Masonic Lodge 711 installs officers for 2023
By RHEA-FRANCES TETLEY
A nearly full lodge room of members and visitors witnessed the installation of officers of Masonic Lodge #711 on Dec. 27 in Twin Peaks.
Installed as Master was Richard Pumerantz PM (Past Master) with outgoing Master Aaron Creighton passing the top hat. Appointed officers installed that evening received lanyards with a jewel representing their office. They were: Manuel Martinez, Tiler; Kurt Huddleston, Senior Steward, and Alex Vallejos, Junior Steward, both of whom were handed long white rods as symbols of the offices; Johnny Wells, PM, Marshall; Cliff Beacham, Senior Deacon; Gary Bothman, Junior Deacon; and Aaron Creighton, PM, Chaplain.
Elected officers formally installed into office were Ken Witte, PM, Secretary; Dale Newton, Treasurer; Johnny Royal, Senior Warder; and Chester Olsen, Junior Warder; were installed into the line.
Brother Olsen played the piano during the processions and floor work of the ceremony and was installed as Organist. The installing officers were Johnny Wells as installing Chaplain, John Shannon as Master of Ceremonies and Jack Rose (Past Grand Lecturer) as the installing officer.
After the formal ritual of the installation, Master Pumerantz commented, “I will always remember to be benevolent.” He told the story of how he became a Freemason, while asking his now father-in-law for permission to marry his daughter. He was told only a Freemason could marry her so, of course, since he had strong intentions to marry her, he asked, “How can I become a Mason?”
His life has been wonderful these past 33 years, Pumerantz said, since he joined and married her. He joined Claremont Lodge in 1989, got married a few weeks later and became Master in the Claremont Lodge in 1995. He has been active in Grand Lodge as well, being appointed to the position of Grand Orator of California in 2001. He has been active in cornerstone laying ceremonies throughout the state for public buildings and schools.
Pumerantz then told the story of moving to the mountains three years ago and seeking a lodge to join. He ran into many of the members at community events, including Ken Witte, but with COVID it was difficult to attend meetings due to the restrictions. He then realized one of his Masonic brothers from Claremont, Chet Olson, was an active member of Twin Peaks Lodge and, when lodge began meeting again, Pumerantz began attending.
Now Pumerantz is enjoying sitting in Lodge with other men of quality. He intends to connect the Twin Peaks Lodge with the activities of Big Bear Lodge. The two small mountain lodges plan to work together to make both lodges stronger together.
“We are a small lodge but we have all the officer chairs filled with installed officers this year,” Master Pumerantz said. The stated meeting on Jan. 4 will be the 33rd anniversary of Pumerantz’s initiation into Freemasonry.
After the installation, they went into the dining room to celebrate the Feast of St. John the Evangelist, where after a delicious dinner of turkey, ham and chicken, they cut the huge cake.
“We know Freemasons from other lodges have moved to the mountains over these past few years and we need to connect with them and invite them back to Lodge. The future evolution of Lodge is to come together as men to share brotherly love and ring true to the needs of the community, becoming community leaders, as we have in the past,” added Pumerantz.
Rim of the World Lodge #711 Free and Accepted Masons, which was chartered 70 years ago, is located at 26012 Highway 189 in Twin Peaks, behind the historic logging wagon.
The members of the Lodge invite all who are interested to their stated meeting dinners, held on the first Wednesdays of the month. For a calendar of events and to RSVP, visit https://lodge711.freemason.org. Everyone is welcome to the dinners, after which the Masons hold their meetings. Call or text Chet Olson with questions at (909) 238-9714.
Installing the badge of office on Master Richard Pumerantz at the Dec. 27 ceremony.
The newly installed officers of Masonic Lodge #711 in Twin Peaks.
The Junior and Senior Stewards being led to their seats by the master of ceremony during the installation.
The top three officers of Masonic Lodge #711 being challenged to do their best.