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Masonic Service Association of North America

Emessay Notes March 2012

Harry S. Truman' s Grandson a Mason

 Clifton Truman Daniel, grandson of the 33rd President of the United States and Past Grand Master of Missouri, Harry S. Truman, was made a Mason at Sight by the Grand Master of Illinois, in the Masonic Temple in Joliet, Illinois on December 3, 2011.

 In the unique ceremony, both the Grand Lodges of Illinois and Missouri participated.  The obligations of the first two degrees were given, followed by the full Master Mason Degree.

 Missouri Grand Master John B. Hess obligated Mr. Daniel in the Entered Apprentice Degree using Missouri ritual, which is the same obligation his grandfather recited during his first degree. Illinois Grand Master Terry L. Seward, portraying King Solomon, raised Brother Daniel with the assistance of Most Worshipful Brother Hess.  The new Master Mason signed the by-laws of Oriental Lodge, No. 33, of Illinois.

 Brother Daniel is Director of Public Relations for Harry S. Truman College, one of the seven City Colleges of Chicago.  The author of two books, he is a former feature writer and editor for the Morning Star and Sunday Star-News in Wilmington, North Carolina.  He is the eldest grandson of the late Most Worshipful Brother Truman.

 In remarks later, Brother Daniel said his grandfather would be proud.  While growing up, he said, "Grandfather always seemed to place his being a Mason above even that of being President.  He seemed to think it a more honorable occupation." 

(Source: Illinois Freemasonry, Winter 2012; and The Missouri Freemason, Spring, 2012)

Anniversary Of John Glenn's First Flight

 The news media carried many stories nationally about the 50th anniversary of John Glenn's historic space flight on February 20, 1962, when he become the first American to orbit the earth.

 Glenn, a fighter pilot who became an astronaut and later U.S. Senator, is currently 90 years old, residing in Columbus, Ohio.  In 1998, at age 77, he became the oldest person to fly in space aboard the shuttle Discovery. Not to be forgotten is that John Glenn is a Master Mason. He was made a Mason at Sight by the late Grand Master of Ohio Jerry C. Rasor on August 19, 1978. 

Masons Support 'Bikes for Books'

 Literally hundreds, and maybe thousands, of bicycles have been donated by Freemasonry across the United States to elementary school children as part of an ongoing program to provide incentives and rewards for reading.

 A search on the internet for "Bikes for Books" leads to a vast list of references to Masonic Lodges participating in the program. 

 Also, the 2011 entry submissions to the Masonic Information Center's Mark Twain Award program for superior Lodges, included a host of Lodges who were working with local elementary schools to try to enhance reading by offering the chance for bicycles.

 A partial (probably not complete) list of Grand Lodges, who have local Lodges participating in the Bikes for Books effort, includes Alaska, Arizona, Maine, Michigan, Minnesota, Montana, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Mexico, Oregon, and Washington.

 In short, the program involves a contact between the local Lodge and one or more elementary schools.  Students must read a specific number of books -- all approved in advance by their teacher -- during a prescribed time period.  Completing the task makes the student eligible for a bike, or bike and helmet.

 For the students, the effort seeks to increase their reading and comprehension skills, recognize positive achievements, and provide attainable goals with life enhancing results.

 For Freemasonry, the program provides a Masonic Lodge with visibility in its community and supports public education by assisting youth reading.

Grand Masters Coming From One-Day Classes?

 Randall L. Rogers, Grand Master of Oklahoma, was a member of the first one-day class in Oklahoma in 1997.  Most Worshipful Brother Rogers, who is an Oklahoma State Trooper and the Masonic Service Association's Hospital Visitation Coordinator in Oklahoma, asked if he was the first such "one-day class Grand Master."

 Apparently not. Dennis S. A. Ing, Grand Master of Hawaii in 2008-09, is also a brother who joined Freemasonry as part of a one-day class.  He is currently serving as Grand Lecturer in Hawaii.

 Are there any others?  Please let us know.


  "I like a thin book because it will steady a table,
  a leather volume because it will strop a razor,
  and a heavy book because it can be thrown at a cat."


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