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Masonic Service Association of North America

Emessay Notes November 2014  

New Video, Brochure Produced For MSA Hospital Visitation Program

MSA has launched a new effort to let the Masonic world know about its Hospital Visitation Program, and to encourage the recruitment of more volunteers.

A video called "Are Ye Able?" has been produced and you can view the 17-minute production on MSA's webpage,  Copies of the video on DVD are available at no charge from the MSA office for use in Masonic districts or regions, where it can be shown multiple times to a variety of groups.

Also available from the MSA office is a new tri-fold pamphlet, "Masonic Service Association Hospital Visitation Program," which is perfect to hand to non-Masons interested in the fraternity or to new members.

It is the goal that these new items will be shown to as many people as possible, as they provide an educational and inspirational message about this program and Freemasonry.

The actual filming of the video was done at the VA Medical Center in Augusta, Georgia, and many of the spokespersons are Georgia Masons.  But the content is generic and appropriate for any state or Grand Lodge.
MSA is also proud of the assistance received from the Grand Lodge of Minnesota and is thankful for a grant from Minnesota Masonic Charities that made the production possible.

Invitation To Participate In Masonic Research

A new research project is being launched to discover more about the attitudes and understanding of Freemasonry.  With the results, the goal is to retain members, assist in Masonic education, attract new candidates, and improve the public image of Masonry.

Anyone can participate.  Needed are Masons, petitioners, former Masons and the general public.

The survey, which will take about 5 – 10 minutes, is available online at:

For petitioners, the survey seeks to know what they hope to find in Masonry; for those who have left the Fraternity, it wants to know what drew them to the Fraternity and what later caused them to leave; for the general public, it tries to determine what they think about Masonry, including, in particular, the degree to which they buy into various common myths that circulate concerning the Fraternity; and finally, for existing brethren, it asks questions to see how much they know about the Fraternity.

The survey is entirely anonymous, but a code is provided at the end of the survey for brethren, which they can use to see how well they did.

Encourage your brethren, candidates, former Masons, and non-Masonic friends to take the survey.  At a later time, results of the survey will be made available.

The survey has been developed and will be processed by an Ohio Mason, who is trained in psychometrics and surveys.

Rickenbacker And Sea Gulls

There is a story about the famous Eddie Rickenbacker, who would go down to the seaside regularly and feed sea gulls.  As he did so, he would say, "Thank you."

When questioned about this practice, Rickenbacker explained that during World War II, the transport plane he was in crashed at sea, hundreds of miles from land.  He and seven others managed to get into a life raft and paddled away.

The group ran out of provisions after eight days and they were now starving.  Rickenbacker reclined at the back of the raft with his cap over his face.  Suddenly he felt something land on his cap, so he grabbed it.  It was a sea gull, which he quickly killed.

The meat provided a meal and other parts of the gull became bait for fishing.  Thus the group survived and made it to land.

Eddie Rickenbacker was a member of Kilwinning Lodge, #297 in Detroit, Michigan. 

(From The Masonic Philatelist, September, 2014, publication of the Masonic Stamp Club of New York, Inc.  Brother Rickenbacker was recognized on a U.S. postage stamp as an "Aviation Pioneer.")

Disaster Appeal For Baja California

Hurricane Odile, packing storm-force winds of up to 125 mph, roared over Baja California, Mexico, on September 14, 2014, leaving widespread damage and flooding.

The Gran Logia de Baja California Sur, with headquarters in La Paz, Mexico, has requested the Masonic Service Association to issue a Disaster Relief Appeal on its behalf.  The Grand Lodge has 14 Lodges, several in the path of the hurricane.  Residents of Baja California, including many members of the Grand Lodge, now face the grim task of rebuilding.

Please forward to the MSA such funds as you feel appropriate to help our devastated Brothers and their families in this stricken jurisdiction.  Please make checks payable to MSA Disaster Relief Fund and send to 3905 National Drive, Suite 280, Burtonsville, MD  20866. 

Or, you may go to MSA's webpage,, and donate online.

A Miracle Of Masonry

One of Masonry's miracles is that it creates a world within the Lodge where good men of any religion come together to eat, pray and live as brothers. 

Consider that for a moment.  Do you know how rare that is around the rest of the world we live in?

(Sanford Holst, editor of the Southern California Research Lodge Fraternal Review, in his column in the October, 2014, issue.)


Remembered Quote From History

Think of all the years passed by in which you said to yourself, "I'll do it tomorrow," and how the gods have again and again granted you periods of grace of which you have not availed yourself.  It is time to realize that you are a member of the Universe, that you are born of Nature itself, and to know that a limit has been set to your time.  Use every moment wisely, to perceive your inner refulgence, or 'twill be gone and nevermore within your reach.

-- Marcus Aurelius (Meditations, 2.4)

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