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Masonic Service Association of North America

Emessay Notes December 2013


What Do You Do With Old Masonic Bibles? 

How often has a family of a deceased Mason given his Bible back to his Lodge, because they don't know what else to do with it?  How often does a Lodge accept the Bible, and just put it on a shelf because they don't know what to do with it?

This same situation happens at Grand Lodges, other Masonic bodies, and to well-known Masonic leaders, who receive such donations.

Of course, you don't want to put them in the trash.

Perhaps when such an offer of an unneeded Masonic Bible from a deceased member is made, the first response should be encouragement to keep the Bible as a remembrance of the individual, or to present it to another family member.

However, Clyde Card, an active Mason in Jamestown, NY, has another suggestion.  Brother Card is also very active with the American Legion as a Judge Advocate.  He said that all American Legion Posts have a solemn ceremony to dispose of old or unneeded American flags; some posts have a Bible disposal ceremony, as well.

Brother Card suggests that you contact a local American Legion Post and ask them about such a ceremony.  Masonic Lodges and American Legion Posts (many with men who are members of both groups) could work together for a proper ceremonial disposal of such no longer needed, but sacred items.


Philippine Disaster Closely Touches One Mason 

Shortly after the Masonic Service Association issued a Disaster Relief Appeal for the Philippines, following the devastating typhoon, which struck the country, the MSA office received a phone call and email from a brother, who had a personal connection with an area, near where the center of the storm hit.

Brother Bertram D. Aaron, now 90-plus years old, said he has already put a relief check in the mail to MSA, and gave this description of his connection:

"My interest is in Makagugwas Lodge No 47 F&AM, Tacloban Leyte PI.  Colonel Charlie Feldstead, Chief Signal Officer, Armed Forces Western Pacific (MacArthur's Command), my commanding officer, and I (Captain Bertram D. Aaron) worked to rebuild that Lodge after WW-2. I was the first non-Filipino to be raised in the lodge after WW-2."

While no reports from that Lodge have been received yet here, MSA is working with the Grand Lodge of Philippines to help bring relief to the area.

Full information on the Disaster Relief Appeal, and the opportunity to donate online, are available at our website,


Advice From Omar Bradley

"This is true in everyday life as it is in battle: we are given one life and the decision is ours whether to wait for circumstances to make up our mind, or whether to act, and in acting, to live."
-- Brother and General Omar Bradley

'Not Your Father's Freemasonry' 

The fact that "times are changing" was noted by Ronald A. Seale, Grand Commander of the Scottish Rite, Southern Jurisdiction, as he made an appeal for Masons to understand that new candidates approach our Fraternity with a different perspective than in the past.

In his "Grand Commander's Message" in a recent The Scottish Rite Journal, Brother Seale, while addressing Scottish Rite membership, made some comments which may apply to all of Freemasonry.  Here are a few excerpts:

Younger, "upwardly mobile" men with families and resulting obligations as to time and finance will no longer join or remain with an organization that does not meet some need in their lives.  And they definitely will not affiliate with us content to be sidelines with no role to fill or challenge to meet. 

Those days are gone.

Thus, it is imperative that we treat each new . . . Mason . . . not as a member whose name is written in stone but as a good man who is trying us out – giving us a chance so to speak.  Will he like what he sees?  Will he find a welcoming group of Masons eager to involve . . . hear his opinions, and use his talents?  Will he be given a chance to exercise real leadership and to be proud to bring his friends and acquaintances? . . . Will we remember not to patronize him with worn out slogans such as "you only get out of it what you put into it" but ask him to do a specific job and praise him for his performance?

This isn't rocket science, folks. It's easy.  It's the right thing to do, and what we promised to do as Masons.  If we don't reach out and engage our members, they will be gone and another chair will be empty at the next meeting . . .


Reminder: MSA Offices Moved

The offices for the Masonic Service Association of North America have moved to a new location, about 10 miles away from its long-time headquarters in Silver Spring, Maryland.

The new address is:

3905 National Drive, Suite 280
Burtonsville, MD  20866

Also, we have a new email address: [email protected]

Our new telephone numbers are:

301-476-9440 (fax)



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