Category: Masonic Light

Master’s Message & From the Secretary’s Desk – September 2021

August 22nd, 2021 by

Master’s Message

My Brother,

Eighteen months from the start of the pandemic, the tide of the pandemic continues to ebb and flow, impacting lives around the world. At this point last year, many of us thought the worst of the pandemic would be behind us in 2021 and we would be resuming “life as normal.” Yet, here we are, in the second half of 2021 with cases and hospitalizations once again on the rise, many still working from home, events postponed or cancelled.

In my first Trestleboard message of this year, I expressed a desire to balance Masonic activities with a conservative and safe approach so we can ensure the safety of our Brethren. Luckily, at this point a vaccine is readily available for those who want to receive it. Therefore, steps can be taken to ensure we are better protected from the most serious risks of COVID-19. However, the vaccine is not 100% effective, and adoption of the vaccine has not reached (and likely will not reach) 100%, so COVID-19 remains especially dangerous for those with preexisting conditions and of advanced age.

Freemasonry continues to be an important part of all of our lives, and many of us have enjoyed being able to meet over the past few after restrictions were lifted, but Freemasonry is not more important than any single life. Yes, there are repeat sentiments from my February message, but it bears repeating. Holding and attending Masonic events increases the risks of contracting COVID-19 among the vaccinated and unvaccinated. As we progress through the rest of the 2021 Masonic year, I strongly encourage anyone who is uncomfortable attending events in person to stay home and stay safe. Lafayette Lodge has endured uninterrupted since 1854, your Lodge will still be here when the threat of COVID-19 passes.

Please put the health and safety of yourself and your family at the forefront. Balance the risks of attending events, and do not take unnecessary risks. Look out for the well-being of our Brethren. As Masons,it is our obligation to look out for our Brethren, to collectively aid and assist our Brethren (and their families) in need. This duty is imparted to us through multiple degrees, lectures, and Masonic lessons.

Fraternally,

Bryan S. Passione,
Worshipful Master

From the Secretary’s Desk

A reminder that some Brothers still owe 2021 Dues, please have the courtesy of notifying the Secretary of any issues of why they have not been paid. We are willing to work with you on getting these issues resolved.

Every month I receive a number of return letters due to Brothers traveling or moving. Please notify the Secretary if you are going to be away and especially if you have moved. An email is sufficient.

Fraternally yours,

RW Raymond Siecinski,
Secretary


Master’s Message & From the Secretary’s Desk – July/August 2021

July 7th, 2021 by

Master’s Message

My Brother,

Even though it is said that one should not seek admission into Masonry for financial, professional, social, or other personal gain, however, this does not mean that members should not look to utilize the services of other members.

Members of the Fraternity are taught to be “on the level,” that is, be honest and straightforward, especially with our Brethren. When I was newly initiated, I was told many stories by experienced and traveled Brothers, and that being a Mason offered “instant credibility.”The belief is that, if another man is a Mason, he presumed to be upstanding and trustworthy.

Utilization of the “Masonic Network” offers various benefits for members of the Craft. For the Brother seeking a service, he is readily able to put his trust in another Brother, more so than a stranger; he is also helping to promote another Brother’s profession, livelihood, or business. For the Brother providing the services, he is expanding the reach of his business, and fulfilling the need of another Brother.

A Brother seeking particular services who wishes to enlist the service of a fellow Mason. may find a service provider by speaking with fellow Masons who may be able to recommend a particular Brother. A Brother may turn to social media, and with the various social media outlets and lodge websites, Brothers could even submit posts seeking a recommendation for a particular service.

The Brother seeking and the Brother providing a service must endeavor to always square their actions and act “on the level,” for these situations are where we solidify our reputation and the reputation of the Fraternity.

Fraternally,

Bryan S. Passione,
Worshipful Master

From the Secretary’s Desk

A reminder that some Brothers still owe 2021 Dues, please have the courtesy of notifying the Secretary of any issues of why they have not been paid. We are willing to work with you on getting these issues resolved.

Every month I receive a number of return letters due to Brothers traveling or moving. Please notify the Secretary if you are going to be away and especially if you have moved. An email is sufficient.

Fraternally yours,

RW Raymond Siecinski,
Secretary


Masonic Moments, Vol. 3, Issue 6, June 2021

May 24th, 2021 by Masonic_Moments_Vol-3_Issue_6_June_2021_Final

Download PDF: Masonic Moments – Vol 3_Issue 6_June 2021_Final


Master’s Message & From the Secretary’s Desk – June 2021

May 24th, 2021 by

Master’s Message

My Brother,

After the tumultuousness of the past year, we are looking to return to a sense of normalcy, or a “new normal” as the case may be. 2020 saw a pandemic, social outrage and uprising, and a paradigm shift in regard to the “honoring” of various military leaders of the past.

On June 19, 2020, a memorial of Brother Albert Pike was defaced, toppled, and set ablaze during a protest in Washington D.C. The memorial was torn down by protesters with rope and chains. The National Park Service removed the statue, while the pedestal, covered with graffiti, remains in place. The date this occurred, June 19, is a significant date, also known as Juneteenth, is a holiday celebrating the emancipation of those who had been enslaved in the United States.

This memorial of Brother Pike was targeted because of Pike’s leadership of Confederate forces during the Civil War. Brother Pike served as a Brigadier General and was generally unsuccessful in his campaigns during the war. Brother Pike tendered his resignation and fled. Brother Pike was later arrested on charges of insubordination and treason but was pardoned by President Andrew Jackson in 1866.

So, why is there a memorial of a Brigadier General of the Confederate States Army in Washington D.C.? Brother Pike was also a poet, orator, lawyer, and prominent Freemason. In 1859, Brother Pike was elected Sovereign Grand Commander of the Scottish Rite (Southern Jurisdiction) and served in this role until his death in 1891. During his tenure as Sovereign Grand Commander, Brother Pike devoted much of his efforts to developing and explaining the symbolism of our Masonic rituals. Brother Pikes seminal work, Morals and Dogma of the Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite explores the esoteric philosophy of the Scottish Rite degrees.

The Albert Pike Memorial was dedicated in 1901 during a public ceremony. The memorial was privately funded by the Scottish Rite, and its installation in Judiciary Square was approved by Congress in 1989 since the memorial depicted Brother Pike as a civilian, not a soldier. In 1978, the memorial was added to the U.S. National Register of Historic Places.

Brother Pike is, without doubt, a controversial individual. This message is not in support of Brother Pike, but is intended to be a neutral attempt to shed light on the history of the man, the memorial, and some of his contributions to Freemasonry.

Fraternally,

Bryan S. Passione,
Worshipful Master

Photo Credits: Wikipedia; WUSA9

From the Secretary’s Desk

A reminder that some Brothers still owe 2021 Dues, please have the courtesy of notifying the Secretary of any issues of why they have not been paid. We are willing to work with you on getting these issues resolved.

Every month I receive a number of return letters due to Brothers traveling or moving. Please notify the Secretary if you are going to be away and especially if you have moved. An email is sufficient.

Fraternally yours,

RW Raymond Siecinski,
Secretary


Master’s Message & From the West – May 2021

April 26th, 2021 by

Master’s Message

My Brother,

In August 2020, a One Day Class, championed by RW Michael Holt and RW Ray Siecinski, was held at the Fellowship Center in Burlington. At this One Day Class, more than 80 candidates from across the state were raised to the Sublime Degree of Master Mason, including three members of our lodge.

One drawback to the speed and efficiency of a One Day Class is that smaller, yet important, lessons sometimes get lost or overlooked. For example, informal lessons on lodge protocol, etiquette, and decorum are not discussed. Meanwhile, through the traditional degree process, these are frequently discussed informally between the candidate and their mentor. Protocol is a code of conduct or behavior prescribed for the Fraternity as a whole. Etiquette is a set of norms and conventions governing conduct or behavior among lodge members. Decorum is the politeness or appropriateness of social behavior, speech, and dress.

Proper protocol, etiquette, and decorum in a lodge is often based on old-fashioned standards of behavior which may not be obvious to our newer members (or forgotten among our seasoned Brethren). As such, RW Siecinski made a formal presentation at our Regular Communication in April on lodge protocol, etiquette, and decorum as an instructional tool for our new members and a refresher for all of us.

Observing proper protocol, etiquette, and decorum helps us to be thoughtful about our conduct, to get along with others, and promotes respect within the Fraternity.

“A gentleman is not defined by the content of his wallet or the cut of his suit. He is defined by his manners and the content of his character.” – Anonymous

Fraternally,

Bryan S. Passione,
Worshipful Master

From the West

The Senior Deacon, in the Fellowcraft degree, gives a considerable description of the two great Pillars that stood on the porch of King Solomon’s Temple, using some words that most of us can’t pronounce. Aside from containing the roles and records what purpose did these column serve?

If they served no useful purpose, and were largely ornamental, couldn’t they be symbolic of some Freemasons we have today? And we have a few who are not even ornamental, such as myself and some others I might name.

If the Pillars were repositories, as has been suggested, no way was provided for getting to and making use of the information they contained. That sounds ridiculous; but don’t we often ignore or refuse to make use of information we know to exist?

Our Speculative temple needs something more than ornamental pillars. We need practical pillars as well. Something that has a reason for being. Just like the pillars we have Brothers’ who are there and do nothing for the temple while others who support it.

Which one are you?

Fraternally,

Michael S. Romano,
Senior Warden


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