In the recent reconstruction of Washington Square Park, its statue of Giuseppe Garibaldi was moved about twenty feet to the north, and was reoriented to face due south. Is the Grand Master drawing or sheathing his sword? Read more about the monument here. Coincidentally, I just happened to shoot this photo yesterday.
This just in:
Garibaldi Lodge No. 542 will confer the Entered Apprentice Degree on Friday, October 19.
71 West 23rd St., Grand Lodge Room (third and fourth floors)
It’s a big room, but it does have a maximum capacity, so let the Secretary know you’re coming. Contact RW Robert Mascialino at garibaldi542(at)verizon.net no later than Monday, October 8.
My advice: Arrive no later than 6 p.m., and have your own apron and lodge membership card, and be prepared to work your way into a lodge. More information here.
If you do not know about the Garibaldi Entered Apprentice Degree, it probably is a ritual unlike any you have seen so far. I think its origins have been explained to me, but either I have forgotten, or didn’t understand. To make a long story short, this initiation is a very symbolic and highly dramatic work that comes to us from either the Memphis-Misraïm or the Scottish Rite tradition of Masonry. (Garibaldi was Grand Master of the M-M Rite in Italy.) It is spoken in Italian. Alchemical symbolism abounds. There is a true trial by fire. It has to be seen to be believed, and that’s why I’m telling you about it now.
The last time I visited, I brought with me a copy of the First Degree as published in Le Progres de l’Oceanie 1843: The First Masonic Lodge in Hawaii (Sandwich Islands), a bilingual text of mid 19th century Scottish Rite Craft ritual used by a lodge in Hawaii that was founded by the Scottish Rite Supreme Council of France in 1843. I thought I could have confirmed that the lodge was working AASR ritual, and it is very similar to Garibaldi’s ritual, except that it has far more spoken word for the Venerable Master than you’ll hear at Garibaldi.
Anyway, I will see you there.