March is going to be a month for the social aspects of Freemasonry.
Our Stated Meeting should be a return to what was originally planned; complete with a social hour, Roll Call Dinner, and family hour. We will also have another Brothers Walk which will be up and down Capitol Mall. The Officers will be having their meeting that was originally planned in January to discuss a book I "assigned."
In addition to OSI (Officers School of Instruction), at the end of the month will have a practice for the District Inspector Worshipful Michael Woo's official visit in April. A Masonic Education/Trivia Night is also scheduled.
I recently started a new tattoo piece that's going to require a few sessions to complete. It's a modern take on traditional Filipino tattoos. As the artist was skillfully (and painfully) dragging the needle across my skin, I remembered that I love tattoos, but I "hate" getting tattoos. Getting tattooed is painful and time-consuming. The end result is usually (if carefully planned and thought out) beautiful. The artist and I had a great conversation about this topic and it reminded me of Freemasonry.
After mentioning my thoughts on my love/hate relationship with tattoos, my artist told me that one of the ancient reasons for tattoos was to prepare ourselves for the hardships or difficulties of life. Tattoos are painful to get, but if you can withstand the pain that you choose to receive, you are preparing yourself mentally for whatever life can throw at you. The beauty of the ink on your skin is a reminder of that endurance you have acquired.
I believe the same can be said about the progressive science of Masonry. Although not physically painful (at least I hope not), the hard work through studying and learning needed (that we choose to do) to progress through the degrees can be difficult and time-consuming. In the end, it's worth it as it leads to discovering the beauty of Masonry as it unfolds before you. And when we don the sacred jewels or wear habiliments of a Mason, we are reminded of that beauty forever.
March is also Youth Orders month during which members and lodges are encouraged to reach out to youth organizations such as DeMolay International, Job's Daughters International, and the International Order of Rainbow for Girls.
DeMolay International was founded in Kansas City, Missouri in 1919. It’s an organization for young men ages 12 to 21. Job’s Daughters International was founded in Omaha, Nebraska in 1920 and is an organization for young women ages 10 to 20. The International Order of Rainbow Girls was founded in McAlester, Oklahoma in 1922 and is for young women ages 10 to 21.
All three Masonic Youth Orders have their own leadership structure, chapters, and values. They also represent Masonic values in community service, compassion towards one another, and truth. These Orders help the youth of today grow to become better members of society.
This last month we had a wonderful Fellow Craft Degree. Congratulations to our newly passed Brethren.
For those of you fortunate to attend, you might well recall a portion of the monitorial of the degree, which states the following:
"Geometry treats of the powers and properties of magnitudes in general, where length, breadth, and thickness are considered; from a point to a line, from a line to a superfice, and from a superfice to a solid.
At first glance, this phrase brings to mind the mathematics of Euclid, an often daunting rite of passage for all high school students."
Below is a really interesting proof from Euclid's Elements, that demonstrates that if you create two points, then trace circles around each point, then connect the points with a line, and connect the ends of that line to one of the vertices of the two circles, you will yield an equilateral triangle circumscribed within the vesica piscis created by the intersection of the circles. What's even cooler is that you can perform this exercise with only a compass and a straight edge.
One could also take the interpretation another direction, and think of the triangular figure known as the Tetractys. It consists of ten points arranged into four rows, where the first row has one point, the second has two, the third three, and the fourth four.
This corresponds nicely to the magnitudes mentioned in the monitorial, as a "point" has only one point (forgive the circular definition), a line is comprised of two points, a superfice (or surface) extends the line into a third plane, and a fourth point can extend that plane into a solid.
This Tetractys dates way back through the ages to Pythagoreanism, dating back to the 6th century BC in what is now Southern Italy. For adherents, they considered the symbol sacred and considered it as a model of the cosmos, where the monad (one) became the dyad (two), then the triad (three), and finally the tetrad (four). The Tetractys also symbolizes the four classical elements: earth, water, air, and fire.
Also coincidentally, bowling pins are arranged in a Tetractys. So next time we have the annual Bowling with Brothers, you now have one more concept to contemplate as you launch the bowl down the lane. On the very last day of this Month (Thursday the 31st), we will have a Masonic Education trivia night.
We are working hard to make it fun and informative, and I hope to see you there!
Hello, once again, Brethren and families. As the last month in the first quarter of the year is here, I hope you had a very nice February as well as celebratory President's Day and that you enjoyed Valentine's Day with that special someone. and of course, one cannot forget the Super Bowl. What a spectacle that has become and what interest it has generated. Like many of you, I was glued to the game and had way too much food and drink. Hope your experience was positive.
As usual, I want to celebrate birthdays, actual and Masonic for March. We have 21 brethren who are celebrating the day of their birth in March, including three Past Masters, Wor. John Peterson, Wor. Max Schell, both on the 28th, and Wor. Juan Faranda on the 30th. A very happy birthday to one and all. May each of your special days bring joy, wisdom, and brotherly love.
We also have Brethren celebrating their Masonic birthday in March, of whom two are Past Masters, Wor. John Knox on the 8th, and Wor. John Peterson on the 20th. Please note that Wor. John Peterson celebrates both actual and Masonic birthdays in March. No question that this is a most special month for him.
A Fraternal shoutout to Brother Derek Waterman who celebrates ten years as a Master Mason. Additionally, a note of recognition to Brother Nigel Martin for celebrating his fifth year as a Master Mason. And reserving a very special acknowledgment to our very own Worshipful Master Russell Tomas who also celebrates his fifth Masonic birthday. Congratulations to one and all.
For some historical knowledge and information, March celebrates the time that the Alaska Purchase took place. This occurred in 1867 and was the acquisition by the United States from Russia of 586,412 square miles (1,518,800 square km) of land at the northwestern tip of the North American continent, comprising the current U.S. state of Alaska.
Russia had offered to sell its North American territory to the United States on several occasions, but the outbreak of the American Civil War in 1861 led to the postponement of discussions. In December 1866, a year after the war's conclusion, Baron Eduard de Stoeckl, Russian minister to the United States, was instructed by Emperor Alexander II to open negotiations for its sale. The cost and logistical difficulties of supplying the territory had made it an economic liability to the Russians, who were additionally struggling with debt accrued during the disastrous Crimean War (1853–56).
Though Russian interactions with the native Aleut people had been largely peaceful, the Tlingit tribes were more restive, leading to sporadic episodes of violence and the interruption of provisions. Political forces in Russia increasingly looked instead toward Asian expansion and—in light of the American philosophy of Manifest Destiny and increased competition from the British Hudson's Bay Company, which leased a southern portion of the territory—viewed the eventual control of the territory by the United States as inevitable and perhaps beneficial.
Stoeckl approached William Henry Seward, secretary of state under Presidents Abraham Lincoln and Andrew Johnson, through an intermediary, journalist, and politician Thurlow Weed. (Seward, an advocate of U.S. expansionism, had long desired Alaska.) The two statesmen began private discussions on March 11, 1867; Stoeckl remained coy about the sale until Seward expressed interest. On March 29, 1867, Stoeckl and Seward completed the draft of a treaty ceding Russian North America to the United States, and the treaty was signed early the following day. The price—$7.2 million—amounted to about two cents per acre.
The treaty was submitted to the Senate for consent on March 30, 1867. It was passed on April 9. The United States officially took possession on October 18 in a flag-changing ceremony at Sitka. However, there was resistance to payment among members of the House. The necessary appropriations were ultimately passed on July 14, 1868.
Alaska remained under U.S. Army control until June 1877, after which it was governed briefly by the Treasury Department and then by various military authorities. Most Russians who had occupied the territory were not permanent residents and had returned to Russia following the sale. Those who remained were given the option of applying for U.S. citizenship within three years, but most eventually left. A civil government was installed in May 1884 after the territory became a district. Alaska was accepted into the union as the 49th state on January 3, 1959.
Well, Brethren, next month we'll explore additional information related to more holidays and special accomplishments. In the meantime, enjoy the month of March, and please stay safe.
The Strength of Masonry in a Divided Nation
When I was in high school, I took a trip to Washington D.C. to learn more about how our federal system of government operates. This was a nationwide program, so many different high schools were intermixed from all over the country. When we were not learning about U.S. history or the procedural aspects of the legislative process, we spent our time in groups each day having heated debates on a range of political issues. In these meetings, it was apparent who was "left" and who was "right." Sometimes the discussions would get borderline hostile, depending on the viewpoints that were shared. In our group, another member and I emerged to represent the majority viewpoint of either side.
Here I was, a more liberal kid from a hippie family from the Monterey Bay Area of California, pinned up against a girl who was a staunch conservative with a strict Mormon background from the State of Utah. We were the opposite on everything to the point where if I said the sky was blue she would have said the sky was red. I remember sometimes the debates got personal and there was no room where we would see eye-to-eye on anything. As the program was winding down, I did not think there was any way I would like this person, nor would they ever like me. I will admit, it was pretty intense and emblematic of the same vein of divisiveness we see across the United States today.
On our second to last day, we got to see a play at Ford's Theater. We were all lining up to take our seats and out of pure random luck, I happened to be seated next to the girl I had been fighting with all week. "That's just great… this is not going to go well, "I thought to myself." For the first five minutes or so, we were not speaking at all and it was definitely very awkward. To pass the time on our long bus rides between historical sites, I had a Star Wars novel I was reading, which I happened to have with me at the theater. She looked down and noticed it in my bag and then asked me about my book, which then lead to a really deep conversation about Star Wars between the both of us. We were laughing and shared similar views about everything related to Star Wars. "Yes, of course, Han Solo shot first!"
Then we were talking nonstop about our life stories and everything under the sun unrelated to politics. After this, we not only became really good friends, but she even nominated me to represent our group at the final dinner to speak to 1000+ people about the program. I used this platform to tell everyone about our personal stories. Although we were at each other's throats on every political issue, politics should never be a reason why we can't be cordial and friends with one another at the end of the day.
I bring up this story, my Brothers, because as you all know, our country is experiencing very troubling times when it comes to political rhetoric. Families, friends, and loved ones are taking their political views so seriously that they are literally disowning or banishing people that have different beliefs. The news, social media, and those on the biggest platforms are actively working to share the most divisive viewpoints that make it seem as if the bridge between one another is too far to ever mend. You’re either with us or you are against us…or You believe X, therefore I must hate you because I represent team Y.
One thing I absolutely love about our ancient and honorable Fraternity is that we do not discuss politics in Lodge and that at the end of the day, we are all walking on the same level to improve ourselves, our families, and our community. We know that although we might have different political views, we have inseparable common interests, bonds, and are unified in our purpose as Masons.
I hope that in this turbulent time in the history of our country, our Fraternity can be a shining example of how people can come together, regardless of personal political beliefs, and be lifelong friends who strive to always ensure the best for one another. This is our strength Brothers… let us not forget that! ,
So, in conclusion, as long as you think Star Wars is better than Star Trek, that is all that really matters.
Washington Lodge No. 20
To practice and promote a way of life that binds like-minded men in a worldwide
brotherhood that transcends all religious, ethnic, cultural, social and educational differences.
Through Masonic principles and tradition, and by the outward expression of these
through its fellowship and compassion, Washington Lodge No.20 Free & Accepted Masons provides ways in which to serve God, family, country, neighbors, and self in an environment that contributes to the enrichment and betterment of its members, mankind, and its communities.
The Grail Mystery and the Seven Liberal Arts
by Frans Lutters
"Lutters has written a very intriguing and useful book, with an underlying spiritual significance for human development. In fact, anyone interested in human development can benefit from this perspective. As a musician, I found it helpful to see the place of music in the context of the seven liberal arts."
--Colleen Shetland, lyrist, singer, editor
Charlemagne established schools in each of his courts throughout Europe. He wished for an educated citizenry and yearned for literacy himself.
His schools had noteworthy Knights of the Grail, as well as Druid/Christian monks from the British Isles and Ireland, as teachers.
The Seven Liberal Arts formed the structure of the schooling offered to those of all ages in the school.
This book thoroughly and visually carries the reader through this high-level educational art form, a form schools are working to recapitulate and transform for the modern world now.
It provides a beautifully articulated structure for educators to adopt in organizing their work to ensure highly educated, logical, and artistic thinkers, as well as providing parents ideas for the holistic educating of their children.
The book carries rich and comprehensive research as well as inspiring visionary appeal for the future. It is illustrated with pictures from the Middle Ages with woven mythology entwined with the history and plans for our educational future.
About the Author
Frans Lutters has a successful career as a Waldorf class teacher that is decades long. He is a asterful storyteller and researcher. He is a lecturer and author in popular demand in his home of Holland and throughout Europe, well known and celebrated in educational communities.
ISBN-10 : 1936367653 • ISBN-13 : 978-1936367658
CALENDAR OF EVENTS
• 03 Social Hour Thursday • 05:30 PM (Club Room)
• 03 Roll Call Dinner Thursday • 06:15 PM (Banquet Room)
• 03 Stated Meeting Thursday • 07:30 PM (LR1)
• 05 Brotherhood Walk Saturday • 02:00 PM (Masonic Temple - Capitol Park)
• 10 Officers' Meeting Thursday • 06:00 PM (Club Room)
• 16 Officers School of Instruction Wednesday • 07:00 PM (LR3)
Topic: 3rd Degree / 1st Section
• 17 DARK Thursday
• 24 Officers' Practice Thursday • 06:00 PM (LR1)
• 31 Masonic Education / Trivia Night Thursday • 06:00 PM (Club Room)
• 04 Executive Committee Meeting Monday • 06:00 PM (Zoom)
• 07 Social Hour Thursday • 05:30 PM (Club Room)
• 07 Youth Orders Dinner Thursday • 06:15 PM (Banquet Room)
• 07 Stated Meeting Thursday • 07:30 PM (LR1)
• 14 Officers' Practice Thursday • 07:00 PM (LR1)
• 20 Officers School of Instruction Wednesday • 07:00 PM (LR3)
Topic: 2nd Degree / 2nd Section
• 21 DARK Thursday
• 28 Degree Dinner Thursday • 06:00 PM (Banquet Room)
• 28 Second Degree - Brother Kevin Hall Thursday • 07:00 PM (LR1)
CLICK HERE TO VIEW THE FULL CALENDAR
Since July 2020, thousands of California Freemasons have already begun to access their portals in iMember 2.0, the new membership platform—one of the highest adoption rates of any grand lodge jurisdiction on the system. Yet with so many new features just a finger-swipe away—and many more being prepped for launch this fall—there are still lots of questions left to be answered, starting with some of the most basic.
How to Get to iMember 2.0
iMember 2.0 is designed to work on any mobile phone, tablet, or desktop or laptop computer with an internet connection. Simply visit member.freemason.org/lodges/20 or freemason.org and click the FOR MEMBERS button in the upper-right-hand corner of the screen. If you haven’t logged on yet, you’ll need to create an account, so have your email address, membership number, and a unique password ready to go.
You Can Download iMember 2.0 on Your Phone
Whether you have an iPhone or an Android phone, you can add a home screen shortcut to access iMember 2.0 quickly and easily. To install, use your web browser to visit the site, and select “Add to home screen.”
The exact placement of the button will depend on your web browser (Safari, Chrome, or Firefox).
More Features in the Works
• Digital Dues, Reminders and Payment Plans
• Expanded Social Networks with App Notifications
• New Ways to Share Resources
• One-Stop Shop for Hall Associations
• Keeping Track of Attendance
iMember 2.0 is available to all Masons in California!
For questions on iMember 2.0, contact Member Services at (415) 292-9180 or email@example.com
Eric Hixson (PM)
Francisco Marques (PM)
Creston Whiting-Casey III
Francisco Marques (PM)
Junior Past Master
D. Edward Entrican (PM)
Jared Yoshiki (PM)
Senior Officers' Coach
Francisco Marques (PM)
Junior Officers' Coach
Head Candidates' Coach
Michael Woo (PM)
Inspector 414th District