We have nine Masonic Districts here in Connecticut, and the “guys who have been around” tell us that they were created according to the old rail road lines that ran in those areas. Back in the pre-automobile days, the District Deputies needed to take the trains (and then what, a horse cart?) to visit the various lodges. An amusing idea, although I have my doubts as to the veracity.
Several times a year, usually in a month with 5 weeks, the senior officers and other interested members of the lodges in a district will get together in order to keep abreast of what’s happening, to ask for (or offer) support for upcoming degree work, or to spread the news about some community activity. These meetings are called Blue Lodge Councils, and most lodges find them helpful. Our district has a little competition: the lodge with the most members that show up are awarded the “Traveling Gavel,” which entitles them to nothing except bragging rights. But it’s fun.
Friendship Lodge No. 33 is located at the southern end of the 5th District, and last night I drove up to
Canada Collinsville to sit at the Blue Lodge Council meeting held at Village Lodge No. 29. As it happens, this was the Annual Meeting, which means a changing of the guard. Traditionally, the outgoing District Deputy for the district is arm-twisted elected to the position of BLC President, and his Associate Grand Marshal is brow-beaten politely agrees to be Vice President or perhaps is blackmailed into fills in Treasurer/Secretary position.
Last night, the previous Associate Grand Marshall was in attendance, but the District Deputy was
fishing and gambling away on an important business trip in Las Vegas. However, a fortuitous circumstance allowed a brother from Frederick Franklin Lodge No. 14 to contact RW. Bro. Larry over Skype using his iPad. The outgoing President, wanting to make sure RW Larry didn’t escape seeing an opportunity for efficiency, was able to install his successor by placing the iPad in the East and swearing him in.
We rounded out the evening by playing Masonic Jeopardy, a trivia game in which teams (in this case, the A side of the district vs the B side) answer various questions on ritual, rules, and history.
And then I had to
take the train back from Canada make the long drive back home.