First and foremost, on behalf of Olive Branch Lodge no 16, I wish to congratulate RW Gary J. Olsen on his election to Junior Grand Warden of the Most Ancient and Honorable Society of Free and Accepted Masons for the State of New Jersey. Olive Branch Lodge will always be a home for you as it is for us!
After watching our Past Masters from the sidelines confer the Fellowcraft Degree to four of our Brothers last night I was inspired by seeing experienced older Brothers amidst younger Brothers and candidates just starting their Masonic journey. I guess the best way to say it is that I had a moment of clarity and I’d like to share that inspiration with you now.
Life is a journey. Some start out young and strong only to be beaten down by life. Others are able to rise above it. We as Masons have an edge. That edge is togetherness. We get to take our journey together as friends and Brothers with a bond few in the world can understand. The bond between us is all day, every day and forever. What a great and honorable craft we are in! Despite our diversity, we come together as brothers in acceptance, loyalty, love and relief. We number in the millions but here at Olive Branch Lodge, our number is ONE!
So as Masons, our journey through life now becomes our Masonic journey together, helping and aiding each other in good and bad times. Relying on each other, men of like minds, on the level, acting by the plum line and parting on the square! We are no longer alone, we have each
other now. To quote a revered Past Master of Olive Branch and a favorite saying of mine, “It’s a glorious time to be a member of Olive Branch Lodge, Gentlemen!”
“Urram misneach dilseachd agus dachaigh” Old Scottish Gaelic engraved on the hilt of a sword, roughly translated as “Honor. Courage. Loyalty and Home”.
Stay steadfast Brothers. Remember, we have each other!
Ken Long – Worshipful Master