FROM THE EAST
I ran across THE BENEFITS of MASONIC MEMBERSHIP by Brother Alphonse Cerza, and I wanted to share some of it with you. “In a general way, the benefits of Masonic membership are both tangible and intangible. A benefit may be considered as anything that is helpful, profitable, favorable, and advantageous to a person. A benefit may take many forms such as improving a person in some way, promoting his happiness, raising his status socially, increasing his personal contacts with others, or assisting him in any number of other ways. If a Mason finds himself stranded in a strange place and is in need of help, there is always available help not too far away. Clearly, the intangible benefits predominate over the tangible ones. In some instances the benefits defy classification because they are a blend of both general benefits. The first benefit received by a candidate for the degrees is the contacts he makes with those that recommend him and those who investigate his petition. The next benefit is the receiving of the three degrees and the friendships that develop with the poster and others connected with his securing the needed proficiency to advance from one degree to the other. The ceremony of receiving the degrees together with the lectures is a new experience and hopefully the candidate has come to the meetings in the spirit of anticipating an important event with a receptive heart and mind. The impressive presentation is bound to have an important effect on him. He is bound to observe that he is the center of attraction, that the degree is conferred on him alone, and that we are concentrating our attention on him. This should convince him that we are devoted to the importance of each person who joins us in our work. Each member knows that in common with all other members he has taken a solemn obligation to be a good man and true. As a result, when meeting another Mason there is immediately established a close sense of friendship resulting from the unexpressed knowledge that they both have a common philosophy of life which makes them better men and that they can help and trust one another. This is often over-looked is that the Craft teaches its members a philosophy of life. The importance of this benefit should not be overlooked because every person needs a philosophy of life to guide him or her in the journey through life. Each member, if he gives this matter some thought, undoubtedly can recall instances in which his Masonic membership that has proved to be a benefit to him. Above all else, it is well to be prepared to answer the question should the occasion arise, ‘What Benefits do you receive from your Masonic membership?'"
My Brothers, after reading and reflecting upon the short talk of Brother Alphonse Cerza, It became quite apparent how the supreme architect of the universe has truly blessed St John’s Lodge No. 11.
In countless ways, the multi-cultural talents amongst our brothers have contributed to make our Lodge great and diverse. We have brothers who are world traveled and well versed, while others are experts in website design and upkeep, while another uses his immense verbal skills over the airways covering politics to now sports. And we have others that fill the lodge with their gift of delightful music. We have brothers whose years of Masonic wisdom and teaching add up to more years than can be respectfully counted. And our Past Masters who make every effort to be at each Lodge Stated Communication to assist the overall advancement and growth of the Lodge by setting the example of being present in Lodge. The importance of this cannot be measured, as they’re past leadership experience and assistance is priceless! The point of all of this is to acknowledge the ongoing Celebration of the Year of Masonic Brotherhood. As we seek further enlightenment in Freemasonry through the talents of each other, may we be so ever humble and thankful for each other and for what each brother brings to our Lodge. Take a moment, if you would my brothers, to reflect upon what each of us brings to help each other become better in the Brotherhood of Freemasonry, as brothers, and as men, who do and can influence the world around us.
Brothers, we will have Lodge on October 2nd. If there is anything you wish to have on the agenda, please get it to me no later than Saturday, September 26th.
I do wish to thank W.B. Anand for filling in for Brother Secretary, W.B. Perkins, W.B. Russell for filling in for Brother Junior Warden, Senior Deacon Sam Chin for filling in for Brother Senior Warden and the rest of the Brothers who stepped up and filled chairs in Lodge during our September stated. It was an educational night, and peace and harmony prevailed.
I look forward to seeing you all in Lodge in October on Friday the 2nd.
Fraternally , D.W. Stephenson Worshipful Master