- 1 FRANCIS LEAVITT BEAL 1864-1931
FRANCIS LEAVITT BEAL 1864-1931
- MM 1911, Putnam
- Grand Chaplain 1917-1927
PRESENTATION, MAY 1919
From New England Craftsman, Vol. XIV, No. 8, May 1919, Page 261:
The Grand Master of Masons in Mass., at a largely attended meeting of Putnam Lodge, Cambridge, April 22, presented the highly prized Henry Price Medal to Wor. and Rev. Dr. Francis L. Beal, "for distinguished service to Masonry." Dr. Beal has for a number of years been grand chaplain of the Grand Lodge. The presentation was made in Putnam Lodge, of which he was chaplain for nine years, until going to St. Paul's Parish, Peabody. He has been in much demand for lectures and sermons upon Masonic occasions and was a member of the committee which recently prepared the new Masonic burial service now in use. Dr. Beal has a host of friends in the various Masonic bodies who will rejoice at this high Masonic honor conferred upon him.
PUTNAM LODGE, OCTOBER 1911
From New England Craftsman, Vol. VII, No. 2, November 1911, Page 50:
Sermon Delivered Before Putnam Lodge
East Cambridge, Mass., October 22, 1911
By Rev. Francis Leavitt Beal, Chaplain of the Lodge.
Worshipful Master — I am deeply sensible of the privilege grass of extending a hearty greeting this this morning to you and the Brethren of our ancient institution. When you asked me to invite Putnam Lodge again in October, you also requested that I preach the same sermon delivered when the lodge was last here, and as all just and upright Masons are taught to look to the East for light, for inspiration and for instruction, so your chaplain will this morning, in part at least, comply with the request coming from the east.
May I quote these familiar- words from Bryant's Thanatopsis —
"To him who in the love of Nature holds Communion with her visible forms, she speaks a various language; for his gayer hours she has a voice of gladness, and a smile and eloquence of beauty, and she glides into his darker musings, with a mild and healing sympathy, that steals away their sharpness ere he is aware"
— And so, Worshipful and Brothers, the student of Craft Masonry as he delves among the symbols, the supports, the jewels, the ornaments and the Tenets of the Craft will find there beautiful teachings "speaking a various language to him," teaching him to bow in humble reverence before the Great Architect of the Universe —teaching him Faith in God, Hope in immortality and Charity to all mankind, speaking eloquently to him of the rules and designs laid down by the Supreme Architect in the great books of Nature and Revelation, our spiritual, moral and Masonic Trestle Board.
Worshipful Master—It is with the deepest sense pleasure that I welcome you and the Brothers of our Ancient Institution tonight.
The Craftsman cannot but feel proud, justly proud, of the great work Masonry has done in the world from the days when the Institution stood for operative Masonry down through the ages till the Operative was merged in the Speculative.
Proud, I say, of the place the Institution has had in the making of the world's history, proud of her quiet deeds of benevolence and charity proud of the Roll of honored names of those who have worn the lambskin, from King Solomon down to John the Baptist and on down to our own immortal Washington.
Our noble institution comes down to us hoary with age, fragrant with the blessings of widows and orphans, resplendent with the record of the great men of history.
And Worshipful and Brothers — this heritage has been handed on to us as a rich legacy — not to treasure selfishly, but that we may study to show ourselves upright pillars in the great Temple of life — that our characters may ring true. That by the faithful use of the working tools of the Craft we may divest our hearts and consciences of the vices and superfluities of life, thereby fitting our minds as living stones for that spiritual building, that house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens — but Brothers, before we are called for the last time from labor here to greater labor in the Celestial Temple where we are to study the eternal plans on the Great Master's Trestle Board in the Eternal East — and to the better fit us for it, we are taught the great privilege and responsibility of using our time — to divide it rightly for noble purposes — the service of God and a distressed worthy brother, for our usual vocation and a part for refreshment and sleep.
And by three Great Lights our pathway is made luminous and bright — and above us supported by three Great Pillars, the clouded canopy to be reached at last by faithful use of the principal rounds of the ladder.
Every man, Entered, Passed and Raised, not alone to be a Master Mason in the lodge-room, but rather because of the training there, a master workman in the great mission of raising humanity to love ^he trut. the beautiful, the good. To the studious mind among us, the philosophy of ancient Craft Masonry opens up entrancing vistas — an inexhaustible mine of riches.
Human life is checkered with good and evil, surrrounded by the manifold blessings and comforts to be obtained 5y a faithful reliance in Divine Providence.
How carefully we should study to build our characters to square with the rules and designs laid down by the Master in the Trestle-Board, Worshipful and Brothers. The world expects great things of us as members of the ancient Craft, and rightly, too. We cannot evade the responsibility.
Our walk must be upright, our actions tried by the square, for we are travelling upon the level of time, not to Eternal sleep, not to a great somnambulistic Nirvana — but to the Great Eternal East — where the Craft are to be entrusted by the Eternal Architect with grander and more responsible duties than we have yet dreamed of.
Here and now, with attentive ear, instructive tongue and faithful breast, we remember our Creator, while the sun, the light, the moon and the stars are still bright, before the silver cord be loosed or the golden bowl be broken, and gathered in high hills or in low valleys, looking to the East for inspiration and strength, we spread the Cement of Brotherly Love and affection and remember always the two Saints John and each of us within the great circle of life, striving to promote the tenets of our profession, Brotherly Love, Relief and Truth.
Ask what shall I give thee: Let us look for a moment at the incident.
The Kingdom had reached its highest glory at the death of David. It was in perfect peace.
Solomon was about twenty years old when at his father's death he ascended the throne. Trained at the hands of God's prophet, strongly influenced by his father David and his mother, he comes to the throne with a well defined character. Gifted with splendid abilities and at least in his earlier life, enthusiastically loyal to the ancient religion. His career was to be strikingly brilliant and with a wisdom perhaps never equalled on the throne.
A zeal for Jehovah which took outward form in the erection of the temple, a statesmanship which filled the land with prosperity.
The young king desiring to inaugurate his reign with a great national religious festival, goes in state to Gibeon and spends several days in sacrifices.
It was at this time the first of the three recorded visions of God to Solomon took place.
While asleep by night, a Divine appearance was vouchsafed to him in a dream, and God said to him: Ask what shall I give thee. Remembering how the glory of his father had followed his "walking in truth, in righteousness and uprightness of heart before Jehovah and feeling himself still but a child, he nobly asked: "Give me now wisdom and knowledge that I may go out and come in before this people."
Let me this morning talk simply to you.
We trace our lineage back to this same Solomon, the first Grand Master of the Primeval Grand Lodge at Jerusalem.
The ancient institution has prestige and power.
Leaders in philanthropy, in business, more — leaders in literature, in art, in science, in religion, bow at our altars.
Tremendous influence is ours. Now before us as a people are vast opportunities and their consequent responsibilities.
Brothers, drilled as we are in the texts and symbols of Holy Scripture, taught to square our lives and conduct by the working tools of the Craft, and told to look to God as the Great Architect of the Universe and ourselves as Master Workmen in working out His great problems: We are I say, in Him to do efficient work.
The age is one of rush and turmoil — of wealth seeking — and alas, no time for the cultivation of quiet, of prayer, of devotion — and there is danger of the grander, the spiritual side of our nature being dwarfed.
It seems to me that we are by training especially fitted to take the lead in this great work.
Prom the noble system of speculative Masonry with its lofty idealism, its high moral tone, and symbolic Scripture teaching, it seems to me to be a very natural step to the church of the ages — the Divine institution — with its Sacramental system, its reverent symbolic worship, its breadth of teaching, its simple faith once delivered to the saints.
Here is the opportunity for each to complete the ethical teachings of the Fraternity and make his time, his influence, his character count—in building up the Kingdom.
Let me ask you this morning to come apart with me. Let us leave busy, crowded Jerusalem and journey six miles out into the quiet country and up the mountain side to Gibeon.
Let us in sacrifice and prayer, seek to know God's will.
It is good for us to be here. Night comes on, and we are called from labor to refreshment.
In this holy place God seems near, and we are not surprised at being vouch-safed a vision.
We are here seeking light. It is the thing we most desire, and the voice says: Ask what I shall give thee. Now is our opportunity. Now is the crucial test of our lives.
Shall it be wealth? Think what might be done for the world's betterment, could we have wealth.
Shall it be honor? Honor is to be desired. It will add to our influence and consequently widen our field of opportunity for good.
Shall it be power? Power — power to be used for others — shall it be?
Shall it be long life? Certainly this is to be desired, if we can retain our powers — but no — none of these. We have been lifted out of our narrow selves up into a nobler plane — a larger place — our Communion with God has filled us with a zeal, a desire for larger things—an intense longing to be a coworker with the great Architect, in developing His plans for the extension of the Kingdom, and we answer: Give me wisdom.
My Brothers, the Lamb-Skin symbolizes purity—purity of heart and life. The pure in heart shall see God, and having seen God, we cannot but cry out, Thy Kingdom come. Oh, Thou Great Architect of the Universe. Raise us up into erect, symmetrical character. Receive us as co-workers with Thee in bringing in the Kingdom. Give us wisdom and light and knowledge, that we may go out and come in before the people, kingly men, because duly and truly prepared, worthy and well qualified, Craftsmen, zealous in the right division of our time. Earnest seekers after light and truth, living exponents of the grand principles for which the Craft exists and for which it labors.
AT CAMBRIDGE ROYAL ARCH CHAPTER, MARCH 1912
From New England Craftsman, Vol. VII, No. 7, April 1912, Page 235:
And it came to pass, when Joshua was by Jericho, that he lifted up his eyes and looked, and behold, there stood a man over against him with his sword drawn in his hand: and Joshua went unto him, and said unto him, "Art thou for us, or for our adversaries?"
And he said, "Nay; but as captain of the host of the Lord am I now come." And Joshua fell on his face to the earth and did worship, and said unto him, "What saith my Lord unto his servant?"
And the captain of the Lord's host said unto Joshua, "Loose thy shoe from off thy foot; for the place whereon thou standest is holy." And Joshua did so.
Most Excellent and Companions, it is with no small degree of pleasure that I welcome you tonight.
As your Chaplain I have sat in the East with you, sir, and looked in the faces of our companions gathered about the sacred altar in convocation.
I have seen the look of reverence as the incense rose to the Most High God. I have been led with you by the way of the gate of the outward sanctuary, which looketh towards the East and found it shut, and been taught to mark well the entering in of the house, and the going forth of the sanctuary.
Yes. and we read that the stone which the builders rejected is become the head of the corner. He that hath an ear to hear, let him hear.
Because — to him that overcometh, will I give to eat of the hidden manna, and I will give him a white stone, and in the white stone a new name written, which no man knoweth, saving he that receiveth it. But woe to him who in life's great quarries makes poor use of his time, and whose work fails to pass the chief overseer's inspection.
We are forcibly reminded that the mind like the diamond in its original state, is rude and unpolished but that the chisel of discipline and education discovers the latent virtues and draws them forth to range the large field of matter and space, to display the summit of human knowledge, our duty to God and to man. And that the mallet in the hands of the enlightened workman teaches him to curb ambition, depress envy, moderate anger, and encourage good disposition. So that marking well his work, and having it inspected, he passes the West with his mark in view and learns that while many are called, only the skilled are chosen.
How beautifully the keystone fits into and completes the great work, and symbolically unites and binds us into one great bond of living, vitalizing heart—throbbing brotherhood. With what beautiful and lofty suggestion, Most Excellent and Companions, come the verses:
I was glad when they said unto me,
Let us go into the house of the Lord.
Our feet shall stand within Thy Gates, O Jerusalem.
Jerusalem is builded as a city, that is compact together.
Pray for the peace of Jerusalem — and to be permitted to take part symbolically in this magnificent and most reverent work which was the wonder and admiration of our Ancient brethren who were permitted to view that magnificent edifice erected by King Solomon and which was dedicated to Almighty God — to be permitted I say to symbolically follow in the footsteps of the Most Excellent Masters of old, is a source of gratification but a gratification involving a deep responsibility — that of dispensing light and truth.
How pointedly we are taught the lesson that He that humbleth himself shall be exalted.
Since sin has destroyed within us the First Temple of purity and innocence, we pray that heavenly grace may guide and assist us in rebuilding the Second Temple of information. For remember the promise recorded by our Ancient Companion Isaiah:
I will bring the blind by a way that they know not.
I will lead them in paths that they have not known.
I will make darkness light before them and crooked things straight.
These things will I do unto them and will not forsake them.
We are to be Craftsmen Masters, who have no need to be ashamed — if not weary in well-doing.
How scripturally instructive and wide our journeyings have been, and how solemn the hush, how awe-inspiring the moment on holy ground as we bared our feet and hid our faces.
And we rose to go forth strong for endeavor to lead our brethren and humanity, to larger things, to the land of freedom and promise, to the regions of truth, to a pure and lofty worship in Tabernacle and Temple, fearlessly facing the Eternal East for inspiration, for there we saw gleaming in letters of scintillating gold — I am that I am.
I am hath sent me, and girding on the Breastplate and with Holiness unto the Lord, inscribed upon our fore heads, we defy the Chaldeans and all enemies of Truth. God has made all things square, up right and perfect, and as with the Compasses we draw upon life's Trestle Board the Circle, it teaches us that each of us is equally near to God.
And the Triangle constantly reminds us that God is omnipresent, omniscient and omnipotent, we contemplate with gratitude and admiration the sacred source from whence all earthly comforts flow. May I restate my text: And it came to pass, when Joshua was by Jericho, that he lifted up his eyes and looked, and, behold, there stood a man over against him with his sword drawn in his hand: and Joshua went unto him, and said unto him, "Art thou for us or for our adversaries?"
And he said, "Nay; but as captain of the host of the Lord am I now come." And Joshua fell on his face to the earth and did worship, and said unto him, "What saith my Lord unto his servant?"
And the captain of the Lord's host said unto Joshua, "Loose thy shoe from off thy foot: for the place where thou standest is holy." And Joshua did so.
The reverent student of Capitular Masonry at once recognizes in the incident recorded in my text, strong similarity to a scene which transpired some eighty years earlier at Horeb.
In this scene we behold the Israelis who were delivered out of Egypt a horde of slaves, by Moses, led through the wilderness thirty-eight years and welded and schooled into National consciousness, now encamped before Jericho, a walled city, which blocked their entrance at the very threshold of the Promised Land. Their courage has been wonderfully strengthened by the miraculous passage of the Jordan. The waters of the Jordan have rushed back into place again and the Israelites now are certainly committed to the task of possessing the land, for behind them rages the Jordan in flood, before them frowns the walled city of Jericho.
They had no battering rams, no engines of war. How were they to capture the city? Take it they must, for it was the key to the whole land. Gen. Joshua was troubled, his chief captains united in saying that the city was impregnable and that it could only be taken by a long siege.
In the evening of the third day as the Hebrew general was walking slowly before Jericho and gazing upon its lofty walls manned with archers, and rather doubting if he could take it, there suddenly stepped before him a tall young man with a drawn scimitar in his hand. Instantly Joshua the warrior-chief drew his sword and challenged.
"Art thou for us, or against us?" And he said, "Nay; but as captain of the host of the Lord, am I now come."
And Joshua fell on his face to the earth, and did worship, and said unto him, "What saith my Lord unto his servant?"
And the captain of the Lord's host Said unto Joshua, "Loose thy shoe from off thy foot, for the place whereon thou standest is holy." And Joshua did so.
Joshua receives his orders, the hosts of God are to fight for them. Now behold a strange sight. A great Walled city, filled with fighting men, and ample stores, well prepared to withstand siege, surrounded by the Israelites. Every day for six days, we see a detail of one thousand fighting men, followed by seven men with trumpets, then the priests vested as for Sacrifice, bearing the Ark, the seventy elders of the people, the rear brought up by an armed detail, marching about Jericho, blowing their trumpets.
The king and men in the city, laugh and deride.
On the morning of the seventh day one of the captains in Jericho rushes in to the king in alarm. The whole army of the Israelites is in motion like a vast sea, coming on in a terrible grandeur, the Holy Ark carried in advance and above it shines a strange gleaming light.
The king and his counsellors hasten to the walls. The hosts of the Hebrews were slowly coming on like a mighty river, each moment encompassing the city closer and closer. Banners flying, trumpets sounding, their tread shaking the plain.
What could mean this mysterious march of seven days and in this last day in full battle array?
At last the city is completely surrounded. Six times they pass about the city. The seventh time that day the host enemies passed Jericho and then facing it stood still, every man with his sword in his right hand. A party of horsemen gallop along the lines. At their head a gray haired warrior, on a charger as white as snow. His sword was in his sheath, in his hand he waved a white rod.
He rode rapidly along the close ranks of the Israelites and at intervals reined up for a few words of command.
The king and watchers in Jericho shuddered at the solemnity of the spectacle of impending doom.
Suddenly the air was rent with the noise of a thousand trumpets. The sound grows louder and louder until the roar of noise about the city appalled all within.
Suddenly all is still, and in the silence was heard the voice of Joshua pealing out. "Shout aloud, O Israel. The sword of the Captain of the Lord's hosts shall fight for you this day. Shout with the voice of one man, for the Lord hath given you the city!"
At once the shouts of three million people shook the air and suddenly in the air above the Ark appeared a man with a sword in his right hand, whose stature over-topped the highest towers of the city. He stretched his gleaming sword towards the city. Like a flash of lightning it encircled the walls, and towers and gates and walls fell flat all about the city.
"Advance and take the city in the name of the Lord of Hosts!" cried Joshua, leading on. And with shout of victory the Israelites enter the city.
Most Excellent, I have selected this text because it is a clarion call — a great opportunity was before the Chosen People, a new epoch in their history, in fact, in the world's history was about to open, and I believe that there is a great opening, a great opportunity before us of the Capitular Rite.
It is interesting to trace the history of Royal Arch Masonry in this country.
Authentic records are in existence in St. Andrew's Chapter, dated August 12, 1769. The work continued through the dark days of the Revolutionary War, and was gradually brought into its present form, old St. Andrew's Chapter being the Anchor, all through those formative years.
I note in the excellent history of this Mother Chapter written by our P. G. H. P. Ellis, that the Installations were events of great importance, at which the officers of the Grand Chapter, the Grand Lodge and other distinguished Masons were invited to attend.
An oration by some clergyman was delivered and a banquet followed, showing the same distinguished courtesy shown to the clergy then as now.
The growth of the Capitular Rite has been steady and whatever may be said by writers about the history of the work, there is no question as to its importance in the Masonic world.
The teachings of Craft Masonry with their sublime philosophy and deep symbolism mould and shape the thoughts, the ideals, the aspirations, aye, the life of every thoughtful man entered, passed and raised. But to us Companions of the Capitular Rite, who have been permitted to see the finished work of our Ancient Masters, exalted to the Royal Arch. We who are allowed to enter the sanctum sanctorum and view its refulgent beauties, to us is entrusted a wider, a deeper, holier mission.
To Truth, Brotherly Love and Charity we may well add as our watchwords—Inspiration and Reverence. Bare thy feet, thou art on holy ground.
Shield thine eyes before the refulgence of the rays of the Shekinah gleaming from beneath the Cherubim. And in the silence, canst thou not hear the voice of the Great Captain of the Host, like the sound of many waters, "I am the Captain of the hosts of the God of Israel."
And we see as did Joshua of old, the radiant figure of the Great Captain, in Glorious Majesty, and he says to us:
"Rise Companions, I have a work for thee. Gird on thy sword, for the hosts of the God of Israel shall fight with thee.
"Enter the Promised Land, conquer the cities of selfishness, raise over them the banner of Truth and Charity and Brotherly Love. A new era dawns, when men shall love each other, a day of inspiration, of great thoughts, of noble deeds. A day of reverence for holy things.
"Advance Companions. The city is yours, in the name of Jehovah. I Am, hath sent me to you."
"By ways they know not will I bring the blind,
And lead them on in paths they have not trod,
Before them shall the darkness be made light,
The crooked straightened, all rough places plain,
And I will not forsake them," saith their God.
From burning bush comes forth the voice of God,
And with uncovered feet he turns aside
To hear God's promise to deliver them
And lead them forward to a goodly land.
The Voice commands him, to the people say,
"I Am, hath sent me unto you and they
Shall hearken, and their freedom shall demand.
Thy Word, the manna sent to us from Heaven;
Thy Grace, the water for our souls outpoured,
Thy Law, the fire by night and cloud by day.
May these sustain, refresh, and guide our way
Along the rugged pathway of this life.
Though humbled in our earthly pilgrimage,
Exalted may we be with Thee to dwell
Forever in the regions of the blest.
Anoint our eyes, Great Master Architect,
And give us skill to rightly judge each stone,
That we the chiefest one may not pass by.
May we and those who follow us, so build
That each at last may hear the words, 'Well done.' "
CAMBRIDGE COUNCIL, NOVEMBER 1913
From New England Craftsman, Vol. IX, No. 3, December 1913, Page 85:
The Secret Place
A Sermon preached before Cambridge Council Royal and Select Masters
Sunday, Nov. 9, 1913'
Isa. XXXIII. 17 — Psal CIV.I - Rev. XXII. 12.
"Thine eyes shall see the King in His beauty."
"O Lord my God. Thou art become exceedingly glorious; Thou art clothed with majesty and honor."
"And behold I come quickly; and My reward is with Me, to give to every man according as his work shall be."
Thrice Illustrious Master and my Companions all, I welcome you this morning. I do it with a glad heart for you are all mine, a part of my great Masonic Parish of seven hundred good men and true.
We have journeyed far to the East together; we have climbed winding stairs, studied the Arts and Sciences, especially learning how to rightly divide our time. Wearied by our labors we rested upon the brow of the hill and studied the Great Trestle Board, and the attentive ear, the faithful breast drank in the great lesson of immortality: "If a man die shall he live again?" Aye! Live to see the King in His beauty.
And as we journey together, our work in sight, the lessons growing more beautiful, we are permitted to see the glory of the house, the fire from heaven, symbolizing the Divine Presence.
We press on our way over obstacles and difficulties determined that nothing shall deter us in our search for Truth. And with glad hearts we see the Stone which the builders rejected, and learn its use in Operative Masonry, and, more important, its part in Symbolic Masonry. Still eager for more light, beckoned on by the bright face of the Genius of Masonry, we pursue our journey.
We pass through spacious and beautiful apartments of the Temple, awed into speechless wonder by their magnificence and the manifest presence of God, when we seem to catch from some distant apartment the words. "I have seen the Glory of Israel."
We pause, and the words of the Queen of Sheba to our Great Master Solomon come to our mind, "Behold, O King, the half of thy Glory has not been told me." And awed and bewildered by the great truths, and mysteries, and the magnificence we have already been permitted to see, we hesitate to advance.
But reassured, we press on and soon find ourselves in the presence of the King.
Clothed indeed he is with majesty and honor. And we walk about the Sanctum Sanctorum and view its beauties and our eager hearts drink in its teachings — truly, it is good to be here— and as we pause and meditate upon life's vicissitudes the words of my text may well come to mind; "And behold, I come quickly; and My reward is with Me, to give to every man according as his work shall be."
But our journey is not yet completed.
Our work accepted, we pass on. A lesson of far-reaching importance awaits us.
And now, as we near the end of our journey and pause to rest, th. grandeur, the Sublimity of it all dashes upon us.
The completed Temple is before us; foundations, walls, apartments, magnificent furnishings; all teaching in beautiful symbolism the wonder ful bve and care of the Great Architect of the Universe and His beneficent plans for the atttainment of God-like character. That we are to be the Architects, the Craftsmen, the Master Workmen building the Temple of Life; building into that Temple an that is beautiful and good and true; that we may be pillars of strength and beauty, strong, symmetrical, anu our characters adorned with chapiters of graces and pomegranates of virtues.
As we pause overwhelmed by this vision, as the scope and reach of it comes to us, there is a tumult and a scene of carnage and bloodshed, fire and smoke, falling roof and crumbling walls, the wail of women, the groans of men, and all is desolation and ruin where had been beauty and peace.
"O Jerusalem! Jerusalem! the wonder of all times and peoples, thi paragon of nations, the glory of the world, the chosen one of Heaven, see now how thou hast become heaps ot ashes and rubbish, an abhorrent spectacle of desolation, a monumental ruin. To what depth hast thou pledged the bitter cup of God's Vengeance."
It is evident that the magnificent Temple of Solomon in all its parts and as a whole, was and is a fitting symbol for workmen among the Craft – the Capitular, and the Cryptic Degrees.
From the commencement of the foundation to the time of the deposit of the Holy Name within the Sanctum Sanctorum all was essential for the great purpose of instruction in the great plan of God's revelation of Himself as All Love.
That not only Apprentices, Crafts* men and Masters were necessary to build up the house of God, but also Overseers, Work Masters, Royal and Select Masters, and Stewards, Guards and Sentinels to build, protect or carry on the undertaking.
The King, by high example and wise precept, led his people in paths of peace and worship of the Great Jehovah. But alas, in the zenith of his power he disobeyed God. He began to love strange women, and soon his heart was weaned from the Lord his God, and this was the beginning of sorrows, till the destruction came.
And the great Temple was leveled; the city destroyed, the people led captive to Babylon. As they reached the rivers of Babylon, the conquerors commanded them to sing, and the picture is vividly given in the 137th Psalm which we used this morning.
"By the rivers of Babylon, there we sat down, yea, we wept, when we remembered Zion.
"We hanged our harps upon the willows in the midst thereof.
"For there they that carried us away captive required of us a song; and they that wasted us required of us mirth saying, 'Sing us one of the Songs of Zion.'
"How shall we sing the Lord's song in a strange land?
"If I forget thee, O Jerusalem, let my right hand forget her cunning.
"If I do not remember thee, let my tongue cleave to the roof of my mouth; if I prefer not Jerusalem above my chief joy."
Masonry is a harmony. The symbolic degrees are the unfinished Temple wherein the Great Builder was at Work when slain. Then the Capitular ahd Cryptic workers take up the work and carry it to completion.
We are all keenly susceptible to the beautiful. How wonderfully these blend in the work. The Temple, the furniture, the vestments and ornaments, the various apartments, the veils, the banners, the Holy Ark — the "Glory of Israel"— how all blend and powerfully teach in the Symbolic, Capitular and Cryptic work.
To the Masonic student, the lessons of the Cryptic Rite are of unexampled force and beauty, they are the end of the journey, the climax of the teaching, the dazzling vista of the magnificent reach of the Great Architect's design.
It is here that the contemplative mind will rest with richest satisfaction, and the earnest soul who has caught the great vision of sternal truth will fire his zeal with che live coal from off the altar ever burning in the Sanctum Sanctorum, and go forth to manifest to the world the sublime tenets of Masonry.
To such my text becomes luminous: "O Lord my God, Thou art become exceedingly Glorious, Thou art clothed with majesty and honor."
My companions, what inviting opportunities are before us; broadened in mind and culture, uplifted in aim and aspiration, ennobled in thought and purpose, we step out from our assembly into the bright light of day. Everything is radiant with God's sunlight, the whirr and jostle of business is all about us. The faces we meet are lined with care, the forms bent with toil, eyes dulled by dissipation or worry.
At once we are conscious of the fact that in the hurly burly about us there is a jarring, a discordant note of selfishness, of greed, of self-seeking. We are sensitive to this because of the lofty, ethical and symbolic teaching of our work.
And here is our opportunity as Royal and Select Masters who have seen the "Glory of Israel," who have been vouchsafed the vision of the King in His beauty. Shall we selfishly and indifferently pass on our way, not heeding the distress about us, or shall we, immediately we mingle with our neighbors, drop our ideals and lose the Key to the Grand Harmonies?
What is Fraternity? Fraternity is love in action; love on fire with intense desire to help, to pass on all light and cheer and uplift.
This I conceive to be the mission of Masonry, my companions.
Of what use are our fraternal gatherings, our noble ceremonies, our lofty teachings, if they do not send us out into daily life to cheer and uplift and ennoble all with whom we come in contact.
Masonry would teach us to be upright pillars in the Temple. That the Almighty Overseer may by the plumb of His Justice find us walking uprightly before God and man; squaring our actions by the Square of Virtue, ever remembering the daily travel upon the Level. But, my companions, there is a higher law. If the heart be not right, we shall be unable to use the Trowel for the glorious purpose of spreading the cement of Brotherly Love and affection; for the vision of the Cryptic work will so imbue us with a love for humanity that we shall have mastered a problem greater than the 47th of Euclid, one found upon the Trestle Board today — Lose thyself in service for others.
In this unselfish way, this entire forgetfulness of self in our intense desire to disseminate light and knowledge to those about us we shall unconsciously work out such beautiful specimens of handiwork in our own lives and characters that the Sanctum Sanctorum will become our Bethel, our place of prayer, of inspiration, of consecration, and we shall each in his station be contributing his part to the Great Temple—building mission of the Craft in the world.
Let us be zealous, faithful Craftsmen and Masters, for "Behold I come quickly; and My reward is with Me, to give to every man according as his work shall be."
And when that time shall come, may each, strong in faith, conscious of the integrity of his purpose, carry up his work for the King's inspection. And if we have made good use of our Apprenticeship, His smile of approval will be dear indeed to us as He says: "This is a beautiful piece of work indeed."
FEAST OF ST. JOHN, DECEMBER 1917
From Proceedings, Page 1917-427:
Most Worshipful and Brethren:
I feel very keenly interested in the remarks of the sergeant, and you can understand why.
I am deeply sensible of the great honor you do me, sir, in asking me to speak at this famous and time-honored Feast, but I confess to you that as I look about me and see many widely known to the Craft for their Masonic learning and their eloquence, I fear greatly that I shall forever "fall from grace."
I was very carefully taught that all just and upright Masons should look well to the East for light, for inspiration, and for instruction, and hence I really have no choice but to comply with the request of the Most Worshipful. But, as there may be a slight suspicion in the minds of some that the clergy proceed upon the assumption that they have an inalienable right to talk ad libitum and ad infinitum, I should like to recite an incident on that point. The great Bishop Potter, of New York, was one day charging a class of young men whom he was ordaining. He said, "Gentlemen, I want you to remember that the best sermon in the world can be preached in fifteen minutes, and you had better make it ten." (Laughter.)
Now, of course, Brethren, that may be good for the clergy in their sermon work; it may do for my friend Dr. Bush, over there, to have him chained up, or my good friend, Brother Horton, the Senior Grand Chaplain, but we certainly would never think of giving such a rule the force of Masonic law. May I quote these familiar lines from Bryant's Thanatopsis:
"To him, who in the love of Nature holds
Communion with her visible forms, she speaks
A various language; for his gayer hours
She has a voice of gladness, and a smile
And eloquence of beauty, and she glides
Into his darker musings, with a mild
And healing sympathy, that steals away
Their sharpness, ere he is aware."
And so, Most Worshipful, the student of Masonry, as he labors among the tools and symbols of the Craft, will find their beautiful teachings speaking a various language to him; teaching him to do justly, to love mercy, and to walk humbly before the Great Architect of the lives of men; quickening his faith, deepening his hope in immortality, and strengthening his charity to all mankind; pointing him eloquently to the rules and designs laid down by the Supreme Architect upon the great Trestle Board and constantly before him in the Three Great Lights.
The Craftsman feels deeply proud of the great work Masonry has accomplished, from the days of the Operative down the ages until the Operative became merged in the Speculative. He is proud of the large place the Institution has filled in the evolution of history; her record for benevolence and charity, quietly carried on; her long line of the great names of those who have worn the lambskin, from King Solomon to Saint John the Evangelist, and on down to our own immortal Washington.
The Institution comes to us, Most Worshipful, with the dignity of age and redolent with the grateful thanks of widows and orphans and gleaming with names illustrious in history. But, Brethren, this priceless legacy has come to us from the hands of the fathers as a great and sacred trust; not to hold selfishly, but that, inspired and broadened by its light and truth, we may so wisely and faithfully and efficiently use the working tools of the Craft that humanity shall be lifted Godward; given a larger conception of beauty and a deeper consecration to the deeper, the supreme purpose of life, attaining to the ideal, the Divine intention, the symmetrical character of the Great Architect, in whose image we were created.
You may think me heterodox, Brethren, when I say that I am not given much to talking about our labors in the Celestial Temple. I am very much more concerned about our daily labors here that in the uplift and brightness and warmth of the light ever gleaming from the eternal East, we shall day by day catch a renewed vision of high ideal, of noble endeavor; and loyally labor to make it crystallize into great achievement.
We are fully taught Brethren; we know it to be our great privilege and responsibility, rightly to divide our time, and the Three Great Lights ever make our pathway bright and clear. Our Working Tools teach us proper limitations, in conduct and continually remind us of our duty to God, to our Brother, and to ourselves.
A Mason's charity is to be as broad as the universe; his conception of truth and virtue and faith as high as the blue canopy above. And if we rightly grasp the design, we shall see that the great object of our training is to inspire every man raised with the vision and purpose and ideal that the highest and noblest labor of the Master Mason is to be a master workman in the great mission of raising humanity to love the true, the beautiful, and the good. What entrancing vistas of ideal and accomplishment, what an inexhaustible mine of riches, open up before the earnest Mason!
Most Worshipful, the world expects great things of every member of the Ancient Craft, and rightly, too. Our walk must be upright, our actions tried by the square, for we are traveling upon the level of time, entrusted with a great mission. The attentive ear, the instructive tongue, and the faithful breast have important work to do, and to accomplish it, wisdom is requisite.
While asleep by night, a Divine appearance was vouchsafed to the young King Solomon in a dream, and God said to him, "Ask what I shall give thee." Remembering how God had blessed his father David, because he "walked in truth, in righteousness and uprightness of heart before Jehovah, and feeling himself inadequate to the task before him, he nobly asked, "Give me now wisdom and knowledge, that I may go out and come in before this people."
We trace our lineage back to this same Solomon, the first Grand Master of the primeval Grand Lodge at Jerusalem. Prestige and power are ours, as an Institution. Bowing before our altars you will find the leaders in philanthropy, business, literature, art, science, and religion. Vast opportunities for humanity's uplift are in our hands, and we are, by our training, in line to do efficient work. In the rush and turmoil of commercialism, of wealth-seeking, there is a very real danger of our adopting a distorted philosophy of life; danger that the nobler impulses of the soul will become atrophied; that the spiritual side of our natures will become dwarfed or, worse yet, ossified. The stress and strain of the present holocaust of world war test the ground-work of faith in God, in governments, and in humanity. Here, it seems to me, we have an anchor, tested and true. Masonry, with its lofty idealism, its high moral tone, its symbolic Scripture teaching, its universality, its deep fraternal charity, is and will be a factor possessed of tremendous potentialities for making a high contribution in the great readjustment to come in the political, commercial, educational, and religious life of the world.
Let me ask you, Brethren, to come apart with me. Let us leave busy, crowded Jerusalem, and journey six miles out into the quiet country and go up the mountainside of Gibeon. Let us, in sacrifice and prayer, seek to-know God's will. It is good for us to be here. Night .comes on, and we are called from labor to refreshment. In this holy place God seems very near, and we are not surprised at being vouchsafed a vision. We are here seeking light. It is the thing we most desire, and the voice says, "Ask what I shall give thee." Now is our opportunity; now is the crucial test of our lives. Shall it be wealth? Think what might be done for the world's betterment, could we have wealth. Shall it be honor? Honor is to be desired. It will add to our influence and consequently widen our field of opportunity for good. Shall it be power? Power to be used for others. Shall it be long life? Certainly this is to be desired, if we can retain our powers. But no, none of these things. We have been lifted out of our narrow selves, up into a nobler plane, a larger place. We have become filled with a zeal and a desire for great things, an intense longing to be a co-worker with the Great Architect in developing His plans for humanity's uplift, and we answer, Give me wisdom. Give us wisdom and light and knowledge, that we may become kingly men, because duly and truly prepared, worthy and well qualified; Craftsmen zealous in the right division of our time, earnest seekers after light and truth; living exponents of the grand principles for which the Craft exists, and for which it labors. (Applause.)
JORDAN LODGE, OCTOBER 1920
From New England Craftsman, Vol. XVI, No. 1, October 1920, Page 20:
The official visitation of R. W. Harry P. Gifford to Jordan Lodge of Peabody, October 6th, was an occasion long to be remembered by the over two hundred brethren present.
Of especial interest was the presentation of the Henry Price Medal to Wor. Charles E. Teague, an active working member of Jordan Lodge for over fifty years. The medal was presented by Wor. Rev. Francis L. Beal, D.D., grand chaplain and chaplain of Jordan Lodge, whose address follows:
"I assure you I am deeply sensible of this privilege.
"You remember, my brothers, that our Primeval G. M. King Solomon, when called to the throne of his father David, was given by God his choice of wisdom, long life, or riches. And that he chose wisdom that he might rule his people well.
"And you and I, duly and truly prepared, worthy and well qualified sought carefully the light of truth, that we might take our places in the great work of leading humanity into larger ideals, wider vision, nobler achievement. And all our earnest search in darkness and helplessness; all our study, w'ill have failed, unless as we face the radiant east, we are inspired, uplifted, and impelled to a larger, broader, deeper grip upon the eternal verities of life and truth. Unless we are so filled with a deep hunger and thirst for light and knowledge that we may the better, the more efficiently, the more unselfishly help our brothers.
"To these high ideals, my brothers, we stand committed. Let us catch the keynote of the grand harmonies of tool and symbol. Let us see the bright gleams of truth glowing in the blue canopy above; and fearlessly take up each day's duties, determined that the inspiration, the uplift, the vision of Masonry shall crystallize into noble action in our daily lives.
"R. W., Wor., and brothers of Jordan Lodge, over one hundred years old — What a record for fraternity. The hundreds of men who have been raised to larger vision, and inspired to nobler endeavor here.
"The strong friendships made and cemented here. The quiet deeds of charity during these years, written in golden letters in the great record book on High.
"These things fill your hearts to overflowing tonight. And amidst this deep and tender rejoicing, we pause to honor one who has passed the half-century mark in active Masonic membership and labor.
"My brother, how much this night means to you. Fifty years since you were led by the hand of a friend, to the door of Jordan' Lodge, and there demanded admission.
"How vivid in your memory is that night. You have been a student of Masonry for fifty years, and still it glow's with promise; still you see new beauties, new lessons.
"Many you have worked with, have paused on the brow of the hill to rest and refresh themselves, and leaving a sprig of acacia for you, have found rest.
"But, tonight, that' memory unlocks the heart's secret inner recesses and calls before you the faces, the scenes, the joys of fifty years of loyal Masonic labor.
"And we will not forget, my brother, to express our gratitude to the Great Architect, our Heavenly Father, for all these happy memories, and that we are still spared to disseminate Masonic light and truth.
"Organized Masonry in New England dates from 1733.
"In that year Henry Price was in London, and appears to have given personally, his Deputation as Provincial Grand Master for North America, by Viscount Montague, Grand Master of the Grand Lodge of England.
"Henry Price was a loyal, active Mason. He died in 1780 at the good old age of 83, and was buried in Townsend, Mass.
"In 1888, the Grand Lodge set up a monument over his remains in the old cemetery at Townsend, to commemorate the event, struck a medal called the Henry Price medal. The grand lodge ordained that the Henry Price medal should be a distinguished honor. The M. W. G. Master may confer it upon brothers who have been active Masons for fifty years; and upon a brother for great and distinguished service to the craft.
"Wor. Bro. Charles E. Teague, by the authority of the M. W. G. Master, and at the request of our good Wor. I now invest you with the Henry Price medal, which you will wear at all meetings of the craft by the side of your past master's jewel.
"Charlie, may you be spared many years to wear this distinguished mark, with honor to yourself and as an inspiration to noble service to your brethren."
ON THE PILGRIM TERCENTENARY, DECEMBER 1920
From New England Craftsman, Vol. XVI, No. 5, February 1921, Page 121:
In a recent sermon eulogistic of the Pilgrim tercentenary, Rev. Dr. Francis L. Beal, rector of St. Paul's Episcopal church, Peabody, paid a tribute to Mayor S. Howard Donnell for his stand against treasonable propaganda from soap box orators. Mayor Donnell was numbered among the members of Jordan Lodge of Masons who attended the service in a body. The sermon was a tribute to Masonry, its ideals and patriotism. In part Dr. Beal said:
II Sam. XXII: 31-33 —
"As for God, His way is perfect; the word of the Lord is tried; He is a buckler to all them that trust in Him.
"For who is God, save the Lord? And who is a rock, save our God?
God is my strength and power; and He guideth the perfect in His way."
The words of my text seem especially appropriate, for they are taken from the Davidic Psalm of thanksgiving after a successful campaign against the Philistines. He was fighting for the freedom of his country from oppression.
We are gathered in this sacred place this morning, Wor. and Brothers, at the request of the M. W. Grand Master, to commemorate the Pilgrim Tercentenary.
The M. W. Grand Master has requested the Lodges to observe the Pilgrim Tercentenary to refute the slanders which are put in circulation against the loyalty and staunch Americanism of the Craft, and to demonstrate our acknowledgment of indebtedness to the sterling character of the Pilgrims.
You might properly ask what has the Craft to do with the Pilgrim Fathers and what they stood for? As we study the matter, we find Craft Masonry, as developed in America the past two hundred years, following the principles which actuated the Pilgrim Fathers.
Democracy and idealism were wonderfully welded in them.
It is especially interesting to me to speak to you on this theme, for both Mrs. Beal and I are of Pilgrim stock. John Howland, one of the Mayflower passengers who landed at Plymouth in 1620, was one of my direct ancestors.
People laugh at the Pilgrims, saying: "They wanted freedom for themselves; they wouldn't give it to others." What was their definition of freedom, the freedom they established in their new home?
The Pilgrims sought liberty under the law; a liberty that cannot subsist without authority; a liberty to do that only which is good, just and honest.
Absolute freedom of speech and of action were as undreamed of by the Pilgrim Fathers, as they are by all sane men today.
I say: all honor to our Mayor Donnell for his backbone, for the stand he took recently on this matter of street-corner ranting and soap-box oratory in this city. And I unhesitatingly say, that the stand he took was squarely upon the principles which were laid down by the founders of this Great Republic; and that the members of the City Government who voted against the ordinance he wanted passed, have little knowledge and appreciation of the Pilgrim's conception of freedom.
The very foundation of Pilgrim belief, whether civil or religious, was an orderly obedience to government; and on that foundation the United States has built all its greatness.
Someone has said: "That the two great benefits conferred by the Pilgrims may be summed up in the words: "The supremacy of the law, and the impartial administration of justice."
Now, Wor. and Brothers, I am sure that it will be clear to every thoughtful Mason, that our Ancient Institution stands like a rock for the Pilgrim principles. Love for God, the Great Architect; and for our fellow-man as His highest work.
Lofty idealism, a constant incentive to greater effort in spreading light and truth concerning the Creator's beneficient plans for humanity's uplift.
Democracy of equality. Every Brother, regardless of wealth or position, absolutely on an equality before our Altars.
A constant insistence upon order, discpline, respect for law and those lawfully in authority.
We may confidently assert that this Pilgrim heritage has been a tremendous asset, a legacy of richness and power to Craft Masonry.
Giving, inspiration and zeal to the great men of the Nation, who have in nearly every case been Masons; and it is a fact of great potentiality, that in this day of turmoil and change, right here in Massachusetts, 95,000 Masons, thoroughly imbued with these principles, stand as firm as Plymouth Rock, for the great principles for which our Pilgrim ancestors gave their lives.
Stand shoulder to shoulder for freedom under law; for righteousness in government, in church, in home; for equality of opportunity for every man who is a man.
That the millions of Masons in America believe in God from the shoulder; believe in the Flag and will defend it; believe in the free government of law and order which that Flag stands for, and will fight for it, and die for it, if need be.
And we are all this because we, too, are Pilgrims, Pilgrims of a new day. Permeated with the high purposes of the Pilgrim Fathers of old; and thrilled and vibrant with the vision of new duty and opportunity to the new day. A day foretold by prophets, and sung by poets when the earth shall be filled with the glory of God, and men shall adore Him and serve Him continually.
To this high quest, my Brothers, I bid you, in the Name of the Supreme Master of us all. The great designs are already drawn upon the Trestle Board. The Working Tools are laid out. The Great lights are in position. Already the East is radiant with the dawn of Promise and all the powers of the Universe are at the call of the Master Workman.
Masonry, once purely operative, then speculative, is now optimistically both; and efficient with glorious purpose.
Aye, my Brothers, we are called from refreshment to labor again. Look well to the Great East.