Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Masonic Symposium in Albany

An Educational Gathering on Topics of Freemasonry

The Northeast Masonic Symposium (NEMS) is devoted to providing a forum in the Northeast corner of the US a place for brothers to listen to lectures on topics of Freemasonry.   To learn about Masonic history, expand their knowledge and to be inspired for their own works is the aim of the symposium for all who attend.    NEMS first gathering is taking place in April of 2012 in Upstate NY. 

This event brings lecturers from across the country and will bring together brothers from all over the region. The symposium is constructed with several tracks of lectures, allowing its attendees to select topics of interest to them. The current agenda offers a full day of food, lectures and social opportunities.   

​You won’t want to miss this event!

The cost for attendance is $50 per person (plus applicable payment processing fees) and includes continental breakfast, a commemorative gift, lunch, a cocktail reception, and a full day of lectures.

Business casual, or business suits.

Who Should Attend
The event is currently open to all Master Masons.

Friday, January 20, 2012

Festive Board in Honor of Poet Robert Burns


You are invited to participate in this Festive Board in honor of the birth of our late Brother Robert Burns, poet laureate of Scotland.  This is a traditional meal, observed worldwide, including the traditional Ode to the Haggis accompanied by a bag piper.  Beginning at 9:00 after our meeting.  We will enjoy two hours of free-flowing scotch whisky and beer, and a full three course meal.  The cost of this has been advertised at $55.00 per person with $10.00 benefiting the Seventh District Association.  The lodge will subsidize this cost at $10.00 per person which brings downs the cost to a more affordable $45.00.   Please make your reservations ASAP to master@JWGL934.com.


Stephen Rumpf, Master


Aurora Grata-Day Star Lodge No. 647
(Third Kings District)
The Seventh Manhattan District Fellowcraft Club
will be co-hosting the annual
Robbie Burns Festive Board
Wednesday, January 25th, 9PM

Masonic Hall
71 W 23rd St, American Room (19th Fl)

$55.00 per person
(includes appetisers, dinner, desert, open bar & piping)
(Free to AGDS647 members in good standing for 2012)

Brother bring a friend
(Stag / Attire: Tux or Tartan)

RSVP (by 01/11/2012): grsolberg@verizon.net

Gie her a haggis!


Saturday, January 14, 2012

The Interest in Shaquille O'Oneil Continues!!

I posted a comment about Shaq, and what's interesting is the number of Brethren on Facebook who have expressed concerns regarding either Shaq's credibility as a representative of Freemasonry, or the manner in which he was made a Mason. Let me state publicly that I do not question either Shaq's credibility or status as a member of this Craft. If a Brother was made in a Regular Lodge, then he is a Brother Mason, period. As a Mason, there is a reality that I must at least FUNCTIONALLy accept- the rights of a Grand Master.  

To relieve confusion and restore good will and peace amongst Brethren, perhaps I should re-word my initial thought: Is National Television the best forum to bring to light such information, particularly in the manner in which it was done? If I wear a diamond encrusted ring of any kind, I can be sure that it will both attract attention and incite inquiry. Am I, in essence, intentionally drawing attention? And once that attention is drawn and I have a captive audience, do I educate the questioner or play coy and naive to the moment at hand?

Friday, January 13, 2012


I have mixed feelings about this situation. There is a side of me that says that a freeborn man, of lawful age, and well recommended, should be able to do whatever he circumscribes for himself. On the other hand, keeping one's passions in due bounds may just mean practicing caution and not bringing excessive attention to the Craft, particularly when that attention is not necessarily presented in a positive light...If you can afford it, why not? On the other hand, Light is Light, and your diamond encrusted square and compasses ring shines no brighter than my silver hollowed square and compasses ring...Thoughts?

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Observing the Craft Lecture!!

The Robert R Livingston Masonic Library and Moses
Montefiore Masonic Education Association Present a Lecture 
By Andrew Hammer Entitled "Observing The Craft." 

Brothers please join us on: 

January 24th at 7 PM. 


PLEASE EMAIL Masoniclecture@gmail.com to RSVP. 

The lecture will take place at the Masonic Hall in New York
City on 71 W.23st (on the corner of 6th Avenue.)

Monday, January 9, 2012


I found this at X-Oriente Masonic Podcast- Check it out!

Betcha didn't know that Chivas was more than a whiskey…it's a fraternity. Clearly Chivas' "Live with Chivalry" campaign is hitting a chord with young men (Presumably the target of the campaign.) What I find kind of fascinating is that the campaign was done in Euro/RSCG's London office. You know London? That place where Masons seem to be portrayed as sinister characters who have nothing better to do than stalk Lindsay Lohan. (Note to Ms. Lohan: Speaking as a Mason, I can assure you that if I were in London, and if I were the stalking type, I can think of at least 30 women off the top of my head I rather stalk than you. So I think it is pretty safe to say your problem is not with the Brothers).

This is one of those markers that should be an indicator that young men are hungry for what Masonry has to offer. What is important to know is the aspirational quality of the images. Watch the ad:

What is important to point out here is that the images are lush. The experiential qualities speak to an authenticity. These are not the type of guys who are doing one-day classes because it is convenient. These guys aspire to fight fires, jump out of airplanes and go to formal parties. Not really the one day class aesthetic. Discuss.

Masonry will be nothing if it doesn't inspire men to aspire to something better. And if better means it is difficult, well that will make that sip of whiskey at the end of it that much more satisfying.

But I hope if the members of the "Chivas Brotherhood" seek out the real Brotherhood you'll welcome them after their first degree with a proper single malt.

Great Podcast Series!


I have a found a GREAT interview with R:.W:. Brother Jerry Butler on X-Oriente, a masonic podcast. For those of you who do not know, he is an internationally acclaimed Soul pioneer and singer. Although he is from my parents generation, as a child, I grew up listening to his music- my parents didn't buy a lot of new records as adults. I've posted the interview here for your edification. It's pretty good, and provides a perspective of Masonry that I believe is most understood and manifest in our elder Brethren, due to their years of accumulated wisdom derived through life experience.

Keep looking to the East!

Here's what the interviewer had to say:

"Back in November I had the opportunity to sit down with M.W. Bro. Jerry Butler. Bro Butler is one of the founding members of the Impressions, a member of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, A Past Grandmaster of the Prince Hall Grand Lodge in Illinois, and a Cook County Board Commissioner. He is also a wise, compassionate and wickedly funny guy.
I went to see him to learn more about how Prince Hall Masonry differs from my own. What I found is that we many more similarities than differences. Special thanks to Bro. Butler, to Bro. Ryan Priester, To the guys of North Star Lodge No. 1 and to Arc Music for granting permission to play some of Jerry’s Music. If you’d like to explore, it can be found on the iTunes Music Store
This episode was brought to you by Stone Guild Publishing, publishers of Morals and Dogma for the 21st Century . Please visit them and help support X-Oriente!"