From the East
Worshipful Jesse Middleton
“Time is free, but it’s priceless. You can’t own it, but you can use it. You can’t keep it, but you can spend it. Once you’ve lost it you can never get it back.” – Harvey Mackay. My Brothers, where has the time gone? Already it is July, and we are into the second half of our year. While we are just beginning to open the doors to Consuelo Lodge, we are already full-speed ahead in preparing to confer the best possible degree the Lodge is capable of, providing all Brothers with the best possible experience in their Masonic journey, and becoming more visible in the Escondido community.
If you recall in the January trestleboard, I made the statement that I expected us to be open by summer time. Well here we are, the temperatures are well above 90 degrees, it is light outside well past 8 o’clock PM, and the Lodge is open. We are no longer meeting virtually for the Stated Meetings and the Lodge has been busy with plenty of masonic activity for those who choose to keep themselves busy with Masonic adventures. I would like to thank everyone who completed the surveys at the beginning of the year. Those surveys have assisted me in setting the course for the year in a way that would be meaningful and exciting for the Brothers of Consuelo Lodge
As the year continued on, we were able to keep in touch via the Zoom sessions which were truly a blessing. While we were restricted from in person meetings, we were able to keep in touch through the virtual realm. Many of these meetings were unstructured and just allowed for some much needed socialization. At other times, education was provided. Those who know me are well aware how important understanding our symbols and ritual is to me and that everyone have the opportunity to learn these lessons if they choose.
Thus far, we have been able to have a 60 year pinning for Wor. Chuck Canedy on May 29th. This was open to all Mason’s and was our first true meeting of Brother’s in the Lodge. For those that attended, it was an experience not soon forgotten. I hope reflecting back on it, that everyone was able to take something out of that ceremony to better their Masonic journey. We have had two Lodge cleanup events. Now, I welcome anyone to call me out on this that attended, but these have been great times! Each event had at least 10 Brothers and lunch has always been provided. Brother Emilio has even brought lumpia and pancit which was a big hit, and much appreciated. These two events also provided an opportunity for our Brothers to have input in Lodge décor and updates. The conversations during these events are always top notch, and allow each and every one of us the opportunity to get to know ourselves and our Brothers even better. We have also had the opportunity to help some students in the community by providing ear buds and cases to better assist them in their virtual learning experience. While it may not be the best experience for learning, the ear buds enabled the students to eliminate background noise and assist them in focusing on the task at hand.
Recently, the Lodge has been recognized as a historic meeting place within the City of Escondido. A few Brothers attended the virtual city hall meeting where the Escondido city council and the mayor recognized the Lodge, along with a few other meeting places, with a short slide show showing the different venues and some of the history behind each meeting place. The certificate is now in the Secretary’s office and will be appropriately displayed in due time.
At the end of June, the Lodge celebrated the Feast of the Holy Saints John by Table Lodge a few days after the Summer Solstice. The dining room was full as can be seen by the photos. Brothers from Consuelo Lodge, La Jolla Lodge, San Diego Lodge, Vista Lodge, and Fallbrook Lodge were present and had a great time, each Brother receiving a complimentary “Canon” to remember the shenanigans which lasted a few hours. There is not enough room or time to describe how well this event went, however the event raised $410 dollars to be donated to the Masonic Homes Foundation and was a great pace setter for the rest of the Masonic year.
I have also started another gathering in which Brother’s meet every-other-Friday evening to discuss the esoteric elements of our ritual. I call these meetings “Fireside Chats.” To date we have had three of these meetings, typically with three to seven Brothers, and they have been really good conversations. Ask anyone who has attended and they will tell you it is time well spent discussing Masonry and the affects it has on us.
Now, we are on to our first in-person stated meeting. All Brothers are being strongly encouraged to bring the family to stated dinners as Masonry is very much a family thing, just look at the example Wor. Chuck displayed at his 60th pinning. That was evidence enough that Masonry affects the entire family. Also, for stated meetings, please come dressed comfortably. There is no requirement of a suit and tie for Stated Dinners or Meetings. Pants and a polo shirt are just fine, I just ask that there are no Brothers wearing shorts or sandal’s. July’s stated meeting will again showcase Consuelo’s ambition to help our community through the presentation of scholarships to three different well deserving students in the Escondido community. There will also be a degree in July. On Saturday July 17th, at 1000 we will confer a 3rd Degree for Brother Madril to be followed by a light lunch. On Monday August 2nd, at 1900 there will be a second degree with a couple others to follow in August. On Saturday, August 7th at 0800 there will be a pancake breakfast for interested prospects that are showing interest in the Lodge. Brothers are encouraged to attend and bring their families to demonstrate the bonds within our Lodge.
There are still some events to come such as the Warden’s picnic which is on for this year. More details will be coming soon. September will include one more large event, which is still being coordinated as well. Please standby for more details as they become available. Around this time, hopefully we will be conferring a few first degrees and preparing for a transition into the next Masonic year. October will have Grand Communications, once again in person, which sends us into elections in November. Time is ever fleeting my Brothers, and there is still plenty to be done! I look forward to seeing everyone who can make it to our degrees and meetings. I ask that every Brother consider that their presence at any Degree has an effect on the candidate, and that effect will last with the candidate so please do your part in assisting the candidate in his Masonic work. As time permits, drop by your Lodge and see what’s going on, who knows what you will find that fits your experience.
From the West
Bro. Jeff Powell
With this year more than half over, it is good to see some of Masonry coming back into full swing. One sure reason that I know that Masonry is no longer in lockdown is that I recently had my first week where a Masonic event was attended every day, and also I am seeing multiple events occurring on the same day. This reminds me of how things were before the pandemic began.
The first thing I want to cover in this article, is that our own Agate Chapter DeMolay has started to hold in-person meetings again, which are held 7:00 PM every first and third Wednesday at the Escondido Masonic Center. If you know of any young men, perhaps a son, grandson, nephew, or neighbor, ages 12 through 21, it would be great if they would became involved in DeMolay. I have recently added a new Masonic responsibility, and that is Assistant Chapter Dad. I am looking forward to exciting future for Agate Chapter and am excited to be a part of the re-building of this youth group.
The last topic for this article is that of change. Change affects everyone, and while I have been fortunate to have a lot of changes in my life within my own control, I have recently ended up without a job. While being unemployed is definitely not a desirable situation, the healthy approach in moving forward is to look at the positives. One good thing is that I probably will not have to travel as much in the future. Another good thing is that there are historic job openings at the moment, and if it was going to happen, now probably the best time to be searching for a new job. Last, it is from the challenges and trials in life that enables growth. If everything remained the same, I would be bored, not grow and essentially become stagnant.
This is also one of the benefits that I have enjoyed in Masonry, for the challenges that Masonry brings, such as, learning ritual in time for qualifications, trying to find enough volunteers to cover the Child ID booth, getting the kids to the youth meetings on-time, trying to word perfectly nail a lecture, these are all things that cause Masonic growth. The rough to perfect Ashlar comes to mind as an analogy of the benefits of growth, and the differences may not be seen immediately but gradually over an extended period of time. Slowly but surely, as we face the challenges life throws at us, we will grow into that perfect Ashlar.
From the South
Bro. Jon Gary Rick
My Brothers, this past June 26th the brethren of Consuelo met and held a Table Lodge to celebrate the day of St. John the Baptist. The modern emulation of a Table Lodge harkens back to early Masonic lodges who would regularly meet above their local pubs and taverns then retire for refreshment downstairs for festivities and socializing; and socialize the brethren in attendance of our recent table lodge did in fact do!
It was serendipitous indeed that our first major opportunity to break bread together after so many months apart coincided with Worshipful Jesse’s planned table lodge; a very fitting return and one that quickly reminded me of the joy I always get when I’m able to sit with my brothers and share a meal.
Taking time for “refreshment” as our 24-inch gauge reminds us is a critical part of our day. It’s with this in mind, that for the remainder of my time as Junior Warden, I’ll be hosting a monthly event outside of lodge which I have dubbed Consuelo at Refreshment; the goal of which is to provide yet another opportunity for us to meet and enjoy one another’s company in a casual social environment. We’ll be meeting in the evening at various pubs and taverns throughout Escondido and North County so if you have any recommendations please let me know!
I’ll be announcing the full details of our first gathering of Consuelo at Refreshment at our upcoming in-person stated meeting on July 12th, with a follow-up email shortly thereafter. Additionally, if you’re planning on attending dinner for the stated meeting, I need you to RSVP for yourself and any of your guests by the Morning of Sunday the 11th. You can do so by visiting: www.consuelo325.org/dinner
Finally, I’d be remiss in not thanking our very own Worshipful Tim Sheets and Bro. Roger Parker, in addition to Bro. Patrick Gerard of Fallbrook Lodge #317 for the wonderful meal they provided to our table lodge. Thank you my brothers, from your labors everyone left the event with a very happy and full belly and this Junior Warden very much appreciated your tremendous efforts!
With that, I wish you all a very happy and healthy July and I look forward to seeing you at the many meetings and degrees we have coming up!