National Order of Trailmasters
The … Fortress … is about to be convened. My brothers behold your Master Journeyman.
Officers enter and take their stations
MASTER JOURNEYMAN: The officers will take their stations and the fortress will come to order *. Brother Marshal pause you will pass right and left through our fortress and assure yourself that all present are entitled to sit in council with us.
Marshal proceeds directly to outer door, gives 3 raps, then 1 whereupon the Junior Monitor opens the door. The Marshal says: Brother Jr. Monitor, our fortress is about to be opened and it is the wish of the Master Journeyman that only those who have knelt at our altar or who have borne witness to a cause should be admitted.
JUNIOR MONITOR: Upon my honor no one has been admitted to our fortress save those who have called me ‘Brother’ I have passed right and left among our ranks and I find them secure.
Marshal closed door, raps once, Junior Monitor immediately afterward. He then proceeds directly to altar, faces east and says: Brother Master Journeyman, I have heard the assurance of a Brother and I find this fortress open to only those who by their own honor are entitled to sit here.
Returns to station, and is Rapped down.
MASTER JOURNEYMAN: Brother Orator what is the hour?
ORATOR: It is the hour before sunrise and there waits within the hearts of men the spirit of valor.
2 Raps, officers rise.
MASTER JOURNEYMAN: Brother Symbolic Traveler are you a Trailmaster?
SYMBOLIC TRAVELER: I was dedicated in the presence of God to the true ideals of life. 1 was instructed in the examples of our order I knelt at our altar. I became proficient in the knowledge of valor and Justice.
MASTER JOURNEYMAN: Why did you join our ranks?
SYMBOLIC TRAVELER: To become a Journeyman of Life.
MASTER JOURNEYMAN: Who are the Journeymen of a fortress?
SYMBOLIC TRAVELER: The M.J. —Sr. Journeyman—Jr. Journeyman.
MASTER JOURNEYMAN: Brother Symbolic Guide why do we ourney5
SYMBOLIC GUIDE: To help all people upon the road of life.
MASTER JOURNEYMAN: In what manner?
SYMBOLIC GUIDE: By making them aware of the teachings of our order as taught by our examples.
MASTER JOURNEYMAN: Brother Jr. Journeyman what are the examples of our order?
JUNIOR JOURNEYMAN: Love fidelity, toil, chivalry, honor and kindness.
MASTER JOURNEYMAN: Sr. Journeyman, what binds these examples together?
SENIOR JOURNEYMAN: The spirit of life.
MASTER JOURNEYMAN: Do you possess it?
SENIOR JOURNEYMAN: All men who journey possess it.
MASTER JOURNEYMAN: Have you given it to your brothers?
SENIOR JOURNEYMAN: I have
MASTER JOURNEYMAN: Sr. Monitor will you open the Holy Bible upon our altar?
SENIOR MONITOR: I open the Holy Bible upon out altar as a symbol of our religious freedom.
May its presence there ever serve to remind us that God is the source of all goodness, honor, and glory forever and ever. Without His guidance our trails upon the road of life would be unbearable and only through His grace can we of this world and time ever hope to seek Him in all our undertakings. The Bible is the words of God and we should always be aware of His goodness and that goodness should be to endeavor to build a fortress so mighty, so steadfast that no man shall ever put us asunder
MASTER JOURNEYMAN: Brother Standard Bearer you will present the flag of our country.
3 Raps: Standard Bearer presents flag
All face flag.
Brothers you will join in the Pledge of Allegiance.
Done: Standard Bearer places flag in standard.
Standard Bearer then steps back to center of altar.
STANDARD BEARER: We place the flag at our altar, thy symbol of the nation we love, to remind us of our civil liberties and for Civil Rights, without which our freedom would be a mockery. Countless thousands have laid down their lives in defense of our country and the red upon this banner has been colored by the sacrifices of all those who gave all that man could give in defense of freedom, honor and justice. They marched to victory at Yorktown and saw the cannons blaze at New Orleans. They marched with Grant at Appomattox. They lead the charge at San Juan. They struggled aboard the Main.. They came with Pershing to the Orgon Forest. They steamed to victory at the Coral Sea. They landed at Normandy and crossed the Rhine. They were aboard the Missouri in Tokyo Bay and for Civil Rights they were with Martin Luther King Jr., Frederic Douglas, and Thurgood Marshall. They gave all they could to make you free: Live for your country, they died for you.
TURNS AND GOES BACK TO STATION
MASTER JOURNEYMAN: Brother Chaplain, you will lead us in our devotions. Now my Brothers, you will stand with bowed heads and open hearts—
Chaplain moves to altar by himself, kneels and prays:
CHAPLAIN: Our Father, we pray that You will help us in these beginnings years of life, to make ourselves more pleasing in Thy sight. May we be better brothers, better friends, and better sons and strive to repay our parents with kindness and consideration for all they have done for us. We pray to Thee for guidance—Guidance in all our undertakings. Help us to be good citizens of our great country and temper our minds, our hearts and our souls, so that we too may become a fortress upon the road of life. Amen.
MASTER JOURNEYMAN: So that we may too become a fortress upon the road of life.
They rise: Chaplain returns to Station— One Rap
MASTER JOURNEYMAN: Brother Senior Monitor, inform the Junior Monitor that our fortress is about to be opened with the spirit of valor.
Senior Monitor goes to door —3 Raps, then 1— Jr. Monitor opens door.
SENIOR MONITOR: Brother Jr. Monitor, we have asked the blessings of Almighty God and lie has sent to us the spirit of valor.
JUNIOR MONITOR: Brother Sr. Monitor, tell our Master Journeyman I have seen the ways 0f the world beyond our fortress walls and that our world is indeed in need of valor.
Closed Door— 1 Rap
SENIOR MONITOR: Brother Master Journeyman, the Jr. Monitor has found the world is in need of valor and even though he stands guard at our fortress walls, he shall ever strive in spirit to bring to all who journey into our midst.
MASTER JOURNEYMAN: It is well and indeed fitting for him to do so.
MASTER JOURNEYMAN: Brother Sr. Monitor, who are the officers of a fortress?
SENIOR MONITOR: The Chaplain, Marshal Orator, Sr. Monitor, Jr. Monitor, Dispatcher, Exchequer, Symbolic Guide, Symbolic Traveler, Standard Bearer, and Examples.
MASTER JOURNEYMAN: Where is the station of the Jr. Monitor?
SENIOR MONITOR: At the outer walls of our fortress.
MASTER JOURNEYMAN: Where is the station of the Sr. Monitor.
SENIOR MONITOR: To the front of the Sr. Journeyman, within the walls of our fortress.
MASTER JOURNEYMAN: What are your duties?
SENIOR MONITOR: I guard the inner wall of our fortress and assist the Chaplain in preparing our altar.
MASTER JOURNEYMAN: Where is the station of the Marshall?
SENIOR MONITOR: To your left
MASTER JOIJRNEYMAN: Brother Marshal, what duty do you perform?
MARSHAL: I conduct all processions as our rights prescribe and assist the Symbolic Guide and Traveler in the ceremony of initiation.
MASTER JOURNEYMAN: Where is the station of the Symbolic Guide?
MARSHAL: At the altar.
MASTER JOURNEYMAN: Brother Symbolic Guide, what is your duty?
SYMBOLIC GUIDE: I conduct deserving brothers on the journey of life.
MASTER JOURNEYMAN: In what manner?
SYMBOLIC GUIDE: By bringing them to the Symbolic Traveler and to receive the examples of our order.
MASTER JOURNEYMAN: Where is the station of the Jr. Journeyman?
SYMBOLIC GUIDE: In the south.
MASTER JOURNEYMAN: Brother Jr. Journeyman, are you an officer?
JUNIOR JOURNEYMAN: I was elected by my brothers to be an instructor.
MASTER JOURNEYMAN: What do you teach?
JUNIOR JOURNEYMAN: I instruct my brothers in the afternoon of life, in the youthful years when our minds are young and hearts are willing to do good.
MASTER JOURNEYMAN: Where is the station of the Sr. Journeyman?
JUNIOR JOURNEYMAN: In the west.
MASTER JOURNEYMAN: Brother Sr. Journeyman, what do you teach?
SENIOR JOURNEYMAN: I was elected by my brothers to teach of the closing of our earthly lives and of the journey to the never ending Sun.
MASTER JOURNEYMAN: Where is the station of the Master Journeyman?
SENIOR JOURNEYMAN: In the east.
MASTER JOURNEYMAN: Why does he sit in the east?
SENIOR JOURNEYMAN: To symbolize the beginning of the Journey of life.
MASTER JOIJRNEYMAN: Where is the station of the Orator?
SENIOR JOURNEYMAN: In the north
MASTER JOURNEYMAN: Brother Orator, what is your duty?
ORATOR: To reach the members of this fortress the lesson of valor.
MASTER JOURNEYMAN: Why does a Trailmaster need the lesson of valor?
ORATOR: To supplement the examples of our order in forming a more perfect onion with the spirit of life.
MASTER JOURNEYMAN: In what way can we convey the lesson you reach?
ORATOR: In living lives as examplified to us by the knights of Chivalry of whom the Prince of Valor was the last.
MASTER JOURNEYMAN: Did you receive their password?
ORATOR: I did.
MASTER JOURNEYMAN: You will communicate it with the Chaplain.
CHAPLAIN: Brother Sr. Monitor, you will attend the altar.
Chaplain arises, goes to the center of fortress, midway between Master Journeyman and altar facing north, Orator walks to him and they clasp hands and whisper the word—after this is done the Chaplain faces the east and says:
CHAPLAIN: … is the password of a Journeyman.
Master Journeyman raps once, they go back to stations. Master Journeyman raps Orator down. Chaplain remains.
MASTER JOURNEYMAN: Brother Chaplain, will you administer rho oath?
Chaplain goes to Altar.
Will all persons not members of this order please rise and face our altar?
CHAPLAIN, hand on Bible: I symbolically place your hand upon the Holy Bible and ask you to give us your promise that you will not reveal the secrets of this order to the outside world nor shall you relate to anyone the occurances that take place in our closed meeetings except those which are merely routine.
In token thereof you shall repeat after me:
I do so promise.
Done. Chaplain returns to seat. Master Journeyman raps once— all seated.
MASTER JOURNEYMAN: By virtue of the power and authority in me vested by the members of … Fortress # …, Order of Trailmasters and acting under the direction of our sponsoring body I here declare this fortress duly opened for the transaction of business.
LIGHTS ARE DIMMED.
MJ: Brother Symbolic Guide, what is the hour?
SG: It is the hour before the morning sun. It is the time of darkness and there are friends. Beyond our fortress walls waiting to become a journeyman upon the road of life. SEATED WITHOUT A RAP.
MJ: Brother Dispatcher do you know of these friends who wait without out walls?
DISPATCHER: Brother MJ on the meeting of … the members of … Fortress elected the following
people to receive the degrees as members of the Order of Trailmasters.
We have instructed these novices to wait without the walls of our fortress.
MJ: Brother Exchequer, what do these novices possess?
Ex.: Their true worth is found within their hearts.
ONE RAP—BROTHERS SEATED.
MJ: My Brothers, there warts at the outer walls of this fortress those who are found to be pure of heart. If there be any member present who has cause to deity any of these who we have chosen to journey with us, to share our joys and our sorrows, let him come forward here and now to proclaim his objection.
Then it will be done. LIGHTS COME ON. Their journey has begun.
SG STANDS UP AND MOVES TO ALTAR.
SG: The morning sun has begun its sojourn across the sky and the doors of our Fortress open wide to receive its light.
Marshall gets up and walks next to him with candelabrum. They kneel at the Altar on both knees. After devotion they get up and go to the North West door. Knocks once then opens door. The Symbolic Guide always leads.
SG: Brother Junior Monitor, who are those who wait at out Fortress walls?
JM: They are those who are pure in heart.
SG: Let them enter.
CANDIDATES ENTER BLINDFOLDED.
SG: My friends, I welcome you to the Fortress of Trailmasters. The portals of our walkways open wide to you in hearty assistance. We invite you to enter into our presence with these thoughts in mind. We are dedicated to the principles and ideals of Fidelity, Honor, Reverence, Decency, and Love for our fellow man. In all our undertakings both within the confines of these walls and within access of the outside world we strive to communicate these virtues to our parents, friends, all with whom we come in contact. We can initiate only those who by their own admission pledge themselves to these ideals and dedicate themselves to their accomplishment. It therefore becomes my duty to propound to you certain questions to determine if you are worthy to journey in body and spirit with us in all of our undertakings. Are you ready to answer these questions?
INITIATES ANSWER: I am
SG: Do you promise that your presence here is of you own free will and accord’
INITIATES ANSWER: I do
SG: Do you declare to us that you are not possessed with a selfish desire to become special among those with whom you associate and that your only motive in seeking us is your hope to serve in a better manner friends, parents, and country?
INITIATES ANSWER: I do
SG: Do you promise to obey the laws of your city, state and nation and never be a party to anything which violates the liberties of others in so far as your own demands of justice, honor, and patriotism are concerned?
INITIATES ANSWER: I do
SG: Do you give us your assurance you will never relate to anyone in any form anything which you may witness here this evening except those who are entitled to bear witness to it?
INITIATES ANSWER: I do
SG: Do you finally assert to us your belief in Almighty God and declare that He is the Maker of Heaven and earth and all things which in them are?
INITIATES ANSWER: I do
SG: Your answers being correct and indeed being all that can be expected of you, I most gladly welcome you to the start of a better life for it is here that your journey shall begin.
SG: Come my friends, the Symbolic Traveler awaits your pleasure.
CONDUCTED TO THE WEST OF THE ALTAR.
ST: My friends, the Journey of life is not easy nor are the trails we blaze forged from effortless ordeals. The desire to do what is right is never the most accessible virtue man possess and because of that reason we fall short of what God desires in us as His Children. It is therefore my task to become your companion upon the road of life and to conduct you upon a journey that will emphasize the trials and triumphs of your journey here on earth.
SYMBOLIC TRAVELER WITH THE SYMBOLIC GUIDE AND MARSHALL CONDUCTS THE CANDIDATES TO THE EAST.
MJ: My friends, before beginning our journey further preparation in your heart and soul is needed. Already you know of the conflicts of life and have tasted the bitterness of man. Never before has the decision to do right been more acute and never before has it been so unmistakenly obscured by the darkness that surrounds us.
A thousand dreams on a thousand hilltops marks the triumph and tragedy of youth. Oh God create in me a fortress of life from the sea of strife with the walls of a mighty faith. That I may become upon the sea, a sailing soul.
To cast my life to the tides of Kingdom come.
My friends, before the morning sun turns to noondays march, are you willing to make yourself a fortress for good in the midst of evil. If so answer, I am.
Then I must cause you to be conducted to our altar so that you might become more proficient in the knowledge of our teachings.
Brother Symbolic Traveler, assisted by the Symbolic Guide, you will conduct these deserving friends to the altar of the Order of Trailmasters so that they might receive their obligation.
CANDIDATES ARE CONDUCTED TO THE ALTAR.
MJ, 3 raps, all stand
MJ: Brother Senior Journeyman, have you been true to your obligation?
SJ: I have carried the teachings of my Order with me, I have journeyed long, 1 have sought many upon the path of life, Yes, my brother I am a journeyman and a Trailmaster: I have been faithful.
MJ: Can you speak for your brothers?
SJ: On behalf of our Order, I speak for many and verily I say unto you upon m~ own honor, rest the vows of all who approach our altar.
MJ: Therefore what say you?
SJ: We shall kneel
SJ raps, all members not officers kneel on both knees.
SJ raps again, Examples kneel.
SJ raps again, all officers except Chaplain kneel.
SJ raps for Final Time: SJ, JJ and Chaplain kneel. SYMBOLIC GUIDE AND TRAVELER ARE STILL STANDING. MJ APPROACHES THE ALTAR.
MJ: My friends you will kneel on both knees. The active candidate will place both hands upon the Holy Bible. The remaining candidates will place their right hand over their heart and their left hand upon the shoulder of the one in front. You will say, I, repeat your name in full and say after me:
I, …, do solemnly promise before Almighty God and in the presence of this Sacred Altar that I will to the best of my ability carry the teachings of the Order of Trailmasters with me, fully accepting all the duties and responsibilities which must now be mine without any mental hesitation or physical compulsion.
I solemnly promise that I will from this moment onward love, honor, respect, and obey my God, never forgetting that He and He alone is the Maker and Creator of all things
I declare before Almighty God that I will be a better son than I have ever been before and that I will do everything within my power to repay my parents for all they have given me, for their hopes, their dreams, and life itself.
I promise that I will defend my country with my life and that I will enlist unto my endeavors the heritage that has made our nation great. Her cause shall be my cause, her victory shall be my victory; her freedom shall be my freedom.
I promise that I will do everything within my power to improve my race and to help those less fortunate with malice towards none and justice for all.
I promise that I shall endeavor to make myself known as a good law abiding citizen, that I will obey the laws of my city and state and that I will recognize that the Constitution of the United States is the bulwark of my liberties.
I promise I will honor all martyrs of history who gave up their lives for the cause of freedom, justice, chivalry and valor, and that I will with the highest respect and admiration, hold before me the lessons 50d examples taught to me by the Order.
I promise I will revere the Prince of Valor who shared the ideals of life with his companions, and that I will never do anything which would discredit those who cherish me or hold me dear.
I promise I will aid, protect, and defend the brothers of this Order that I will never do nor say anything which would cause them to be dishonored; and I promise I will share with them their joys and their sorrows, their triumphs and their tragedies, never forgetting that we are bound together through precept and example to the cause of true brotherhood.
And now my brothers you will repeat after me.
ALL MEMBERS REPEAT AFTER THE MJ: In so far as is humanly possible, I promise to be faithful to these vows. So help me God.
Arise my brothers.
ALL OFFICERS RISE.
MJ: The active candidates will seal these vows by kissing the Holy Bible. The remaining candidates will seal their vows by shaking the hand of their new brothers. CANDIDATE SHAKE HANDS WITH EACH OTHER. DONE. It is well, you have pledged your honor to God and your fidelity to man - may He help you to be true to both.
MJ RETURNS TO THE EAST -RAPS ONCE, ALL ARE SEATED, THE MARSHAL AND SYMBOLIC GUIDE SEAT THE REMAINING PASSIVE CANDIDATES. THEY THEN PROCEED WITH THE ACTIVE CANDIDATES TO THE EAST.
MJ: Now my brothers you will be placed in the custody of the Symbolic Traveler who will take you on a journey that will emphasize the toil of the manhood and the triumph of a human soul. You will be instructed in the examples of our Order and I charge you to pay heed to the lessons they teach. Be gone and may God grant you wisdom in your journey
SYMBOLIC TRAVELER LEADS, FOLLOWED BY THE MARSHAL WITH CANDELABRUM: THE CANDIDATES ESCORTED BY THE S. GUIDE. THEYMAKE TWO CIRCLES OF ROOM AND STOP AT THE FIRST EXAMPLE.
ST: My brother, the journey upon the road of life is hard and seeing your light upon the edge of the impending forest we ask that we might stop and gain some new insight that might make our journey easier.
1ST EXAMPLE: I will place in your keeping the light of love to guide you and help you on your journey.
LIGHTS STICK AND PRESENTS IT TO CANDIDATE, THEN LIGHTS.
Love is a spark, a glowing ember in the soul of man. It knows no race nor creed, no hate, nor fear. It will stand the test and will conquer the Winter’s night.
Love is like a beacon my brother for it is the light of kindness that cuts through the impending fog to w arm the heart of those it touches.
We have reached an age when the thought of "love" for other human beings or lust plain being kind and trying to help our fellow man seems strange if nor unwanted. Let me remind you that love is not just a word for the movie queens and the unreal poets on country sides who write poems.
Love is the foundation for all our truly enduring human relationships, and no word can better describe the feelings you have for your family and your country; and no other word can better describe the relation you have with your Father in Heaven.
I therefore present you this flame to burn within your heart. Upon you falls the task of harboring its warmth. For only you can decide whether this flame shall become a raging fire or a dying ember.
Remember my brother, love conquers all.
SITS DOWN: THEY MAKE ONE CIRCLE OF ROOM, GO TO 2ND EXAMPLE WHO STANDS.
SYMBOLIC TRAVELER: My Brother I have in my keeping the light of love I realize its significance. Can you help us further in our journey by sharing the example you teach.
2ND EXAMPLE: I will share with you the radiance of fidelity.
My Brothers, fidelity is the virtue of being true to your friends, to your ideals and promises: and true to obligations you have accepted.
We have all observed in our everyday living the irresponsible young man who carelessly forgets to be on time, negligently shirks his responsibility to others, and recklessly conducts his business with little or no concern towards his family for friends. Or perhaps even you on occasion have lost sight of this virtue when you failed in the taking of responsibility in performing a task without first asking yourself the question "Do I really intend to do this and follow it through to completion."
But Fidelity not only implies to the relatively simple task of merely keeping your appointments on rime it also encompasses the awe some responsibility of being true to your country, family and friends.
My brothers in your veins flows the very blood of this your nation and time may soon come when you will be called upon to spill its precious color on the world’s darkened battlefields of hate and infidelity.
I therefore place this light in your keeping and I solemnly hope that from this time forward your word and your promises shall never be broken. For if you enter the toad of life with fidelity before you, surely your journey here shall not be in vain.
2ND EXAMPLE SITS DOWN. MAKE ONE CIRCLE OF ROOM AND STOP IN FRONT OF THE 3RD EXAMPLE.
SYMBOLIC TRAVELER: My Brother our journey through this fortress is half over. We seek the light of your candle so that we might continue onward.
3RD EXAMPLE: I light your candle so that you might see better the toils of life. DONE Hold out your hands my brother, are they scarred, have they felt the pain of hammer and nail, the blisters of axe and saw; and the cust of rake and plow. I am the light of toil. I never rest. My back feels the weight of a hundred days and my soul feels the satisfaction of a job well done a hundred times. Even the best things in life are never free; the spark of love and the radiance of fidelity given to you must be first forged upon the heart and soul and only through toil on the path of life can they be of meaning to you. No thing in life is ever gained for nothing. From the Executive to the lowest laborer they pay their price for success with the sweat of their brow and the knowledge of their minds. If you want something in life my brother, you must work for it for toil has only one achievement and that achievement is success.
3RD EXAMPLE SITS DOWN: CIRCLE IS MADE OF ROOM TO THE 4TH EXAMPLE.
SYMBOLIC TRAVELER: We have traveled with the radiance of 3 Examples. They have made our journey easier. You tell our brothers of the lesson you teach so that the radiance of your candle might also light their way.
4TH EXAMPLE: I place in your keeping the symbolic flame of chivalry. My brothers the ancient past is crowned with glorious examples of knights in shining armour, whose deeds of heroism and self denial brightens our existence and sets an example worthy of our imulation.
However the days you have long since yielded to the annals of time and time must press its pace onward until we find the little of that spirit that once blossomed when knighthood was in flower. But the idea of chivalry on the battlefield of life has never died. There are many ways to win the battle of life and many roads can be taken which lead to the success.
But let me impress upon you the thought of success is not the only measure of a man’s worth for in many cases the methods used to obtain success far out weigh their reward. This is to imply that it is not important to succeed but rather to emphasize the idea that the methods you employ are also significant. There is little between the great dreams of sacrifice and the chivalry of daily living for without its practice in daily courtesies it can never flare up to the torch of freedom’s victory. The armour you carry is your will to do good and the chivalry you shall possess will be in that accomplishment regardless of the success gained or lost. May this flame never be extinguished with inconsiderate action whether it be to a rival in business or to an opponent on the field.
EXAMPLE IS SEATED - ONE CIRCLE IS MADE OF THE ROOM AND STOPS AT 5TH EXAMPLE.
5TH EXAMPLE: I give to you the radiance of honor. DONE —Down through the recorded annals of history, many pages have been devoted to the honor of individuals.
Brave warriors and noble statesman have etched their accomplishments and endeavors into the stones of time with the honor they forged for themselves out of the rocks upon the path of life. My Brothers, the radiance of honor is the light of the right. Without honor you can have no chivalry. As you journey from our fortress the path of life will carry you through many twists and turns: and often, too often, you will be caught up in the flood of human actions where the right and wrong are not clearly defined.
Life itself is seldom, if ever, clearly represented by one course or another. The decision you make will depend upon your ability to cut through the greys that surround a problem. The concept of honor consists of two parts. First, It is the knowledge of right and wrong Secondly, is the adherence to those principles considered to be right. If you journey through life with these two ideas before you, you will never hesitate to do what is right. The encouragement in the radiance of honor is its ability to cut through the indecision of life and form a foundation from which you can build a tower to span the portals of Heaven.
MAKES ONE CIRCLE OF THE ROOM AND STOPS AT THE 6TH EXAMPLE.
ST: My Brothers, we near your journey’s end. We are tired and look back to the examples we have received with radiance of our candles. May we accept your light.
6TH EXAMPLE: My Brothers. I am the example of kindness. My flame is pure. LIGHT CANDLE. I am the cup of cool water on the thirsty trail and the warm shelter on a stormy night. I help all people upon the road of life. Acts of kindness in daily living never go unnoticed whether they be in the form of a helping hand or just a friendly word of encouragement to a weary traveler. Many times, friendly words of encouragement to a weary traveler, or a simple phrase such as "good morning" has brightened your day and made your burden a lighter load. However, we have all experienced the pain of inconsideration for those thoughtless acts have left a bitter impression upon your hearts and made our existence in this world seem a bit more gloomy. But one cannot go forward into the journey of life with this feeling . Out Order can never hope to erase all the bitterness about us, but we can hope, indeed we can pray that our acts of kindness will help to neutralize some of this worlds bitterness and pain.
I am the light of kindness
You are the star of hope
We are the ones on the trail of life
Who have seen the morning sun and caused its warmth
To be felt a thousand runes upon the troubled soul.
The seas may toss and the tides may turn
But we remain the same
We share our cup with those we meet.
And break our bread with those who eat
And we quench our thirst and feed our souls by those with whom we share.
Go now, my Brothers for journeys yet undreamed await you still
We have given you the light of our candles and may God’s blessing tall upon you in all of your endeavors.
GO TO ALTAR, CANDELABRUM IS PLACED ON THE ALTAR BY SYMBOLIC TRAVELER. CANDIDATES IS THEN SEATED. MARSHAL, SYMBOLIC TRAVELER AND GUIDE GO BACK TO STATIONS.
ONE RAP BY MASTER JOURNEYMAN AND THEY ARE SEATED.
MJ: My Brothers, the time for valor is close at hand LIGHTS ON FULL.
We shall retire.
The Spirit of Life
MARSHAL GOES TO THE ALTAR NODS AND OFFICERS COME IN. THEY STAND
WITH BOWED HEADS: MJ SAYS AMEN. THEY THEN GO TO THEIR STATIONS - MJ RAPS AND ALL ARE SEATED.
MJ: Brother Symbolic Traveler, assisted by the Marshal and Symbolic
Guide, you will conduct the candidates to the altar.
ST: Brother Master Journeyman, I present those with whom we have entrusted with the secrets and the examples of our Order.
MJ: My brothers, you were instructed to wait at the walls of our fortress, before the rise of the sun. You came to us willingly and expressed your desire to join with us in the performance of our duties as journeymen of life. You swore on your honor to uphold the secrets and ideals of our Order and you bound yourselves together with us in ties of true friendship when you knelt before our altar. We have accepted you into our comradship with the hope that you would endeavor to hold the examples of oar Order before you in your daily living so that they might guide and temper your decision and actions. But your journey here with us is not yet completed for we have yet to give you the Spirit of life, the last flame to light your soul with a brilliance brighter than all the stars in heaven and the heavens in one.
MASTER JOURNEYMAN NODS. SR. JOURNEYMAN AND CHAPLAIN GO TO THE ALTAR. EVERY LI GHT ISOUT EXCEPT THE CANDLES.
MJ, walks toward altar and says: In the beginning God created the Heavens and the earth and the earth was void and without form and darkness was upon the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God moved upon the waters and God said "Let there be light CHAPLAIN LIGHTS MATCH and there was light."
CHAPLAIN: And God said this is good. Light, my brother, light to separate the darkness from the day and the night from the sun. Light to shine upon the soul of man to guide him on a strange journey to Heaven’s gates. Light to breathe the breath of life into the dawn of creation. And so it happened the Spirit of life was cast into the soul of man to light his way upon the journey of life. .. and so the journeys over hill and dale, forest and field rivers and seas, toward the end of life’s journey when the sky shall change from its darkened night for the eternal life where sun neither rise nor set nor do they flee from pain but cast their golden warmth upon the angels wings.
And so I present you with the Spirit of Life and I light your candle with its warmth, its light and its Holiness for in so doing I give to you a meaning and a purpose for the examples of our Order. For now you have heard of life, felt toil, seen chivalry, given honor and smiled at kindness in your journey with us. The 6 Examples of our Order are yours to help you in your journey through life but our last candle flame is the light of truth, which has given you life itself. It is placed at the apex to remind you that it is the beginning and the end, the reality and the dreams of all people. God is life, God is love, God is light. He seeks to aid us in all our journey.
Our desire as members of the Order of Trailmasters is to seek to learn more about Him through recognition and knowledge. By truth, we learn both recognition and knowledge. We therefore strive to emphasize its importance in the password of our Order which has this central thought in mind. … my brothers, is the pass word, … the Latin word meaning truth, which reaches us to seek the truth about all things in our journeys through life, whether they be truth about friends and people whom we met or truth in Almighty God. … is communicated between one brother and another upon entering the fortress. Our Trailmaster handshake is extended to you and its two fold responsibility explained.
SYMBOLIC GUIDE AND TRAVELER DEMONSTRATE THE MOVEMENT WHILE HE IS TALKING ON THE SAME, SYMBOLIC TRAVELER AND THE CHAPLAIN & ORATOR COMMUNICATE IT.
CHAPLA1N AND SYMBOLIC TRAVELER AND GUIDE ARE SEATED —JR. AND SR. JOURNEYMAN RETURN TO THEIR STATIONS —MASTER JOURNEYMAN THEN SAYS:
MJ: Brother Marshal, you will face your Brother south.
DONE—MASTER JOURNEYMAN RETURNS TO STATION AND SITS DOWN.
Jr.J: My brother, I am in charge of the symbolic south. I am not an officer but an instructor in the ways of the journey through life. The south is therefore emblematic of the half completed journey where you pause and reflect back to what has happened and to what you have accomplished. In reality, I also symbolize the midpoint in years of your development as men. For you can now pause and think back to your accomplishments before you journey to our doors here this evening. Whether you have had many happy memories of duties and responsibilities well fulfilled is not important but what is important is the realization that there is still time to stop and shape your life anew. There will be many opportunities still remaining for you to do good and be better before the years of manhood rush upon you. I am in charge of the weary journeyman who has come to my camp in search of a brief rescue from the trails of life; where he can refresh himself with the light of truth and the examples of our Order before he begins again his journey onward in search of new ways of becoming better man and citizens, and better brothers. I am your instructor in the beginning years of manhood and it is well that you should rest here with me before continuing your journey. Brother Marshal you will face our Brother West. DONE.
Sr.J: My Brothers, I also am an instructor but unlike the Symbolic South my camp is empty for none can journey with me. I am alone. I represent the end of life’s journey —the closing days of your journey when faith grows strong and hope is built for the time to come when knowledge becomes infinite in grace and love of our Heavenly Father. But in a more solemn manner, I represent the single soul of man who must walk those last few steps alone to the Maker of the Universe and proclaim to Him, for yet a final time, his faith in all that is to follow, help to keep his faith strong for he goes to a place where many men have gone but none can return.
Time stops for no man and it also becomes my duty to remind my brother to live each moment for its worth, as though it were his last . . . for when that moment is passed, no power on earth can ever bring it back but the good may remain for countless ages to come. I am the journeys end, but I also teach a new journey. In all of your actions, my brother, remember these words:
Life will be golden all the way
If we shall live it right this day
The worth of it depends on how
We use this moment here and now.
SR. JOURNEYMAN IS SEATED.
Sr. J: Brother Marshal, you will face our brothers east. DONE.
MJ: My Brothers, my station is in the East emblematic of the rising sun and the morning of your life. I know the beginning of all journeys for I have gained this knowledge by seeking the truth. It is my duty to instruct you and lead my brothers every day for I am the Master Journeyman. I teach that the life begins each morning with the rise of the sun and its journeys across the clear blue or cloudiest rain filled sky till it reaches the time of night and then like an eternal kiss, earth breathes its final breath on a dying sun and our life for that day ceases to exist. I teach of the importance of living each day and starting each morning as a new day; hoping to accomplish more and better things. I hold the examples of our Order before me as I journey with the spirit of life in my heart, I cannot fail to please my God.
Each morning I rise and try to blaze a new trail for others to follow but I cannot do it alone for unlike the Symbolic South, and West, all my brothers are here with me for they too are Trailmasters, for they are journeymen of life. It therefore becomes your duty to journey with me and I welcome you to my side with opened hands and a warm heart knowing that we shall not fail if we but believe and try.
Brother Marshal, you will conduct our brothers to my station in the East. DONE.
My brothers, this completes the ceremonies of initiation into our Order. From this time forward, you are bounded to us by honor, precepts and examples to the performance of the duties we have made known to you as a journeyman upon the road of life. Ours is an Order of service and your merit here with us will not be proven by your actions within these fortress walls, but rather by the manner in which you conduct yourself outside these confines. If you feel that you shall fulfill your duties to us by merely coming to our meetings and functions or by being faithful in the discharge of duties assigned to you, let me remind you that you have sworn before Almighty God and before the members of this Fortress to become a better son, a better man, a better brother. A knowledge of our order is important but your ultimate devotion to duty will be your actions in daily living before the world. The path of the Trailmasrer is never easy for you must forge a new metal from the trail of life to keep you steadfast in your endeavors for good. You have been entrusted with the examples of love, fidelity, toil, chivalry, honor and kindness and you found the truth in the Spirit of Life. These are yours to guide you and light your way to a new and wonderful beginning.
We are called a fortress upon the road of life because we are a bulwark for all that is decent and good. But a fortress is not a building of stone and brick nor is it a temple to visit only in the hours of need. Our real fortress is in the heart of man and our only monuments to the living are those members who live by our examples. A building may decay and grow old with age, but an idea placed within the heart of man shall last a thousand years.
You are now our brothers; we share in common your joys and your sorrows, your triumphs and your defeats. Remember always that we are your brothers and may you find joy and happiness in your membership with us.
Brother Marshal, you will seat the candidates.
MJ: My brothers, this meeting nears its ending and the setting sun looms low on the darkening horizon, If any brother has cause to be heard, let him stand forth and make his thoughts known before the men who journey on the Road of Life.
PAUSES- THEN SITS DOWN.
Jr.J, standing: Hear me my brothers, my station is in the symbolic south. I remind you that here is your refuge from the journeys of life because here I encourage all men to reflect back to their former days, and looking forward grow in their will to do good.
Sr.J, standing: Hear me my brothers, my station is in the symbolic west. Look to me for encouragement in the closing of your day, for I am the ending of your journey. I remind you to live each moment of your life with all of the vigor you possess, realizing that the good you do during one precious moment may live on to inspire men for years to come. SITS.
MJ, 2 RAPS —ALL OFFICERS STAND: I therefore order this Fortress to be closed.
THE SYMBOLIC GUIDE AND TRAVELER THEN EXTINGUISH THE CANDLES OF 1-3 AND 4-6 EXAMPLES, RESPECTIVELY. THE CHAPLAIN EXTINGUISHES HIS CANDLE.
Brother Chaplain, you will lead us in prayer 3 RAPS my Brothers we will stand with bowed heads CHAPLAIN GOES TO ALTAR AND KNEELS.
CHAPLAIN: Our Father, help us to do Thy will on the journeys of life and inspire us with Thy Spirit by lighting our pathway to Thy Throne. We of this Fortress pray that we may be ever worthy of this fellowship. Help us to be faithful to Thee, to our homes, and to our friends. And in so much as we are your sons, help us to be a brother to man and in the morning sun, may we seek Thee and in the final rays of its setting fire, may we worship Thee for Your Kingdom, your Fortress is Forever. Amen.
CHAPLAIN RISES AND RETURNS TO HIS STATION.
MJ: Standard Bearer, we now entrust the banner of our nation to your keeping.
STANDARD BEARER REMOVES FLAG FROM ALTAR AND PLACES IT AT HIS STATION.
MJ: Brother Sr. Monitor, you will inform the Jr. Monitor that our Fortress is closed.
Sr.M., acting at door: Brother Jr Monitor, this Fortress is closed. RETURNS TO HIS STATION.
MJ: My brothers, may we be a Fortress on the road of life PAUSE. I now declare this Fortress duly closed.
Officers retire as Chaplain closed the Holy Bible.