Sunday, January 17, 2010

Log of the Week of January 4th

On Monday evening, January 4, I attended the Installation of Officers of Denali Chapter No. 16, Order of the Eastern Star. Sister Bonnie Duncan and Brother Al Schuerger were installed Worthy Matron and Worthy Patron. It was great to see Bonnie in the East and a bit of a surprise. The surprise was because I had always associated Bonnie with the Great Alaska Council of the Boy Scouts where she was the training chair for the Denali District. Its also interesting to note that, although a coincidence, the OES Chapter and the Boy Scout District share the same name.

As Tuesday, January 5 was the first Tuesday of the month, it was time for the stated communication of Matanuska Lodge No. 7, my “Mother Lodge”. This was our first meeting for 2010 and WB Ted Hutchinson’s first time in the East as Master of the Lodge. Ted had an extremely well planned out meeting, which he executed in a superior manner. Assisting WB Ted were WB Dennis Oakland (SW) and Bro. Mitch Coulthard (JW). The officers performed the opening and closing ritual with precision, which was a pleasure to see from such newly installed officers. It was also a pleasure to see so many sideliners, who enjoyed wonderful fellowship in the dining room before the meeting.

Wednesday evening, January 6 found me back in Anchorage for the 94th installation of officers of Anchorage Lodge No. 17. Brother James S. Zuke was installed as Worshipful Master for 2010. Installed along with WB James were VW Thomas L. Schram (SW), Bro. Mark A. Sledge (JW), VW Michael B. Swensen (Treasurer), and VW Jim R. McMichael (Secretary). It was a delight to see the members of Job’s Daughters Bethel No. 1 escorting the officers into the lodge room. The installing officers included VW Dennis R. Thayer (Installing Officer), RW Johnnie L. Wallace (Installing Marshall), Bro. Robert K. Kelly, Jr. (Chaplain), W Glen E. Josey (Installing Secretary), and W Timothy Jackson (Installing Tyler). Some of special guests at the installation were RW Curtis Harris, Senior Grand Warden and W Franklin Dunbar, Assistant Grand Secretary of the Most Worshipful Prince Hall Grand Lodge of Alaska.

Saturday, January 9 was a very busy day Masonically, with the Al Aska Shrine Annual Meeting and installation of officers and the installation of officers for International Order of the Job’s Daughters Bethel No. 1, Matanuska Chapter No. 14 Order of the Eastern Star, and Sterling Lodge No. 22. It is hard to be in two places at once, so I had to choose my participation. As I was invited to be an installing officer for the Sterling installation, I opted to stop in Anchorage for the Al Aska Shrine annual meeting. The election of officers for 2010 took place during this meeting and the following Nobles were elected as the leaders of the Divan:

Potentate – David Worel
Chief Rabban – V. J. “Nik” Nicholas
Assistant Rabban – Bruce Cling
High Priest and Prophet – Paul Bordale
Oriental Guide – Jeff Polizzotto
Treasurer – Fred Angleton
Recorder – Kip Clapper

The installation of officers, which I unfortunately missed, occurred later in the evening. Typically, the Potentate’s Ball would have followed after the installation; however Illustrious Worel has chosen to have his festivities at the conclusion of the Annual Communication of the Grand Lodge of Alaska, beginning Friday, February 5. Dave has planned a whole host activities and events to participate in. Please go to the Grand Lodge of Alaska Website for information about the activities.

Sterling, Alaska is located on the beautiful Kenai Peninsula and alongside the World Famous Kenai River. A couple of months ago, I had been invited by MW Les Little to be his Installing Marshall for his progression to the East, yet again, as Worshipful Master of Sterling Lodge No. 22. The installation took place on Saturday, January 9. Sterling is a little over 350 miles round trip from my home and January in Alaska means winter driving conditions. As such, I decided to leave home a little early to make sure I arrived in time. Along the way, I stopped in Anchorage to attend the annual meeting of Al Aska Shrine, where I picked up my driving companion, RW Johnnie Wallace (DGM), for our trip along the Scenic Seward Highway.

Johnnie and I arrived in Sterling just in time to join the other installing officers (MW Henry Dunbar and MW Harry Koenen) for their 10th installation of officers. In addition to MW Les Little (WM), the other officers installed included Bro. Bill Roberts (SW), W Carl Lindstrom (JW), Bro William Nelson (Treasurer), and VW Tim Smith (Secretary). It was a very enjoyable installation ceremony, and I am pleased to report that the installing officers did an excellent job.

After a great meal and wonderful fellowship, it was beginning to get dark, so Johnnie and I hit the road for our drive back around Turnagain Arm. Along the drive, Johnnie and I listened to past editions of Masonic Central, which I had downloaded to my phone. All in all, it was a very satisfying end to a long Masonic week.