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'Black Marks on White Paper' to premiere Feb. 3 on AETN

Posted 31 Jan 2014

"Black Marks on White Paper," a biography of former Liberian Vice President Bennie D. Warner, will premiere on the Arkansas PBS (AETN) Monday, Feb. 3, at 8 p.m. The film, produced and directed by retired United Methodist elder Rev. Bob Hager of Paragould, demonstrates how a seemingly insignificant event can transform many lives.

In a small Liberian village in 1943, 8-year-old Warner observed a man writing with a pen and paper and asked his father, "How can I get one of those things that makes black marks on white paper?" His father told him he would need to attend school. This motivated him to seek the education that would lead him to become a teacher, pastor, Methodist bishop, vice president of his native land and, eventually, a missionary to America.

In 1977, Liberian President William Tolbert nominated Warner to become vice president of the Republic of Liberia, an office he held until 1980. In April 1980, while Warner was attending the United Methodist General Conference in Indianapolis, he received word of a military coup in Monrovia, where Tolbert and 13 members of his cabinet were executed. Warner was advised not to return home.

Warner became a man without a country. Unshaken by his circumstances, he declared himself a missionary to America. For more than 30 years, he has taught and served as a pastor in the United States. His strong faith and determined spirit have touched the lives of countless people.

"Black Marks on White Paper" is a Tiny Seed production. Partial funding for the film was provided through the United Methodist Foundation of Arkansas.

"Black Marks on White Paper" will repeat Wednesday, Feb. 26, at 6 p.m. on AETN Plus. AETN Plus (AETN-3) is available to watch over the air using an antenna hooked up to a converter box or a digital television. However, it is at the discretion of cable and satellite companies whether they make these channels available to their subscribers. A complete list of service providers currently carrying AETN Plus is available at

AETN is the premier broadcast venue for Arkansas's independent film producers. The network strives to showcase indie films from and about Arkansans, turning the spotlight to a wide range of topics that might otherwise go unnoticed.

Arkansas PBS (AETN) is Arkansas's statewide public television network that enhances lives by providing lifelong learning opportunities for people from all walks of life. AETN delivers local, award-winning productions and classic, trusted PBS programs aimed at sharing Arkansas and the world with viewers. AETN depends on the generosity of Arkansans and the State of Arkansas to continue offering quality programming. For more information, visit, or follow the AETN blog at AETN is broadcast on KETS (Little Rock), KEMV (Mountain View), KETG (Arkadelphia), KAFT (Fayetteville), KTEJ (Jonesboro), and KETZ (El Dorado).