The Ceremony of Installation
of Master is conducted by an Installed Master, who on most occasions will
be the outgoing Master of the Lodge, for the sake of convenience the Installing
Master is referred to throughout as I.M.
If the Master elect is not fully qualified under the Constitutions and Regulations to be installed into the Chair, because either he has not served the office of Warden in a Regular Mark Lodge for the full period of one year, or he has not served as Master of a Lodge of Craft Freemasons, then it will have been necessary to have applied for and to have obtained a dispensation from the appropriate authority in accordance with Reg. 73 (ii).
If the outgoing Master is not to carry out the Ceremony, he will invite the Installing Master to take the Chair at an appropriate moment
The Installing Master will invite Past Masters to occupy the Chairs of Senior Warden and Junior Warden, and to undertake the office of Inner Guard. He may also invite a Past Master to undertake the duties of Chaplain, and also those of Director of Ceremonies. These Past Masters should be conducted formally to their respective posts by the D.C., and the Brethren who are relieved of these duties should be conducted to seats elsewhere
D.C. presents Master Elect (M.E.) from a position immediately to the East of the Master Overseerís pedestal.
D.C.: Worshipful Master
(or Worshipful Installing Master), I present to you Brother Ö the Master
elect of this Lodge for the ensuing year, to receive at your hands the
benefit of Installation, the better to qualify him for the discharge of
his important trust.
D.C. resumes his seat, M.E. remains standing
I.M.: Brother Ö, I congratulate you on the honour which has been conferred upon you by your Brethren and I shall have pleasure in complying with the request now made. Before proceeding, however, to install you as Master of this Lodge of Mark Master Masons, it is necessary that I should address some questions to you, with a view to testing your qualifications for the office You will accompany your reply to each with the Sign of Fidelity.
Have you been legally elected to fill the First Chair by the members of this Lodge regularly assembled for that purpose?
M.E.: I have.
I.M.: Have you duly served the office of Warden for a full year in a lawfully constitutcd Lodge of Mark Master Masons?
M.E.: I have.
I.M.: Have you been regularly installed in the Chair of a Craft Lodge of Freemasons?
M.E.: I have.
If the answer to either of the last two questions is in the negative, the dispensation must be read aloud at this point.
I.M.: Do you consider yourself qualified to undertake the management of the Lodge by reason of your conduct as a man and as a Mason, your skill in our noble art and your knowledge of the traditions, landmarks and constitutions of the Mark Degree?
M.E.: I do.
I.M.: Do you promise faithfully and impartially to discharge your duties as Master of this Lodge, and neither in that capacity, nor at any time when the Lodge may be under your direction, to permit any deviation from the established landmarks, regulations and ceremonial of the Order?
M.E.: I do.
I.M.: Then you will ratify and confirm these promises by sealing them once with your lips on the Volume of Sacred Law.
D.C. rises, returns to M.E. and conducts him to the Masterís pedestal, where he ratifies the promises, D.C. then leads M.E. to a onvenient seat.
I.M.: I will now thank the Brethren below the rank of Installed Master in this Degree to withdraw.
Those Brethren, with the exception of the M.E. retire from the Lodge without saluting, Officers should have left their Collars on their seats, or handed them to the A.D.C., before leaving.
D.C. conducts M.E. from his seat
to position just East of the M.O. and stands just behind him.
I.M.: I declare this a duly constituted Board of Installed Masters in the Degree of Mark Master Mason.
Gavels once, not repeated by Wardens.
I.M.: The Brethren will rise, turn to the East and assume an attitude of prayer
Brethren place right hand on heart. D.C. prompts M.E. to do likewise.
I.M., or Chap.: Almighty Father and Great Overseer of the Universe, vouchsafe Thy blessing on this our solemn rite, and grant that the Brother who is about to be numbered among the Rulers in Mark Masonry may be endued with wisdom to comprehend, judgment to define and ability to enforce obedience to Thy most holy law.
Sanctify him with Thy grace, strengthen him with Thy mighty power and enrich his mind with genuine knowledge, that he may the better be enabled to enlighten the minds of his Brethren and to promote the honour and glory of Thy most holy name.
Omnes: So mote it be.
Brethren drop right hand, and turn face inwards. D.C. prompts M.E. to drop right hand.
I.M.: Brother Ö, you will now take a solemn obligation with regard to the duties of your office and the secrets restricted to the Masterís Chair. For that purpose you will advance to the pedestal.
D.C. conducts M.E. to the pedestal and returns to his place.
You will stand erect, place your right hand on the Volume of Sacred Law and elevate your left hand towards heaven.
State your several names at length and repeat after me:
I, Ö, in the presence of the Great Overseer of the Universe, and of this worshipful assembly of Installed Masters in the Degree of Mark Master Mason, do accept the office of Master of this Lodge and pledge myself to a faithful discharge of the duties thereof, until the next annual period of election within the Lodge, and until a successor shall have been duly elected and installed in my stead.
I hereby bind myself to maintain and preserve the ancient discipline, landmarks and traditions of the Order.
I solemnly vow that I will never divulge the secrets restricted to the Masterís Chair in this Degree to anyone in the world, unless it be to an Installed Master of a Lodge of Mark Master Masons, or to a candidate duly elected to that office, and then only in the presence of and with the assistance of at least one other Installed Master in the Mark Degree duly summoned for that purpose.
I further engage myself to uphold the authority and supremacy of the Grand Lodge of Mark Master Masons of England and Wales and its Districts and Lodges Overseas.
Lastly I pledge myself to an exemplary practice of the principles of this Degree and to the maintenance of its peculiar rites and ceremonies.
All this I do on my honour, so help me the Great Overseer of the Universe and keep me steadfast in this my solemn obligation of an Installed Mastcr of a Lodge of Mark Master Masons
I.M.: As a pledge of your fidelity and to render this a solemn obligation you will seal it with your lips four times on the Volume of Sacred Law
M.E. drops left hand and complies.
I.M.: I now acknowledge you as the duly obligated Master of a Lodge of Mark Master Masons.
I.M. lifts right hand of M.E. clear of V S L , and releases it.
I.M. leaves his pedestal by the South side, takes M.E. by both hands, turns him anti-clockwise and places him just to the South of the pedestal facing North, I.M. faces him about one pace away.
I.M.: After the death of our Master, Hiram Abif, with the circumstances of which you are of course well acquainted, it was necessary to elect a presiding Master to fill his place, but on account of the number of able and intelligent craftsmen, it was difficult to choose one without giving umbrage to the rest. It was at length determined to select twelve from among those Mark Master Masons who had already held office as Overseers, and who were deemed superior to the others These were required to repair on the following morning to a particular spot and it was arranged that he who should first see the rays of the rising sun should be acknowledged Master and supply the place of Hiram While the majority looking towards the East, I.M. instructs M.E. in a whisper to remain still, he himself turns to the East and shews Screen Sign
screened their eyes with their right hands, thus, to guard them from the approaching glare, Adoniram, turning to the West, I.M. instructs M.E. in a whisper to follow his example, both turn to the West observed a sunbeam strike the roof of the Temple. He immediately fell on his right knee I.M. and M.E. kneel on right knee and held out his right hand in the Plumb Sign to indicate his discovery, this being peculiarly appropriate to him as it was his particular duty to prove Masonry perpindicular by thus holding the infallible plumb line.
I.M. rises, but restrains M.E. from so doing.
He was at once acknowledged as the legitimate successor of Hiram Abif, one of his companions then raised him with this Grip
I.M. takes hold of right wrist of M.E. between his own right thumb and forefinger, raises him and turns him to face North
The whole of them then saluted him thus: I.M. gives Screen Sign followed by Plumb Sign, M.E. does not copy.
The Words of an Installed Master are Sar Habbonim, signifying Chief of the Builders.
The full sign of an Installed Master is given by the Screen Sign, followed by the Plumb Sign and the last part alludes to the ancient punishment of having the tongue slit from root to tip.
These Signs and the Words are the distinguishing secrets of an Installed Master of a lodge of Mark Master Masons.
D.C. presents Masterís Apron, on cushion to I.M., he then removes apron of M.M.M. from M.E.,and returns to his place.
I.M.: I now invest you with the badge of an Installed Master.
I.M. invests M.E. with Masterís apron.
I also invest you with the Collar and Jewel of your office, which is the highest honour the Lodge can bestow on any of its members.
I.M. takes hold of right wrist of M.E. between his own right thumb and forefinger, and leads him to the North side of the Masterís pedestal, I.M. walking backwards, when M.E. is in position in front of Chair.
With the Grip and the Words Sar Habbonim of an Installed Master, I install you in the Chair of Adoniram.
As I.M. says the Words, he places Master in the Chair, releases Grip and steps away to the South
I.M.: I offer you my congratulations on your past services having been such as to justify the Brethren in submitting themselves to your direction.
I.M. goes to front of pedestal, picks up gavel and returns to South side.
I place in your hands this gavel gives gavel to Master the symbol of your rule.
Master places gavel on pedestal.
I.M. places right hand on heart
And may God speed you in your work.
I.M. goes to front of pedestal, salutes Master with full sign of an Installed Master, he returns to South side of pedestal
I.M.: Worshipful Master, will you now be pleased to invest the Immediate Past Master?
D.C. offers Collar and Jewel of I.P.M. to Master, who rises and invests I.P.M. with suitable words, Master then sits.
I.M.: I now have to inform you that the reading of the Hebrew characters on the obverse of the keystone, as communicated to an Installed Master, is Hiram The Whole Structure Showed To King Solomon.
I.M.: Brethren, now that Worshipful Brother Ö has been regularly installed in the chair of Adoniram according to ancient custom, I call upon you to salute him as Installed Masters with five, taking the time from me.
Installed Masters salute the Master with full sign of an Installed Master, five times.
I.M.: Worshipful Master, will you be pleased to close this Board of Installed Masters?
Master: I declare this Board of Installed Masters closed. Gavels once, not repeated by Wardens.
I.M.: Be seated, Brethren.
End of Inner Working
I.M.: Brother Inner
Guard, admit the Brethren.
Visiting Brethren below the rank of Installed Master are admitted first and, without saluting, return to their seats.
Brethren of the Lodge below the rank of Installed Master are admitted and under the direction of the D.C. form a line along the North side of the Lodge, facing South, D.C. takes his place at the East end of the line, he places his wand in a stand or hands it to a Brother seated behind him.
I.M.: Brethren, during your temporary absence, Worshipful Brother ... has been duly installed in the chair of Adoniram according to ancient custom, and I call upon you to pass before him and to salute him as Mark Master Masons.
D.C. leads procession round Lodge, each Brother salutes Master as a Mark Master Mason without halting, procession re-forms line in the North, D.C. recovers his wand.
I.M óI now proclaim Worshipful Brother ... Master of the Ö Lodge of Mark Master Masons, No ... on the Register of the Grand Lodge of Mark Master Masons of England and Wales and its Districts and Lodges Overseas, until the next regular period of election within the Lodge, and until a successor shall have been duly elected and installed in his stead; and I call upon you to greet him as Mark Master Masons with three taking the time from me.
Brethren greet Master, with handclaps in the rhythm of the knocks of the Degree three times.
I.M.: Be seated, Brethren.
Brethren from Column in North move to convenient seats and sit.
I.M.: Worshipful Master, I now present to you the Working Tools of a Mark Master Mason, which are the Mallet and Chisel, I.M. points to Mallet and Chisel lying on the Volume of the Sacred Law on which also you were admitted to this Degree. With their symbolic uses in other degrees you are familiar. In this Degree they are employed to indent the Triangle, the Mark Masterís mark of approval of the work, as being fitted for its place in the intended structure. But as we are not all operative but free and accepted or speculative Masons, we are by these tools again reminded of the moral advantages of discipline and education and are led to entertain a firm but humble hope that, by the correction of irregularities and the subjugation of our passions, we may hereafter be found worthy to receive the approving mark of the Great Overseer of the Universe, as fitted to form part of that spiritual edifice, "that house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens".
I.M. requests Master to stand, I.M. opens Warrant, and he and Master hold it by two top corners so that it is displayed to the Brethren.
If the Warrant is framed, I.M. goes to it and points it out.
I.M.: I now present to you the Warrant of the Lodge, which has already passed through the hands of many worthy and distinguished Brethren, and I trust that it will be transmitted to your successor pure and unsullied as you now receive it.
Master relinquishes hold of Warrant, which I.M. hands to D.C. to fold and put away I.M. requests Master to sit.
I.M.: I now present to you the Constitutions and Regulations, of which it will be your duty to make a careful study, and the By-Laws which you are to enforce in your Lodge.
Form of closing a Lodge of Mark Master Masons
W.M., seated, gavels once, repeated
by Wardens; he rises: I rise to inquire for the first time whether
any Brother has aught to propose for the good of Mark Masonry in general
or this Lodge in particular. W.M. sits.
W.M., as before: I rise to inquire for the second time Ö
W.M., as before: I rise to inquire for the third and fourth times Ö
S.D. collects working plans from W.M. and Overseers and deposits them on S.W.'s pedestal.
W.M., seated, gavels once, repeated by Wardens: Brethren, assist me to close the Lodge.
W.M.: Brother Junior Warden, what is the constant care of every Mark Master Mason?
J.W. gives Sn. M. and stands to order with H. Sn.: To prove the Lodge close tyled.
W.M.: Direct that duty to be done.
J.W. gives third party of first sign and discharges it: Brother Inner Guard, prove the Lodge close tyled.
I.G. goes to door and knocks * * **; Tyler replies * * **; I.G. returns to his station, gives Sn. M. and then stands to order with H. Sn.: Brother Junior Warden, the Lodge is close tyled. Gives third part of first sign and discharges it.
J.W. gavels * * **, gives Sn. M. and then stands to order with H. Sn.: Worshipful Master, the Lodge is close tyled.
W.M.: Brother Senior Warden, what is our next care?
S.W. gives Sn. M. and then stands to order with H. Sn.: To see that the Brethren appear to order as Mark Master Masons. Gives third part of first sign and discharges it.
W.M.: To order, Brethren, as Mark Master masons.
All give Sn. M. and stand to order with H. Sn.
W.M.: Brother Senior Warden, where is your constant place in the Lodge?
S.W.: In the West
W.M.: Why are you placed there?
S.W.: As the sun sets in the West to close the day, so is the Senior Warden placed in the West to close the Lodge by command of the Worshipful Master, after having seen the wages distributed and the working plans deposited in a place of safety.
W.M.: Have the working plans been so deposited, the dues all rendered and the wages paid?
S.W.: They have, Worshipful Master, to the best of my knowledge and belief.
Chaplain or W.M.: Before the Lodge is closed, let us with all reverence and humility express our gratitude to the Great Overseer of the Universe for favours already received and, as the stone rejected by the builders, possessing merits to them unknown, became the head of the corner, so may we by patient continuance in well-doing be built up as living stones into a spiritual house, meet for His habitation.
Omnes: So mote it be.
W.M.: Brother Senior Warden, our labours being ended, you have my command to close the Lodge. Gavels with left hand * * **.
S.W.: In the name of Adoniram, and by command of the Worshipful Master, I close the Lodge. All give third part of first sign and discharge it; S.W. gavels * * **.
J.W.: And it is closed accordingly until the next regular meeting, emergencies excepted, of which due notice will be given. Gavels * * **.
I.G. goes to door and knocks * * **; Tyler replies * * **; I.G, remains at door; J.D. adjusts Tracing Board; P.M. goes to front of pedestal, removes Mallet and Chisel, closes Volume of the Sacred Law, places Mallet and Chisel thereon and returns to his place.
P.M.: Nothing now remains but, according to ancient custom, to lock up our secrets in the safe repository of our hearts, uniting in the act of Fidelity, Fidelity, Fidelity Fidelity.
All place right hand on heart four times to the rhythm of the knocks of the Degree.
A closing hymn may now be sung.