From the Wise Master (October, 2014)

posted May 30, 2015, 8:18 PM by San Jose Scottish Rite   [ updated May 30, 2015, 8:18 PM ]
One of the fun parts of travel for me is when I get a chance to do something masonic in a different town, state or country. Suz and I were traveling to Germany for my Dad’s 80th birthday. Thanks to social media (i.e. Facebook), an old friend knew that I was coming into town, and that I was a Scottish Rite Mason. Many questions later about Masonry in general, we come up with the idea of a road trip to the Freemason Museum in Bayreuth, Germany. 
Located in a building that is part of the Bayreuth Castle and also hosts the Bayreuth Lodge (founded 1741), the museum displays an enticing collection of historic documents and regalia, overview about masonry and show-and-tells of masonic philosophy and ritual. The three chambers of reflection, focusing on the main symbols of the first three degrees (a motion detector triggered a recording and sparse light shortly after entering the chambers) certainly were a key element of the overall exhibition. 
What really caught my eye though was an old Rose Croix apron, estimated to be from the late 1800s (see picture), likely via France. While Germany has a long history of Masonry, its high degree systems were closer to the Swedish Rite and fragmented. In addition, there were many Grand Lodges, Germany being the union of once separate kingdoms. After many years, as of the 1960s, there is finally masonic unification into one overarching Grand Lodge union, and the predominant high degree system is the Scottish Rite. Ordo ab Chao!
It feels good to be back, though. Our preparations for our Fall Reunion have started and practices are in full progress. If possible for you at all, please plan on attending our Reunion. We have added many additional degrees over the last several years, and it likely will be refreshing to see the ones again that you saw as a candidate.
Last but not least, a brief reminder about our next wine tasting event: Our next Passport Day will be on November 15th and we are looking at the Saratoga wineries, specifically Savannah-Chanelle, Cinnabar and Cooper-Garrod. Please call me at (408) 505-1822 in case of questions, and see http://scmwa.com/event/passport-4/ for information about the passport events.

Fraternally,
Wolfgang Lochner 
Wise Master