Independent Order of Vikings
Opening of the Lodge.
Chieftain: The meeting will come to order.
Officers, take your respective stations and see that the doors are closed and properly guarded.
When attended to, the Chieftain proceeds with ceremony.
Chieftain, *: The hour for opening this meeting is now at hand. No one who has not passed the requirements for Vikings, or is not in possession of the current quarterly password is permitted to remain. The Vice Chieftain, you will satisfy yourself that our guards possess knowledge of the signals, signs and passwords of our Order, and instruct them to not admit strangers or improper persons to the ante-room or Lodge hall during the deliberations. The Herald will ascertain that all present are in possession of the current password.
The Vice Chieftain takes up both passwords from the inner and outer guards, and furnishes them with such instructions as they may be in need of to properly perform their respective duties, whereupon he (she) returns to his (her) station, ready to report..
The Herald advances and gives the password to the Chieftain, after which he (she) circles the room, obtaining from each person, who must rise, the current password.
Should any member be without such password, the Herald will direct him or her to the Chieftain; if not a member he (she) will request him or her to leave the room. If a visiting member is present, Herald announces this to the Chieftain with name of Lodge.
Before communicating the password to a member, the Chieftain must, in every case, inquire of the financial secretary whether the member is in good standing, or member must show receipt book or card.
The Herald, after having satisfied himself (herself) that every one in the room is entitled to remain, returns to his (her) station, ready to report.
Whenever a substitute officer is appointed for the evening he (she) should be instructed in his (her) duties by the Chieftain.
The duty of the Herald is to collect from the members in the lodge hall the quarterly password prior to opening; to see that the officers are clothed in proper regalia; to see that the proper salutation signs are used; and to see that the members strictly observe all rules of decorum.
Vice Chieftain: Chieftain! Our guards have been examined and found to possess the required qualifications for a proper performance of their respective duties.
Herald: Chieftain! All present possess the password for the current quarter.
Chieftain, ***: We may then, undisturbed, begin our deliberations. Permit me to remind you of the responsibility that rests upon each and every one of us in the solution of all problems that may come before us, and for the correctness and righteousness of which solutions we entertain great hopes. And we, who have been entrusted with the making and keeping of the records of this Lodge; to guard its treasures; to preserve order and decorum, and prevent the entry of improper persons, should always remember that on a punctual performance of our obligations connected with the positions of trust accorded to us, depends in a great measure the future success of this Lodge. Let us, therefore, do our best, always remembering that reward for our deeds will follow.
Let us join in singing the opening ode.
Ye children of Northland, who westward set sail,
Ye Vikings, to all a hearty greeting!
May also in Vinland our virtues prevail
And stronger grow each time that we are meeting!
To fight, we are pledged, for the good and the true,
If broken we see the laws eternal.
We meet here as comrades our troth to renew,
And add new links to friendship's chain supernal!
Chieftain, *: Inner guard, notify our outer guard that the Lodge is open, and is ready to admit waiting members.
Chieftain: The Finance Secretary and Herald will retire to the ante-room and ascertain the names of the candidates wishing to submit to our requirements for membership, and, will collect from them the required fees.
Re-enter and report.
Finance Secretary: There are ... candidates, namely: … name ready and willing to take the obligation and become members in our select circle of descendants of the illustrious Vikings.
Chieftain: The members who assist in the initiation of candidates, will take their respective stations and prepare themselves for the performance of this solemn act.
When ready for performance of ceremony, Chieftain proceeds.
Chieftain: The Herald and assistant Herald will retire to the ante-room, prepare the candidates and conduct into our midst those who are willing to submit to our prescribed obligations and requirements.
Retire to ante-room.
Herald, taking names of candidates: Worthy candidates! Do you know of any reason that would prevent your acceptance as members in this organization, the principle of which is charity, and aim fraternity? If so state them now.
Herald: Will you promise us, that if we accept you as members of this organization that you will not reveal to any one out of this organization, anything that may here transpire?
The candidates are blindfolded.
Herald: You will now follow me on your turbulant path of trial that leads to success, and I promise to safely guide you through.
Knocks on inner door.
Inner Guard: Chieftain! There sounds an alarm on our portals!
Chieftain: Who dares approach the secret council chambers of the Vikings?
Inner Guard to Herald in ante-room: Who dares approach the secret council chambers of the Vikings?
Herald: The tried and tested Herald of the Vikings with strangers from the north, descendants of Vikings, who have given satisfactory answers to the preparatory questions and who are willing to submit themselves to the requirements which will make them worthy of becoming members of this organization.
Inner Guard: The tried and tested Herald of the Vikings with ... strangers from the north, descendants of Vikings, who have given satisfactory answers to the preparatory questions and who are willing to submit themselves to the requirements which will make them worthy of becoming members of this organization.
Chieftain: You oft tried guardsman! Let them enter this room that we may see if they possess the bravery and virtues of their forefathers and if Viking blood flows in their veins.
Inner Guard: Let them enter this room that we may see if they possess the bravery and virtues of their forefathers and if Viking blood flows in their veins.
The Herald enters with the candidates.
Song No. 1
We hail thee, strangers of the North,
In welcome we thee sing.
Thou sprang from Svea's glorious earth,
Come, take thy place 'mongst friends of worth,
With clang of shields and harps that ring,
We greet thee at our Ting.
Herald: You have now entered within the outer portals of the Vikings and have been separated from the temporal world. Be cautious and careful on your journey to their secret council chambers, as unknown dangers may await you, but have courage, for I have promised to guide you and a Viking never breaks a given promise.
Inner Guard in the role of Heimdal, blows his horn, if such is available. He or she steps in front of the Herald and asks: Who comes there?
Herald: The tried and true Herald of the Vikings with strangers from the distant North, descendants of our illustrious Vikings, who desire membership in our Order.
Heimdal: Trusted Herald, give me the pass word.
Heimdal: Before you are allowed to advance any further I must test and see if you are our true and trusted Herald.
Answer, therefore, the questions I now put to you: How do you know that these strangers are worthy to become members of our Order?
Herald: They are willing and ready to submit to such tests as are prescribed, and so prove to us their worthiness.
Heimdal: What do these strangers expect in return for their willingness to endure such tests and trials?
Herald: True comradship, the time-honored viking kind; cheer and friendship during the journey over unknown pathways of life.
Heimdal: You have been tested and found worthy! Follow me.
He leads them to the Vice Chieftain.
Herald: Vice Chieftain! I present to you these strangers from the North, descendants of Vikings, that they may before you subscribe to our Vikings oath.
Vice Chieftain: Strangers! Will you give us your word of honor to always keep secret whatsoever you may here see or hear?
You will now take the oath by placing your right hand on your heart and repeat the following:
"I (add your name) promise and swear, on my word of honor, and by the ancient sword of Odin, that I will not reveal to anyone, who is not entitled thereto, any of the secret signs, pass words, signals, or ceremonies of this Order, nor anything in whatsoever form, which may transpire, within any lodge, of which I may be a member or which I may visit.
I further obligate myself to always conduct myself, rightly and honorably, towards lodge and member Vikings, and to obey all laws established for Grand and Subordinate Lodges. If I violate this my solemn oath and promise, I agree to be expelled from this Lodge and Order."
Friends, I greet you welcome to our ranks, and remind you of our ancient forefathers, who regarded it as an unpardonable breach to break a given promise. The sword of the modern day Vikings differs from that of the ancients in a most significant degree. Whilst their was of polished steel, ours consist of the double edged sword of enlightenment and advancement, without which no power in the world can exist. I charge you: mold this weapon, for without this your existence in the community becomes insignificant and your value as a champion in this fraternity nil. Avoid to in the slightest degree injure anyone, either within or without this fraternity. Whenever the icy winds of need and poverty penetrate a brother's or sister's lonely dwelling, be always ready to instill in his or her heart light and peace from the warming rays of a sun emanating from fraternal acts and love. Wherever the truth is trampled under foot, it is your duty to the same defend. You can then with joy and hope await the removal from this home of strife to Vikings' peaceful Valhalla.
Herald! Conduct our newly received members to the Asars kinsman, our aged Past Chieftain, that they may receive from him (her) further advice and ancient rules of wisdom.
Song No. 2
Now have Odin and Thor, Frej and Balder and Njord,
Those who watch when we wake and we sleep,
Now have Freya and Nanna and Frigg heard thy word;
What is promised you also must keep.
Listen, thou, who art born to be worthy and wise,
Thou, whose faith is like steel, clear and strong,
To the valiant runes, to the Chieftain's advice,
As we read it in myth and in song.
Herald: Worthy Kin of the Aesir! Our new-won friends come to you, aged sage, who hath gathered your wisdom's strength out of the fountain of Mimer, and requests advice for the struggle that awaits them.
Past Chieftain: Esteemed Brothers (and Sisters)! You have now passed through the ordeals, and with honor withstood the test. It therefore becomes my duty, as the Vikings oldest Chieftain, to give you a few rules of conduct, the observance of which is an unavoidable requirement for the attainment of an esteemed place within our fraternity. I also desire to remind you of a few of our worthy forefathers,—and the ancient deities,—words of wisdom,—the undisputable wisdom of which can, with undiminished circumference, act as a guide for the conduct of our modern day Viking.
It is undoubtedly well known to you, that we, in pursuance of our laws and usage, protect our members in the moment of danger and aid in sickness, and render the last service whenever Odin sees fit to call you to the Heavenly Valhalla. But it is also a pleasant duty to assist one another in our desire to gain intellectual development through which we may be a credit, and become better citizens of the community.
Your conduct should always be such, both within as well as without the lodge, that there can be no cause for complaint, nor can occasion regret, that we this day have accepted you as members of our fraternity.
Never forget that you have given us your word of honor to always retain as secret the ceremonies and acts of the Independent Order of Vikings, and never convey them to anyone who is not entitled to gain knowledge thereof, for you ought to be mindful of, that the ancient Odin's all-seeing eye watches over that all promises are kept. Violations thereof will bring about a strict application of our laws, without regard to the individual. Lastly, let me give you a few rules of wisdom, which may be of inestimable value to you in life.
A warning shall you have to-day
Oh brothers, proud and young,
Before all counsels sleep for aye
Upon the dead man's tongue.
And first, the high gods reverence!
For good and evil come,
Like storm and sunshine, not from hence,
But Valhalla's shining dome.
The heart's most secret vaults they see
Though clos'd with fast'nings strong,
And long years' penance shall there be
For but one moment's wrong. :
By few the haughty man is fear'd,
Hated he is by all;
And arrogance, by few rever'd,
Is father to a fall.
Too much good sense none ever show,
However wise it fall;
But little enough full many know,
Who have no wit at all.
Fond youth on many things for aid
Will trust itself indeed;
But battle proves the keen sword blade.
And want a friend in need.
A friendless man, however fear'd,
However bright his day.
Dies like a trunk in deserts rear'd,
Its bark all peeled away;
But who so claims fast faithful friends
Grows like the woodland tree,
Round whose deep roots the streamlet wends,
Whose branches sheltered be.
Down to the grave thyself must go,
And what thou hast, away;
But one thing, brother, well I know.
Which never can decay,—
That is the unchanging doom decreed
To every dead man's sprite;—
Will, therefore, every noble deed,
And do thou every right!
Live as you wish when you die, to have lived, well knowing that this world is unthinkable without a creator and preserver or the existence of human morality and accomplishments without a final judge over virtue and vice.
You are now to accompany our Herald to our mighty Chieftain, that you may receive additional advice and rules for your conduct.
Song No. 3
All hail, Oh stranger dear!
Our honored Chieftain here,
Brave and glad;
A homage let us bear him!
A conqueror in fight,
He stands with helmet bright
On his brow-
Fraternal oath we swear him.
Herald: Honored and esteemed Chieftain! I present before you these brothers (and sisters) from the distant North, descendants of our ancient clan of Vikings, who have complied with the requirements prescribed by our laws and usage.
Chieftain: Friends! You have listened to words of wisdom and to the experienced and battle tried warrior's advice. Mind and follow them as you obeyed your father's and mother's prayers in your days of childhood and youth, for useful advice is like the mornings dew on the flower's stalk, and as a shower on sun-baked fields. Like the darkness, which embraced the earth on creation's morn, but disappeared on the Creator's mighty, "Let there be light," so the shadows pursued one another here in hallowed council chamber, until delivery came upon your affirmative promise passing over your lips that you will keep the oath which you were prepared to take and which each Viking before you has taken.
It was the All father's eye that then gazed down through space and smiled the smile of understanding and encouragement. As the Herald assisted you upon your journey so, also, should you assist and help members who are weaker than you. Learn therefore, that hate and vengeance and deceit cannot exist within true Vikings nor in the assemblies of the Lodge.
I earnestly hope to see that the teaching given you this evening will take root in thought and will and bear fruit a hundred fold, as then the moments of sorrow will be lessened and those of happiness doubled.
Seek the road that leads to Valhalla and when you have found it go valiently forward, and leave in the sand footprints for others to follow to the same abode of the gods!
With these admonitions I now proceed to give you the unwritten work of our Order. To enable the identification of a member of this Order, we have a handgrip done in the following manner . . . and in order to unmolested complete our deliberations in the meetings we have signals, passwords and salutation signs, a knowledge of which can only be conveyed to members of this Order, and only by the officiating Chieftain. When you attend this meeting you give only the quarterly password to the Herald who receives the same, but whenever you attend the meetings of another lodge of this Order you should then also give your name and the name of your lodge, in addition to giving the password, or present a traveler's card.
Should you arrive at the Lodge hall after the opening of the Lodge, you then give on the outer door a signal . . . . and to the outer guard, whispering, the permanent password, wich is . . . ., whereupon you gain entrance to the ante-room. On the inner door you give the following signal . . . and to the inner guard the current password, likewise in a whisper. This password, which is changed quarter-annually, is for this quarter . . . . You have thereby gained entrance to the Vikings' council chamber. Advance thereupon to the center of the room and first salute the Chieftain then the Vice Chieftain thus . . ., after which you take your place in the Lodge.
Should you desire to retire while the Lodge is in session, you advance as before and salute the same officers in a similar manner. Should an answer to your salute be refused, you cannot retire, but ought to again retake your seat.
The gavel which is the emblem of authority with which the Chieftain is vested, serves also to legalize the motions carried in the meetings.
One rap calls the Lodge to order, a member to silence, or seats the members when standing *. Two raps calls up the officers (or degree staff) * *. Three raps calls up the Lodge * * *.
You will now please face about and as your name is called by the Secretary, take a step forward whereupon your fellow members of the Vikings will welcome you in the usual way.
We will now sing initiation Ode No. 4.
Now by Odin and by Thor,
Ancient gods of Northern lore,
You're a Viking of our band,
Vikings, truly, clasp your hand.
For the right,
Then your path shall be more bright.
Welcome to our Viking throng,
To our friendship true and strong.
Chieftain: I now invite our new members to take their seat among us.
Closing of the Lodge
Chieftain: All questions submitted for our deliberations at this meeting have been properly disposed of.
Chieftain: Financial Secretary, what are the receipts?
Financial Secretary answers.
Chieftain: Has the Treasurer received these funds, and given receipts therefore?
Chieftain: Recording Secretary, what are the disbursements for the evening?
Recording Secretary answers.
Chieftain, ***: We are then ready to close this meeting. Let us all during the interim have the best interest of this organization in view, always working for its success and respect, and at every opportunity afforded, help and succor our suffering and needy members. Let us join in singing our closing ode:
When we depart,
Help us, O Valhall's recorder,
Always to honor our Order,
Dear to our heart!
Friends, when we start,
Think of the welfare of others,
Work for the sisters and brothers.
Dear to our heart!
Chieftain: I now declare this meeting duly closed. *.
Opening of the Lodge.