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Earnest adherence to rule is particularly necessary to Odd Fellowship. We must never allow disciplina to be relaxed, as the number of cases which may, by such means, require it, increase, and the Order must contain many who are indisposed to employ the goodly resoluteness. Hence, too, none save such as entertain a strict desire for the prosperity of the Order, can be expected to maintain a real discipline. Many “roots of bitterness" will spring up in Lodges, and we cannot expect to arrive at a state of perfectness where all will act rightly; for whereunto is the palace that foul things sometimes intrude not?
The time must eventually arrive when our elder brethren will be “gathered to their fathers," and the guidance of the Order devolve on the younger members. If, then, we indulge in odious petty differences now, we must bid farewell to the tranquillity, content, and peace, exhibited and enjoyed to-day, and dread the anarchy, confusion, and turbulence, that will assuredly prevail to-morrow. “Can such things be, and overcome us, like a summer's cloud, without our special wonder ?" To obviate so dire an aspect in the perspective, so bitterly repugnant to the feclings of every true Odd-Fellow, so utterly at variance with the purposes for which our praiseworthy Institution was founded, let us, by our uniform adhereịce to its principles, evince our determination to secure un. violated, unsullied, without stain and without alloy, the purity of Odd-Fellowship in our own day.
I decided enforcement of discipline is necessary in the promotion of unity among us; without which we may, as the numerous sands on a seabeach, lie in acci. dental proximity—in a seeming connectedness with each other—but, upon a more superficial observance, our manifold and important parts will be wofully disjointed. We must exhibit a solidity of purpose and principle entirely connected. We must, like a mass of gold, uniformly allow all our parts and particles to adhere and combine; and so evince an ardent desire and resolution to fulfil the important duties we are called upon to perform, in a manner that will reflect credit on the Order, and convey satisfaction to ourselves. We must, by unity, not only constitute a great number, but a great one. We must be united in both con mon interests and reciprocal esteem.
Prayers at Opening and Closing a Lodge.
REVIOUS to the opening of a Lodge, the officers and members must be clothed in proper regalia, and each take his station or seat. The door must be closed, and the proper examinations made. When the Lodge shall be duly opened,
according to the prescribed form, the Chaplain may offer the following
PRAYER. Thou King eternal, immortal, and invisible, the only wise God our Savior, Thou art
the sovereign of universal nature, the only true object of our best and holiest affections. We
render thee hearty thanks for that kind provider.co which has preserved us during the past week, protecting us from the perils and dangers of this life; and for permitting us now to assemble in thy name for the transaction of business. We humbly beseecb thee, our heavenly Father, to preside over our assembly, to breathe into our hearts the spirit of love and of a sound mind; and may each and all be governed by an anxious desire to advance thy glory and ameliorate the condition of mankind. Let thy blessing rest upon our Order; upon all the Lodges, Grand and Subordinate, belonging to our entire family of bro
thers. Let Friendship, Love, and Truth prevail, ' until the last tear of distress be wiped away, and the
Lodge below be absolved by the glory and grandeur of the Grand Lodge above. This we ask in humble dependence upon, and in most solemn adoration of Thy one mysterious and glorious name. Amen.
Or this :
Almighty and most merciful God! we adore thee as the Creator of all worlds, and the righteous Governor of all beings, upon whom we are dependent for life and all its blessings, and without whose favor no human enterprise can permanently prosper. Lift upon us, we pray thee, O Lord! the light of thy countenance, and bless us while we are together this evening. May all things be done in the spirit of charity and brotherly kindness, and may our labors of love be blessed to the promotion of the best interests of our beloved Order. Hear us, O God! in behalf of the stranger, the sick, the afflicted, the widow and the orphan, and bless them as thou seest that they may need. Keep us ever in thy fear and wisdom, and save us all with an everlasting salvation : and to thy great name be all the glory, "as it was ini the beginning, is now, and ever shall be, world without end." Amen.
After the business shall have been transacted, and the Lodge closed in due form, the Chaplain may offer prayer as follows:
We bless thee, O Lord, that we have been permitted to enjoy this, another Lodge meeting. Pardon what. thou hast seen amiss in us; and now, as we are about to depart, let thy blessing be with us, and with all our brethren throughout the globe. May brotherly love prevail, and every moral and social virtue adorn our lives, while members of this Lodge below; and at last may we be admitted to the joys of a better world : and thine be the power and the glory, for ever and ever. Amen,
Degrees and Degree Lodges.
DEGREE Lodges are formed for the purpose merely of conferring the five subordinate degrees on members who may apply for them : their legality is recognised by the Grand Lodge of the United States. The time, place, and manner of
conferring the degrees are proper subjects for local legislation. They may be conferred by the Grand-Master, the Deputy Grand-Master of a district, or his deputy; by the N. G. of the Lodge to which the applicant may be attached, or by a Degree Lodge established for the purpose. But no Lodge can confer degrees upon a member of another Lodge, without the consent of the Lodge to which the member belongs. The price of degrees is left to the control of the local Grand Lodges. Certificates for degrees must be granted by the subordinate Lodge to its members, by ballot, on the presentation of which certificates to the proper officer, the brothers are entitled to be instructed in the degrees named therein. Not more than the first three degrees can be conferred at one time, unless the most urgent necessity be shown to exist, in which case the Grand-Master of the Grand Lodge, or his deputy, may grant a dispensation permitting the five to be conferred on the same day.
A Degree Lodge is sanctioned by the Grand Lodge