Archive for Thursday, November 12, 2009

Masons will celebrate 150 years on Saturday

November 12, 2009

There will be some history made Saturday when the Palmyra Lodge No. 23, Ancient Free and Accepted Masons of Kansas celebrate their 150th anniversary.

You might know them as the Masons. But what are they?

“Also known as Freemasons, it is the world’s largest and oldest fraternal body,” said Thomas Kleist, master of the local lodge. “The modern form of Masonry originated in England in 1717 and began as craft guilds or union of the stone masons.”

The celebration is at 1 p.m. Saturday at the local lodge and the Grand Master of Kansas A.F. and A.M. and his officers will here to present a plaque commemorating those 150 years. Refreshments will also be served.

There are 20,000 Masons in Kansas, Kleist said, and 41 in the local chapter. He also explained what they do.

“We actively participate in the community as we are able,” he said. “Due to the lack of members, we have done little in that respect in years past. That is changing, as we have been making efforts to be more active.

“One of the efforts we have made in the last two years is in supporting the Community Food Pantry at First United Methodist Church,” said Kleist. “We also support public education and this year have an entry in the Masonic essay contest, which is a state-wide contest with the winners receiving scholarships. This year’s subject is ‘What would George Washington think of our government if he came back today?’”

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