The North Carolina Mason

May/June 2021

North Carolina Mason

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I have been in the news business for decades. I've covered stories that ran in local papers and international gazettes. I have inter- viewed movie stars, crime kings, fat-cat CEOs and sitting U.S. presidents. I have covered plane crashes, major oil spills and devastating floods. I've covered some unprecedented things, some amazing things, some life-changing things. But I had never, not even once, interviewed a man about his toes. Until now. Eagle #19 Past Master Charles King is a man of his word. When he makes a promise, he keeps it. Even when it requires him to head to his local nail salon in Goldsboro to spend hours having the square and compasses painted painstakingly onto his big toes and his thumbs. (Not to be ignored, the rest of his digits were topped with fetching splashes of matching metallic blue and gold.) Why, you ask? What possessed him to do this thing? Why, he was doing a good deed. Faced with a pandemic shutdown that curbed fundraising events lodges would normally hold, he did the one thing he could still do to raise funds for his favorite charity, the Masonic Home for Children at Oxford. In April, he challenged his lodge to raise $500 from their pockets for MHCO. In return, he promised, he would have his toenails painted with the Masonic symbol in their honor before the first lodge meeting in May. When his brothers raised the money almost immediately, he upped the ante. Raise $1,000 and I'll paint my fingernails, too, he promised. Well, they did … and he did. As we emerge from pandemic restrictions into a new day and new ideas, this wonderful story of painted fingers, toes and the brotherly spirit shows me that charity among the 370 North Carolina lodges is alive and joyful. I have been hearing from brothers around the state that they are trying new things, new ways to raise at least a little bit to help our charities – which are still incurring unprec- edented COVID-related costs and trying to recover from an unplanned downturn, the likes of which none of us has ever seen. What is your lodge doing to take some of the financial edge off for our charities? Some brothers are making anonymous challenges – one has challenged his brothers to raise $1,000 for Masonic charity and he will match it dollar for dollar. Every little (and large) bit helps. Charity took a major hit last year, as you would expect. Because lodges couldn't do what they normally do, fundraising events vanished. e Special Activities Committee reports that lodge donations for MHCO and WhiteStone have dropped consistently for several years now, starting a couple of years before the pandemic but most noticeably last year. So far this year, the trend is slow to rise because many event and attendance Page 4 The North Carolina Mason May/June 2021 T h e m i s s i o n o f f r e e m a s o n r y i n n o r T h C a r o l i n a i s T o r a i s e T h e m o r a l , s o C i a l , i n T e l l e C T u a l , a n d s p i r i T u a l C o n s C i e n C e o f s o C i e T y b y T e a C h i n g T h e a n C i e n T a n d e n d u r i n g p h i l o s o p h i C a l TeneTs of broTherly love, relief, and TruTh, whiCh are expressed ouTwardly Through serviCe To god, family, CounTry, and self under The faTherhood of god wiThin The broTherhood of man. (USPS 598-260) is published bimonthly by e Grand Lodge of AF & AM of North Carolina, 2921 Glenwood Avenue, Raleigh, NC 27608. ird class postage paid at Oxford, NC 27565. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to e North Carolina Mason, School Of Graphic Arts, Masonic Home for Children, Oxford, NC 27565. Grand Master R. David Wicker Jr. Board Of Publication Kenneth Lambert Adam Cloninger Dwight Decoskey omas VanEtten omas Pope Editor Beth Grace Good quality pictures are essential for suitable reproduction. e right to reject any submission is reserved. Pictures will be returned to the sender only if accompanied by a self-addressed, stamped envelope. Email submissions are preferred: high resolution, unaltered JPGs and Rich Text Format documents only. Submissions and other correspondence should be sent to the editor at 2921 Glenwood Ave., Raleigh, NC 27608 or Each North Carolina Mason is a subscriber to The North Carolina Mason. If you know a member who is not receiving the paper, please send us his full name, complete address, and the name and number of his lodge. Masonic widows receive The Mason free upon request. Subscriptions are available to others at a rate of $5 per year. Subscription inquiries and address changes only should be sent to: e School of Graphic Arts, Masonic Home for Children, 600 College Street, Oxford, North Carolina 27565. Opinions expressed are not necessarily those of The North Carolina Mason, the Grand Lodge, or Board of Publications. Grand Master R. David Wicker Jr. ............................ Deputy Grand Master Larry B. ompson Jr. Senior Grand Warden Kevan D. Frazier Junior Grand Warden Donald E. Kehler Grand Treasurer Lewis R. Ledford (PGM) ............... Grand Secretary Jonathan Allen Underwood .... Senior Grand Deacon Robert W. Rideout ................. Junior Grand Deacon Steve M. Norris ........................ Grand Marshal Gilbert D. Bailey Grand Steward Michael A. Register Grand Steward Phillip R. Johnson ........................... Judge Advocate T. Marcus Browne III Grand Chaplain Paul F. Menard Grand Tyler Calvin A. Rogers Jr. Grand Lecturer Herbert C. (Dicky) Lyon Grand Historian Daniel F. Finch Grand Orator E. Oscar Alleyne NORTH CAROLINA The Mason By Beth Grace Editor ■ see NAILS, page 7 Nailed it! From the editor's desk

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