I would like to begin by thanking all my brothers who have helped me in my masonic journey. I have learned so much and continue to learn so much about Masonry from so many of the people in this room. Thank you. I also have to give special thanks to my very patient and lovely wife. Her love and support give me the stable foundation to build my life on, and without her I would not be the man I am today.
I don’t really like long speeches, so I will try to keep this short.
My first interaction with Masonry was through my grandfather “Pap-pap”. He told me about a lot of the good things that Masonry had to offer but that if I wanted to be a Mason I had to ask on my own. I wasn’t ready at the time, and I didn’t come to knock on the door of the lodge for another 15 years.
When I finally found that my heart was prepared to become a mason I came around to this building on a Saturday and found MWB Joedie Poole smoking a cigarette in the front. He asked if he could help and then took me inside and introduced me to MWB Richard Cripe and MWB Bill Patterson. And that is where my masonic journey began under the care of three past grand masters. That was a great start, but they were very demanding; insisting that my ritual work was perfect before allowing me to progress. It took me nearly two full years to go from petition to Master Mason. Masonry, as it turns out, was a lot of work.
Once I became a Master Mason, the work continued. Rituals, lectures, investigations, coaching, committees, etc. Every time I took a step forward, there was more to learn and more work to be done. The funny thing was, however, the more work I did the more I was getting something out of masonry. I am always finding something new to reflect on and grow with. I think that is the fantastic thing about Masonry. The deeper you go, the more you find.
The three principal tenants of freemasonry are Brotherly Love, Relief and Truth. Those are the core pillars that form the base support for all the rest of Masonry. When engaging with any brother or in any masonic activity, these should be the basis of our interactions. Are my actions based in brotherly love and without envy or bitterness? Are my actions going to provide support and assistance in some way to my brothers or their families? Are my actions based on known truths and based on facts rather than rumours or stories? These are the questions that we should always be asking ourselves.
I would like to dedicate this year as a year of ritual and constitutional education. I would like all of the lodge masters to ensure that the rituals are not only committed to memory, but that the lessons contained in them are understood. I would like each lodge meeting to dedicate a time to discussion of some aspect of the rituals or the constitution. These are the foundational components of our work, and it is the duty of the masters to ensure that the foundations of masonry are solid. I will also task my inspectors to work with the grand lecturer to provide educational discussions when they carry out their visits. I would very much like the focus of the Grand Lodge of Japan to be on the work of Masonry this year.
Whenever I tell someone that I am a Mason, I inevitably get some form of the question “So does that mean you have the keys to the universe?” I always smile when I hear that. Of course, the answer is “Yes.”. The first set of keys that we are provided with are Brotherly Love, Relief and Truth. When you look further into the ritual and constitution you will find that we have been provided with an abundance of keys to work with. The only real question is whether you will commit to the work of picking up the keys and opening the doors.
I thank you again for assigning me the work that this role entails. With your support I am looking forward to serving the lodge for the coming masonic year.
Jeremy C.R. Entwisle, Grand master 2019
Tokyo Masonic Center
4-1-3 Shibakoen, Minato-ku, Tokyo 105-0011