Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Who Goes To Conshy For A Shoe?

It’s amazing to see the turn out for a district visitation simply to have the honor of taking possession of an old shoe. I guess it’s the simple pleasures (and bragging rights). Regardless of motivation, it’s the fellowship that matters and that is what keeps the Masonic road show going.

Over 80 brothers converged on Conshohocken last night for an evening that was both memorable and entertaining (even without a tiara in sight). With the hall quickly filling up, additional seating had to be brought in to accommodate the capacity crowd. It made it really easy to tell who came in late.

The multigenerational gathering was one that demonstrated the experiential spectrum of the room. Newer brothers were recognized along with those who were celebrating their Masonic birthday all with a wide variety of years as members of the craft. But what highlighted the evening for me were the words spoken by those who were honored for their 25 and 50 fraternal years as it reaffirmed the fact that we are all equal with the same motivation and bond that brought us to Fritz Lodge that night.

It is an honor to hear the words of those with so many years in the fraternity not because of the degrees they may have or the offices they have held but because you can see the lasting impact that the brotherhood has had on their lives. That is a Masonic education that can’t be found in any book and a value that those who have not been raised cannot understand. Those are the words that reinforce the brotherly bond and strengthen the generational ties to each other.

These are the nights that bring to the forefront a connection with the brothers that we never knew and those who are no longer with us. For many of us it also ties us to our Masonic genealogy knowing that the tradition and ceremony has been witnessed and embraced by us all, past and present. And, finally, it shows us the value of what we have, greater than ourselves, that we can pass down to future generations.

I hope that many of you either have experienced this or will experience it in the near future. I encourage all brothers to take the time to reflect on these points both in the lodge and during the normal course of your day. And for those of you who have not accepted the gift of Freemasonry, I encourage you to ask a Mason about their experience and what the fraternity has meant to them. Remember, to be one, ask one.