I've started this blog in order to keep a journal of my year as a Worthy Grand Matron. I was installed as Worthy Grand Matron in October 2006, and should have started then, but it has been soooo busy these last few months that I really haven't had time to sit down and write anything. Although it is already March 2007, I will begin at the beginning and hopefully get caught up before my year is over!
I guess, before I begin, I should explain a bit about the Order of the Eastern Star. The Order of the Eastern Star is the largest fraternal organization in the world to which both men and women may belong. Worldwide, there are approximately 1 million members under the General Grand Chapter. Only men who are Master Masons are eligible and women with specific Masonic relationships may be members. Eastern Star is a social order comprised of persons with spiritual values but it is not a religion. Its appeal rests in the true beauty of the refreshing and character-building lessons that are so sincerely portrayed in its ritualistic work. A deep fraternal bond exists between its members. It is the wholesome relationship of sisterly and brotherly love brought about through high principles exemplified in our lives which make us near and dear to each other.
The stated purposes of the organization are: Charitable, Educational, Fraternal and Scientific; but there is much more to it than that. Dr. Rob Morris, the Poet Laureate of Masonry and Past Grand Master of Kentucky, founded the Order in 1850 using beautiful and inspiring biblical examples of heroic conduct and moral values. These portray the noble principles, which should adorn the personal lives of Eastern Star members. Eastern Star is an organization where women and men can contribute much time, energy and wisdom to our Order with Charity, Truth and Loving-kindness for the good of all mankind throughout the world.
Concrete evidence of the charitable nature of the organization as it affects others is the millions of dollars that have been raised within the membership to support national, jurisdictional, and local charities. Many Grand Jurisdictions also have homes for their senior members.
Many of the Jurisdictions proudly sponsor and support the Order of Rainbow for Girls and Job’s Daughters and, along with the Masons, support the Order of DeMolay for boys. The purpose of these youth groups is to train these fine young citizens to be leaders in the community and to be future members and leaders in the Order of the Eastern Star. Eastern Star also supports Eastern Star Training Awards for Religious Leadership and Shriner’s Hospitals.
(To Be Continued...)