Master’s Message & From the East – December 2021


Master’s Message

“Know thyself ” is one of the Delphic maxims inscribed above the entrance to the Temple of Apollo at Delphi. The Delphic maxims were said to have been given by the Oracle at Delphi and are attributed to the Greek god Apollo.

This maxim has appeared throughout history, in works from Greek playwright Aeschylus, philosophers Socrates and Plato, poets Alexander Pope and Ralph Waldo Emerson, writings by MW Benjamin Franklin, and adorns the Tyler’s chair at the Scottish Rite SMJ headquarters, the House of the Temple in Washington D.C.

Throughout history, this maxim (the invitation to self-examination) has evolved. According to Socrates, true wisdom is knowing what you do not know. Knowing yourself includes recognizing the limits of your own wisdom and understanding, and what you have yet to learn. Similarly, to Plato, knowing thyself is a matter of freeing yourself from ignorance and seeking the light of knowledge. In Alexander Pope’s poem ‘An Essay on Man: Epistle II’, Pope proposes that man should learn to look inward at themselves in an effort to learn about their own nature, power, limitations, and weakness, with the purpose of gathering knowledge about oneself as a step toward enlightenment. In 1750, MW Franklin wrote “[t]here are three things extremely hard: steel, a diamond, and to know one’s self.”

As Masons, we strive for self-improvement, and honest introspection is an integral aspect of that pursuit. We must peer inward, strip away any preconceived expectations and honestly examine ourselves. Only then will one identify their limits and weaknesses, and be able to pursue the light and knowledge of self-improvement.

Fraternally,

Bryan S. Passione,
Worshipful Master

From the East

Brethren,

Dues notices for 2022 have been mailed and are due upon receipt. In the past year, many brothers have expressed displeasure with Grand Lodge’s desire to transition to a fully virtual blue card, and cease providing a physical blue card.

After the membership voted down legislation seeking to transition to virtual blue cards in 2020, Grand Lodge once again sought to pass similar legislation to strip members of their physical dues cards at the 2021 Grand Lodge Annual Communication. However, members spoke in opposition to the proposed legislation on blue cards at the Annual Communication and the legislation was amended on the floor. The amended verbiage was approved by the membership. Per the amended legislation, members will still have access to the virtual dues card through the Grand View platform, but Grand Lodge will also be obligated to provide blue cards to all members (not upon request or subject to Grand Lodge’s arbitrary determination).

During discussion on the legislation prior to voting, MW Monacelli confirmed that under the amended legislation, Grand Lodge will proactively send blue cards to the lodges, which will be consistent with how lodges have received blue cards in the past.

Brethren, your voice was heard in 2020 when the blue card legislation was defeated, and your voice was heard again in 2021 which resulted in the adoption of the amended legislation. Your vote matters!

November 21, 2021 at 9:00 am | Masonic Light


Master’s Message & From the West – November 2021


Master’s Message

My Brother,

Charity is an inseparable aspect of our great Fraternity. Together with “faith” and “hope”, we are encouraged to make charitable contributions to those who are in need as far as our ability to give permits. Charity is such an essential piece of our teachings, that it is the first lesson we are taught upon being initiated as an Entered Apprentice. The importance of charity is also reiterated in both the Fellowcraft and Master Mason degrees.

Our lodge is extremely fortunate, we have a special Trust for the dedicated purpose of charity and Brotherly assistance. The August C. and Martha Schneider Trust affords our lodge the ability to contribute financially to charities in our community.

In early September, Hurricane Ida pummeled New Jersey with heavy rain and winds, and flooding in the state was unprecedented. Rahway, a low-lying city, was hit particularly hard. Many homes, roads, and buildings were damaged from flood waters and other natural forces, including several lodges throughout the state. Our lodge building was, fortunately, not severely damaged. Although, we did appear to have some slight water damage on the second floor.

Additionally, the Rahway Food For Friends Food Bank lost the majority of their stored food due to flooding. As we enter November and approach Thanksgiving, it is another opportunity to reflect on our good fortunes and assist those in needs. Working wit the elected Officers and Schneider Committee, I have asked the Schneider Committee to authorize a donation in the amount of $500.00 to be made to the Rahway Food For Friends Food Bank to assist them in restocking the food bank. This donation would be in addition to the two previous $500.00 donations the lodge made to the Food Bank in 2020.

The Schneider Charity Committee is comprised of members who are appointed by the Worshipful Master each year. I have had the privilege of serving on the Schneider Charity Committee several times, and it is one of the most fulfilling Committees to be involved with. Please contact me or our Secretary if you have an interest in serving on the Schneider Charity Committee in the future.

Fraternally,

Bryan S. Passione,
Worshipful Master

From the West

My Brothers,

I send you greetings from the West my Brothers. With Installation only several weeks away, I thought I may dispense a little light to you on this ancient practice, though I must first mention that such an event is not entirely unique to our Fraternity.

As I mentioned above, this ceremony is of ancient origin and not exclusive to Freemasonry. Cultures and societies of the past had such practices with the succession of new kings, priest, and other ruling or governing individuals. However though, these practices were often called ‘inaugurations’, a term still in use today, because they were overseen by the augurs.

As a Masonic ceremony, the Installation was founded early on in its creation. In Anderson’s Constitutions, a stylized form of “Constituting a Lodge” was performed in 1723 by Duke Wharton, who was Grand Master at the time.

This writing contains the ceremony of installing a new Master and Wardens of a Lodge which contains the words “Shall, in due form, install them.” This is perhaps the earliest known Masonic use of the word “install”.

So when you attend Lafayette Lodge’s Installation this year and those of other lodges throughout your Masonic life, I hope you let your mind slip back into antiquity and understand you are part of something great, historic, and treasured by many.

Fraternally yours,

Michael S. Romano,
Senior Warden

November 12, 2021 at 1:49 pm | Masonic Light


Bring-a-Friend Table Lodge – Saturday, December 4


October 1, 2021 at 8:45 am | Lafayette Events


Masonic Moments, Vol. 3, Issue 9, October 2021


Masonic_Moments_Vol-3_Issue_9_October_2021_Final

Download PDF: Masonic_Moments_Vol-3_Issue_9_October_2021_Final

October 1, 2021 at 8:30 am | Masonic Moments


Master’s Message & From the West – October 2021


Master’s Message

My Brother,

Mental health issues do not discriminate. In 2019, more that 47,500 Americans ended their own lives, and over 750 of those were in New Jersey. For ages 10 – 64, death by suicide is a top 10 cause of death in New Jersey.

American Foundation for Suicide Prevention (AFSP), founded in 1987, is a voluntary health organization that aims to gives those affected by suicide a nationwide community empowered by research, education, and advocacy to take action against this leading cause of death.

AFSP is dedicated to saving lives and bringing hope to those affected by suicide. AFSP creates a culture that’s smart about mental health by engaging in the following core strategies:

  • Funding scientific research
  • Educating the public about mental health and suicide prevention
  • Advocating for public policies in mental health and suicide prevention
  • Supporting survivors of suicide loss and those affected by suicide in our mission

Mental health has been an issue prior to the pandemic but has been exacerbated by the Covid-19 pandemic. Mental health is still a taboo topic in a lot of communities, and any steps we can take to start (and continue) the conversation and remove the stigma are worthwhile endeavors.

While there is no single cause for suicide, there are risk factors and warning signs which may increase likelihood of an attempt. Join us at our Regular Communication on Friday, October 8th for a presentation from the AFSP that focuses on mental health, warning signs, and prevention methods. Learning this information can literally save lives.

Fraternally,

Bryan S. Passione,
Worshipful Master

From the West

My Brothers,

As we begin to prepare to close one Masonic year and begin anew I just wanted to say, as your Senior Warden, ‘thank you’. Thank you to everyone who helped your Lodge and your Brothers out during these most trying of times.

Freemasonry is defined different ways by many different Brothers but there is no denying that, at its heart, is Charity and Brotherly Love. The Brothers of Lafayette Lodge have always excelled at exemplifying those qualities and this was seen, in full grandeur, during 2020 and 2021.

It is my earnest desire that we do not become complacent as life, ever so slowly, goes back to the normal we once knew. The coming year will still provide many challenges to overcome and the Lodge and Brethren therein will continue to need your steadfast support.

In closing, I would like to congratulate WB Passione for a job well done. His leadership this year, combined with his wisdom to make the right decision, his love for Freemason, the Brethren, and Lafayette Lodge are every present and will carry on for years to come.

Fraternally yours,

Michael S. Romano,
Senior Warden

October 1, 2021 at 8:15 am | Masonic Light


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