[Square & Compasses]

Why did you become a Freemason?

Message-ID: <20051126225400.36914.qmail@web30801.mail.mud.yahoo.com>
Date: Sat, 26 Nov 2005 14:54:00 -0800 (PST)
From: ART <zadacus@yahoo.com>
Subject: Why I Joined Freemasonry
To: masonry-ask@mit.edu

You Can Always Trust A Mason

By Art Rathman
JW Peoria #31
Peoria AZ

My first introduction to Masonry was at an early age. It was during a summer when my grandparents came to visit. Their car wasn't running right so I went with my grandfather to a service station to get it fixed. I stood there next to him like the curious 5 year old that I was and listened. After a few words were exchanged, they shook hands and grandpa gave the man his keys.

As we were walking to a café nearby to wait for the car I, being a curious 5 year old, began to ask questions. After who knows how many childish questions, I asked a rather obvious one, "Why did he give his keys to a total stranger?" The answer most people would give would be so that he could work on the car, but grandpa wasn't most people, instead he replied "Because he's a Mason, you can always trust a Mason." This answer had the desired effect, it answered the question in a way that stopped any further questions from me.

You might wonder why this stopped the interrogation, it was obvious that I had him on the ropes, right where I wanted him, but there's something else I need to tell you about my family that will explain my lack of response. You see, my father was not my mom's first husband, she had been married to her high school sweetheart who gave her three sons. When he passed away she married my father and he gave her three more sons. My older brothers had a different last name and that was ok, to us there was no difference. They were Masons, we were Rathmans.

So on that summer day, when grandpa tells me the mechanic is a Mason, I thought he was related to me. Years later when I began to realize there was no uncle or brother of mine working at the Chevron I began to wonder just what he meant. The words "you can always trust a Mason" stuck with me all these years. Whenever there was something on the History channel, in a movie, or in a book regarding Masonry, I paid attention. The more I learned, the more I saw what they stood for; what my grandfather stood for. Their values and accomplishments were most impressive. When I noticed a man at my church wearing a Mason's ring, I finally asked to become a Mason.

Presently, I am the only Freemason in my family, my grandfather has passed on and my brothers are either unable or uninterested in Masonry. I can't help but wonder what my grandfather would think about it, but I think I know what he'd say; "My grandson's a Mason, you can always trust a Mason."

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