Opening Charge

A Charge at the Opening of a Lodge

Fiat Lux--Part of the window donated by the Grand Lodge of Pennsylvania to Freemasons' Hall, London

   Brethren:–As useful knowledge is the great object of our desire, we ought to apply ourselves with zeal to the practice and profession of Freemasonry.  The ways of wisdom are beautiful, and lead to pleasure.  Knowledge is attained by degrees, and cannot everywhere be found.  Wisdom seeks the secret shade, and the lonely cell, designed for contemplation.  There enthroned she sits, delivering her sacred oracles.  There we are to seek her, and to pursue the real bliss.  Though the passage is difficult, the farther we trace it the easier it will become.

   If we are united, our Fraternity must flourish.  Let all private animosities, therefore, if any should exist, give place to peace and good fellowship.  Uniting in the same grand design, let us be happy ourselves, and endeavor to contribute to the happiness of others.  Let us promote the useful arts, and by that means mark our superiority and distinction.  Let us cultivate the moral virtues, and improve in all that is good and amiable.

   Let the genius of Freemasonry preside over our conduct, and, under her sovereign sway, let us preserve a nobleness and justness of understanding, politeness of manners, and evenness of temper.  Let our recreations be innocent and pursued with moderation; and never let us suffer irregular indulgences to expose our character to derision and contempt.  Thus, shall we act in conformity to our precepts, and support the name we have always borne, of being a respectable, regular, and uniform Fraternity.

–from The Ahiman Rezon

Hymn before opening the Lodge, “Hail Eternal by Whose Aid” (Tune: Saint Bees)