Monday, September 28, 2009


Yesterday (9/27/09) was a very big & emotional day for the Powell family - no we didn't finish reading "The Lost Symbol" (still plugging away - not what they would call great literature, but I am enjoying it) and it wasn't because the Jets won again (J-E-T-S! Jets! Jets! Jets!). No yesterday afternoon, my son, Conor, was installed as the Master Councilor for Trinity Chapter, Order of DeMolay and following that Installation, DeMolay's Honory Legion of Honor was conferred upon me.

As I said, it was emotional. Not for Conor. Not for my wife, Marian. But for me...

Ok, I am sure that they had their moments but I am usually the very reserved one (much to the surprise of all my old college friends) at these things. But not today. Nope.

At the completion of the Legion of Honor ceremony, I was asked to say a few words. Not a problem, as a Past DDGM, AGL, etc., I have often spoken in front of large crowds. But something happened.

The applause from the crowd turned in to the DeMolay's version which I equate to almost a type of clapping chant. And I lost it.

I tried to thank Marian & Conor for all their support. For all the nights that I am away on Masonic business, for their understanding and their love. I wanted to thank MW Bruce Widger, a Past Grand Master for the State of New York, my Masonic Mentor & friend. I barely got any of it out when I was overcome with emotion. Yeah. That's right. I balled like a baby.

Afterward, the NY State Master Councilor, Andrew Roberts spoke and reminded us all that a reaction such as mine usually springs from very strong feelings. He is absolutely correct. In the Order of DeMolay, I have found an organization that I wish I had known about as a teen ager - I would have loved it as, I think, my own son does. In today's fast & loose society, it's still nice to see an organization that promotes such things as love of parents, reverence for sacred things, courtesy, comradeship, fidelity, cleanness and patriotism. It's nice to know that you can be a part of all these things and still be cool. And cool they are...

But these guys need Advisers. If you are a very active Freemason and even if you are not that active, these young men need you, your Lodge, your Scottish Rite Valley, your York Rite bodies to step up and support them. They need money, yes that always helps, but more importantly they need your involvement. Go find the nearest DeMolay Chapter and volunteer to be an Adviser - they always need rides to & from events, help at their meetings and they need new members so bring in your sons, grandsons and nephews. It will be the most rewarding thing you will ever do. It has been for me.

After I composed myself, I asked Trinity Chapter to stand. I told them "this award may have been for me, but it is all about you." And it is. DeMolay is a great organization and I am extremely honored & humbled to be a new Legionnaire, but it's not about us, it's about them. Those young men are our future. Think about that...


masonicinfo said...

CONGRATULATIONS Brother Legionnaire!

Ed King, LOH

mbradigan said...

Mike Bradigan

I enjoyed reading your comments. I am a Charter memeber of the East Aurora, NY Demolay Chapter. My Father was a Mason and passed away several years ago. Lately, I have been feeling that something was missing in my own life. I have come to the conclusion that I greatly miss the fratenity that my father tried to pass on to my brother and I. I will try to contact our local Masonic organization and get involved again. Thank you for sharing your thoughts.

Justa Mason said...

Richard, congrats to you and your son. I hope you have a vibrant, active Chapter.

I have been unexpectedly called on to fulfill my initiatory degree obligation and aid some DeMolays to start a Chapter that has been dormant for over seven years. Their efforts (I did very little) have resulted in an installation ceremony on Nov. 7th.


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