by W:.Tim Bryce, PM, MPS
Palm Harbor, Florida, USA
“A Foot Soldier for Freemasonry”
Originally published on FmI in 2007
We are now approaching the holiday season where we typically enjoy several year-end parties. For many Grand jurisdictions, it marks the end of the Masonic Year, and the birth of a new one. Knowing the festive atmosphere of such occasions I posted a request on the Internet soliciting favorite Masonic toasts. As usual, the Brethren responded generously. Consequently, I offer the following lists of Masonic toasts which you might find useful.
Thanks to all of the Brothers for their contributions.
Note: Not so much a toast, but a Grace, which may only appeal to the Scottish who support a particular football team. Origin unknown.
God bless the meat and God bless the stovies,
God bless the Jews, the Muslims and Jehovies.
God bless the Catholics and God bless the strangers,
And if you’ve any Blessing left Lord,
God bless the Rangers!
A FELLOW CRAFT TOAST FROM ISRAEL
A toast on the occasion of a Brother being passed to Fellow Craft.
Worshipful Master, Brethren,
It is my pleasure to say a few words about the star of tonight’s work, Brother (Name). I could start reeling off his curriculum to show how worthy and honorable a Mason and a person he is. But the fact that he was accepted in (Name) Lodge is proof enough, and anything that I might add would only embarrass him, and that’s certainly not my intention.
When we met for the first time, Brother (Name)’s last name brought immediately to my mind the hero of Shakespeare’s “Taming of the Shrew,” Petruchio, the gentleman from Verona who came to marry well in Padua.
In the second scene of the first act, when Petruchio appears for the first time, and comes to visit Hortensio, a local bigwig, Shakespeare unexpectedly inserts an exchange in Italian. Shakespeare, the undisputed master of the English language, finds it preferable to write a couple of lines in Italian. Why? I don’t know. Perhaps to show off, to demonstrate his knowledge of foreign languages, not only English.
For whatever reason, this is what William Shakespeare wrote:
Signor Hortensio, come you to part the fray con tutto il cuore, ben trovato, may I say.
And Hortensio replies:
Alla nostra casa ben venutto, molto honorato signor mio Petruchio.
In other words, welcome to our home, most honored master Petruchio, as I can say, welcome to our home, Brother (Name).
Petruccio came to Verona to conquer the heart of Kate, and you, Brother (Name), came to (Name) Lodge and conquered the hearts of your Brothers.
So let us all rise and lift our glasses. Brethren, a toast to our Brother (Name)!
- Courtesy of W:.Leon Zeldis, PM
Tel Aviv, Israel
Author comment: I do not know of any special toasts but I have often felt the need for a collection of Masonic honors which go with the toasts, such as this one for Lodge Irrigation:
Down the channel and over the wheel (with suitable gestures),
flow back to Irrigation (three times, hand and foot etc.),
and for Lodge Ibis (the Ibis is a medium sized water bird):
Dip your beak (hand outstretched fingers in a beak pointing down),
spread your wings (arms outstretched),
fly back to Ibis (hands flapping) three times,
apron heart and hands.
Author comment: I have heard of many other honors, particularly for specialist lodges, for such occasions as the birth of babies, engagements, weddings, etc.
- courtesy of Bro. Ian Alexander
Lodge Leeton-Yanco 313, UGL NSW & ACT
SEQUENCE OF TOASTS IN ONTARIO, CANADA
Toast to Grand Lodge
Toast to Queen and the Craft
Toast to the Office of President of the U.S.A (if American Brethren present)
Toast to the candidate
Response by the candidate
Toast to Visitors
Response by a visitor
Junior Warden’s Toast – Happy to Meet, Sorry to Part,
Happy to Meet Again
- courtesy of W:.Marty Brokman, PM
Bedford Lodge 638, A.F.& A.M., GRC
Toronto, Ontario, Canada
PAX, CARITAS ET CONCORDIA
This, in Latin, is the motto of Caliburn Lodge.
Translated it means, “Peace, Love and Harmony.”
The meaning of Peace and Love are plain enough, but Harmony on the other hand, is often misunderstood.
Is it merely the absence of conflict, and if so, is this a desirable goal?
Imagine a world where everyone is always in agreement with each other. Can you? Of course not! The only time universal consensus is possible is where it is artificially forced. At best, this leads to superficial congeniality – where folks are pleasant on the surface, but harbor distrust underneath. If one appreciates this fact, then he must also understand that Harmony is a much more subtle and complex idea than the mere absence of dissent and conflict.
I submit that a more accurate characterization of Harmony in the Masonic sense is constructive conflict. Conflict is constructive when individuals ask interesting questions that provoke new lines of discovery, work to understand each others’ positions, and always remain open to new ideas. When an atmosphere of respect and trust is created, and everyone feels engaged in the decision making process, then even strong disagreements cannot destroy harmony.
Isn’t this a more apt understanding of what we, as Masons, mean by Harmony? Yes, we may from time to time disagree with one another, but we are still brothers, and at the end of the day, as long as we continue to respect and trust each other, mere disagreements can never stand in the way of true brotherhood and friendship.
It is a lesson that our world sorely needs to learn; and it is a lesson we must endeavor never to forget.
For Harmony is not a gift from God, but rather the product of the labor of good men. We must work each and every day, and work hard, to create Harmony.
So Brethren, I raise a toast to Caliburn Lodge, and to Peace, Love . . . and Harmony.
- W:.Richard A. Graeter, PM
Caliburn Lodge No. 785 F.& A.M.
Cincinnati, OH, USA
At our Festive Board on October 5, 2006.
THANKS TO R:.W:.RONALD M GOLDWYN FOR THIS EXTENSIVE LIST
1. Our most Worshipful Grand Master. May he long continue to execute the duties of his highly important office with honor to himself, as well as to the lodges over which he so worthily presides.
2. All grand officers around the globe. May they square their lives by the strictest regard to the rules of morality, and regulate their conduct by the plumb line of equity, so that when any of them shall be consigned to the silent grave, it may be inscribed on his tomb “here lies a good man.”
3. Health, happiness, and unanimity to all the fraternity of free and accepted masons, around the globe.
4. To all the members of the ancient and honorable craft. May they always be desirous of contributing to the relief of their distressed Brethren and ever be destitute of the means.
5. May every Mason entertain that ardent and generous good will to his Brother, which makes his Brother’s situation his own, and do to all as he would they should do to him.
6. To all ancient Masons, wherever dispersed and oppressed. May they soon find friends able and willing to relieve them.
7. May every Mason, who Is desirous of assisting a distressed Brother or his family, be always possessed of the means.
8. All regularly constituted lodges throughout the globe. May peace, harmony and love predominate in all their meetings and happiness be the portion of every member, in his individual capacity.
9. May the funds of all lodges be managed in such a manner, that the distressed widows and orphans of deceased members may never have the mortification of applying for that relief of which they stand in need, but cannot obtain.
10. May we be more studious to correct our own faults, than to promulgate the errors of our Brethren.
11. May no honest heart ever know distress.
12. May the fragrance of a good report, like a sprig of acacia bloom over the head of every departed brother.
13. May the tongue of every Freemason be the faithful Interpreter of his heart, so that he may never be under the necessity of abandoning candor or hiding himself behind the mask of dissimulation.
14. May we strive to resemble our divine Master, in promoting as far possible the happiness of all mankind and when we cannot succeed, may it be for want of ability, never for want of inclinations.
15. May we enter apprentices to virtue; be fellow-crafts with charity; and always masters of our passions.
16. The heart that conceals, and the tongue which never reveals.
17. The immortal memory of the Widow’s Son.
18. The good Samaritan. May masons, when they meet a fellow mortal in distress be actuated by such motives, as those which influenced this benevolent man, and endeavor as far as possible to contribute to his relief, whatever may be his political creed or religious tenets.
19. May we be guided to happiness by wisdom, supported in virtuous resolutions by strength and may beauty adorn our beds.
20. Sincerity! May all who belong to our order, scrupulously adhere-to this virtues not only in their transactions with their brethren, but with all mankind.
21. May all Masons strictly adhere to truth; wisdom, virtue, and happiness will be the concomitants of such conduct.
22. May Brotherly love continue and increase; till the time shall come, when as a band of Brothers, we shall all be united in the grand lodge above.
23. Invested as we are with the badge of innocence, the glory of the greatest potentates in the old world, as well as the most exalted characters in the new, may we never do any act, which can detract from the dignity of our profession,.
24. May every Mason be obedient to all lawful orders of his superiors, friendly to his equals, and condescending to his inferiors.
25. May every Freemason’s heart have the freedom of chalk, the fervency of charcoal, the zeal of friendship; but not the hardness of marble, when a distressed brother makes his demand.
26. May universal benevolence be the plumb line of all our actions
27. May every Mason endeavor to attain a thorough knowledge of himself.
28. May the square form our conduct through life; the level and plumb line remind us of our condition, and teach us to walk perpendicularly and act uprightly.
29. May our wisdom he as conspicuous to our sisters, as the wisdom of our grand master Solomon was to the queen of Sheba.
30. May every free and accepted Mason rise in the East, find refreshment in the South, and when he rests in the West, may he enjoy the same reward as was bestowed on our patron St. John, that of being the disciple, whom the savior. of mankind loved.
31. The American fair. May virtue, modesty, grace and love, endear them to the affections of their husbands.
32. Success to every Mason, who stands plumb to his principles, yet on a level with his Brethren.
33. The President and constituted authorities of the United States. Though in the lodge, we can have nothing to do with political disputes, we must all unite in wishing health and prosperity to the magistrates of our country.
34. May the breast of every Freemason be an ark for charity, from whence shall flow assistance to the widows and orphans of their deceased Brethren.
35. May the rays of celestial light dart from the east. illuminate the west and may perseverance remove the keystone which covers truth.
36. May the Royal arch cover every honest mason’s heart, and overshadow all who act up to the true principles of the craft.
37. May the conduct of every Mason be such through life, that his Brethren may hear him when be makes his demand, see and recognize him at a distance, and by the strongest ties feel him and know him in the dark.
38. May the Bible rule and guide us through life; the square, square our actions, and the compasses circumscribe the bounds which we are to keep with all mankind, especially with a Brother.
39. May Masonry flourish till nature expire. And its glories ne’er fade till the world is on fire.
40. The Craft. Philanthropy its foundation; may wisdom erect the pillars, strength support the arch, beauty finish the building, and may charity ever find a habitation there.
41. The immortal memory of our late most Worshipful brother, general George Washington, the father of his country, and the friend of man.
42. Our Sisters. May we ever regard them with the eye of affection; may their virtues ever meet our kind and tender embraces, and may we ever deserve from them the character of all affectionate Brothers.
43. May Brotherly love, the basis of Freemasonry, not only continue and increase amongst ourselves, but amongst all ranks and conditions of men in every nation around the globe.
44. May secrecy, good fellowship, morality, and an ardent desire to promote the happiness of each other be the polar star of every Mason.
45. May Masonry flourish and vice decay.
46. May the two great parallels be our guide to the grand lodge above.
47. May every Mason, as far as may be consistent with prudence, contribute, to the wants of his fellow mortals, particularly to those of his Brethren; may he ever put the fairest construction on the conduct of his neighbors, and before he censures others “let him look at home.”
48. May Masonry continue to flourish till time shall be no more.
49. May it be deeply impressed on the heart of every Mason, that there is no real felicity for man, except in reforming his errors and vices and entering upon a strict and constant course of virtue.
50. Religion! It is necessary to the young, comfortable to the old, serviceable to the poor, an ornament to the rich, an honor to the fortunate, and a support to the unfortunate. May every Freemason ever be actuated by its divine precepts.
51. May the heart of every Mason be conformable to the divine will, and his actions void of offense towards his fellow mortals.
52. May we as Masons be affectionate to our friends, faithful to our Brethren, obedient to the laws, and just even to our enemies; and may it ever be a maxim of our creed, to fear death less than the least reproach of our conscience.
53. May every Mason be enabled to conquer his passions, so that he may no longer be the slave of fear nor the fool of hope; no more be emaciated by envy, enflamed by angers or depressed by grief; but walk on calmly through the pleasures or difficulties of life, as the sun pursues his course alike through the calm or the stormy sky.
54. The great Masonic virtues faith, hope and charity. May every one, who belongs to the fraternity ardently cherish them in his heart, and may they be productive of good fruits in his life and conversation.
55. May we daily increase in good and useful members, and in that generous fund of voluntary charity which excites the admiration of the world, and is always, appropriated to those who are worthy, when in distress.
56. May the whole Brotherhood continue constant in good works, and adorn their profession, whilst arts and learning flourish amongst men, even to the end of the world.
57. The secret and silent.
58. All mankind.
TOASTS AND SENTIMENTS
1. To SOLOMON, the luminary of the EAST, and WASHINGT0N the glory of the West.
2. To all those who steer their course by the three great Lights of Masonry.
3. May every Mason who stands in need of Friendship be able to say EUREKA!
3. May the Tuscan order support us; the Ionic guide us, and the Corinthian reward us.
4. May we never feel want, nor never want feeling.
5. The Brother who stands plumb to his principles, yet is level to his Brethren.
6. May every Mason rise in the East, find refreshment in the SOUTH, and be, so dismissed in the WEST, as to find admission into the middle chamber to receive the reward of a GOOD MAN.
7. May the altitude of our virtues, ever be at high twelve.
8. To each faithful Brother, both ancient and young, Who governs his passions and bridles his tongue.
9. The heart that conceals, and the tongue that never reveals.
10. May we learn to be frugal, before we are obliged to be so.
11. Pleasures that please on reflection.
12. May we never meet an old friend with a new face.
13. The woman we love, and the friend we dare trust.
14. May the single be married, and the married be happy.
15. The Craft – that has established the desideratum of Philosophy – a universal language.
16. May we never be unmindful of Judas’s fate.
17. May each Mason revere, the book, compass and square.
18. To those whom we love, and to those who love us.
19. May we correct our own faults, before we publish those of our Brethren.
20. Great men Honest, and honest men Great.
21. Riches to the Generous, and power to the Merciful.
22. Love to ONE, friendship to a FEW, and good will to ALL.
To HIM who all things understood,
To HIM, who furnished stone and wood,
To HIM, who nobly spilt his blood—
In doing of his duty;
We hail the day! we hail the morn!
On which those three great men were born!
Who did the TEMPLE thus adorn
With WISDOM, STRENGTH and BEAUTY.
- courtesy of R:.W:.Ronald M Goldwyn, LMPS
GLNY & GLCT
The toast is in the form of a poem called. “The Toast to the Vistors.”
Tonight I have the pleasure
To all I must confess
To give to you this toast
To our Visitors and our Guests
The fellowship that you bring tonight
Is something that can’t compare
You know we like to see you
And glad that your always there
The harmony, the chat and jokes we have…
With our old and new found friends
We wish it could last for hours
And somehow never end.
But… all good things must come to an end
And we go our separate way
We hope you enjoyed yourself tonight
And return again someday
And now I ask the members to stand
To raise a glass in cheer
To toast to all our visitors
Who supported us this year
I understand that this poem is quite old and comes from England.
- Lord Peter Wright Lodge No. 156
Alice Springs, Australia
Keep the Faith.
NOTE: The opinions expressed in this essay are my own and do not necessarily represent the views or opinions of any Grand Masonic jurisdiction or any other Masonic related body. As with all of my Masonic articles herein, please feel free to reuse them in Masonic publications or re-post them on Masonic web sites (except Florida). When doing so, please add the following:
Article reprinted with permission of the author and “http://www.freemasoninformation.com”