We Can't Forget Eighteen Years Ago: September 11, 2001








We Can’t Forget Fifty Years Ago: July 20, 1969

Congratulations to Brother Buzz Aldrin on the fiftieth anniversary of his historic moon landing. Many of us remember the grainy video images first broadcast from the moon, soon followed by the publication of the amazing photographs reflecting Brother Aldrin’s description of the “magnificent desolation.”

Brother Aldrin also established Tranqulility Lodge No. 2000 while under deputation of the Grand Master of the Grand Lodge of Texas. Its purpose is for “promoting, encouraging, conducting and fostering the principles of Freemasonry, and to assist in promoting the health, welfare, education and patriotism of children worldwide.” Membership in Tranquility Lodge No. 2000 is open to all Master Masons of the Grand Lodge of Texas, or members of those Grand Lodges that are in amity with the Grand Lodge of Texas.

We Can’t Forget Seventy-five Years Ago: June 6, 1944

If ever there ever was a culmination of effort for good to prevail over evil, June 6, 1944, was it. The invasion by Allied forces to free Europe from the tyranny of Nazism began that day and continued until final victory in April of the next year. Millions of servicemen and women set examples for us to do whatever is necessary to preserve freedom.

Twenty years after that date, CBS news correspondent Walter Cronkite, a Senior DeMolay, brought President Dwight D. Eisenhower back to the Normandy beaches to recall that day. On the fiftieth anniversary, June 6, 1994, President Bill Clinton, another Senior DeMolay, met with leaders of the World War II Allies to mark the date: D-Day .

Now, on the seventy-fifth anniversary, June 6, 2019, there will be celebrations throughout Europe and especially Normandy for a ”momentous occasion to celebrate peace, liberty, and reconciliation.”

It is estimated that of the more than 16 million American World War II servicemen and women, fewer than half a million are still living. While the number of those who served continues its inevitable decline, it is well worth it for those of us who cannot remember that day to remember its everlasting significance in our lives.

Nebraska's Return to Proficiency



There has been so much interest in the April issue of the Short Talk Bulletin, MSA wants to make it available for everyone, not just lodges and Grand Lodge officers. The pdf is available by clicking here.




Subscribe to the Short Talk Bulletin

An Annual Subscription to the monthly Short Talk Bulletin is only $12 for a year's worth of Masonic knowledge and education.

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The Final Volume is Finally Here!

Volume VI of the Bound Edition of the Short Talk Bulletins has arrived in our Burtonsville, Maryland headquarters. They are available for immediate shipment. If you haven’t ordered yours yet, you should do so now.

Order by clicking here.

Volumes II through VI are available in Master Mason or Grand Master format. Volume I had been sold-out but was reprinted in the Spring of 2018. It is only available in the Master Mason format.

Volume VI is the last volume of the series which covers 1923 – 2017. As he has done for the previous five volumes, renowned Masonic Scholar Brother S. Brent Morris has updated, corrected, and otherwise improved the bulletins. Volume VI also has an index covering all the volumes. This will be an indispensable addition for any researcher.

One Hundred and One Questions About Freemasonry

Ths digest contains many answers to questions that will provoke interesting discussions in Lodge.

Order by clicking here.



Patriot Pack Now Available

The “Patriot Pack,” an assemblage of well researched Masonic papers about the Founding Fathers of the United States and Freemasonry’s impact on the organization and principals on which the country was based is now available at our online store. These booklets are an important inspection of that premise.

These digests are a must read for any student of American history. Brothers Ronald E. Heaton, William Mosely Brown, and W. Eugene Rice have referenced original lodge records and research by noted Masonic historians including James Royal Case, Past Grand Historian of the Grand Lodge of Connecticut.

The booklets "Masonic Membership of the General Officers of the Continental Army," Masonic Membership of the Signers of the Declaration of Independence," Masonic Membership of the Signers of the Constitution," and "Membership of the Founding Fathers" includes those who were Masons, those suspected to be Masons, and even those for whom there has been no record of ever having been a Mason.

"We The People… The Constitution and Freemasonry" suggests that the spirit of Freemasonry had much to do with this treasured document. A comparison of the principals found in the Constitution is discussed.

"Freemasonry and Democracy: Its Evolution in North America" explores the role that Freemasonry played in the development of democracy in the United States and Canada. The Forward, written by Richard E. Fletcher, Past Grand Master of Vermont and past Executive Secretary of MSA, says, “Allen E. Roberts and Wallace McLeod, two of Freemasonry’s most prolific and outstanding writers, have contributed their talents to tell this story.”

These six booklets are available for a limited time, and the time to get them is now. "Masonic Membership of the Signers of the Declaration of Independence" is out of print but has been restored from our archives. These booklets can create an interesting lodge discussion or be the basis for further research about Freemasonry’s influence on the beginnings of the United States of America.


Orders for the Reprint of Volume I of the Bound Edition of Short Talk Bulletins are Available Now!

A limited reprinting of Volume I of the Short Talk Bulletins Bound Edition, 1923-1937 can be ordered here. The reprinting is available in only the Master Mason edition.

This reprinting of Volume I has been re-edited by esteemed Masonic Scholar, Brother S. Brent Morris. and includes newly discovered information about the Masonic authors of the first decade of Short Talk Bulletins. The new reprinting also matches the same distinctive blue cover found on previous volumes.

The Short Talk Bulletin has been described as the “Widest Distributed Masonic Publication in the World.” The monthly Bulletin is mailed to every Masonic lodge and Grand Lodge officer in the United States and Canada whose Grand Lodge is a member of the Masonic Service Association of North America. MSA also mails the Bulletin to lodges of the United Grand Lodge of Germany and the York Grand Lodge of Mexico.

Each year since 2013, MSA has published a new volume, usually spanning fifteen years beginning with the initial Volume I. Volume V, released in 2017, covered 1983-2002. Sales of the republication of Volume I will be limited to those who have already ordered at least two prior volumes, or who place orders for two volumes or more in addition to Volume I. Pricing for Volume I is $75 plus $8 shipping and handling. The other volumes have been reduced to this price for a limited time.

Click here for the form. 

For those who don't want to order the Volume I Reprint of the Short Talk Bulletins online, an order form can be downloaded and printed out.

Masonic Service Association Partners with Amity

For many Masons, finding a lodge in another jurisdiction, either state, province, or country, has been a struggle. The Amity mobile app, by Copiri (amity.copiri.com), was created so any sojourning brother can register and find lodges throughout the world. While still in its infancy, the Amity mobile app is being recognized as a welcome companion to the “List of Lodges - Masonic” published by Pantograph Printing and Stationary Company of Bloomington, Illinois. The “List of Lodges - Masonic” is usually kept at every lodge secretary’s desk for use to validate the recognition dilema faced when a brother who cannot be vouched for attempts to visit a Masonic lodge.

The Amity mobile app is free to install from either the Apple Store for iPhone, or Google Play Store for the Android platform. It allows a search for lodges by city in nearly every country. Once the lodge is found, the user can check if the lodge has been registered with Amity, or the Master or secretary, and if notes have been entered about the lodge. As the developers say, their purpose is to help brothers connect with each other.

The hope is that brothers who want to travel and find lodges outside of their usual borders will download the mobile app. They would then be able to find a lodge, and be able to show their Grand Lodge is recognized by the Grand Lodge they visit. A guest would even be able to “sign in” to the secretary, much as they would with a guest book.

Over 33,000 Masonic lodges and over 250 Grand Lodges around the world are listed. Registered users are spread across 47 states as well as the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and in 27 countries.

The Masonic Service Association’s Short Talk Bulletin will also have a presence on Amity’s mobile app. The MSA logo will lead to a location where a Short Talk Bulletin is displayed. A past Short Talk Bulletin will be available on every registered user’s phone to read, and the issue will rotate monthly, free of charge. A year’s subscription to the Short Talk Bulletin will be available for the mobile app. The subscription will also show the past twelve Short Talk Bulletins, again, rotating through the year.

MSA’s Short Talk Bulletin is recognized as the widest distributed Masonic publication in the world. It is printed and sent to member Grand Lodges and their lodges, as well as every Grand Lodge officer and Past Grand Master. The wide ranging topics are meant to be read at a lodge meeting for just a few minutes, thus, the “Short Talk.” Now, with the Amity mobile app, a Bulletin will be available at every meeting.

The goal of this partnership is to expand the reach of each organization through the use of the other’s existing processes. By implementing such a partnership carefully, both the MSA and Amity can impact global Freemasonry in a positive way.

Your Grand Lodge is always the final authority on questions of inter-jurisdictional recognition. When in doubt, consult your Grand Secretary for a final opinion.

And, as our friends at Amity say, "travel... safely."

MSA Publications Now at the Online Store

The contents of the MSA Publications Catalog are now online and ordering takes only a couple of steps. There is a minimum online order of $12, not including shipping.

MSA's Online Store may be used for ordering these items using a credit card.


Bahamas Disaster Relief Appeal

The Bahamas have experienced an unprecedented amount of damage and destruction due to the two days that Hurricane Dorian battered the islands. While food, drinking water, and supplies are needed, the best way to assist them now is through your monetary donation.

The Bahamian Masonic leaders under the jurisdictions of the United Grand Lodge of England, the Grand Lodge of Scotland, and the Grand Lodge of Ireland have combined their efforts and requested the Masonic Service Association of North America (MSA) to issue this Disaster Relief Appeal.

Please forward any donations you feel appropriate to help our devastated Brothers and their families in this stricken jurisdiction to MSA.

Please make checks payable to MSA Disaster Relief Appeal and send to:

Masonic Service Association
3905 National Drive, Suite 280
Burtonsville, MD 20866

When remitting by check, please clearly mark that you wish the funds to go to the Bahamas Disaster Relief Appeal.

Donate by credit card by simply clicking the Donate button

Please remember, MSA deducts no part of your contribution for administrative expenses including charges by PayPal, bookkeeping, and cost of acknowledgment letters. Your entire gross donation will be sent to the affected jurisdiction.

Disaster Appeal For Nebraska has Concluded

Nebraska Grand Master Robert W. Moninger has asked the Masonic Service Association of North America to conclude their Disaster Relief Appeal.

The Grand Lodge of Nebraska is grateful for the outpouring of support from Masons across the USA in their flood relief efforts. They have been able to directly support the rebuilding efforts of brothers affected by the remarkable flooding this spring. In addition to the monetary support of MSA and their own state wide appeal, brothers from neighboring states also provided in-kind donations such as hay and other direct farming supplies to brothers.

The Grand Lodge of Nebraska said, " We have been truly been blessed by the ties of brotherly love and affection."

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Current Newsletters:   Emessay Notes and Focus 

MSA is a 501 (c) (3) charitable organization.

Thanks to a Special Staff Member

MSA Executive Secretary Simon R. LaPlace wishes to thank a member of the staff who has been working without pay and doing a fine job. His title is "Editorial Consultant" and he works on the "Short Talk Bulletin" and "Emessay Notes," copy editing, rewriting. and making all kinds of brilliant suggestions as he feels the necessity requires.

This Editorial Consultant is none other than "The Professor," Brother H. C. Arbuckle III of Corpus Christi, Texas. He is a Past Master of Loma Alto Lodge No. 544, Tilden, Texas (The Mother Lodge of McMullen County), as well as being an Endowed Member there and also in Oso Naval Lodge No. 1282, and Corpus Christi Lodge No. 189, both in Corpus Christi, Texas, and also of Five Points Lodge No. 1137, in El Paso, Texas. Brother Arbuckle is also a full member of Texas Lodge of Research. He is a 32-degree member of the Scottish Rite, Valley of Austin, Texas; a member of Corpus Christi Chapter, Council, and Commandery. He is an endowed member of both Scottish and York Rites. He is a Life Member and Charter Member of Al Amin Shrine in Corpus Christi, and an Affiliated Life Member of India Shrine in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, and Al Malaikah Shrine in Los Angeles, California.

Brother Professor has published extensively in both secular and Masonic publications, and is the author of the May 1976 Short Talk Bulletin titled "Tell It Like It Was," one of the finest written especially for the Bicentennial.

We are proud, and justly so, to have The Professor working with us. He is a very modest and humble man and is quite proud of his modesty and humility and justly so.

And so mote it be, Brethren.

Masonic Mentoring BrochureNEW!  Masonic Mentoring Guidelines In Clear, Helpful Language

A great, new brochure has been published by the Masonic Service Association that, in simple, understandable words, establishes a sound mentoring program for any Lodge.

Masonic Mentoring explains:

  • Who should be a mentor,
  • What a mentor does,
  • What new members expect, and
  • Tips for being successful.

It is perfect to assist any Lodge candidate-counseling program, or any new member orientation effort.  It is good for members of a candidate committee, or for any individual who may be working with a new member.

Thanks to Bert Bouma, of Montana, author, and to the Grand Lodge of Montana, for permission to republish this material.

You may order Masonic Mentoring now at our Online Store.

Audio Short Talk Bulletin Now Available at NO COST!

Audio Online Library

A new style of subscription for the Short Talk Bulletin, is now available for those who may be visually impaired or just prefer an audio version.

The Short Talk Bulletin Online Audio Library is now available as a downloadable podcast.

Previously, Brother Michael A. Smith, a member of the Grand Lodge of Maine, has been recording Short Talk Bulletins and charged a fee. Now he is making them available at no cost. His only request is for a few Brothers to make a donation.

By the end of January twenty-nine Short Talk Bulletins had been made available. These make great presentations at a lodge meeting and often spur discussions. Many of the Bulletins are recorded by the original author.

It’s one thing to read a Short Talk Bulletin, but it’s another to hear it read with the original speech patterns of the original presenter. MW Casey Hood is a prime example. As good as his writing is, it’s even better when heard with his Kentucky accent.

One can feel the emotion of Elizabeth Meldrum, Miss Job’s Daughter of Virginia, 2016–2017. Laugh, cry and contemplate the feeling in her voice as she describes her family’s connection to Freemasonry and what it means to her.

Soon, hopefully, lodges will be contributing a small amount to keep these talks being produced. They are the perfect supplement to the monthly Short Talk Bulletin put out by MSA. Maybe your lodge can find a small amount to contribute, or maybe you can do it for them.

Please go to Short Talk Bulletin Podcast for a complete listing of available Bulletins, and an easy way to donate to them.

For a featured sample, listen to the Short Talk Bulletin August 2018,"Can You See Me Now?" by MW Casey Hood, Past Grand Master of the Grand Lodge of Tennessee.

The Longest Serving Grand Master in History

There have been only ten Grand Masters of the United Grand Lodge of England since the unification in 1813; of these, five were members of the Royal family. The current Grand Master Prince Edward, Duke of Kent, was elected and installed in 1967 and has served the longest, 52 years. His father, Prince George, Duke of Kent, had served as Grand Master from 1939 until he was killed in a military air crash in 1942. He was the fourth son of King George V. Prince Edward will turn 84 in October.

Prince George’s great uncle, and uncle of King George V, was Prince Arthur, Duke of Connaught and Strathearn, who served as Grand Master from 1901 until his death in 1939. Prince Arthur had previously been the longest serving Grand Master.

Prince Arthur’s brother, King Edward VII, son of Queen Victoria, had served as Grand Master from 1874 to 1901 but was obliged to resign upon his ascension to the throne.

The first Grand Master of the United Grand Lodge of England was Prince Augustus Frederick, Duke of Sussex, son of King George III. He had previously served as the Grand Master of the Premier Grand Lodge of England (“Moderns”) while his brother, Prince Edward Augustus, Duke of Kent and Strathearn and father of Queen Victoria, was the Grand Master of the Ancient Grand Lodge of England.

A Sad Goodbye

For the past three years, I have had the pleasure of working at the greatest job in the world. The friendships my wife and I have made throughout the country have been truly fulfilling. The work of the MSA Representatives and volunteers at Veterans homes and hospitals is inspiring. The dedication I have seen by Grand Secretaries and many Masons is reassuring.

When I made the commitment to serve as Executive Secretary for three years, I anticipated the position would continue for a longer period. MSA’s commissioners are working to reorganize the Association, and after 100 years, one of these changes may be the elimination of an Executive Secretary. Despite my presentation to them in February that would turn a deficit into a surplus, they have chosen a different path with an uncertain future.

I hope what has made MSA so important continues—disaster relief, education, and comforting veterans, but I am not so sure it will. But I will continue to help these programs as long as I can.
-Simon R. LaPlace

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