From the East
July is here and summer is in full swing. By now, many of you are coming back from the July 4th vacation and ready (not really) to get back to work.
Our last Stated Communication was not only a lively one, but also brought us a visitor from across the pond. You may not know Brother Ben Cross by name, but if you saw him, you would instantly recognize him from his many acting and theater credits, including his breakout leading role of “Harold Abrahams’ in the multiple Oscar winning “Chariots of Fire” (1981) to more recent roles of ‘Sarek’ in “Star Trek” (2009) and ‘Emperor Tiberius’ in “Ben Hur” (2010). To hear a true Shakespearean speak in the lodge was really something. This just goes to show that you never know what may happen in lodge. I wasn’t aware of Bro. Cross’s pending visit, so was equally as surprised as everyone else!
Many times in the past, Phalanx had a standing tradition of going dark in July. In the last few years we have remained open, and will again remain open for work and instruction this year. Also at our upcoming July stated, we will be voting on two new candidates to receive the degrees in Masonry. We had a slow start to the year with petitions, so hopefully this is a good sign that things are once again picking up. I urge all members to come out to show your support and vote for the good of Masonry.
Finally brethren, be safe in your travels, remember the lessons we’ve learned, and may God be with you all!
Kai Ferell – Master
From the West
Summer is always a busy time for folks. You have vacation, weekend grill outs, and of course the inevitable fact that many of us have to go to work for most of each week. For several years when I first became a member of Phalanx Lodge we were dark in July. That has not been the case for several years now and I would encourage all brothers to join at our regular stated communication in July. With the Grand Lodge Annual Communication only months away it is a great opportunity for us to hear about and the amendments to the code that will be voted on in September. We also continue to conduct regular business at our July meetings, which includes voting on candidates, as well as voting on business concerning the lodge itself. It is not meant that Masonry should interfere with your regular duties, but I would encourage everyone to do everything in your power to join us on the 10th of July to engage with your brothers in the business of the lodge.
Jim Lofton, SW
From the Secretary
Please note that there are several opportunities for supporting our Masonic charities here in NC, and also Brothers who were impacted by the recent tornado damage in Oklahoma.
Please take a moment to check for the year 2013 on your dues card…the second round of delinquency notices will be mailed in the coming weeks.
Lastly Brothers, please take a moment to check, edit and return the data sheet that I sent you last month. The Grand Lodge is particularly interested in accurate military service information, including start/discharge dates, branch and conflict(s). Please also include a correct mailing address, phone numbers, email address, spouse name and offices and years held. You may return this by mail, or email me a scan of the document.
I do want to let you know of another project that the Grand Lodge has a number of Brothers across the state assisting with, including me. They have had 75,000 data cards of our deceased Brothers scanned and we are helping to now enter the data into a database so that lodges have computer access to information on all of their members. This has been a fascinating walk through the Masonic lives of thousands of our Brothers, with some cards reaching back into the late 1700’s. Should you wish to assist with this, please contact me directly.
Mike Hamrick, PM
From the Craft
In the wake of the devastating tornadoes that swept through Oklahoma last month, I was able to speak to our brethren at the Moore, Oklahoma lodge (Moore Lodge #539, A.F. & A.M.). As you probably know, Moore, Oklahoma was at the center of the devastation.
The brethren were most appreciative of our thoughts and prayers; indeed, the thoughts and prayers of the entire Masonic fraternity. The outpouring of concern for their situation was grand. As an efficient method of response, they were posting daily, if not hourly, the updates regarding the lodge building, the members, the community, etc. Thankfully, the lodge building was unscathed; however, some of the brethren did not make out so well. In fact, some lost possessions, up to and including their homes. A needs list was/is posted at the Moore lodge’s web site which includes clothing, house wares and other paraphernalia.
As a means to assist, I contacted the North Carolina Grand Lodge and our District Deputy Grand Master John Trail. From a Grand Lodge perspective, Brother Ric Carter advised me that the Masonic Service Association would lend the appropriate assistance to the brethren. From our District 32 perspective, I asked WB Trail about asking the district lodges to step up and lend some extra assistance to those brothers in need. It was determined that WB Trail would send my message out to each of our district’s lodges. I am happy to report that I have heard from two of our lodges! WB Don Hendershot of Steele Creek Lodge #737 informed me that they contributed $200 to the cause. WB Allan Mann of Charles M. Setzer Lodge #693 informed me that at their next Stated Communication that they would be putting the motion for assistance before the brethren. Phalanx, at their June Stated Communication, contributed $200 by way of a motion for assistance. It was also determined by the brethren of Phalanx to hold the contribution until our July Stated Communication in order to allow brethren to contribute individually, if they so desired, and by donations collected by the Master’s “Hat on the Alter” after the meeting. The Phalanx donation will then be $200 plus whatever additional funds are raised. What a great out poring of support to our fraternal brethren.
It is not too late if you wish to contribute. Please plan on attending the July 9, 2013 Stated Communication. At that time, you may contribute cash or check to the cause. If you are contributing by check, please make it payable to Phalanx Lodge #31 with the memo line reading “Moore Oklahoma Relief Fund”. All donations collected, including the $200 voted on by the brethren and contributed by Phalanx Lodge #31, itself, will be forwarded to the Masonic Service Association and used specifically for the Moore, Oklahoma lodge relief.
Brethren, it is at times like this that our Masonic tenets of Brotherly Love, Relief and Truth rise to the top. Thank you for all you do! I have included links to the various web sites of the entities which I have mentioned so you may be able to read additional information.
Sincerely & Fraternally,
WB Ralph Harkey, PM 2012