From the East
Worshipful Jesse Middleton
My Brothers, the light at the end of the tunnel is finally here. I appreciate everyone’s patience, and their excitement to get the show going. The last 17 months have been something that most, if not all of us, have never experienced. The isolation and unknowing has certainly taken its toll on many people, and it is not lost on me that some aspects of life may never go back to what they were 17 months ago. That being said, I hope everyone was able to read the directive from the Grand Master this past week that shows there will be changes coming to the current restrictions, in the coming weeks. But, Consuelo Lodge #325 has persevered, and nothing could show that more than the month of May.
On, May 15th, Consuelo Lodge was able to make a difference in a few local students’ lives by donating ear buds, and protective cases for those ear buds, to the Escondido School District. Education and community have always been a focus of Masonry since the Enlightenment Period. Due to a poor understanding of Masonry, many governments were reluctant to allow Masons to act in the open during those times. To circumvent that, many donations and charitable actions where done either anonymously or under the banner of some other entity. Luckily, today we are able to do our part to help our community, and assist in any way we can in an open environment. Helping the Escondido School District is just one of a few ways Consuelo Lodge is able to invest in the future of its community. A very big thank you to Wor. Tracy Reynolds for bringing this need to the Lodge’s attention, and for making the connections within the school district. I’d also like to thank Worshipful George Tegart for running the logistical part of this endeavor, Brother Greg Lund who coordinated the reception and wrote the article, and Wor. Doug Ford who was able to take photos to capture the event. For those that do not have social media, the school district did acknowledge the Lodge on Twitter and on Facebook, and the students also signed a Thank you Card that is currently sitting on the Tiler’s desk. Also, if you did not know, the Lodge is active on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.
Consuelo Masonic Lodge was deemed a “Historic Place of Assembly,” within the City of Escondido on May 19th. The City Council of Escondido recognized Consuelo Lodge during one of their virtual meetings. A few Brothers were online to witness the meeting where a slide show was prepared by the City and a brief history of the building was given. A certificate was presented to the Lodge, and will be hung up for everyone to see in due time. I believe this is the first time in quite a while that the Lodge has been recognized by the city of Escondido. I have no doubt this is a result of our participation in the Chamber of Commerce as well as the other events where we have gained exposure.
For the first time in over a year the Lodge was opened on May 24th. It was opened on the first degree, and the following Brothers proudly and successfully gave back their proficiency; Bro Julian Madril (Fellowcraft / Junior Steward), Bro Jason Beyer (Fellowcraft), Bro. Emilio Ampuan (Entered Apprentice), Bro Raphael Pena (Entered Apprentice), and Bro Brent Miller (Entered Apprentice). Seventeen Brothers were in attendance, and everyone stayed for light refreshment at the end of the evening. These Brothers have all been very patient, and working very hard to advance on their journey. Personally, there was no better feeling than to see all of them picking up their working tools and again begin that journey. Another great part of that evening was those on the sidelines. There were many faces that haven’t actually been in an open Lodge in many years, and their presence and interaction was truly a blessing to the Lodge
Now, for the pinnacle event of the month. On May 29th, Worshipful Inspector Gabe Barboa and Consuelo Lodge had the distinct honor of presenting to Wor. Chuck Canedy his 60 year award certificate and pin, on behalf of the Grand Lodge of Oregon. For those that missed this event, you truly missed out on a very special afternoon that really brought the Lodge and Canedy family closer together. Wor. Chuck’s wife Dorothy and kids, Michele, Ryan, and Rhonda were all in attendance. There was no doubt Masonry had played an intregal part in the Canedy family, and how close they all were. The tenets of Masonry were noticeable in all of them, which no doubt, they learned from Wor. Chuck. Now, I am not sure how many of you have seen a 50year award ceremony, but to see a 60 year ceremony was a real treat. I for one was very moved by the entire event. The photos and this article will never be able to fully describe the love and appreciation for both Wor. Chuck and the Craft, it was something you would have had to have been there to appreciate. Thank you Wor. Tom Handell for stepping in as Chaplain for the ceremony!
Moving forward, June 14th will be our last “virtual” Stated meeting. It’s been a great run and opportunity to test another avenue of Masonry. I think there is something to be said for the virtual meetings, and I believe they certainly have their place at times, but there is no doubt we are ready to move back into the lodge room and really enjoy each other’s company. For those that have been active in the last month, you will notice that the Lodge has a very strong and able core of members who arrive early and stay late. There is something to be said for a group of men who have a bond that carries over out of the lodge room and into everyday activities. As the months go on, and we become more active, I hope to see more joining this core group. Please be sure to check your emails on a regular basis as there are events that have been popping up at very short notice.
Saturday June 26th, will be our observance of, “The Feast of St. John.” We will be holding a Table Lodge that afternoon and all members of Consuelo Lodge are strongly encouraged to attend. Please be sure to RSVP so that we can ensure there is enough food and beverage for all who plan to attend. The Feast of St. John has been a tradition for Table Lodges for a very long time and I feel there is no better way to officially fully open the Lodge than to inject an old tradition to bring the Brothers together. An email recently went out with information and a link to RSVP. I will be sure to send another email with more details and the RSVP link very soon. If anyone has any questions, or would like to volunteer to help, please call or email me.
A new event that will become a re-occurring theme will be fireside chats. This will be the 2nd and 4th Friday of every month and will take place in the Wor. Pete Legatta fireside room at the Lodge. This event will be very casual, and will be an open discussion on all things esoteric. These chats will not necessarily be lodge functions, as the discussions will not be restricted to Masonic symbolism or meanings. These chats will encourage Brothers to discuss and ask questions about the deeper symbology and mythology that has been engrained in the sub-consciousness of man since time immemorial. Any Brothers interested in participating, please mark your calendars with the dates, starting time will be 7PM and will go until everyone has had their fill for the evening. Please respect the fact that, as always, there will be no discussion of politics or religion. Any questions please reach out!
In the Lodge’s venture to continue to create fellowship and bonds outside of Lodge, Bro. Jon Rick will be coordinating events on a monthly basis that will take us to different restaurants and watering holes within Escondido. This will give everyone the opportunity to get to know each other in a more relaxed and casual setting. As those details become available, Bro. Jon Rick will be sure to communicate those details so that everyone who wishes to participate can.
By this time in July, the Lodge will be in full-swing. The Lodge will not be dark this summer as we have been dark for the past 17 months. As restrictions loosen up, I encourage everyone to attend lodge and do some travelling. If you anticipate taking a summer vacation, please try to find a lodge near where you are going and drop in! I myself will be doing some travelling and look forward to visiting other Lodges and learning from those experiences. Starting in July, the Brothers who have completed their proficiency will be receiving their next degree. Times are about to get busy, my Brothers. Please keep in mind those that cannot attend, or who have difficulty attending. If you are able to, please reach out to them and see if you can assist in getting them to Lodge. I also continue to encourage everyone that can to drop by and see Wor. Walt Dill. I know in the past month, Bro Vance Johnson and Bro Jason Beyer have dropped by to pay Wor. Dill a visit, as well as Bro Emilio Ampuan, Bro Jim Forster, Bro Patrick Scoggins, and members of The Eastern Star. A very big Thank You to Bro. John Gravitt who has done a lot of coordinating to get Wor. Dill to attend the Coffee and Donuts, that’s been occurring regularly on Wednesday mornings. For those interested in Coffee and Donuts details please reach out to Wor. Sheets or Bro Vance Johnson.
Lastly, please keep Wor. Sheets in your thoughts as he has had to undergo an emergency appendectomy. He is recovering at home, and looking forward to being able to attend Lodge again soon. I am sure he would appreciate hearing a phone call or text checking in on him. Get will soon Tim!
From the West
Bro. Jeff Powell
With the COVID-19 restrictions slowly being eased, I am pleased to see things slowly returning to normal. Not only are things resuming in the blue lodge, but some of the youth groups have also began holding in-person meetings. Job’s Daughter’s has recently had an in-person reception for Maura Arnold, a picnic, and I have attended the first in-person Bethel meeting in since before the pandemic.
One thing that I have noticed that has returned as quickly as in-person meetings, and that’s scheduling conflicts. As I’m sure all of us brothers are in the same situation and often are choosing between which Masonic events we can attend, and which others do we decline. I have narrowly escaped one of these situations on June 19th which is the weekend of this year’s Master’s and Warden’s retreat in Irvine. Luckily, since there is a virtual option which offers the same content, I do not need to skip this event.
The competing event for that particular weekend, is the Job’s Daughter’s Installation. What makes this Installation different from others, aside being the first in-person installation in a while, is that my daughter Tamara will be installed as Honored Queen, and I do not wish to miss this event. Brothers, if you can attend Tamara’s installation, it’s on June 19th at 4:00 PM. Also, please remember to RSVP, or you probably won’t be able to get in. If you send an RSVP to [email protected], I’ll make sure your name gets added to the list. I’m looking forward to seeing you all there!
Speaking of Job’s Daughters, it has been recently asked how can someone support the group? There are several ways:
Be on the lookout for fundraisers and purchase items, tickets, etc… These will usually get announced in lodge meetings or sent out to mailing lists.
If you set Job’s Daughters Bethel 154 as a charity on ‘smile.amazon.com‘, a portion of every purchase you make will be donated to the Bethel.
Eat breakfast at The Golden Egg Omelet House on W. Mission Ave. Not only will you get a fantastic breakfast, but if you write ‘Job’s Daughters Bethel 154, Escondido’ on the receipt, a donation will be made to the bethel. This is on ongoing fundraiser and is valid any time.
If you would like to make a monetary donation, the address for the Bethel is the same as the lodge:
Job’s Daughters Bethel No. 154
℅ Bethel Guardian: Nikki Daniels
1331 S Escondido Blvd.
Escondido, CA 92025
Thank you for supporting our youth groups!
Now for the ‘educational’ part of this Trestleboard article. Often, as searching on the Internet for Masonic information returns useless misinformation. Sometimes, however, very useful information can be found.
I may have written about this before, but one thing that I have found on the internet are old, discontinued Masonic documents sometimes containing ritual which is no longer used. I sometimes wonder why some of these rituals are no longer used, and what may have been behind some of the decisions to leave these out and how we ended up where we currently are.
One of my favorite of these old documents, I consider to be more of a Masonic history book than ritual, and that is ‘The Constitutions of the Free-Masons’ from 1734, which was printed in Pennsylvania by our Brother, Benjamin Franklin. If you are interested in learning about what early American Masonry might have been like, then I encourage you to read through this. Perhaps we might have some of it read during the educational portion of a Stated meeting sometime in the future.
This book even contains some Masonic songs. I think if we searched enough, we may even find the music that accompanies those words to the songs contained in this book.
From the South
Bro. Jon Gary Rick
Brothers, last week our lodge officially opened for the first time since the pandemic began. It was opened for the purpose of hearing the proficiencies of many of our Entered Apprentices and Fellowcrafts who’ve waited over a year to return their work. It was a wonderful night and one which I took much joy in as we celebrated their tremendous efforts. It was also fantastic to see such a wonderful turnout for the evening. Truly a reminder of how good and how pleasant it is for brothers to dwell together in unity!
Now we are blessed with being able to take the next step in our lodge’s journey in fully returning to labor; that of preparing to confer degrees. I personally have always been drawn to our ritual as it’s the cornerstone of our fraternity and like many wise masons who have gone before me have expressed a similar sentiment, each time you hear a degree, it is an experience, and you can come away with something new that you might not have noticed before.
With this in mind, I very much hope you will join us in the coming weeks and months as we initiate, pass, and raise our friends and brothers who’ve been waiting ever so long to start or continue their journey in Masonry.
Last month I expressed that your presence at lodge is a simple but powerful action and never more meaningful than at a degree for a candidate. Let’s build on the momentum from our wonderful proficiency-night and support our brothers in their journey toward that Sublime Degree.
It is my hope that as the State and County continue to lift COVID restrictions that it will become even easier to attend lodge, but regardless, I want to make the same offer as I have before; should you need assistance meeting any of the requirements to attend lodge safely, please don’t hesitate to let me know. I will help in any way I can.
Until I’m able to greet you again my brother, I wish you and your family a safe and happy month of June!