Sunday, October 08, 2006
Lodge Vitruvian's Newest Master Mason
Permit me a moment to brag on one of my lodges. Lodge Vitruvian No. 767 raised our newest Master Mason today, Brother Kenneth Davis.
Our philosophy at Vitruvian is to bring a man through the degrees slowly, and it took Ken a year to do so. He knew this from the start, and I remember a year ago that he said something that made what we do seem worthwhile. He said that he had looked around the internet at other lodges, and if he hadn't seen ours and read about our philosophy, he probably wouldn't have petitioned the Masons.
Vitruvian is Indiana's only European Concept lodge. When we started the lodge back in 2002, we were top-heavy with Past Masters, and frankly, past everybodys - brethren who were involved in everything in the state, the compulsive joiners of the Craft who were looking for something different. That was a tremendous help to get us started and up and running.
But as the years began to pass, the truth was that we still had things we had to do that were part of the day-to-day job of running a lodge, those mundane, boring tasks that aren't new and exciting. As a result, we lost many of those early joiners and had to survive on our own merits.
We have short business meetings, outstanding feasts, the best in Masonic education and speakers. We believe in formal dress, because while it is the internal and not the external parts of Man that Masonry regards, the external is a reflection of what a man is like on the inside. Dressing in tuxedo and gloves is actually the great leveler in a lodge - who can then say who is the banker, the bricklayer, the Ph.D. professor or the plumber? Which was the whole point when our English brethren adopted this custom centuries ago...
Best of all, we have many visitors who come and see what we do and take our ideas home to their own lodges.
A case in point was our degree today. We had visitors who drove all the way from Nashville, Tennessee to see what we were up to. We had brethren from all over the state. We were short some members for parts, so brethren stepped up to help. Because of our unique membership from across Indiana, we chose to go on the road and confer the degree at Delaware Lodge No. 46 in Muncie. Theirs is one of the most magnificent Masonic facilities anywhere in the country, and it was an honor to perform the work in this beautiful lodge.
Wbro. Eric Schmitz composed an outstanding new Volume of Sacred Law presentation and delivered it for the first time today.
And in keeping with the uniqueness of our lodge and its members, after Brother Davis was presented with several gifts from the lodge, in return he distributed a gift to the brethren present - a medallion depicting the symbol of our lodge, Da Vinci's Vitruvian Man. It was the first time I had ever seen such a thing done, and I will cherish it forever. Ken is the second member we have initiated at Vitruvian, and the first while I have been Master.
The design of Vitruvian has always been to remain small - no more than 36 members. The reason is to strengthen the personal bond between its members. I can't get to know 200 members of a lodge. But I can know and care about fifteen or twenty. As a result, the events of today will stay with me always. Bringing a new brother into our small family means so much to us all.
My personal thanks go out to Wbro. Jim Dillman, without whom we would have been lost; Wbro. Tim Brinkmeyer, Master of Delaware No. 46, whose tireless work allowed the day to be a great one; Wbro. Dale Adams, for his strength and assistance; Wbro. Fred Dusel and Brother Jay from Nashville, for their kindness and their interest in what we're doing; to the many members of Delaware No. 46, and the other brethren from all over who stepped in to help; and of course to my friend, brother and evil twin, Wbro. Nathan Brindle, for all that he does.
And congratulations to Brother Ken Davis, our newest Master Mason.