The evening, at Westbury Manor, started with a prayer by RW Howard Bonsaing and presentation of the colors by the Queens Masonic Veterans followed by the Pledge and singing of the National Anthem.
We were then introduced to the dignitaries who were in attendance, after which Past Grand Master Carl Fitje gave a splendid biography of MW Stewart C. McCloud. The PGM said he enjoyed the time he spent with MW Stewart and all of his family. RW Stewart McCloud II added in that his dad was quite a character!
The Award, this year, went to Ms. Jordyn Harris for her essay, ”What career would I choose to make a difference in the world?” It was read by our own District Deputy RW Joseph J. Saglimbene. The young lady who wrote the essay, wanted everyone to live a better life and that all of us should unselfishly do for others (as all Masons are required to do.) Ms. Harris wants to become a nurse, to heal and treat patients as well as their families. Her skills and desire will be an asset to the nursing field, because, she would like to become a NICU Nurse. She wants to contribute to new born children and also to their families. By giving newborns a fighting chance to survive she knows that they will fight to survive and come to make a mark on society.
After the reading RW Joe wanted everyone to thank his wife Ann as well, for all the work that he was able to accomplish over the past two years. Without Ann’s help he wouldn’t have been able to do half as much as he did, and RW Joe did it “His Way”, in song for everyone’s enjoyment.
Our Grand Master. MW William J. Thomas then got up and spoke about turning over The Gavel in 14 days, it was a big team and most of the things he had wanted to accomplish were completed, his wages being complete as Grand Master. He said he gave RW Joe and RW John many challenges to accomplish in the Queens District as well, and they have been successful in completing them, the Grand Master then thanked them for their hard work. RW Joe has been nominated for the committee to oversee the Home in Utica.
The Grand Master’s wages have been fulfilled and RW Joe and RW John have served the Craft well. They have started many new things to help aid all new Master Masons during their term and this makes Masonry, here in Queens, and the Grand Lodge truly GRAND. After hearty applause and coffee and cake, we all retired from the Westbury Manor. It truly was a Grand Night!
W Nicholas Isabella
Queens District Historian