Tuesday, December 5, 2017
Red Wing Lodge #8 for the past ten years has a tradition of a Christmas Pudding at the December Stated Meeting and Officer Installation . Its a tradition that has certainly grown over they years, and certainly one of my favorite masonic events of the year...anywhere!
Now you just don't go down to the local bakery ( if you have one) and pick one up to take home.
Past Master Gary Thomas and Chef by occupation makes it every year for us. Gary says that its a labor of love for him, and that he loves to make it. When I asked how long it takes to make he replied about all day. "All Day I asked" Gary said "Ya about an hour and a half to cut, chop and mix all the ingredients and seven hours to steam it, oh shopping for all the stuff, ya pretty much all day."
I asked what was in it, and Gary said Raisins,Plums,two and a half pounds of butter, three cups of sugar, a little suet and some other things.There are thirteen ingredients and there is a ritual to making it. I said Gary there's a Masonic Ritual to making Christmas Pudding? Being a Past Grand Master I know the Masonic work I wondered how I missed this one? Gary replied that there is a traditional ritual that he uses with recipe that's not masonic.
Here is a summary of the process and its symbolism:
The Christmas pudding is a custom that goes back to medieval England.
The pudding has thirteen ingredients to represent Christ and the twelve disciples.
Each family member of the household takes turns stirring the mixture. They stir in the direction of East to West honoring the Magi who traveled in that direction.
There was a prayer that was said during the stirring, but Gary couldn't remember that part.
Brandy is warmed and then placed on the pudding, and lite. For a little flavor and a very nice dramatic effect.
It is served with a dollop of icing that Gary wont talk about. (maybe in ten more years Ill get that out of him)
Its the perfect dessert after an excellent hearty meal on a cold December night. The room is filled with Masonic Brotherhood, a few candles its the perfect night.
I should also mention that Past Master Jeff Seaberg prepares an excellent dinner.
Sunday, November 5, 2017
I have gone on vacation to Israel to see the places where Abraham,Moses and Jesus had hung out in.
I will be walking the streets of Jerusalem in the city of David and stand on the Mount of Olives. The city that defined the events of the birthplace of my Christian faith.
I am also looking forward to spending the evening with Jerusalem Lodge #4 and their Festive Board.
Wednesday, November 1, 2017
Put the Thanks Back into Thanksgiving
By S.K. Tom Hendrickson P.G.M.
To me Thanksgiving has been lost between Halloween and Christmas and has become a forgotten holiday. I went into a store just before Labor Day and all the Halloween decorations, candy and costumes were out on display. Then a few weeks later when I went back to purchase Halloween candy, the Christmas decorations, lights, and artificial trees were on sale!
I know that it is hard to believe, but from the time the Pilgrims landed on Plymouth Rock and for three and half centuries, friends and families gathered together sharing the bounty of their efforts and spending time together strengthening our spiritual bonds. Together they took time to recognize and thank God for the blessings in their lives. Then somewhere in time Thanksgiving was hijacked and turned into just a day of football and shopping.
Thanksgiving has been reduced to just become a spring board for the Christmas shopping season. November 23rd is a day spent looking thru the store advertising and preparing for that strategic shopping adventure, with many of the stores opening on Thanksgiving evening for the pre-Black Friday shopping. Of course, before the shopping there is the big meal and plenty of football to be consumed.To me Thanksgiving should celebrate the ideals which makes our country flourish, religious and personal freedom, family values, shared prosperity, stability, bounty, safe harbor and most important
is gratitude to God for all our blessings.
Thanksgiving should be a day when we share a meal with our loved ones that nourishes our bodies. We spend time together strengthening our spiritual bonds and together we are thankful for God’s presence and blessing in our daily lives
Now, not every Thanksgiving has been over the river and thru the woods to Grandma’s house. Some of us ate Thanksgiving dinner from a Mermite food container dropped out of a chopper at a Firebase overseas. Some of us ate crackers at a hospital while a loved one was in Intensive Care, or we ate at a Police Station, at a Truck Stop or at the Salvation Army.
Sometimes we must look beyond our daily struggles and examine our lives to count and focus on our blessings. This lesson was driven home hard for me one day just recently. I was at a local restaurant and at the table next to mine was a young man in a wheel chair. He had lost both legs and his right arm as a Marine in Iraq. We had a nice talk then he said something that moves me to this day. He said that he was really thankful that he still had his eyesight and he thanks God every day he is still alive.
We look to the Bible and King David wrote in Psalms 100:4(NIV) Enter his gates with thanksgiving and his courts with praise; give thanks to him and praise his name. And Paul wrote in Ephesians 5:20 (NIV) Always giving thanks to God the Father for everything, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.
As men of faith and as Sir Knights we should remember that the spirit of Thanksgiving should be present with us each and every day. Let us all remember the spirit of Thanksgiving and make our prayers and thanks be heartfelt every day.
Sunday, October 22, 2017
Musee de l”Armee Paris France
I had the great opportunity to visit the French Army Museum in Paris France this past January. Its Medieval Armour collection is the best in the world. Its collections contains hundreds upon hundreds of complete suits of Armour, beautiful ornate craftmanship that are works of art. You can see how small the Knights actually were. I am standing next to the typical suit of Armour.
After about four hours we needed a break and had a wonderful lunch in the museum cafeteria as only the French can do. Then it was on to the Artillery collection, the Napoleons Crypt that was most impressive as well.
When we exited the Museum directly outside we found the Order of Malta setting up for a charity fundraiser. The Order is a lay religious Order of the Catholic Church and was established in 1113 A.D. After we had past them at a safe distanced I whispered “Remember Jacques DeMolay”!
Thursday, October 5, 2017
Monday, September 25, 2017
Minnesota Royal Arch Chapter #1 just concluded its 2017 Masonic Retreat.It was held at the YMCA Camp St. Croix in Hudson Wisconsin. The camp is beautifully set in a North woods setting, on the banks of the St. Croix River only minutes from St. Paul Minnesota. It was two and a half days of good food, great conversations, and many opportunities to learn, and explore new ideas. There was even some great poetry read by Terry Christianson.
The day began at 8AM with breakfast, classes until noon, lunch, classes until 5:30 dinner,class until 7:00 followed by a Campfire until 2 or 3 in the morning. It was a full day and no opportunity for kickball, volleyball or horse back riding like the other kids did.
Here are just a short list of the various distinguished Speakers: Terry Christianson, Rob Jones,Scott Wolter,Aaron French,Timothy Hogan,Ray Hayward.Their topics ranged from The Lost Word,Symbology,Verbal Communication,Nazis,Masonry and the Occult, Five Points of Fellowship, and many more.
It was just a great week end and Ill be sure to attend next year. Thank you my Brothers, my teachers, my Students.
Posted by All Things Masonic at 7:07 PM