Taking pride in finding new works about Freemasonry is something in which I’ve taken pride over the past few years. However, there’s a Maine Mason who clearly has me beaten. A PDDGM from District 4 and a Grand Organist, RW Charlie Briggs, who – although living in Massachusetts – not only finds wonderful books but also sends them along as donations to our Grand Lodge Library. The most recent package to arrive contained a book that you should all consider buying: one for yourself and one to give as a gift for a Brother. Oh, and perhaps your lodge should think about getting these for newly-raised candidates also. George Washington’s Rules for Freemasons by Bro. Mark Tabbert has taken the ‘copybooks’ from which our forefathers learned cursive writing and amplified these emulative phrases as they relate to the world of Freemasonry. Hard to describe but inspirational indeed. Thanks AGAIN, Bro. Briggs, for your ongoing support!
So many lodges in Maine now support ‘Bikes for Books’. About 1,500 bikes and helmets will be given to youngsters this year but that’s nothing to the thousands more who’ll become life-long readers and learners, bettering our society! Your lodges and the Maine Masonic Charitable Foundation can be rightfully proud of this wonderful work!
BUT despite the tremendous efforts made for our youth, few Masons themselves read. Am I wrong? How many books have YOU, my Brother, read this past year? And yet there’s SO much of interest, even if you’re not a self-professed reader. Consider what you’ve missed: the gold swindle in Lubec, the gangland shooting in Bangor, a bank robbery in Mars Hill, what a Brother Maine Game Warden encountered in his years of service, and hundreds of other works about things that happened (or could have) right in your area in the past? (In some cases even, the future!) There are hundreds of books, both fiction and non, about things that could surely tweak your curiosity. From the creation of Moxie on to the Nazis landing in Bar Harbor, there’s fascination galore. And if you’ve got a phone or tablet which allows programs (those things called ‘apps’), you can have all of these stories in your pocket: a perfect alternative to when you get tired of waiting in the parking lot with that little blue book in your hand! (Every Mason understands that reference for sure….) If you want to learn more about how to enhance your reading, let’s talk. There’s a world out there just waiting for you, one that’s constantly expanding.
For over a century, helpful brothers would give a newly installed lodge Master a copy of Macoy’s Worshipful Master’s Assistant, too often far after the time when it should have been read. Now, though, you should give the newly elected Junior Warden his personal copy of Macoy’s Modern Worshipful Master’s Assistant, edited and brought into the current age by Michael A. Halleran. It’s a very well written revision by a (now) PGM who, as an attorney, is acutely aware of the many inter-jurisdiction variations in the practice of our Craft . He has carefully and throughfully provided a wealth of guidance to those headed towards the East. This is *truly* a work that every lodge should have available. Imagine: information on handling the lodge’s social media, hints about welcoming visiting Masons, realities of planning a budget and so much more. It’s timely and relevant –