From the Personal Representative (June, 2010)

posted May 19, 2015, 2:41 PM by San Jose Scottish Rite   [ updated May 19, 2015, 2:41 PM ]
Sometimes I think it can’t get any better than this, but when I do, things happen to make our Scottish Rite experience even better than ever. In April, we initiated the largest class in fifteen years, which I thought would be a pinnacle performance for the year, but then, on May 18, at our semiannual Night of Instruction VW Allan Casalou, Grand Secretary of the Grand Lodge of California delivered an address focused on the Entered Apprentice degree that was most interesting and informative. With the Agape Feast that followed, the atmosphere and conviviality were unsurpassed. We’re going to have to start limiting the reservations to this event in the future, if things get any better.

Then, the next week, on May, 25, the 29th Degree Team conferred that degree on Bro. Tom Thiel of Salinas Lodge #204 which was simply out of pure consideration as it isn’t among the required degrees. That, too, was done flawlessly and though the audience was not very large, they all enjoyed the degree immensely (as did the cast). I also announced at the close of the degree that I was extending special dispensation to the 29th degree team to permit self introductions, as they have developed that as a part of their formal presentation and do it with precision and it has become a positive contribution to the impression the team makes.

The next event to which we are applying our best effort, will be the July barbecue, when the program will emphasize our association and obligation to Asiya Shriners and their great work they do in their area and their service to our Shriners’ Children’s Hospitals. While in past years we have recognized our brothers in the Shrine and their great work more by reference and acceptance, it seems to me to be time we give them the recognition they deserve. I know that many of our active Scottish Rite members are also active in the Shrine, but too often we give too little attention to our mutual interests and objectives. The menu, of course, will be rib eye steak as in the past, and members are encouraged to invite all the Shriners the can to participate.

Consistent with the efforts of many of our past Venerable Masters, activities are beginning to materialize that will, in my opinion, energize the membership and promote interest in our order. Our Ambassador Program, communicating the energy and fraternal feeling of our Valley, the social activities like the Football Tail Gate Party, the Mason of the Year program, the Children’s Christmas Party, the Night of Instruction, and those others I’ve mentioned earlier, are showing results among the lodges of our jurisdiction.

Our role in Masonry is to support and enhance the Craft Lodge experience, and to encourage the individual Mason’s quest for further light. This should be our first consideration and any member of Scottish Rite that is not active in his lodge should reflect seriously on that obligation. The more we get involved in our Blue Lodges, the better our total Masonic experience will be.

Speaking of a total Masonic experience, I’m considering a bit of a departure from our sober, staid social meetings, and going to something that might be a little livelier. It has occurred to me that we don’t give enough attention to the “discoverer” of this continent, Christopher Columbus. In October, I’ve been thinking the Stated Meeting Dinner might be devoted to Italian songs and aria. If there is any interest in this idea, let me know. I’ll need a couple of soloists, a pianist, and some shameless song leaders, preferably of Italian descent, or at least Italian inclination for the occasion. I haven’t run this idea past our Kitchen Kabinet, yet, and they may discourage the notion, but let me hear back from you, our readers, as to what you think about it.

Meanwhile; keep those ideas coming in. I’m beginning to enjoy this job.

Bob Winter - Personal representative of the Deputy of the Supreme Council in California

The Rite Word - June 2010, Volume 4, Issue 6