| || |
Grand Master Volsky Invites Grand Masters of Georgia and Tennessee to Washington, DC for Masonic Day of Thanksgiving
On August 21, D.C. Public Schools welcomed back almost 50,000 students across 115 different school campuses. Students arrived to find their classrooms and schools sparkling clean and ready to go thanks to the efforts of parents, teachers, administrators and community volunteers, including the D.C. Masons.
William R. Singleton-Hope-Lebanon Lodge No. 7 partnered with School Without Walls at Francis Stevens in the West End neighborhood for the fourth year in a row. The lodge allocates money from its charity budget to provide for something new for the school to help them in their academic mission. In years past this has included bulletin boards, book cases, storage cabinets and some picnic tables.
This year, Worshipful Master Adam Tager, working with the school, purchased a dozen picnic tables. Under the leadership of Senior Steward Graham Keithley, Masons from Singleton Lodge and several friends of the lodge constructed these tables on Saturday August 20th. Now, two whole classes can now go out and enjoy the weather. This is also an added benefit for the community. On the weekend, the park is used by community members and now provides them a place to sit and enjoy the natural beauty of the park. During the George Washington University's Day of service in September these picnic tables will be painted in delightful colors to become an even nicer amenity to the school community.
St. John's Lodge #11 partnered with Hands on DC and the faculty and staff at Ketcham Elementary School to spruce up the landscape, clean up the real school garden, and organize a number of different parts of the school.
Hands on DC is an all-volunteer, nonprofit organization that is dedicated to improving the learning environment in DC public schools. Hands on DC works on community engagement with public schools and supports scholarships for local DCPS students.
St. John’s has already renewed their commitment to assist Hands on DC to assist with next year’s Back To School efforts.
On March 12, 2016 a new chapter in the history of the Grand Lodge of the District of Columbia was begun with the formal installation of the officers of AU Lodge, UD (Under Dispensation).
This new lodge is composed of brothers who have an affiliation and affinity for American University. Members of the new lodge include current students, alumni, faculty, staff, advisory board members and their relatives. Throughout the United States, more and more Grand Lodges are seeing lodges whose membership has a university affinity, such as, Harvard Lodge, Boston University Lodge, Patriot Lodge affiliated with George Mason University, and The Colonial Lodge affiliated with The George Washington University.
Installed as Worshipful Master was W. Br. Perry Blatstein; as Senior Warden: Br. Adam Tager; as Junior Warden: Dustin Rawlins; as Secretary: Peter Brusoe; and Jesse Ouellette as Treasurer. The Installation was held at the DC Scottish Rite using lodge furniture generously loaned by Albert Pike Lodge, No. 33. The installation was presided over by RW Br. Richard J. Bautista, Senior Grand Warden and was assisted by RW Br. Christopher K. Mahaney, Grand Lecturer.
Following the installation MW Br. Leonard Proden, PGM in his role as Sovereign Grand Inspector General for the Scottish Rite, presented a very generous check to the lodge to support the Matthew C Shlonsky Memorial Fund established at American University's School of International Service. (Shlonsky was an AU alumni and a friend of several AU Lodge members. He was tragically killed while standing in front of a Metro station last August.)
The Grand Master of Masons in the District of Columbia invites all Freemasons of this jurisdiction to come with their families to join us for an afternoon of fun, food, drinks, clowns and music at...
THE MASONIC FAMILY PICNIC
GLEN ECHO PARK
7300 MACARTHUR BLVD, GLEN ECHO, MD 20812 ON SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 26, 2015
FUN BEGINS AT 12 P.M. – RAIN OR SHINE FOOD SERVED FROM 1 PM TO 3 PM
COME AND ENJOY LOTS OF FOOD AND BEVERAGES – ALL YOU CAN EAT AND DRINK!
LIVE BAND MUSIC - DANCE 'TILL YOU DROP (OR UNTIL 5 P.M., WHICHEVER COMES FIRST...)
FUN, CLOWNS, AND CAROUSEL RIDES FOR KIDS AND GROWN-UPS - ENTERTAINMENT FOR ALL!
The picnic is sponsored by the DC Scottish Rite, Almas Shriners, and MESH of DC.
- The Event is Free to all -
TO BE READ ALOUD IN EVERY CONSTITUENT LODGE AT THE FIRST COMMUNICATION AFTER ITS RECEIPT
AND BE FILED BY THE LODGE SECRETARY FOR READY REFERENCE
SUMMARY OF THE TRANSACTIONS OF 2013 ANNUAL COMMUNICATION
OF THE GRAND LODGE, F.A.A.M., OF THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA
The Annual Communication of the Grand Lodge, F.A.A.M., of the District of Columbia was convened at 10:00 a.m. on Saturday, November 16th, 2013, at the Scottish Rite Center , 2800 16th Street, NW, Washington, D.C.
TRANSACTIONS TO DATE
The Grand Secretary announced that the records of the transactions of the Semi-Annual Communication of the Grand Lodge on May 8th, 2013, both in summary and in full, were completed and made available by direct mailing and posted on the website.
Reports requiring the attention and or action of the Grand Lodge were presented as follows:
Credentials Committee: Reported that a quorum existed permitting the Grand Lodge to conduct business. Attendance was as follows: Lodges represented: 37, Lodges not represented: 2; Grand Lodge Officers: 17; Past Grand Masters: 15; Past Masters: 64; Worshipful Masters or their proxies: 32; Senior and Junior Wardens or their proxies: 55; and 13 non-voting Master Masons, total attendance: 196
Bylaws Committee: Recommended granting approval to proposed amendments to the current bylaws of: Wm. R. Singleton-Hope-Lebanon Lodge No. 7, St. John’s Lodge No. 11, Anacostia Lodge No. 21, Albert Pike Lodge No. 33, and the Lodge of the Nine Muses No. 1776. It was also recommended that proposed amendments requested by Washington Daylight Lodge No. 14 be allowed provisionally until their final approval at the Semi – Annual Communication in May, 2014.
Budget and Cash Flow Committee: 2014 Budget was submitted. Action: Approved
Committee on Masonic Recognition and Fraternal Relations: Recommended recognition of the Most Worshipful Prince Hall Grand Lodge of Maryland.
Committee on Jurisprudence: recommended approval of the 15 dispensations issued by the Grand Master, including one to allow formation of a new Lodge, L’ Haitienne, U.D. Action: Approved
Other Reports: Reports of the Grand Master, Deputy Grand Master, Grand Secretary, Grand Treasurer, Grand Lecturer, Grand Lodge Trustees and the following committees or entities were received: Accounts and Audits, Scholarship, Library and Museum, Planning, Unfinished Business, Masonic Day of Thanksgiving and Remembrance, Community Outreach, July 4th Community Activities, Festivities, Youth, and St. John’s Mite Association.
No actions were required.
The Grand Master awarded the Valentine Reintzel Medal for Meritorious Service to WB Daniel D. Darko (1798), WB Peter D. Galitzin (33) and MWB Roggy Kossi Paass, Grand Master, Grande Loge Nationale Togolaise.
There were no legislative actions
2013 Budget Amendment: Requested by the Grand Master to extend life and health insurance for dependents of the staff of the Office of the Grand Secretary ($7,200) and partial expenditure for the repair work at the Grand Lodge Headquarter Building ($102,000).
Union Lodge U.D. Petition for Charter: Based on the positive recommendation of the Oversight Committee with a new designation of Union Lodge No. 6.
Emeritus Titles: The Grand Lodge voted to accord the title of Grand Secretary Emeritus upon the retiring Grand Secretary, Mansour Hatefi, PGM and the title of Grand Treasurer Emeritus on the retiring Grand Treasurer, Paul D. Gleason, PGM, respectively.
Grand Lodge Officers elected are as follows: James T. Feezell (54): Grand Master; Jeffrey D. Russell (5): Deputy Grand Master; Kenneth D. Fuller (7): Senior Grand Warden; Roman Volsky (15): Junior Grand Warden; Joseph S. Crociata (15): Grand Secretary; George J. Stoklas, Jr. (7): Grand Treasurer; Richard M. Bautista (33): Senior Grand Deacon; Charbel T. Fahed (3): Junior Grand Deacon; Michael D. Nicholas, Sr. (19): Senior Grand Steward; Alan D. Gordon (32): Junior Grand Steward.
William F. Harvey (7) was re-elected to serve as Grand Lodge Trustee for another three (3) year term (2014-2016).
Christopher K. Mahaney (23) was elected to receive the Distinguished Service Medal of the Grand Lodge.
Kenneth D. Fuller (7) and Nicholas A. Robischon (54) were elected as Grand Lodge Representatives to MESH Charities, Inc. for a three (3) year term (2014 -2016)
It was announced that the Third Communication of the Grand Lodge will convene at 5:00 p.m. on Saturday, December 14th, 2013, in the Lodge Room of the Scottish Rite Center, 2800 16th Street, NW, Washington, D.C., followed by the Installation of the Grand Lodge Officers.
The 2014 Semi-Annual Communication of the Grand Lodge is scheduled for Wednesday, May 8th, at the Scottish Rite Center. The full report of the transactions of this Annual Communication will be included in the 2013 Proceedings of the Grand Lodge.
On behalf of The Colonial Lodge, No. 1821 I hereby issue a challenge to you, your lodge, and your "Muggle" (non-Mason) friends to participate in the first-annual Colonial Challenge on June 15.
The Challenge is a team-based competition that includes a scavenger hunt, trivia competition, and a reception at the House of the Temple.
Teams compete in the fraternal (on behalf of a lodge) or open divisions. Prizes will include trophies/medallions, bragging rights, gift certificates, and the labor of Colonial Lodge brothers at your next meeting or event.
The day begins with the scavenger hunt across DC. Teams are given metro cards and picture clues/tasks to complete (e.g.: can you get a stranger to do a cartwheel? get a picture with a uniformed Marine?) in a limited amount of time. The second half of the challenge is a trivia competition at the House of the Temple. The winners will be 'crowned' at the reception following trivia.
Those who do not wish to compete but want to participate may join us at the House of the Temple to watch the trivia and celebrate/heckle the victors. Separate registration required.
Why should you/your lodge participate?
The Challenge is intra-fraternal, as well as a great lodge-building activity. We recommend pairing some of your newer members with some of your older members to help them get to know one another in a way not often presented through regular communications. Also, many of our members will be in attendance and we are always happy to meet other masons and their friends.
· June 15th, starting at Noon
· Teams of 2 (lodges are encouraged to register more than one team)
· Non-Masons/"Muggles" are also welcome and encouraged to participate!
· $99 entry fee includes all supplies for the challenge and the after party
· $10 off for every team you refer that signs up
· $30 for those who only wish to attend trivia/reception but not compete.
If you want to learn more:
All the details for the challenge are available at http://www.thecoloniallodge.org/challenge. If you still have additional questions, please reach out to Tyler Coffey, our Junior Warden who is in charge of the event at email@example.com.
S & F,
Morgan P. Corr
The Colonial Lodge, No. 1821
This year’s Hands on DC work-a-thon will take place on two dates: May 4 and May 18. During the work-a-thon, more than 2,000 volunteers will spend the day working to create a better learning environment at one of about 40 DC public schools. Projects are available for every skill level and typically include painting, cleaning, and landscaping.
The Freemasons of the Nation’s Capital team is recruiting volunteers for to help on either or both workdays.
Work-A-Thon Day 1 – May 4
Stuart-Hobson Middle School, 410 E St N.E., Washington, DC 20002
Street Parking Available, Union Station is the closest Metro stop.
Work-A-Thon Day 2 – May 18
Garfield Elementary School, 2435 Alabama Avenue, S.E., Washington, DC 20020
Street Parking Available, Limited on-site parking
You can volunteer for this service project by visiting the “Freemasons of the Nation’s Capital” team recruiting site at http://www.firstgiving.com/handsondc. Select the event for which you would like to register (the May 4 and May 18 events are listed as separate events). As you complete the online registration form, you will be asked to “Join a Team.” Select the Freemasons team for your intended volunteer date. To volunteer on both days, you will be asked to register twice.
If you have any difficulty with online registration, please contact me at Dustin.Rawlins@SingletonLodge.com. Please include the names, ages, and Lodge affiliation of your attendees and I can add them manually.
This is an open event, so please encourage your family and friends to come out for one day to refurbish the District’s public schools, get some exercise, and witness an excellent example DC Freemasonry in action.
Once you join the team, you will receive periodic updates via e-mail that will provide instructions regarding the day’s schedule, reporting times, school assignments, and metro/parking instructions. The day usually begins around 8:30 A.M.; breaks for lunch around Noon, and work/clean up conclude around 3:30 P.M.
Recommended dress for the Work-a-thon should be “work” clothes such as sturdy and comfortable shoes, jeans or long pants, and so on. Work gloves will be provided to all volunteers at no cost.
Please sign up today to join your fellow Brothers, family and friends in this important endeavor.
For any questions, please contact Brother Dustin Rawlins at Dustin.Rawlins@SingletonLodge.com.
Dear Brethren, Many have expressed themselves on our simple and most basic tenets - I particularly enjoyed the reflections hereafter, and am most pleased to share them with you to refresh some of our earliest impressions upon joining our Brotherhood - Max Ullmann, PM
THE LEVEL AND THE SQUARE
The Masonic poet, Robert Morris, has given us, as from a perennial fountain, more than three hundred effusions in form of odes and poems; but none wear so well with old admirers, none secure so speedily the favor of the newly-initiate, as his conception of August, 1854, which has "gone out through all the earth" under the name of The Level and the Square. It is the Masonic song of the age, tending to the immortal. Eighteen years since, Brother George Oliver, D.D., eminent above all others in English Masonry, and the Masonic writer for all time, said of this piece: "brother Morris has composed many fervent, eloquent and highly-poetic compositions - songs that will not die, but in The Level and the Square he has breathed out his depths of feeling, fervency and pathos with brilliancy and vigor of language, and expressed his faith in the immortal life beyond the grave."
We meet upon the LEVEL and we part upon the SQUARE: What words sublimely beautiful those words Masonic are! Come, let us contemplate them, they are worthy of a thought; On the very walls of Masonry the sentiment is wrought.
We meet upon the LEVEL; though from every, station come. The rich man from his mansion and the laborer from his home; For the rich must leave his princely state outside the Mason's door, While the laborer feels himself a man upon the Checkered Floor.
We act upon the Plumb, 'tis the order of the GUIDE; We walk upright in virtue's way, and lean to neither side; The ALL-SEEING EYE that leads our hearts will bear us witness true That we still try to honor GOD and give each man his due.
We part upon the SQUARE, for the world must have its due; We mingle in the haunts of men, but keep our manhood true; But the influence of our gatherings is always fresh and green, And we long, upon the LEVEL, to renew the happy scene.
There's a world where all are equal, we are hurrying toward it fast: We shall meet upon the LEVEL there, when the gates of death are past. We shall stand before THE ORIENT, and THE MASTER will be there, Our works to try, our lives to prove, by His unerring SQUARE.
We shall meet upon the LEVEL there, but nevermore depart: There's a MANSION, bright and glorious, set for the "pure in heart": There's a MANSION and a welcome, and a multitude is there Who in this world of sloth and sin did act upon the SQUARE.
Let us meet upon the LEVEL, then, while laboring patient here: Let us meet and let us labor, though the labor is severe. Already in the western sky the signs bid us prepare To gather up our WORKING-TOOLS and part upon the SQUARE.
Hands round, ye Royal Brotherhood, close in the Golden Chain: We part upon the SQUARE below, to meet in Heaven again. Each link that has been broken here shall be united there, And none be lost around the THRONE who've acted on the SQUARE.
Periodically published in Masonic journals, quoted in a thousand orations, seen in fragments in innumerable epitaphs, musically wedded to sixteen airs, declaimed by traveling performers, and embodied in many "Gems of Reading," this effusion deserves best of all to herald our sketch of The Well Spent Life.
Is It Time Yet for Stewardship?
by James T. Feezell, PM
Deputy Grand Master
I've often thought we Freemasons have given short shrift to our Stewards. Historically, a Steward was an officer of authority and great responsibility, think the British Lord High Steward, or Tolkien's Stewards of Gondor. Somewhere along the way, Stewards took a low path from right hand of the monarch to sommeliers and inflight wait staff. The lodge Steward, nowadays, often appears relegated to the role of mere Masonic gopher, shuttling candidates within the lodge, and food and refreshment without. In those lodges with real, installed Stewards, and not just Stewards du jour for a particular conferral, or an empty chair with the collar and jewel draped over the back, the office is more often simply a first dues-paying step on that path to pillar officer, Wardens and Master, where the "real" glamour and power are found, where "the magic happens". I think it's an unfortunate evolution of the office and its importance; Stewardship may be our greatest responsibility to the Craft and responsible Stewardship our greatest contribution.
It appears to me now may be the time to focus on Stewardship, in the sense of responsible planning and management of our Craft, particularly Freemasonry in the District of Columbia. Collectively, we've enjoyed a helluva decade. Since 2003, we've basked in the media spotlight of Messrs. Brown's and Hanks's explorations of our myriad plots and conspiracies (mostly imagined), as well as Nick Cage's of our vast, hidden holdings of precious gems and metals (sadly, also imagined). In 2011, we celebrated our 200th anniversary, with the attendant fanfare, celebrations, and congratulatory commemorative medallions and breast jewels. In 2012, we raised our Bic lighters and called the band back for an encore to celebrate the first year of our third century. In the past decade, we've commissioned art exhibits, hosted international conferences, founded Grand Lodges across the globe, chartered our annual constituent lodge and minted our annual Honorary Past Senior Grand Warden or Grand Emeritus, twinned ourselves nigh unto exhaustion, and even planted our Grand Lodge banner on distant soils. All pretty impressive for four thousand and some members of our modest planned city of 68 square miles.
Still, we are Free Masons, emulating the operative designers, planners, and builders who founded the Craft, not the bed sheet-clad, perennial revelers of the Faber chapter of Delta Tau Chi. It appears to me it may be time to nudge our brother in the South to set down his column already, roll up our sleeves, and set our collective attention to the business of laying a solid and sustainable foundation for the coming century. A survey of our lodges, constituent, as well as Grand, and their accounts, suggests to me we may be well served by some candid assessment of the State of the Jurisdiction.
The organization that supports and embodies our ancient and gentle Craft may want for some repointing. For cautionary examples of extended hiatus of Stewardship in our Craft, we need not look so far as the "recent unpleasantness" across the Atlantic. Some of the "aggressive" measures our sister jurisdictions have implemented at the corner of Waning Membership and Waxing Overhead ought suffice.
It appears to me the Grand Lodge, the Masters, Wardens, Past Masters, and Past Grand Masters of the jurisdiction, would do well to begin a frank discussion about where we are today, including ritually, operationally, and financially, and how that compares not only to the vision of the Founders of our Grand Lodge, but also our potential as a model of excellence, both in our community and in the Masonic fraternity. Are we, collectively, building and improving, or coasting and depleting? How to close the gaps between our current state and our aspirational? What actions would the responsible Steward undertake?
Reveling in the vineyards makes for a pleasant respite, but it is the quarries and the temple where the great works are built and the great builders are cultivated. Let's undertake the assessment and labor that need be done to place our lodges and our jurisdiction on a firm footing for our tercentennial. If you have ideas, suggestions, or comments, please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org. The Grand Master's and my door, phone, and inbox are always open to ideas for the good of Masonry, as well as offers to help labor in their implementation.