My time in the East sitting in the Oriental Chair is ending. I thought I would share this portion of my Masonic Journey. Additionally, a coming event, the New Member Orientation Night, scheduled for December 2nd next month (details forthcoming by email) being organized by RW Ric Fernandez, Br. Rick Smith and Br. Preston Hall. They will be bringing together all the Masons raised in the last 5 years, causing me to think about my Masonic travels.
After I was raised (June 2014), I, like many of us, was unsure of what was expected of me. I had pledged my allegiance to the oldest and greatest fraternity in existence, one that encircles the globe and whose influence for good is never ending by going through all three degrees and swearing oaths and obligations at our sacred altar.
The particular reason that you chose to become a member of this grand and noble order is known only to yourself. It might have been the prompting of idle curiosity. That being true, you should now be well satisfied. It might have been for social aspirations. That being true, you have now been accorded the opportunity to acquaint yourself with many interesting and intelligent gentlemen. It may have been because a relative or close friend is a Mason and expressed a desire that you should join the fraternity and follow in their footsteps. One reason I joined is because my grandfather was a Mason; another was my curiosity. Lastly, a fellow brother whom I worked with, WB Dave LaBaw, was a recently raised mason when I petitioned.
Whatever the reason that led you to Freemasonry, there are two great questions that still confront you. Will you be worth anything or nothing to Freemasonry and, will Freemasonry be worth anything or nothing to you? The answers lie within you yourself, for if you apply to your own life the lessons that you have received in the three degrees, it will make you a better citizen, a better father, a better son, and a fonder husband. For the first two years in masonry, I was still looking for direction. Though work and home life certainly played a part in my sporadic attendance at events and meetings, I know recognize it as a a hollow excuse: I used it as a crutch. As with any other endeavor, to do something you have to be willing to put the effort. My reasons may not align with yours and that’s alright for my journey will differ from yours.
Remembering and adhering to the rituals and protocols can be daunting without a fellow brother/mentor to keep you on your path as a new Mason. Eventually, after some encouragement, from WB LaBaw I took a chair starting with the Junior Master of Ceremonies. Getting involved was the key to my success. I got past the unknown by getting involved, going to rehearsals, helping with events, and being involved in ritual work.
Since then, my journey has been rewarding, giving me purpose both at home and within the lodge. You get in return what you put in not just in Freemasonry but in life as well. So, to all my new brothers who may feel at a loss in your journey, simply reach out and talk to a fellow brother. Come to a meeting or rehearsal soon you’ll be coming to another. Getting involved in an event is a great way to bond and generate the urge to do the next. We are fortunate to be in a supportive and engaging lodge. The brothers have many stories of their journeys; how and why they became Masons and I thank you all!
As Worshipful Master of Trenton Cyrus #5 it has certainly been rewarding and you, my brethren, have been my greatest support. I leave you with this verse from the Canadian Charge that WB Tom Wilson has done a few times this year for a newly raised Master Mason:
These are your Vows, be they your cares.
And may such light be given,
In answer to your earnest prayer,
That you may ever do and dare
All that God's gracious Laws enjoin,
So that, when shades of night decline,
You may be found in Heaven.
On yonder Book these Oaths WE took,
And will we break them? Never!
But stand by this, and this, and this?
Forever and forever!
WM Nick Lamson