BY Guest Sojourner- RWB Michael A. Himes- Jr. Grand Deacon (State of Ohio)
Silence and Circumspection
I have become aware of a trend in all of our Masonic meetings, one which I feel is very detrimental to our craft. I am referring of the lack of respect shown by those who insist on carrying on a conversation on the sidelines while the business or work of the evening is taking place. How many times have we seen a degree portrayal disrupted or interrupted by brethren who feel that their own personal agenda is more important than that of the presiding officer? How often have we seen the rank and title of our Deputies and Grand Officers ignored as someone talks while our dignitaries address the room? How can we impress on our candidates the dignity and solemnity of the work when they cant hear the work over the buzz of conversation? How much longer must this go on?
Several years ago, after attending a Lodge inspection, I wrote a poem about this problem. Although written with the Lodge in mind, all you have to do is substitute the name of the Masonic body you are visiting in the appropriate place, and the meaning will be the same.
I think that I shall never see
For as the Master bravely strives
Of candidates, both young and old
Yet on the sidelines members feel
And so to men on left and right
With words that simply cannot wait
And then the Masters vocal cords
His lectures perfect, line for line
Too bad the candidate cant hear
Remember, brethren, one and all
On all our beautiful degrees,
Brethren, if we act as we would wish others would if we were presiding, or if we were a candidate, then our meetings will be more enjoyable and productive for everyone.
Michael A. Himes
**RWB Himes is currently serving
the Grand Lodge of Ohio as the Junior Grand Deacon