Presented by V.W. Bro. Norman McEvoy
Past Master (1998)
Victoria Columbia Lodge No1
Grand Lodge of BC&Y (Canada)
It seems, with the arrival of winter, we find ourselves attending more Memorial Services than usual for Brethren who have passed to the GLA, remembering the wonderful times we have had together, and offering our condolences to his family.
During the last month, I have had too many of such occasions and in particular the loss of a dear and personal friend whose company and wisdom I had the privilege of sharing both inside and outside of the Lodge & Chapter.
I was deeply honoured in that his wife of many years asked if I could assist in the planning of his Memorial Service. It was at that time that I found myself attempting to explain to the officiating Minister, WHY the Brethren would want to place a sprig of Evergreen on the casket.
It is very possible that many of those reading this issue are unaware of the reason WHY we Freemasons consider this to be such an honour, so “Courtesy of the Grand Lodge of Manitoba” I now offer an explanation.
The Evergreen, which once marked the temporary resting place of one illustrious in Masonic history, is an emblem of our abiding faith in the immortality of the soul.
By it, we are reminded of our high and glorious destiny in our Father’s Kingdom; and that there dwells within each of us an imperishable immortal spirit, which lives eternally.
In the steadfast faith of Freemasonry there is an enduring belief in the wisdom and goodness of God, and a trusting reliance that, like this Evergreen, our souls will hereafter flourish in eternal spring. It is an emblem of our Faith and of our Hope and we are comforted in the Belief that our Brother has found entrance to a fairer and brighter world.
As we place our hand over our Left Breast we think to ourselves;
“His Memory is Faithfully Cherished in our Hearts”
As we extend our right hand over the Apron, dropping the sprig of evergreen we think to ourselves;
“To the grave we consign the remains of our Departed Brother”
We raise our right hand and point it upward, we think to ourselves;
“We commit his spirit to God who gave it”