Trestleboard – November 2021

From the East

Worshipful Jesse Middleton

My Brothers, the sands of the hourglass seem to be falling faster and faster as the year wanes. Recently, we had our “Past Master’s Night.” The Degree was very well done with Worshipful Tom Handell in the East. The candidate, Bro. Currie, was passed to the Degree of Fellowcraft and enjoyed more enlightenment as he was introduced to additional moral lessons veiled in the allegories of the Middle Chamber. This is a signpost of Consuelo Lodge that the year is coming to an end.

     On the 8th of November, Consuelo Lodge will be holding their annual Veteran’s Appreciation Night. This year, Bro. Jason Beyer has been the lead coordinator for this event, and I assure you this event will be unlike any Veteran’s Appreciation Night Consuelo Lodge has seen before. There is a program for the evening, which Bro. Jason has spent many personal hours working on.

     For those available, I implore you to RSVP on the Consuelo 325 website and attend this meeting. Show our Veteran’s that you support them and support the efforts of Bro. Jason in putting together this very special program to honor our Vets. For those who can, there will be a donation can in the dinning room that will be used to raise money specifically for homeless veterans in Escondido. Please consider their sacrifice and the things you can do to assist others in helping them get the services they deserve.

     On that same evening, we will be having our annual election of officers for the ensuing Masonic year. Bro. Jeff Powell, Bro. Jon Rick, and Wor. Vic Beltran will be looking for nominations to continue their journey to the East. All three of these men have the utmost moral and social values to continue to lead the Lodge in a direction that benefits the Craft and each Mason within this Lodge. All have put a considerable amount of time into enhancing the Lodge experience, supporting their Brothers, and interacting with their community. I look forward to the opportunity to hand the gavel over to Bro. Jeff and watch him lead with the support and trust of his Lodge.

     On the 12th of  November Consuelo Lodge will be hosting a Masonic Education evening. The evening will start at 6:30 and food will be served. Currently we have seven Brothers lined up to make presentations on Masonic subjects of their choosing. For anyone that has attended the Fireside Chats, this will be very similar but on a larger scale, and with other Lodges invited. If you have been looking for more explanation on our Degrees and a conversation that goes beyond an elevator speech explanation of our Craft, this is the event for you. Please RSVP with the Master so that we have enough food for everyone.

     December 2nd will be a BIG evening for Consuelo Lodge. In this one evening, we will fit the Mason of the Year award (Bro. Greg Lund), the Hiram Award (Wor. George Tegart), and two 50 year Pinnings (Bro. Jim Forster and Bro. John Woosley). There will be a dinner to precede the ceremonies so please RSVP.

     All of these men have personified what it truly means to be a Mason. Their dedication, efforts, and wisdom have benefited the Craft and Consuelo Lodge in particular. I ask everyone to please make yourself available to show support for these Brothers, as they have done for all of us in the past.

     End of the year Christmas Party. This will be the event of the year. If anyone remembers the “Rusty Trowel” dinners, this event will take that to the next level. There will be a formal dinner with live entertainment, and Santa will make an appearance for any children who will be attending. The evening will include a “White Elephant” gift exchange for those who wish to participate. There will also be a charity event going on, more details to follow!

     That will just about wrap it up for the year. As is tradition with Consuelo, the outgoing Master will be absent from the December Stated Meeting as the transition to the newly elected Master takes place. I cannot help but look back at the year and count the many blessings which transpired.

  1. I am thankful for the numerous experiences which have allowed the Lodge to grow into the brotherhood it is today
  2.  I am thankful for the Officers who supported me, and put in the extra effort behind the scenes to keep the Lodge moving forward
  3.  I am thankful for the Brothers who came to me with questions, comments, and requests. You all effected the outcome of every event and degree.
  4. I am thankful to the wives and girlfriends of the Brothers. Your support afforded us time with your partner, and that led to a successful year at Consuelo Lodge.
  5. I am thankful for the Charity the Lodge performed in our community. Though there were not many Charity events, the ones we did were meaningful and taught many of us a lesson in being an active partner in our community.
  6. I am thankful for the challenges that came up throughout the year. They presented me and the pillars the experiences essential to improving our leadership skills
  7. I am thankful for the youth organizations that assisted at Stated Dinners and allowed me to participate in their meetings. You may not understand now, but your meetings helped me learn a bit about myself and to see things at times from a much different perspective
  8. I am thankful for the 50 Year Pinning ceremonies that Consuelo Lodge was able to perform. Seeing these Brothers who have dedicated so much time to the Craft and seeing their families who supported them has left an everlasting impression upon me
  9. I am thankful for my wife Karla who’s independence and strength has allowed me to sacrifice time with her and my two boys in order to participate in Lodge functions
  10. I am thankful for every Brother who voted for me last year to assume the role as Worshipful Master for the year 2021. Your vote of confidence in me gave me the opportunity to grow in countless ways. I do believe I am a much better man today than I was when I first sat in the East, at the beginning of the year.

     I wish everyone a very happy and safe Thanksgiving. I hope everyone can have a good meal surrounded by friends and family. I look forward to the coming weeks as my term quickly comes to an end. You have all made this past year a very memorable year with lots to be thankful for. 

From the West

Bro. Jeff Powell

It’s hard to believe that we’re already heading into the month of November, and the Masonic year is nearly over. For me, the first half of the year seemed to go slow but is picking up speed in the latter half. It’s good to see the lodge firing on all cylinders again by initiating new candidates, performing degrees, and having regular informal gatherings such as the Wednesday coffee & donuts, and Consuelo at refreshment.

     With the year coming to an end, I have become more engaged in preparing for next year with getting the officer lineup finalized, next year’s calendar, and the budget. If anyone has an activity in particular that they would like us to do next year, please bring it to my attention for consideration.     One thing unique about this year as the Sr. Warden is writing these monthly Trestleboard articles. The articles from the West are supposed to be educational, however, this has sometimes been a challenge. The reason being that even though there are many concepts in the degrees which aren’t necessarily secret, I have the tendency to avoid them in the Trestleboard for similar reason that I would not want to discuss a movie plot to someone who hasn’t yet seen the movie. Such topics are better off being discussed in a forum like the Fireside Chat, where the audience can be assured to be Masons.

     One thing however, that is not a secret, is that much of Masonry has themes centered around King Solomon’s temple. While recently researching various topics on the web, I found a topic on King Solomon’s Temple which was so interesting and bizarre that I decided to share it. We all know that the temple was located on the temple mount in Jerusalem, right? After all, it’s called the ‘Temple Mount’. Well, there are numerous web sites and various Youtube videos which suggest that perhaps the temple was located somewhere else. To make their case even more compelling, they use Holy Scriptures, archeological discoveries, and other historical writings to attempt to prove the case.     One of the most compelling examples they give are from Leviticus, where several passages which suggests that the temple may have had running water for bathing, ritual purification, and a place for sacrificing birds. This would place the temple about 1000 feet to the south of the Temple mount in a place called ‘the City of David’ where the only natural spring would have existed. Archeological findings around this water source, the Gihon Spring, reveal areas once utilized for atonement ceremonies which would have included animal sacrifice.

     So, if Solomon’s temple was located 1000 feet south of the temple mount, what would have been located at the temple mount? According to these sources, the temple mount and the existing walls were actually part of Fort Antonia, left intact to be used by the Romans after they destroyed the city.

     Like I said, I decided to share this only because I thought it was intriguing and something to think about, not that any of these concepts have any proven validity.

From the South

Bro. Jon Gary Rick

My Brothers, with October behind us, I pondered at great lengths about the specific topic I wanted to share with you for this month’s Trestleboard. Having just returned from Annual Communication there was much I wanted to include. This being my first time in attendance at Grand Lodge, I thought for sure I would recount all the details of each day; the amazement of seeing it all in action or what an honor it was to sit in the Senior Grand Deacon’s chair for a few minutes while Grand Lodge was open – (Thanks again Worshipful Mark!)

     However, when I kept reflecting upon all the events that unfolded that weekend, there was one very specific moment that kept coming back to the forefront of my mind time and time again. That moment was when a motion was made to revoke the charter of another lodge.

     I thought I had packed well for my trip and prepared everything I’d need for the handful of days I’d be in San Francisco – but I failed to mentally prepare myself for the possibility of voting to dissolve another lodge, only to be compounded by the fact that this lodge was more than a century old.

     I listened very carefully to each reason why this motion was brought to the floor. The difficulties this lodge has had in maintaining it’s records, how they didn’t have the necessary qualified officers to fill the required chairs and how after much help from Grand Lodge it still had outstanding issues.

     I then listened as the brothers from this lodge pleaded with all those assembled for more time. They recounted all the efforts they’ve made in qualifying their officers, improving their records, and so forth – they then recounted this lodge’s 100+ year history, how it was a cornerstone in their community, and how many appendant bodies and youth groups met in their lodge building.

     It was at this moment I was reminded how important a lodge can be to a community and more so to all those who are directly or indirectly tied to it. It was also when I fully realized how incredibly fragile a Masonic Lodge actually is. We often speak about how Freemasonry has existed for so long  that our actual history is somewhat lost to time (since time immemorial), we speak of how the craft can endure all things – something I truly believe but I think it’s vitally important not to confuse the ruggedness of the craft with the frailty of a singular lodge.

     The privilege of being a member of a Masonic Lodge also comes with the responsibilities of its considerable maintenance. I’ve often thought of Consuelo, it’s 126 year history, and it’s incredible foundation that was built by all of it’s Masters, Wardens, Officers, and Members who’ve gone before us as being nearly unshakeable – I now realize that thought was wrong.

     We too could easily find ourselves standing before Grand Lodge pleading with our brethren if we take for granted all the hard work of those who’ve contributed to that in which we now enjoy. The responsibility to ensure the continued success of Consuelo falls on us all, and while I believe we’re well positioned with an excellent slate of Entered Apprentices and Fellow Crafts working their way to that Sublime Degree, I must implore us all to take an active role in guiding our lodge into the future; as our Worshipful Brother Tracy Reynolds has often said, “many hands make light work”.

     With our November Stated Meeting a short couple of weeks away, we’ll be electing new officers for the coming Masonic year, which will in turn require the appointment of additional officers and committee members. If you’re able, I highly encourage you to volunteer. I promise you the return on investment of your time and energy will be well worth the reward of preserving our lodge for generations to come.

     Thank you my Brothers for your consideration and I hope you and your families have a wonderful November and a very happy Thanksgiving! Oh, and if you’re wondering about the fate of that 100+ year old Masonic Lodge, I’d be happy to tell you all about it at our next Consuelo at Refreshment on Nov 17th (more details to come via email!).

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *