Wardens and Brethren –
Greetings from the East. I hope everyone is enjoying the start of summer as we leave the cold behind and enter the season of growth. We have a busy month in June, as we prepare the Middle Chamber to receive a worthy Fellow Craft, support the Westerly Masonic Foundation in their work to keep our lodge sound, and celebrate St. John’s Sunday with Central Baptist Church.
Bro. Tim Cavanaugh has been working hard in the quarries, and I am looking forward to our Fellow Craft degree as the brothers explain the symbolism of the Middle Chamber. I recently came across a great booklet that offered an interpretation of the degree, and it really hit home. I offer some points from it for you to ponder.
“The Fellow Craft is a man in the prime of his life; experienced, strong, resourceful and able to bear the heat and burden of the day. The man in his middle years carries maximum responsibilities. It is he whom his family depends on for support. He is the Atlas on whose shoulders rest the burdens of business. By his skill and experience the arts are sustained. To his keeping are entrusted the destinies of the state.
The Fellow Craft walks in the full, uncolored light of noon. Everything stands starkly before him in its most uncompromising reality. If he were buoyed by boyish illusions of the ease of life and the sufficiency of his strength a little while ago, those illusions have now vanished in the heat of the day. After a few more years he will become mellow and resigned. But at high noon, this time has not yet come. If is for him to bend his back and bear the load.“
It is our responsibility to pass along the wisdom of the middle chamber lectures, which teach the need to pay attention to what our senses reveal about our world, using the tools given us by a never-ending education in the liberal arts and sciences to become better men, to understand own strengths and weaknesses as well as being able to recognize those qualities in our fellow men, the better to support them in times of distress.
Sunday, June 26 is St. John’s Sunday. This year we will travel across the parking lot to join Central Baptist Church for the 9:30 AM service. All are invited, not just the members of Franklin. It would be great to have our families join us as we acknowledge the wisdom, grace and power of the Supreme Architect and in remembrance of why Freemasons dedicate their lodges to both St John the Baptist and St John the Evangelist. Recall the symbolic representation in our lodge of a point within a circle between two parallel lines. The first line represents St. John the Baptist, who through preached repentance and humiliation before God; the second represents St. John the Evangelist, who by his learning finished what his predecessor began by his zeal. As the circle represents the due bounds with which we circumscribe our passions, we are ever between the examples of the Holy Saints John.
Finally, the Westerly Masonic Foundation will meet on June 13th at 7:00 PM to discuss raising the rents paid by all members of the foundation. This discussion is necessary, as the costs to maintain the building exceeds the income from rents. It will be painful, as not all organizations have the means to support the added expense. The men who represent Franklin on the foundation have been diligently working on how to best meet the considerable needs of our building, and they would appreciate fresh perspectives and voices at the meeting. Please consider coming down for an hour to participate.
Bro. Eric B. Ross
Worshipful Master, Franklin #20