The Guiding Light / Nov. 2015 9
The West Gate
This month, I will address what I term Masonic Maturity. I have had the privilege of handing out Masonic Service Awards twice this year. As I stood in front of the lodge, and gazed upon these Master Masons who had served the craft for many years, I began to think of the term Masonic Maturity. It brought to mind a few questions, such as, when do we reach Masonic maturity, do we ever reach it, and is there such a thing as Masonic maturity. I will write my thoughts below. Feel free to let your mind ponder the term as well.
We all understand that mature means fully grown and developed. When a Fredericksburg peach reaches maturity, it is the perfect time to enjoy it. When a young boy reaches maturity, he is considered a man. This process is different for everyone and everything. It occurs much faster in some people, and a warm spring tends to bring peaches to full maturity a little earlier than normal. But what about a Mason, when does he reach maturity? Is it upon raising, when he turns in his proficiency, after serving as Worshipful Master, or when he has served the craft for many years? I think this time frame is different for each Mason, and might never be fully reached. I think again about the service awards recently. As I gazed upon these Masons, I am amazed at the amount of service and time they have put in to the craft. Some of them had gone through the chairs, others had not, but they had all been faithful to the fraternity. Each man stood there humbly receiving their pin, while proud family and brethren looked upon them. Is this a sign of maturity, or just another part of the growth? Men like Marvin Daniel, Cody Bradshaw, and Johnny Ohlenburg have served this lodge and Masonry well over the years. We look to them for their wisdom and knowledge. They are certainly much closer to Masonic maturity than I am at this point.
Finally, is there such a thing as Masonic maturity? I would like to think so, but it may not be truly attainable until we pass on from this earth. As we travel to that undiscovered country, from whose bourne, no traveler returns. It may very well be at that point, we find Masonic maturity. I for one, will continue to learn, grow, and strive to be a better Mason and a man, to the end of reaching Masonic maturity. Let me know your thought as our paths cross in the near future. Where are you on your journey to Masonic Maturity?
Randall S. King, Senior Warden