Friday, January 29, 2010

Golden Fleece Lodge #89 - 1st Degree

Golden Fleece Lodge #89 in Litchfield held a 1st Degree last night (1-28-10)and they did a great job. Three new brothers were initiated and they were as follows: John Powers, Wesley Hoffman, and Simeon Webster. Welcome to the fraternity my brothers. Golden Fleece has been very active lately in raising new brothers for their lodge and they have been working on degree work. Last night they had 3 brothers from Monticello Lodge #16 assist with the degree work. I can remember a few years ago when I was asked to help line up people for degree work. I asked what positions they needed and I was informed all of them. I am very proud of all the hard work the brothers have been doing to improve themselves in Masonry. Great job my brothers. The photo shows Bob Holly (District Representative who has been very active with the lodge and offering them a lot of support.

The photo shows (1st Row - left to right) Wesly Hoffman, Simeon Webster, and John Powers. The second row is WB Bob Holly, WB Mike Ross (current master for #89), and Brother Tracy Newman (Monticello #16) acting master for the degree work.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Templar Lodge Rededication - January 23, 2010

On January 23, 2010 Templar Lodge #176 rededicated their Lodge building after an extensive renovation. MWB Thomas McCarthy and other Grand Lodge Officers assisted with the ceremony. The brother did an excellent job on the renovation and it look very nice. They even had a Worshipful Brother present who was Master of the Lodge in 1960, the same year they laid the corner for the building.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

On Friday night, January 22, I attended the Metro West Master's and Warden's meeting hosted by Cataract Lodge #2 in Minneapolis. They had a social hour with soup and sandwiches, then they went upstairs for their meeting. It was great to see alot of brothers on the sidelines. A comment was made that WB Lee Dorholt has been instrumental in getting the group back up and meeting on a regular basis. Great job Lee!

After the meeting, the wardens went back downstairs for discussion with RWB Thomas Hendrickson and WB Dave Olson to talk about planning for the future and the importance of calendars with scheduled events.

Past Masters and current sitting Masters were treated to a great time with a Past Masters Degree. I was able to take part along with Jim Christensen, Junior Grand Deacon in the Past Master's Degree. neither one of us had been through it before. It was a great time and fun was had by all. A special thank you to Monte Miller who gave me his Past Master's Degree Pin. I will pass it on when I get the opportunity as he requested.

Friday, January 22, 2010

Monticello Lodge #16 Raises a New Master Mason

On January 19, 2010 Monticello Lodge 316 raised a new Master Mason, Art Anecki. Monticello has been slowly growing over the past five years and has a group of new masons that are taking the ritual work seriously. I heard one of the brothers mention it was the first time the lodge has put on a complete 3rd degree with the supporting cast being members on Monticello Lodge #16. They did a great job with the work and made it very impressive for the new master mason.

Brother Tracy Newman organized the degree work and made sure they had a couple practices before the degree that night. Everyone did a great job with their parts. I tip my hat to all of the brothers who took a part in the event.

The top photo is brother Art and WB Ed Wern who presided over the second part. The bottom photo is brother Art and WB Chris Zalomsky, the current Master for Monticello Lodge #16.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

A Tribute to My In-Laws

Yes, you read it right, I am submitting this tribute to my In-Laws. They are both great individuals, a couple, and dedicated to their family. And yes they both are part of the Masonic Family. This past weekend they celebrated their "50th" Wedding Anniversary and we were able to share it with them in Chicago(Schaumburg), Illinois. It was the first time they had all of their kids, grand kids, great grand daughter, and son-in-laws together at one time.

I would say I had to choose between Masonry and Family, but there really was no choice, I wanted to be together as a family. Therefore, I had to miss the One Day To Masonry on Saturday. I am sorry I wasn't able to attend and celebrate with all of the new brothers that were initiated, passed and raised in all of the degrees of Masonry. I heard the work was really fantastic.

My mother and father-in law are truly wonderful and they care about their family more than you could ever say. They treat both of their son-in-laws like they are their own children and would do anything we asked. They have proven that over time and time again. They both are part of the Masonic Family. My Father-in-Law is a Past Master (multiple times)and was also a member of the Scottish Rite and a Shriner. His brother was also a Mason. My Mother-in-Law was a past Worthy Matron (several) Times. Her Father was also a Mason and member of the Eastern Star.

They both our wonderful individuals and live their lives like we are taught in Masonry to be upright and moral. I want to say congratulations to them on their "50th" Wedding Anniversary and above all thank you for accepting me as part of their family and introducing me to Masonry.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Fraternal Lodge #92 - Installation

Last night I attended Princeton Lodge #92 for their regular stated meeting. It was a dual purpose that I was attending their meeting. I knew ahead of time that due to the weather in December they were not able to open their lodge, so they were planning on having their regular stated meeting to conduct business and then elect their officers for the current year. After the election took place they were going to have a closed installation of the officers. Prior to their meeting they had a nice meal served for the brothers.

The meal was the primary reason I was attending, not because I like to eat like all Masons, but because I had a co-worker who was attending with me. I have know my co-worker for approximately one year and he live between Elk River and Princeton. I had the honor of carrying his petition to join Masonry and present it to the Master. I asked him to attend the meal with me so he could get a chance to meet the brothers and they could meet him. I sure was smiling inside with pride that he was there and that he wanted to become a brother mason. The meal was good and the fellowship was even better.

During their installation WB Brian Sjoberg was installed as the new Master for 2010. The brothers did a very nice job with their installation. They had ten brothers in attendance and all of them were installed into an office. The other thing that was unique was that all but one of the brothers were also members of Kedron Chapter #120 OES located in Princeton. The brother informed the new Mater who is to be married this year, that they would like to see him and his future wife join the chapter also. I am also a member of Kedron Chapter #120. Therefore, 10 out of 11 brothers present were members of Keron Chapter. The lodge and the chapter have a great working relationship and I feel that is what makes them both very strong.

The lodge also has a fund raising project that was very successfully last year. The project involves a recycling program where they work with the local community. I will do some more research on the project and right about it in a future article. They made almost $5,000 after expenses. They are currently working with local officials to conduct the program again this year.

My congratulations to all of the officers installed last night.

Monday, January 11, 2010

Bethel #11 Installation of Officers

On Sunday, January 10, 2010 I attended Bethel #11's Installation of Officers. The Jobbies did an excellent job in planning and conducting the ceremony. PHG Ashton Gergen was the Installing Officer and Katie Cherry was installed as the Honored Queen for this term. Congratulation to HQ Katie and the rest of her officers. I wish you a fun and successful term during your reign.

North Star #23 Installation

On Saturday, January 9th, I attended the Installation of Officers for North Star #23 located in St. Cloud, MN. Mich Freeman was installed as the Master for the year. My Congratulations to WB Mitch Freeman and the other officers elected and appointed that were installed. During the ceremony, WB Louis R. Hird, age 93 and Past Master of North Star Lodge in 1972 presented the gavel to WB Mich. WB Louis is also Mitch's grandfather and was Master of North Star the same year Mitch was born. Mitch's father assisted his grandfather during the Gavel presentation (white sweater).

Saturday, January 9, 2010

22 Years Ago Today

It was 22 years ago today that I knelt at the altar at Maroa Lodge #454 and took my obligation of a Master Mason. The journey that I took I will remember for the rest of my life, I was raised to the sublime degree of a Master Mason. As I reflect back on that day, I remember my brothers who were there to share in that experience. Some of those brothers traveled over a 100 miles to be there for that event in my life. That really impressed me very much and it meant a lot to me. Some of the brother who were there were as follows: Larry Austin,my father-in-law; J.T. Liming, Grandfather; Robert Austin,Uncle; Garrell Leslie, a very dear friend and my childhood barber; Jerry Ray, supervisor, Merrell Goodrich, employee, and many brothers from Maroa and surrounding lodges. Some of these brothers have traveled to that house in heaven not made with hands.

I have heard many brothers say that you always get more out of Masonry than you put into it! It is very true, I have have been very blessed in my years as a Mason. Many brothers have become close friends and very dear to me. Some of them have even become more like family and even like a father to me. Both of my parents are deceased and this bond we have shared can not be broken. I have also been blessed with some brothers who have become mentors to me and I look up to them for guidance.

When I have been in need, my brothers near and far have come to my aid to help me and my family. Just knowing they were there and willing to help made those times easier to get through and I will cherish those memories for ever. They were there when I lost my father, my brother was in the hospital for over a month in Nashville, I lost my job, and when I was in the hospital after my tree stand broke, and most recently my hip replacement.

I hope and pray to continue to give to Masonry and lead by example and become a true brother to other brothers and their families. When you extend your hand out in Brotherly Love you will experience great joys that are hard to put into words, but it is one of the best experiences in life.

Thank you to all of my brothers near and far who have helped me gain more light in Masonry and experience the joys of my life. I pray that I can help others just as you helped me.

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Master Mason Degree at North Star #23

Last night North Star Lodge #23 conducted a Third Degree for four new members that were rasied to the sublime degree of a Master Mason. This was a very enjoyable and memorable night for all those who were in attendance.

WB Bruce Bowers presided in the East for the first section and MWB Roger Taylor sat in the east for the second part. All of the brothers who took parts in the degree work did an excellent job with their parts.

Two things made the evening a very memorable part for me. The first was was watching a father raise his son up by the strong grip of a Master Mason. It brought back memories when I was able to raise my own son up several years a go by the strong grip of a Master Mason. It is such a great joy to be able to call your son a Brother. I know John Pederson also had the same feeling. You sure could see by the smile he had on his face.

Second, in one of my earlier postings, I stated I wanted to become more proficient in the ritual work. Well I had that opportunity to do that last night with about a four to five hour notice. I was called by one of the members asking for help since they had a brother who had volunteered to do the 1st Craftsmen stated he was unable to attend that night. I made a couple calls and was not able to find someone who could do the part. I called the brother back and stated that I would do the 1st Craftsman. I have never done this part or had never studied it either. I spent the next fours hours studying the parts. I might not have been letter prefect, but I sure was bubbling inside knowing I was taking part vs sitting on the sidelines.

I guess the moral of the story is don't be afraid to volunteer when someone ask you to take a part. You will get great joy my being part of the degree team. I look forward to the next new part I can learn

Again congratulations to the four new Master Masons, and to WB Bruce Bowers on his final activity as Master of the lodge. Brother Mitch Freeman will be installed as Master of North Star Lodge on this Saturday, January 9, 2010 at 3:00 pm.

New Years Resolution - MissionStatement

My New Years Resolution was to be a better person, husband, father, friend, and brother thus improving myself in Masonry. I follow our Most Worshipful Brother's Tom McCarthy's Grand Master of MN for 2009-2010 Blog and he had a very nice article on "A Mission Statement for the New Year. So I am going to attempt to put in words what I would like to accomplish and maybe some items that will help me achieve improving myself in Masonry

My personal Mission Statement would be shortened to Improve myself as Individual and in Masonry.

1. I will improve my spiritual faith by attending church on a more regular basis, through prayer, reading my Bible, and reflecting on my actions. I will keep my Lord and God as one of main main priorities.
2. I will work on improving myself as an individual by doing the best I can and not holding back. I will treat people the way I would want to be treated. I will try to listen more and be more more understanding. I will work on controlling my temper and treat people with respect. I will keep my family as one of my other priorities in life.
3. I will improve myself in Masonry by living my life with integrity and extending the hand of brotherly love out to help those in need. I will read more books on Masonry so I may gain further light in Masonry. I will become more proficient in our ritual work.