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Masonic Service Association of North America

Emessay Notes January 2007

Meal Prayer

Fred Kirby Bauer was a Past Grand Master of Massachusetts and the long time Chaplain of the Conference of Grand Masters of North America. At the Grand Masters Banquet in 2001 (presided over by then Grand Master Bauer) the following “blessing” was sung. We lost Bro. Bauer in Aug. 2006 and in his honor this prayer was again sung at the Grand Masters Banquet in 2006. We want to share this beautiful prayer with our readers.


Bless our friends
Bless our food
Come, O Lord, and sit with us
Make our talk
Glow with peace
Come with your love to surround us
Friendship and Peace
May they bloom and grow forever
Bless our friends
Bless our food
Bless our homeland forever. Amen

(Sung to the tune of Edelweiss—Words by Alfred McBride, O. Praem)


National Salute to Veterans Weeks February 11-17, 2007


Hele, Conceal and Mever Reveal

      A law passed in 1562 (Act 5 Eliz. C.4, s.30) refers to the occupation or art of the “Tyler, Slater, Healyer, Tilemaker…” We are well aware of the use of the title Tyler for the one who keeps off cowans and intruders, but Healyer is an interesting synonym as it turns up in a related and Masonic context.

      The word also occurs in Dublin in 1502 when a Charter was issued to the Gild of Carpenters, Millers, Masons and Heliers.

      The heiler or healyer, then, is one who covers a house with a roof of slates or tiles and the word comes from the verb to hele (or ‘heal’, and in Scotland, ‘heill’) meaning to cover, hide, conceal or keep secret. Although only nowadays used in our Obligations, it was apparently still in use 100 years ago: an 1894 property advertisement offered for sale some ‘slate-heled modern cottages’.

         (All of the above comes from the 20-volume Oxford English Dictionary, exept for the Gild Charter which is mentioned in the History of the Grand Lodge of Free and Accepted Masons of Ireland by J.H. Lepper and P. Crossle (1925).

(Source: Ars Quatuor Coronatorum – Vol. 118—2005)

Laborare Est Orare

      From first to last, Freemasonry is work. The institution venerates the Supreme Being, oftentimes referred to as the Great Architect of the Universe; commemorates the building of King Solomon’s Temple; employs emblems fashioned after working tools used by masons and artisans; and preserves the name of the first workers in brass as one of its fraternal passwords. When brethren meet together, they are said to be at labor. The Master of a Lodge is figuratively seen as the overseer who sets the Craft to work and gives them the necessary instruction whereby they may proceed in their labors. Thus it is that Freemasons everywhere are consistently instructed that there is a perennial nobleness and sacredness in work.

      A Freemason routinely addresses himself to the business of life and considers it the school of our earthly education. He has also settled the question for himself that as a man of freedom and independence, gained by the sweat and toil of his ancestors, he is far from exempt from labor. Masons build; they are in motion; they promote change; they create; they imitate their God in every manner possible.

(Source: Excerpt taken from Meditations on Masonic Symbolism by Bro. John R. Heisner)

Did You Know? What is meant by A. L. (After Light)?

Anno Lucis. Year of Light; date used in Ancient Craft Masonry. Add 4000 to A. D. date

(Source: MSA Digest Pocket Masonic Dictionary)


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