Dear Brethren, We have reached the midway point of 2018 and the future of Hialeah-Opa-Locka Lodge No. 391 has never been brighter! Our numbers have grown, our ritual is strong and our lodge is moving forward not only attracting new young men, but enticing older non-active brothers to return and be part of this growth. With a newly surfaced roof over our heads we got to work, passing our newest Brothers to the degree of Fellowcraft and then raising them to the sublime Degree of Master Mason, in May. Congratulations to Brothers Randy Cruz & Joshua Logo!
In April, our lodge participated in the Annual Autism Speaks Walk in Doral, FL marking the 4th year that we
participate in this event to raise funds for Autism research. This year, our lodge helped raise over $600 for this great cause, and the walk provided our Brothers with a great opportunity to bond with each other and our families.
Throughout the last few months, Hialeah-Opa-Locka Lodge also hosted two of the three Masonic Leadership Training sessions held here in District 27. The sessions are designed to educate Brothers in lodge management and break down the responsibilities set forth for each appointed and elected position. The first session was held in both English and Spanish, with the Spanish instruction being held downstairs and the English training being held upstairs in the lodge room. The third part of the MLT course was also held at our lodge.
Hialeah-Opa-Locka Lodge also played host to an all-day Fellowcraft and Master Mason Degree, where Brothers from several of the Spanish Speaking lodges came together to pass and raise 19 Brothers, from across the district.
The end of May brought us to the 189th Annual Grand Communication for the Grand Lodge of Free & Accepted Masons of Florida, held at the Rosen Plaza Hotel, in Orlando, FL. This year's Grand Lodge Communication brought out a large contingent of Brothers with over a dozen Master Masons in attendance. The event started out with family and fellowship at Epcot. Our annual day at the park was followed by a successful turnout at the Grand Communication.
Following our first day of Grand Lodge, we also held a lodge dinner to break bread with our families and celebrate our accomplishments for the first half of the year. Brothers Luis Gonzalez and Ruben Ovalle were both awarded Certificates of Appreciation for going above and beyond the call of duty in their roles and for their selfless dedication to our lodge and our craft. W:. Esteban Lazo was also presented with an appreciation award for all of his selfless dedication to the lodge and for his commitment to the post of secretary, which he has held for 7 years.
The first half of this year has also seen an increase in Masonic education initiatives and a renewed push for the attainment of proficiency cards. So far, this year, one Brother has already received his Silver Card proficiency becoming the second Brother proficient enough to instruct younger Brethren with their catechisms. W:. Miguel Savinon, also a Silver card holder, obtained his White & Green Proficiency Cards solidifying his position as lodge instructor for Hialeah-Opa-Locka! We will be hosting a lecture by R:. W:. Joseph Fleites on Thursday, August 9, 2018. The lecture will focus on the esoteric and philosophical meanings of the lessons taught to us in our entered Apprentice Degree. We are hoping that the event draws a large crowd from within our district and from nearby districts as well. The lecture will be open to all Masons.
Continued growth and progress has been our mission this year, and so far we have made tremendous strides in both. We have interested young men visiting us on a weekly basis and plan on holding another set of degrees in the coming months. We are also cultivating new relationships and reviving old connections with other lodges within our district and in nearby districts throughout the South Florida area. Our hope is to promote our fraternal bond with other brothers in other lodges and work together to improve our craft and attract the next generation of Freemasons. While our numbers continue to grow, we have plenty of seats and would love to have more of our older Brothers come back and become active again. Our Stated Communications are he