Apcar Talk 1946
TALK GIVEN BY RWM MICHAEL APCAR AT THE FIRST MEETING OF LODGE STAR IN THE EAST
SINCE THE BEGINNING OF THE WAR
Tuesday, April 9, 1946
WORSHIPFUL BRETHREN AND BRETHREN:
We meet here this evening in Open Lodge for the first time in four years and five months, with mixed feelings of gladness and sorrow.
We meet in humble thankfulness to the Great A. of the Universe for the many blessings and tender mercies bestowed upon us in His infinite goodness.
To the U.S. Army of Occupation for their sympathetic consideration in granting us permission to once again hold our Masonic meeting in this our Masonic Temple.
To the Brethren of the Tokyo Bay Masonic Club for their moral and spiritual support, as well as their generous material assistance, in setting us on our feet again. Several of the former members who have now returned to their respective homes will no doubt be well pleased that we are now reaping the harvest of the seeds that they had sown, and to them we also offer our sincere gratitude for all that they have done.
Lodge Star in the East No. 640 S.C. received its Charter sixty seven years ago from the Grand Lodge of Scotland. This charter was among the confiscated articles and although all else has been lost this most important dooument has been found and now occupies its honored position in our Lodge, thus enabling us to hand it pure and unsullied to our successors. Our Lodge has in its long years of existence seen many years of happiness but it cannot be denied that it has had its share of sadness and adversity.
On September 1, 1923, the disastrous earthquake and fire which destroyed Yokohama completely demolished our Temple together with all of our belongings, and for a second time again at the outbreak of World War II on December 8, 1941.
This second time, not through natural causes but by deliberate, malicious and political tyranny of the Japanese Government, not only were our properties confiscated but several brethren were placed in jail, for various reasons, their only crime that of a being member of our Ancient and Honorable Institution.
I will not dwell this evening on the trials and sufferings of the individuals while in jail, but suffice it to say it was at times almost beyond human endurance.
By the confiscation of our records and all Masonic regalia and furniture no doubt the Japanese Government were under the impression that they had broken the Masonic backbone, but as you brethren are well aware the Masonic backbone consists of its excellent principals, traditions and tenets.
These true Masonic principals, the Ancient landmarks and traditions of our excellent and honorable institution are safely lodged in the repository of faithful breasts and are thus transmitted unimpared under circumstances precarious and even adverse through a succession of years.
In our hour of triumph we must not for one moment overlook nor forget the factors which contributed towards the restoration of our Temple and our happy meetings again.
It is my command that this evening be dedicated to the memory of those that lost their lives in the gigantic struggle which has been brought to a g lorious and successful end to free the world from our oppressors and thus affording peace and security to mankind in the future, and also to offer our sincere condolences to the relatives of our dear departed brethren.