"Continue the Work"

MW Bro. Jonas Cossette , Grand Master, 2023-24

GM Musings - April 2024 - Cossette (PDF)



Greetings Brethren,

In my last Musing I dwelt on the idea of the duality of Temperance - the need to move forward with restraint, and how that fosters growth. This draws to mind the two columns of the Saints’ John. Saint John the Baptist is celebrated on June 24th and Saint John the Evangelist is celebrated on the 27th of December. We see various installations occurring near one or the other. In this sense we will see some lodges beginning their Masonic Year, while others will be at the midway point of their yearly cycle.

These types of opposing cycles are important to the fortitude of an organization. Keeping the parts moving at different tempos can ensure that the natural tendency of the ebbs and flows of momentum are offset from one another, thus avoiding great swells of unsustainable growth and equally great depressions of inactivity. In the typical cyclical pattern, we will see our own Jurisdiction grow in a small and sustainable manner as we begin to look at welcoming a new Grand Line for our Jurisdiction and new members for our Board of General Purposes. The continual renewal of membership in our governance body ensures the continued prosperity of our organization as new members bring with them vitality, new ideas, and renewed vigor; while our experienced members offer wisdom, guidance, and education. If you are considering serving your lodge, District, the Board of General Purpose, or the jurisdiction, I do recommend you put your name forward. Freemasonry can and will always benefit from the help of those willing to serve.

The Annual Grand Lodge Communication will be held in Regina this year from June 20th to the 22nd. There will be Golf and a “Meet and Greet” event on Thursday the 20th. Grand Lodge will open on Friday the 21st at the Wa Wa Shrine Temple and will follow the same format as last year. A later opening on Friday to allow the Ladies and the Brethren to enjoy Downtown Regina at their own pace. Friday evening will see the Formal Banquet, and Saturday will have the majority of the Grand Lodge Business conducted, including the installation of the newly elected and appointed officers for the ensuing Masonic Year.

This brings me to the focus of this month, which is Fortitude. Fortitude is the natural progression from the balance found with Temperance. Once we have learned to observe that due medium between avarice and profusion we can begin to fortify ourselves. This is a skill which I am still working towards. Masonry has helped me to see some of my areas of weakness and to try to follow the steps of Prudence in directing my course, and Temperance in moderating my actions. Hopefully these steppingstones will allow me to work towards my goals with Fortitude.

In the book, “Discipline is Destiny”, Ryan Holiday writes about Temperance. I find this book speaks to me about Fortitude. There are many great passages in Holiday’s book. He writes about many great people who have accomplished much. I would suggest their ability to accomplish great things was in no small part due to their strength of character, or their Fortitude. Their ability to keep moving forward, no matter how tough the odds. In an excellent chapter of the book, the author writes about Lou Gehrig, who played professional baseball for 2,130 consecutive games. He states that Mr. Gehrig was a “two-time MVP, seven-time All Star, World Series Champion, Hall of Famer and the first player ever to have his number retired.” In this chapter of the book, the author speaks at great length about the personal struggles of Mr. Gehrig: his quiet stoicism and his commitment to his craft of baseball.

The author went on to quote two other famous men from history.

First, Muhammad Ali, “When a Man can control his life, his physical needs, his lower self, he elevates himself.” and secondly Winston Churchill: “Never give in, never give in, never, never, never, never - in anything great or small, large or petty… Never yield to force; never yield to the apparently overwhelming might of the enemy” The author would later reveal the two exceptions which Sir Winston Churchill would lay out - “never give in, except to convictions of honour and good sense.”

These two quotes so perfectly illustrate the ideals of Fortitude. We must have the personal strength to see our areas that need improvement, and we must have the personal strength to continue the work to improve ourselves in those areas. But we must not forget the foundation stone of Temperance, our will to temper ourselves with the convictions of honour and of good sense.

Once more Brethren, thank you for all the good work that you do. Please Continue the Work!


MW Bro. Jonas Cossette, Grand Master, 2023-24

Month Book Author Relation to Masonry
July Start with Why Simon Sinek In my heart
August The Richest Man in Babylon George S. Clason The 24-inch Gauge
September Atomic Habits James Clear The Common Gavel
October The Compound Effect Darren Hardt The Chisel
November Extreme Ownership Jocko Willink Truth
December How to win friends and influence people Dale Carnegie Brotherly Love
January 12 Rules for Life Jordan Peterson Relief
February The Art of War Sun Tzu Prudence
March Ego is the Enemy Ryan Holiday Temperance
April Discipline is Destiny Ryan Holiday Fortitude