Tuesday, August 31, 2010

‘The Magpie Has Landed’

(With apologies to Ill. Jake!)

Magpie readers, as this edition of The Magpie Mason goes to press, I am not at my computer, but actually am seated inside the Philadelphia Academy of Music among a class of about 150 Scottish Rite Freemasons about to receive the Thirty-Third and Last Degree of the Ancient Accepted Scottish Rite of Freemasonry.

There is a lot to say about this experience (and of course a lot I’m enjoined not to say), but I’ll state only that the past three days here in Philadelphia have been unlike anything else I have experienced in my 13 years in Freemasonry. Yeah, it’s clichéd to say “This is unlike anything I’ve ever…” but this is really unlike anything I’ve ever experienced in Masonry, and I have seen a lot.

Members of The Masonic Society will read more about this in the next edition of The Journal, for which I am jotting down notes, shooting many photos, and generally attempting to document what a candidate for the 33° witnesses in the events leading to the ceremony. This is not an exposé of the ritual of course, but is a description of the many fraternal and very exoteric aspects of the Annual Meeting of Supreme Council. In my experience, the details of these yearly adventures often get lost when brethren return home and share news and anecdotes about the week. I’ll do my best to share an “inside view” of how it looks inside the eye of this hurricane of happenings.

The ritual itself? Written in the 1950s by New Jersey’s own Harold Van Buren Voorhis – before he himself was coroneted! – it definitely is a ritual of the Northern Masonic Jurisdiction, if you know what I mean.


Chris Hodapp said...

Congratulations, my Illustrious friend. A well-earned honor.

M.M.M. From the North Eastern Corner said...

Congratulations Brother! Its well deserved.

Magpie Mason said...

Thank you both! And reciprocal Huzzahs back at you Chris. Looking forward to Chicago.

Jim Dillman said...

Jay, congratulations on receiving this well-deserved honor. I'm looking forward to reading your account in The Journal.

Magpie Mason said...

Thanks Jim. I'm writing that story right now.