Volume LVNovember 2008Number 4

Expanding Masonic Experiences

Left-right: Bros. Kwan Morrow; Scott D. Simkins, J.W.; Frederick W. Wichterman, P.M.; Ryan P. Rex, S.W.; James T. Willoughby, W.M., Steven P. Ralston, W.M.; George Porchea, P.M.; Eugene H. Rifkind, P.M.; William Smith, J.W.; John Taylor, Jr.; Joel C. Wolfert, S.W.; Johnny Sherrill, S.W.; Dale H. Fera, P.D.D.G.M.; David A. Vahey, P.M.; Robert M. Mills; Paul R. Knapp, W.M., Keith Jones, P.M.; and James Day

Officers and members of Hiram Lodge No. 81, Philadelphia; Widener-Apollo-Kensington Lodge No. 211, Philadelphia; and Concordia Lodge No. 67, Jenkintown, attended the Annual Banquet of Prince Hall's Composite Lodge No. 121 on June 20 and the Conferral of the Third Degree on June 21. A relationship of reciprocal visits has developed over the years between Composite Lodge and Hiram Lodge, with the recent inclusions of Widener- Apollo-Kensington Lodge, Concordia Lodge and Friendship-Williams Lodge No. 400, Jenkintown.

While many similarities exist between the ritual of the Prince Hall Lodge and the Blue Lodge, differences are notable. The opening and closing of a Prince Hall Lodge ritual includes music and singing, and throughout the degree work, much emotion is exuded.

"No Blue Lodge Mason should miss the opportunity to witness the Conferral of the Third Degree by a Prince Hall Lodge to further instill the oath and obligation we have taken in front of the altar," Bro. Steven Ralston, W.M., Hiram Lodge No. 81, said. "I encourage all Masons to take advantage of these occasions because the most apparent attribute will be the overwhelmingly warm atmosphere of fraternity and brotherhood among all Masons."

The Grand Lodge of Pennsylvania granted recognition of the Prince Hall Grand Lodge of Pennsylvania for visitation purposes at the Quarterly Communication of June 6, 1997.

Members of Newtown Lodge No. 427 and East Lodge No. 55, P.H.A., on March 17. Seated in the middle of the front row is Bro. George T. Smith, Jr., Worshipful Master, East Lodge; sitting on his far right is Bro. Edward O. Weisser, R.W.P.G.M., P.M., Worshipful Master, Newtown Lodge.

On March 17, for the first time, members of Newtown Lodge No. 427, Woodside, attended a meeting of Star in the East Lodge No. 55, Prince Hall Affiliation, Philadelphia. Bro. Edward O. Weisser, R.W.P.G.M., P.M., W.M., has been reaching out to other lodges as one fraternal organization to another and has several visits on the calendar for this year. Star in the East Lodge conducted regular business at the meeting and provided a history of Prince Hall Lodges for the Blue Lodge members. Newtown Lodge has reciprocated with an offer for Star in the East Lodge to attend one of its lodge meetings.

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