I would like to first congratulate and welcome our newly passed Fellowcraft brothers. The light in Masonry continues to get brighter as the journey moves forward. So, keep up the good work, there is more to come. I also want to acknowledge and congratulate the degree team and all the Brethren that were present at our February Stated Communication. Everyone did their part plus more, and that’s what it is going to take for us to continue improving our degree work. I thought everyone did a great job, and I look forward to watching everyone improve as we move through this year and the years to come.
The February Stated Communication provided some lessons moving forward – the first being that our Lodge should be prepared to receive any visiting Grand Lodge Officers. The Acting Grand Master of Masons of the District of the Columbia graced us with his presence, and it was up to us to receive him using the proper Masonic protocol. We were not prepared for this. Nonetheless, we put our heads together and after a quick read through of the ritual, we received the Grand Master, in not so perfect form, but we did it! As the Master of St. John’s Lodge No. 11, I take full responsibility for being unprepared to receive the Grand Master and being able to lead the Brethren in conducting the proper reception. R.W.B. Richard J. Bautista, Acting Grand Master at the time, is an understanding and patient man who worked with our ritual team to teach us the correct way the Grand Master is to be received. He was also extremely kind in his words to the Lodge and is a wealth of knowledge of all things Masonic.
The Grand Master of Masons of the District of Columbia, M.W.B. Roman Volsky, has implemented an initiative to enhance Lodges’ abilities and their mastery of rituals not conducted on a regular basis, such as receiving the Grand Master. He is challenging us to become better Masons by encouraging us to pay close attention to detail and training us to perform in the right way no matter what environmental factors are in play. As Masons, we must be prepared for anything big or small, and we mustn’t act with hesitation. I’m proud of our Lodge for coming together and doing our best. We will learn these rituals as we move forward, and I have no doubt in our Lodge’s ability to execute on short notice. Looking forward to seeing each and every Brother at the next Stated on March 3rd.
Sincerely and Fraternally,
James S. Parkhurst