The North Carolina Mason

September/October 2011

North Carolina Mason

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Page 4 escorted to the stage which held the podium and the symbolic East. Finally, our past grand mas- ters were brought to the stage. Each group was welcomed and accorded private grand honors. Grand Orator A. B. Swindell IV delivered the keynote reminding Masons of the part Ma- sonry plays in their lives and how they extend and share that effect with their communities and the rest of the world. Through the rest of the morning, recognitions were presented, and a number of reports were introduced before breaking for lunch. Immedi- ate Past Grand Master William L. Dill present- ed a supplement to his preliminary report of last year, finishing the business of his term. Immediately after lunch, and before resealing the lodge, representatives of North Carolina's Masonic youth groups, Rainbow for Girls (Bob- bi Dupuis) and DeMolay, (Travis Glidewell) spoke to the gathering. After the non-Masons were escorted from the lodge hall, labor was resumed. A ceremony was conducted to honor our members who died this past year. At the conclusion of the Necrology, Grand Master Ledford presented his preliminary report on his year thus far. Throughout the day, slide- shows were presented featuring photographs of Masonic events around the state during the last year. There was business requiring voting on Fri- day afternoon including the Report of the Com- mittee on Appeals. Grand Master Ledford called the member- ship from labor to refreshment around 4:00 p.m. Several hundred Masons and their ladies attend- ed a barbecue and bluegrass evening at the Mil- lennium Center just a block from the headquar- ters hotels. Proceeds from the event, catered by Big Boy BBQ, went to the NC Masonic Foun- dation. On Friday evening, Masons were seen in groups all over downtown Winston-Salem. They enjoyed the entertainment and many restaurants around the center of the city. On Saturday morning at 9:00 a.m., the final business session of the Annual Communication began. The first business before us on the second day was, as always, the budget for 2012. Finance Committee Chairman Sam Lee presented the budget in sections, calling for discussion before asking for approval of the delegates for that sec- tion. Interspersed between those parts, delegates marked ballots to elect Grand Lodge officers for next year. The budget, with a small surplus pro- jected, was approved as presented. Before balloting began for grand treasurer, PGM Cliff Everett, who has held the office since 1996, took to the podium and announced that he would not again serve. Everett said that he was still capable of carrying out the duties of Group 1 Group 2 Group 3 Group 4 Group 5 Group 6 The North Carolina Mason September/October 2011 ANNUAL, from page 1 the office and still enjoyed the office, but thought that the time had come for him to step aside for fresh financial leadership. After Everett shared a history of grand treasurers for the last 50 years, delegates elected current Grand Master Lewis R. Ledford as grand treasurer. He will take his new office at the Grand Lodge officer installation which replaces him as grand master December 3. Elections proceeded without any other sur- prises. Robert E. Gresham Jr. of Albemarle 703 was elected to become our next grand master. Gresham is a retired certified public accountant. The Grand Lodge voted to grant a charter to Ashlar 765, a new lodge in Hampstead on North Carolina's southeast coast. The area has had a growing population without a convenient lodge. Code changes were considered on Saturday Amendment Scorecard Marriage defined ..................................returned Secrecy .......................................................passed Renunciation .............................................passed Felony pleas ..............................................passed Funeral changes ........................................passed Alcohol use ..................................................failed STATE, from page 3 Union Grove Grassy Knob 471 had Movie Night at the Lodge July 21. They watched The Man Who Would Be King, featuring Masonic characters. Baked ziti and ciabatta highlighted the menu at Grassy Knob's September 1 dinner. — Tom Gregory Benson Relief 431 is holding a raffle. First prize is a 52-inch high definition television, second is a $100 gift certificate, and third is a $50 gift cer- tificate. Tickets are five dollars or five for $20. — Grover Dees Wallace They are getting to the bottom of their roof problems at Wallace 595. Seems that gutters were blocked, and some brickwork needed repair. — Bulletin of Wallace Lodge Night on July 14. Kinston Richard Caswell 705 was having their Family — Lynn Hill Smithfield Fellowship 84 was to hold their Annual Homecoming on September 17. It was to be an old fashioned pig-picking. — Fellowship Lodge Selma Selma 320 was holding both a blood drive and their annual golf tournament this fall. — Grover Dees Wilkesboro Liberty 45 was horribly shocked in August by the very premature death of their Master Ricky Allen Brewer. He was only 42. He is remembered for his "likeable personality and diligent example." — Steve Brown SALUTE, from page 8 Ben Wallace talks of Masonic honors. Blackmer Lodge honors long dead brother RICHMOND — On April 28, a delegation of 21 from Blackmer 127 in Mount Gilead met in Richmond, Virginia to pay tribute to a broth- er who had fallen nearly 150 years earlier. Major Edmund Christian was the master of Blackmer Lodge in 1859. With the eruption of the Civil War in 1861, he enlisted in the army. Two years into the war, he was a major with the 23rd North Carolina Infantry, when at the battle of Seven Pines, he was wounded. He was taken to a private residence in Richmond. Two days later, he died of his wounds and was buried in Hollywood Cemetery, now a peace- ful resting place overlooking the James River in downtown Richmond. Given the nature of the battle, and the time lines involved, it is most unlikely that Brother Christian was afforded a Masonic Burial ser- vice. Blackmer Lodge members thought it proper to honor their past master and decided to do so. A visit to the grave and a memorial service was planned. On a beautiful spring morning 16 mourners vitality of the Craft to community. The lodge set up tents and cookers in the big parking lot outside the historic Greensboro Masonic Temple. Hot dogs, hamburgers, French fries, chips, drinks, and cookies were served. All the food was free to emergency services workers. More than 200 folks showed up — it was a huge success. — Tom Saitta gathered to "pay the last sad offices of pious duty to our departed brother." Lodge Historian Steve Campbell began the program with a briefing on the peninsula campaign of 1862, of which the Battle of Seven Pines was part. Jennifer Nash is a historian who discovered the final resting place of Maj. Christian. She contacted the lodge with that information sev- eral years ago. She continued the ceremony with the story of what was known about Edmund Christian, the man. The ceremony was concluded by Ben Wallace, master of Blackmer Lodge, who performed the Masonic portion of the service. — Ben Wallace morning. Amendment Group 1, regarding the clarification of marriage extending until divorces are final, was referred back to committee for its wording to be polished. Groups 2, 3, and 4, clari- fications of language in The Code, were all passed. Group 5 was a wholesale change in the way we conduct funerals. It will give much greater flexibility to lodge masters in when and how they may conduct Masonic funeral services. A new manual for various ceremonies and sugges- tions for customizing funeral services is forth- coming. The changes have been widely wel- comed as bringing modern and proper practice to this important final respect we pay to Masons. Group 6 would have allowed alcohol in lodge facilities, except the lodge room. Once again, it failed. The vote was taken by written ballot and won a simple majority 434-414, but short of the 2/3 majority necessary to change The Code. All changes to The Code take effect January 1, 2012. Five grand lodges were recognized. Foreign jurisdictions recognized were in Azerbaijan, Mo- naco, Moldova, and Malta. Prince Hall of Okla- homa, which manages most of the military lodges around the world was also recognized. This was the second Prince Hall jurisdiction we have rec- ognized; fewer than a dozen voters dissented. This should simplify military affiliations for our lodges

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