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The Master’s Installation Address

Brothers I wanted to share the address with all of you in case you could not attend the Installation of Officers of Riverhead Lodge #645 on June 18, 2024. I hope this message finds you well and ready to enjoy the Brotherhood and Fraternity. Please look to the calendar and the Riverhead Lodge BAND for all the latest happenings at the Lodge.

June 18, 2024


Distinguished East, Brethren All, good evening,


Tonight, I stand before you enormously proud to be your Worshipful Master and I thank the Brethren of the Riverhead Lodge for entrusting me with the Mastership. I think we all know that there’s a weight of responsibility that comes with the office and over the last few weeks that responsibility has been weighing on my mind and I sometimes find my feelings bouncing from elation to trepidation and I expect they’ll probably find an equilibrium somewhere in the middle as the year progresses.


Considering that I have been in the East 3 times previously to tonight, I still have this nagging feeling of not being quite ready for this. I can say that I will always look to the Past Masters of Riverhead Lodge for advice and guidance. They are the ones who know what they’re doing – the really distinguished practitioners of the arts and mysteries of Masonry, some of you, more of a mystery than others.


First, I want to thank the Immediate Past Master, W:. Bro Bobby Abel. You presided over a great term in the East last year with your all your efforts. W:. Abel will certainly understand when I say, he ran a tight ship.  Thank you so much for all the hard work you put in and it was such a pleasure watching your commanding performance. It is Brothers like W:. Abel that are truly the reason Riverhead Lodge is such a strong and well-respected Lodge.


To my officers this year, whom I’ve already thanked for taking up their offices, all I can say is that I could not want a better band of brothers. I know that each of you is equally committed to doing well and supporting each other. That makes it so much easier for me; I have only to settle back and relax into an enjoyable routine. A big thanks again from me to all my officers this year. A special word of thanks to Bro. Dominic (the younger & elder) and Bro. Pete for the wonderful meal this evening.



So, who am I in this stage of Masonic career?

Having spoken about the Lodge, I come back to the question of what this point in Masonry means for me. Well, practically everything I know and have experienced about Masonry has been shaped and molded by the Brethren of two Lodges, both Potunk and Riverhead, many from both Lodges are here with us today. So, Brethren what I know, I know from you and what brought me to you was at first a curiosity, then growing interest and then a fraternal bond of brotherhood based on our shared values of goodness and decency. Just as my mother brought me into this world, so my mother lodge, Potunk Lodge, and by means of adoption, Riverhead Lodge has welcomed me into the fellowship of brothers who strive to do good and be good in their endeavors. Those who know me will understand the adoption reference.


Masonry has changed me for the better, which means that you’ve changed me. That we learn a great deal from each other is something I’ve come to appreciate more and more. The universality of Freemasonry is surely embodied in the fact that our learning inside a lodge never stops. From a practical perspective I’ve also come to know that the same conduct we follow and apply inside our Lodge can also be applied in the profane world outside the lodge. Trying to make my dealings with others level and square gives me a frame of reference which my involvement in Masonry continually reinforces.


But we are not here only for the purpose of socializing and enjoying each other’s company. We believe in doing what we can to promote and support the charitable purposes of the Lodge. Our charity this year will continue to benefit many, like the clients of Maureen’s Haven and others.  I know that the Brethren, within their means, have already given generously and will continue with their time, talents and treasure.

Social Events

Let’s turn to what we’ve got planned for the coming year. I’d really like to extend my thanks to all of you who have been involved in the planning. As usual, our W:. Bro. Dominick, assisted by other officers, has kindly taken the lead and already set up some events. We have our Christmas brunch with Santa. We also have our Lodge BBQ and the tri-Lodge Pig Roast, led by W:. Mike Sokel, which have always proved a popular success in past years. And the event I’m particularly looking forward to is a potential Robbie Burns Night and feast/festive board which is being planned tentatively for January next year. There will be other events in the offing. As you may have heard me say, I can’t stand group texts so please watch the Riverhead Band for updates.



Inviting members to become more active

One last thing, Brethren. I want to also thank our brothers of Peconic Lodge, soon to be members of Riverhead Lodge, for all that they do and are doing for Riverhead Lodge and its beautification. I am looking forward to seeing how the Lodge room looks in a few months.

This reminds me of something. I remember a Masonic Temple that had some structural damage after a bad storm. The lodge was forced to rent conference room space at a local hotel and banquet hall to hold their stated communications in. About 4 months later a man was checking into the hotel while the Lodge was holding one such meeting.

He asked the clerk, “What’s going on with the guy in a tux with a sword?”

The clerk told him, “The Masons are renting the room to hold their meeting while their building is being repaired.”

The man responded, “Masons…I’ve heard of them. Aren’t they hard to join?”

The clerk responded, “They must be. That guy has been knocking on the door for the past 4 months, and they still haven’t let him in.”


Concluding remarks

In concluding this address, I wish to give my personal thanks to all the Brethren who have brought me into Masonry, encouraged me along the way and helped me in reaching the chair, even if it’s for the 4th time, but who’s counting right? If I mess up during this year – and I’m bound to say something either out of turn or crass – forgive me in advance. If I somehow mess up the lodge workings, I know you will continue encouraging me, whilst whispering wise council, pointing me in the right direction. Kind of like that fourth “point” of a circle.


My wish for the year

Finally, my Brothers my wish for this year. Let our Lodge be a lodge that shines its Light as does that bright Morning Star that rises in the East and brings us peace and whose warmth will undoubtedly preserve the harmony of our Lodge. May we come together as a true band of Brothers and when we return to the quarries in September, hit the ground running.