Newsletter for the month of February
NEWS FROM THE MASTER
Dear Brethren, Ladies & Friends Of Golden Rule Lodge:
I want to thank all my Brothers in Golden Rule Lodge for your trust and faith in me by once more electing me Master of our Lodge. I will do my best this year to be worthy of that trust, and help lead my Brothers as we strive toward more Light.
Both of our Wardens wrote lengthy articles this month, so I will keep mine short. Feb 8 is the Annual Convocation and Initiation Ceremony for the Central CA Past Masters Asso. (CCPMA) All Past Masters of GRL went through this ceremony during your year as Master, and it would be great if you could join us as we initiate new candidates this year! On Feb 16, we will be doing a Courtesy First Degree for Daylight Lodge. Please come out a support your Officers as we support another Lodge. And lastly – our quarterly Blood Drive with the Red Cross is Sat, Feb 28. Many Brothers have been giving “The Gift of Life” for years, and it is a way to both give back to the community and even save a LIFE!! Please call Bob Ahrens and join us!
I am working on putting together several social and community service events for this year, and will have more details and information on these next month. I am also going to be adding Masonic Education to our Stated Meetings, as mandated by the Original Charges, starting in Feb. So, come out and get a little education! I want to make our Lodge more than just Stated Meetings & Degrees. And, if you have any ideas for programs and/or things you think should or should not be done this year – please – come talk with me and whisper good counsel in my ear! I want your input!!
See you all in Lodge!!
NEWS FROM THE WEST
What it means to Me to be a Freemason Lodge Officer.....
First - what is a Freemason Officer?
Pedestal Officers are elected by the members of the lodge. Lower ranking officers, such as the Deacons and Stewards, are appointed by the Worshipful Master. Golden Rule 479 Officers serve in their positions for one year. The names and duties of the officers are mostly taken from very old customs practiced by the medieval stonemasons' guilds, where Freemasonry originated.
Golden Rule lodge is required to have a Worshipful Master, a Senior Warden, a Junior Warden, a Senior Deacon, a Junior Deacon, a Treasurer, and a Secretary. However, All Freemason Organizations do not march in lockstep with one another. There are subtle and not-so-subtle differences in the names of officers and their duties, from country to country, as well as from state to state. And yet, a Mason from Golden Rule on vacation in Belgium will recognize the same basic framework of the Masonic Officer's line that he had at home in San Jose, governing the lodge he's visiting in Brussels.
Masonic officers are generally part of what is called a progressive line, also known as "going through the chairs." It is a line of succession that moves up one position at a time from one year to the next. When a man is appointed to the Junior Steward's position, in a perfect set of circumstances, seven years later he will be Worshipful Master. Although this curious plan for leadership has its drawbacks, (like fatigue) it was designed based on the philosophy of equality among Masons. The progressive line is most common in the United States, but it exists in many other jurisdictions, as well.
There is supposed to be no politicking or campaigning for an officer's position. In the ideal lodge situation, each man simply advances each year, learning each position's duties and a portion of the Masonic ceremonies. By the time he becomes Worshipful Master of the Lodge, he has sat in every chair except, perhaps, the Secretary and Treasurer. He has learned public speaking, management of a volunteer organization, decorum, and responsibility. And – eliminating the annual popularity contest for election that many groups suffer from, results in a smoother, friendlier line of succession. Any man, regardless of his social, business, or economic position outside the lodge room, may aspire to be Master of his Lodge.
I have enjoyed my 5 years in the line and am looking forward to my Senior Warden duties and the responsibilities. I would like to congratulate all the Officers on their installation and look forward to making Worshipful Hanks year a very successful one. And to, hopefully, setting the standard for Lee and John to follow. I also hope to encourage other young Master Masons of Golden Rule Lodge to come out to the officer’s practices, attend our OAM meetings and hopefully making a fulfilling desire of one day being the Master come true.
NEWS FROM THE SOUTH
I was honored to take on the role of Junior Warden on January 19th, 2015 for Golden Rule Lodge No. 479. I welcome your thoughts, suggestions, support and participation as I prepare for service when the Lodge is called from Labor to Refreshment. The Junior Warden’s Station in the South with the Sun at Meridian Height represents the role and responsibility for providing refreshment with the aid of the Deacons and Stewards. Ensure:
preparation of meals and refreshments
availability of tableware
preparation and clean-up of kitchen and food serving areas
That simple description goes along with the responsibility to look out for the needs of all Lodge Brothers and Visitors and ensure that Brotherhood and Friendship are enjoyed by all and not detracted from by overindulgence.
Let’s keep the warm welcome in the Lodge and make our gatherings places of friendship, fellowship and support for worthy Brother Masons and their families and a place of support for Brothers that may need help to overcome current challenges in their lives.
Please help when and wherever you can by making sure that Brothers and Visitors are made welcome and that all are provided for with places among the Brethren. Also, please ensure that all clean-up and tidying that you can do is done before you leave the lodge. Don’t just eat and run and leave all the clean-up and tidying to a dedicated few.
My thoughts for 2015 as Junior Warden:
Stated meetings to be a welcoming gathering for Brothers and significant others with Dinner at 6:30pm - (typically $10 per person.)
Plan events for Brothers and families to enjoy together:
Thanksgiving Pot Luck
Other events as identified during the year.
If you have suggestions that would help get our Brothers involved and sharing the fellowship of Masonry together let me know. I welcome your Comments, Compliments, Suggestions and Complaints. All are perceived as measures of success.