Greetings Winona Post readers.
How are we just about half way through this year, especially when March seems like both yesterday and years ago at the same time? One can only imagine what the early Winona Masons would’ve thought of all that life in 2020 has sprung on us. Those Winona Masons in 1857, newly chartered as an official lodge, in the same few months that our city of Winona held its first city elections. Electronic meetings with voice and face, worldwide reaction in real time to news stories, and what’s this, a deadly virus? That one wouldn’t be too surprising given that medical procedures were quite primitive and completely unsanitary until almost 1900. Another thing that wouldn’t surprise them is seeing Masons remaining true to our ongoing duty to help our poor distressed Brother Masons, their widows, and orphans. The main tenets of Masonry, which, as you might remember, are friendship, morality, and brotherly love, don’t change. What changes is how we as Masons accomplish honoring and performing them, adapting and adjusting to whatever comes our way. Whatever language, time period, or place, we work to stay true to our Masonic principles. And, during these historic times, we want to again remind our Brother Masons, their families, and anyone reading this: please never hesitate to ask for help — sometimes we can’t do it all on our own. Masonry is about supporting one another. This week brings us the Fourth of July, U.S. Independence Day. One of our Winona brothers recently acquired an original, authentic four-page bi-weekly periodical published in Boston, Mass., on Wednesday, May 30, 1795 — in the upper-left corner is a paid advertisement for the quarterly meeting of the Grand Lodge of Massachusetts, listing one Paul Revere as the Grand Master. Masons have helped one another, and their communities throughout our country’s history, Masons support freedom, opportunity, and respect for all people. As we have now entered the timeframe for absentee-balloting for Minnesota’s August primary, one way we can help one another is to perform our civic duty by educating ourselves and voting. As we residents of the Winona County area look ahead to potential new ways to conduct our civic and organizational business, let us all remember who and what we are, from where we have come, but also how far we still have to go. “The arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends toward justice.” May we all keep that in mind as we continue our journey with one another through our time on this earth. We look forward to the day when we all can join together again in health and harmony. So mote it be.