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upon you so to do; you must not be unmindful of thcrs* whom nature has more immediately connected to you.
If you cannot bestow alms on the necessitous, you may recommend them to those who can; you may drop a tear over their misfortunes, and in something or other be serviceable to them; and in whatever way you can contribute your mite, Charity with pleasure will accept of it; she will consider the principles by which you were influenced, and if these were proper, she will tell you, you have done your duty; that you have her applause; and that, in due time, you will plenteously gather the happy fruits of your benevolence.
The man who loves his fellow-creatures, who sympathizes in their miseries, and who anxiously wishes it was in his power to relieve them, though hit circumstances allow him to give no pecuniary assistance, is very charitable: for gifts and alms are the expressions, not the essence, of this virtue. A man may bestow great sums on the poor and indigent without being charitable; and may be charitable when he is not able to bestow any thing. Charity therefore is a habit of good-will or benevolence in the soul, which disposes us to the love, assistance, and relief of mankind, especially of those who stand in need of it.
By inspiring gladness into a heart oppressed with want, you receive the most rapturous,—the most durable pleasure, of which the heart is capable: and so far as you are thoroughly sensible of the satisfaction which arises from doing good, and that the best way of enlarging human happiness, is by communicating it to others, so truly are you Masons; and as such you will always have a tear of tenderness ready to shed over the unfortunate, and be ever ready to do them kind offices; your hands will never be shut when benevolence commands them to be opened; and when a collection is to be made for charitable purposes, you will chearfully throw in your mite to increase it.
Whatever collection is now made, you maybe assured will be religiously appropriated for the purposes for which you design it; industrious, but unfortunate brethren, and not the idle and dissolute, will be partakers of it: some part of it will go to the dwellings of poverty and disease, there to procure bread for the hungry, and medicines for the sick; and some part of it will rejoice the hearts of the aged.
A SHORT CHARGE
GENERALLY GIVEN TO NEW-ADMITTEB
You are now admitted, by the unanimous cone sent of our Lodge, a fellow of our most ancient and honourable society; ancient as having subsisted from time immemorial, and honourable, as tending in every particular to render a man so, that will be conformable to its glorious precepts. The greatest monarchs in all ages, as well of Asia and Africa as of Eouropet have been encouragers of the royal art, and many of them have presided as grand-masters over the Masons in their respective dominions; not thinking it any diminution of their imperial dignities to level themselves with their brethren in Masonry, and to act as they did. The world's great Architect is our Supreme Master, and the unerring rule he has given us, is that by which we work. Religious disputes are never suffered in our Lodge; for, as Free Masons, we only pursue the universal religion of nature: this is the cement which unites men of the most different principles in one sacred band, and brings together those who were the most distant from each other.
There are three general heads of duty which Masons ought always to observe, viz. to God, our neighbors, and ourselves. To God, in never mentioning his name but with that reverential awe which becomes a creature to bear to his Creator; and to look upon him always as the Summun Bortum, which we came into the world to enjoy; and, according to that view, to regulate all our pursuits. To our neighbour, in acting upon the square, or doing as we would be done by. To ourselves, in avoiding all intemperance and excess, whereby we may be led into a behaviour unbecoming our laudable profession.
In the State,, a Mason is to act as a peaceable and dutiful subject, conforming chearfully to the government under which he lives: he is to pay a due deference to his superiors; and from his inferiors he is rather to receive honour with some reluctance, than to extort it: he is to be a man of .benevolence and charity, not sitting . down contented while his fellow-creatures (but much more his brethren) are in want, and it is in his power, without prejudicing himself or family, to relieve them. In the Lodge he is td behave with all due decorum, lest the beauty and harmony thereofshould be disturbed and broken, He is to be obedient to the Master and presiding officers, and to apply himself closely to the business of Masonry, that he may sooner become a proficient therein, both for his own credit, and for that of the Lodge. He is not to neglect his necessary avocations for the sake of Masonry, nor to involve himself in quarrels with those who, through ignorance, may speak evil of or ridicule it. He is to be a lover of the arts and sciences, and to take all opportunities of improving himself therein. If he recommends a friend to be a Mason, he must vouch him to be such as he really believes will conform to the aforesaid duties; lest by his misconduct at any time the Lodge should pass under
tome evil imputations. -Nothing can prove more