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Masonic News & Views -- Bart the bear
August 29, 2011
Greetings Brother,

Once upon a time in the woods beyond the CowChows there lived a bear named Bart. Bart was a big beautiful brown bear and all the other animals of the forest loved him. He worked very hard to make the forest a better place for everyone, but he was also playful and fun.

One day Bart became ill, and soon word spread all through the forest that Bart the bear was gone. And, all the animals were very sad. The little brown field mice brought petals from every kind of flower in the forest and laid them at the opening of Bart's den. The bees brought mugs of Bart's favorite honey and placed them on the multicolored carpet of flower petals. Oscar, the cotton-tailed rabbit, made several trips to the field near the bend in the river to fetch sweet clover, and piled it into a mound near the base of the tree where Bart scratched his back every morning. A chorus of birds perched in the limbs of the tree and bravely sang the tunes Bart loved so well. The deer came and placed a woven-leaf basket full of gooseberries next to Bart's big flat sunning rock. Even the mountain lion came out in the afternoon heat to offer his respects for the big brown bear. But still, the animals were sad.

And then Oscar, the cotton-tailed rabbit said, "Do you remember how Bart would roll himself over and over in the clover patch near the bend in the river? He looked so funny rolling and wallowing about in that clover that I asked him once why he did it. He just shrugged and said, 'I like to smell like clover.'"

And Evelyn the doe said, "I remember in the Fall when the persimmons would turn the most beautiful blush of orange, and Bart was the only one tall enough to reach any but the very lowest branches. He could've taken all the sweetest fruit for himself, but instead he would invite us all over and then give the tree a mighty bear shake. The ripe fruit would fall to the ground and Bart would bow graciously and say, 'Dinner is served.'"

And Kelly, a regal-looking red Cardinal, giggled and said, "Bart would come out of his den on his way to breakfast, and he would always stop to listen to us sing. One time he said, 'You call that music? I'll show you music!' and he picked up a stick and began waving his arms around like a conductor. After a bit he tossed down the stick and said, 'You're absolutely right. Your way is much better.' And then, he began dancing the most hilarious jig until we were all laughing so hard we nearly fell out of the tree."

And one by one the animals of the forest told their stories of Bart's bravery, or silliness, or service, or kindness, or love. Soon the animals were laughing as they remembered the life of their dear friend. There were still tears but now they were tears of happy laughter tinged with sadness for they knew that the big beautiful brown bear Bart would never truly be gone so long as they remembered.

And Oliver, the wise old owl, swiveled his head all around and said simply, "Bart would like this." And they all agreed that he would.

Fraternally yours,

Tim Couch

Now, on with the news........................

Wednesday, August 31, 2011: Memorial visitation and services for Illustrious Sir Bart Tucker 33, will be held at J.D. Lee & Sons Funeral Home in Rogersville, Missouri. Visitation will be from 6:00 to 8:00 PM, followed by the funeral and Rose Croix services. Reverend Dale Roller 33 will officiate the funeral service.
Bart was a past and the present Worshipful Master of Pleasant Hope Lodge No. 467. He was a Past District Deputy Grand Master of the 34th Masonic District of Missouri, a 33rd Degree Scottish Rite Mason of the Valley of Joplin, and a Noble of Abou Ben Adhem Mystic Shrine. Bart was a friend to many, a brother to all, and he will be sorely missed.
For more information and to send condolences visit the J.D. Lee & Sons website.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011: Washington Lodge No. 87 will meet in Special Communication for work in the 2nd Degree of Freemasonry. Up to four candidates will be presented for passage to the degree of Fellow Craft. Lodge will be duly Opened at 7:00 PM.
Washington Lodge is located on the west side of the courthouse square in Greenfield, MO.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011: Billings Lodge No. 379 will meet in Special Communication for work in the 3rd Degree of Freemasonry. Brother Ryan Steven Stoops will be presented for advancement to the sublime degree of Freemasonry. Refreshments at 6:00 PM and Lodge will be duly Opened at 6:30 PM.
We would also appreciate the Brethren bringing a bag of candy for the Billings Parade. Thank you.

The Tri-County Scottish Rite Club cordially invites all Scottish Rite Masons and their family and friends to enjoy fun and fellowship at their regular meetings held on the third Thursday of each month. Tri-County meets at the Elks Lodge in Bolivar , MO. Social time at 6:30 PM; Dinner and meeting at 7:00. Yearly dues are just $5.
For directions and inquiries please call John Bennett at 417-328-8188 or Jackie Slagle at 417-376-2943.

Saturday, September 10, 2011: Charity Shoot for Kids sponsored by Solomon Lodge No. 271. Proceeds from this Sporting Clays Shoot will support McGregor and Bowerman Elementary Schools in Springfield, MO. The event will be held at Ozark Shooters Sports Complex in Branson, MO. Click here to open and print a registration form for this event. For more information contact Brother J.W. Gibbs at (417) 350-2700.

Sunday, September 11, 2011: Friend Lodge No. 352 will hold their annual installation of Officers ceremony. The ceremony will begin at 2:00 PM and there will be refreshments following.

Sunday, September 11, 2011: Bolivar Lodge No. 195 will hold their annual installation of Officers ceremony beginning at 3:00 PM.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011: It's once again time for the ever popular Abou Ben Adhem Shrine Corn Roast. It will be held at the usual place at Pat Jones River Park. Gates open at 4:00 PM. This event is free to ABA Nobles and there will be corn, BBQ and Camels Milk. This is a stag event for the members of Abou Ben Adhem and dues cards will be checked at the gate.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011: Solomon Lodge No. 271 will hold their annual Installation of Officers ceremony beginning at 7:00 PM. This will be an open event. Family and friends are invited and welcome to attend.

Saturday, September 24, 2011: The Valley of Joplin KCCH Club will host the annual Rite Care Memorial Golf Tournament to benefit Joplin Scottish Rite Care. The tournament will be held at Eagle Creek Golf Club in Joplin, MO. This will be a 4-Person Scramble with a shotgun start at 8:00 AM. Entry fee is $85 per player and includes:

  • Greens fee
  • Cart with GPS
  • One Mulligan
  • Post-Tourney lunch and awards ceremony
  • A Goodie-Bag
  • Additional Mulligans are available.
Lunch will be catered by Eagle Creek Golf Club. There will be Flight Prizes, as well as prizes for Men's/Women's Longest Drive and Closest to Pin. Hole sponsorships are available for $100. This year's tournament is dedicated in memory of H. Joe Anderson and Peter S. Christodoulou. For more information call (417) 623-3219.

Saturday, October 1, 2011: Sparta Lodge No. 296 in Sparta, MO will host a Concealed Carry Firearms class. The classroom portion will begin at 8:30 AM, and then a trip to the shooting range after lunch. The class should be finished around 4:00 PM. Guns will be available or you may bring your own. You'll need about 100 rounds of ammunition, .22 long rifle if borrowing a gun. For more details call 417-880-0074.

The Scottish Rite Valley of Joplin needs your help in preserving our beautiful Scottish Rite Cathedral. And, in helping preserve this piece of American history you could win a brand new Chevy Camaro. Tickets are just $50 each and only two thousand tickets will be offered. There will be cash prizes awarded, as well. For all the details on how you can help us preserve this beautiful building please go to WWW.WIN-CAMARO.COM. or visit and "LIKE" the page at While you're at it be sure and tell your friends. Thank you very much.

As you can see there's lots of Masonry going on in Missouri. See the links below to keep up with the latest or to submit information for your upcoming meeting.

For more news of upcoming events and special communications visit the Upcoming Masonic Events page on

For a calendar of Stated meetings for many of the Lodges and Masonic bodies visit the Masonic Calendar page on

For help locating a lodge building visit the Missouri Masonic Lodge Map page on

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