach men how to tie a tie, we speak about social media, and my 2-favorite, building solid relationships and living your dreams. BM: Do you have a program for younger males? GK: We started out supplying clothing to men coming home from prison, but decided to also expand and be proactive by teaching our younger males. So yes, we are mentors for younger guys and we teach them some of the same topics, but on their level. The earlier you start, the better we all are for it.
BM: Do you have any men who come back afterwards to help out with the organiza-
BM: What made you choose the name “That Suits You”? GK: Great question. It was either SUITS R US OR THAT SUITS YOU. I wanted it to be catchy and relevant. I was surprised no one had used it, but I believe it was waiting for me. BM: Do you have more than one location? If so, where? GK: We are based in NYC, but we have several partners all over who conduct suit drives and drop off locations such as Virginia, Ohio, New Jersey, Washington, and are always looking for more. BM: What are the steps it takes to own your own business? GK: I believe each business will not be exactly the same but the basics are Make sure you have a strong desire to do it, Make sure there is a need for your services, Do your homework about what you need to begin, Prepare yourself for all the ups and downs of business, Share your desire with a select few (not necessarily for approval but for support if needed), Start knowing that you will have to make adjustments along the way, and Continue to learn and grow but never quit. BM: Next month makes 4 years
since you have started, how have you grown since then? GK: Yes, every year we have grown. We have grown in knowledge, services, space, and more importantly in relationships. Just a few months ago Gayle King invited me to her home to gather some suits and ties. That alone was priceless to me and she was just so welcoming and encouraging. BM: What specific jobs skills do you teach the men who come to your organization that will help them become future business owners? GK: The skills are how to build and leverage relationships to their advantage in building a business, how to use the magnificent tool of social media to promote their business DON’T EXPECT PEOPLE TO SUPPORT, WHAT YOU WON’T EXPOSE, always make a great first impression so that image is crucial, How to properly dress for business, Invest in themselves. We let them know how important it is to invest in conferences, books, videos to build up their knowledge, and Protecting and building their Credit. Anyone in business must
have an excellent credit history, and this is something that is not discussed much in school or at home but is a must have. We need 750 and better to do the things we need to do. And whatever we teach we make sure to tell the men ….Everything is POSSIBLE! BM: Since you show men how to properly dress, do you also show them the properly conduct an interview? GK: Yes, we give them all the information of arriving on time, how to look, how do you wait in the interview room, proper handshake. Mind your words and tone, dealing with distractions, etc. Then we conduct mock interviews and give them feedback and tips. BM: Many of our youth today can learn a lot from “That Suits You”. There are many people out there who don’t know how to conduct and interview or how to properly dress. This organization gives back and helps them become greater.
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Published on Feb 7, 2017
Published on Feb 7, 2017
Actor Peter Parros of Tyler Perry’s The Haves and the Have Nots is our cover star this month. In this issue, Peter gives us an intimate glim...