Square & Compasses

A New Memorial Service

This memorial service was written by Wor. Bro. Ron Graves and Bro. Bill Predgo, of Killeen Lodge No. 1125, Killeen, Texas, and first introduced in Masonry Universal...

WM: Past Masters, Wardens, my brothers, friends and loved ones, tonight, as we near the end of the Masonic year, we pause to pay a last tribute of respect to those brothers of our lodge and to Masons everywhere that have gone on to that celestial lodge above where the Supreme Grand Master forever presides.

It is always fitting and proper that we should do this to remember those who once walked among us. And as a reminder to each of us that one day the working tools of this earthly life will also fall from our nerveless grasp and that we shall be called before our Lord and Savior who will sit in judgment over us. Each of us will have to account for our lives and the way we lived it while here on earth.

At this time I would ask you to stand as our Chaplain leads us in a word of prayer.
(suitable prayer given)
So mote it be!

WM: They are not dead, these brothers that once shared this earthly life with us. They have but taken leave of their earthly body. But, their souls live on in an eternal joy in the comfort and protection of our Heavenly Father. Here on earth, they met with us as true and faithful brothers; sharing our happiness and our laughter; comforting and consoling us in our sorrow; working with us as we strived to make our world a better place in which to live. Let us strive to be worthy in the eyes of our Creator by following the examples of these tried and true brothers that have gone before us.

(Lights are dimmed as S.D. lights one candle for each departed brother. Candles are displayed with name cards with print large enough for the audience to read half-way between the Altar and the West.)

WM: Bro Secretary, you will call the roll of brethren that have in the past year gone to that spiritual building, that house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens.

(Secretary calls roll. WM repeats the following eulogy for each departed brother. The S.D. extinguishes the candles one-by-one as WM pays honor to each departed brother.)

WM: Bro. [name] was born [date], initiated as an EA on [date], passed to the degree of FC on [date], and raised to the sublime degree of a Master Mason on [date]. On [date], Bro. [name] put down the working tools of life [S.D. extinguishes candle] and heard that welcome plaudit, "Well done, thou good and faithful servant! Enter thou into the joy of thy Lord!" The light that was our brother, [name], is now dark in our lodge, but his memory still glows in the hearts and minds of those of us that knew and loved him.

(Continue until each brother is honored.)

WM: The lights that were once our brothers are now dark. But their memory will continue to shine (Room lights are quickly and brightly turned up.) as long as one of us is alive to keep their memory glowing. May their souls rest in eternal joy and comfort, safely enfolded in the warm and loving embrace of their Savior, our Lord, Jesus Christ.

Let us pray. Our Heavenly Father, we are grateful for the privilege of knowing and loving these individuals and for the friendship and brotherhood we shared together. While their parting leaves a void in our hearts, we know the parting is only temporary. We will dwell with them again in that house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens. We ask you to reach out with the hand of love, compassion, and guidance to those family members left behind. For we know that their grief and loss is the greatest. Be with us always. Guide and lead us as we strive to imitate the shining examples of these departed brothers. Amen. So mote it be! I would like to leave you with this thought: The tide recedes, but leaves behind bright sea shells, on the sand. The sun goes down, but gentle warmth still lingers on the land. The music stops, and yet -- it echoes on in sweet refrains. For every joy that passes, something beautiful remains.

This program was open to the general public and was followed by a program of music and recitation.

WM Ron Graves

Please note that the service, as written, seems most appropriate for exclusively Christian lodges, and others may want to adopt variations as they seem fit. In this regard, Wor. Graves says:

Of course, the service is meant to be a starting point that can be amended as necessary. I had the same thoughts concerning other faiths. That is one of the things about Masonry that makes it attractive to me. It teaches peace and harmony with all faiths -- Fatherhood of God (By whatever name) and Brotherhood of Man.

I was just surprised when I found nothing written that offered what I needed at the time. My posting is to provide the assistance to another brother that's looking for something similar. If this service spawns a reverent idea, then I have done what I hoped to do. By all means, brothers, use it as you see fit. Shape it for the builder's use.

Sincerely and fraternally,

    /^\      Ron Graves            |  Killeen Lodge No. 1125, A. F. & A. M.
  \/ G \/    Worshipful Master     |  Killeen, Texas    (3RD Thurs)
  / \./ \    RGRAVES@TENET.EDU     |  Chartered - December 11, 1917
     ^      -=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-
             "Behold, how good and how pleasant it is for Brethren

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