The Official Publication of the Audubon Park Lodge #272

September 2016
Volume 18, Number 2

From the East ... 


Greetings Brethren

It is amazing how quickly my year as Master has passed.  It seems as November, and the start of my year, was just here.  During this time our lodge as grown with several new brothers and had many great fraternal moments.  Along with these great experiences there have been several losses.  Two of our very active members have left the area.  Brother John Rivera has moved to Oregon to continue his studies, earning a Phd.  WB Kim Roddy is traveling extensively and living on the west side of the state.  As a door closes a window opens, which mean it is important that all of us step up and fill the void, more on that later.

Our Lodge building continues to be heavily utilized.  Several lodges are still meeting here as the new Spokane Masonic center is not yet finished.  October 9th from 11 am – 4 pm Grand Lodge will present a training program for Secretaries, Treasurers, and Temple Board members at our Lodge.  The training is open to everyone, just register at the Grand Lodge web site.   

            This year’s district 27 annual meeting is scheduled for Saturday, October 22 beginning at 9:00 am and should end by 1:00 pm.  It will be held at the new Spokane Masonic center located at 506 W. 2nd Ave.  If the new building is not ready Plan B is to hold the meeting at the Manito Masonic Temple.  Lunch will be provided, cost $10.  Prior to the meeting a cornerstone ceremony will be conducted by the Grand Lodge team.

            At October stated meeting we will be electing new leadership for the Lodge.  Your participation is very important.  With Brother John leaving the area we have a hole in the line and need someone to step up and serve as master.  We have many younger masons that are filling the other chairs but need an experienced mason to fill the master’s chair.  It is not fair to expect one of the junior members to jump into the leadership of the lodge.  We have the resources needed to fill this need in our lodge; you just need to step up.  The support I have had throughout the past year has been great and I have no doubt that the next Master will have the same level of support.  Let me know of your plans at the next meeting. 

            Coming up over the next several month we will be have several brothers receiving degrees in addition our stated meetings and family nights.  Plan on attending as many functions as possible, this is what it is all about.  Of special note, our annual Steak Fry will be had September 30th this year.  This is the 5th Friday of the month instead of the usual 3rd Friday.  Please let me know if you will be attending so that I can make sure to have enough steaks. 

            As this is my last Pillars as master, I would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone that has helped to make it a special year.  You have supported me and provided growth and a great experience.  See you in Lodge.


WB Barry Rettkowski

Worshipful Master

From the West...  

Which and What Part of the Ashlar is Our Lodge Building?

How often to do you gauge your time and then knock away superfluous features or items of a given thing? I think upon this question often, for a variety of reasons, more especially because I have begun to ask myself, are physical masonic lodges superfluous?  I believe they are. I believe they are because over my ten short years as a Mason I have witnessed them skew our priorities, shift us gradually away from our Great Tenets and because I have seen others excel through a different way.

Buildings are important for a variety of reasons.  Their foundations, walls and furnishings typically exceed the lifetime of any given Mason and provide continuity.  I enjoy looking up our lodge walls and seeing who our past masters were and periodically seeing small memorials associated with deceased brethren. However, I can’t help but ask at some point, does the building exist to serve us or do we exist to serve the building? I ask this because I often observe many brothers, from many lodges and many jurisdictions spending the majority of their masonic time worrying about parking lot signage or leaky pipes at the expense of other things. Measuring their work upon a 24-inch gauge, I fear they may be spending too much time on the labor of property, and too little on fraternity and charity.

Brotherly love, relief, truth, fortitude, prudence, temperance and justice.  If a physical building can facilitate these things, effectively and often, it has a masonic purpose. What happens though when the building becomes an end in itself and its maintenance exceeds the applications of our tenants? Let us examine a couple.

Does our building promote friendship? I think in a sense it does but consider that America’s earliest Freemasons found ways to accomplish the same in tents and taverns. In this respect I would ask you to consider if there’s a more economical or practical way to accomplish the same.  If I needed transportation to work a couple of miles away from my home, bought a car to facilitate that goal but spent more time maintaining my car than working, I might have an issue.

Does the building provide relief? I can’t help but notice that we spend more on fixing toilets and mowing our lawn than on charitable contributions to our community.  Is it possible that the building impedes our ability to effectively provide relief? I think it does. Ask yourself the same for each of our other tenants.

I travel often for work and pleasure, and I enjoy visiting other lodges and taking note of what they do differently or similarly. One of the biggest differences I’ve seen over the years and throughout the world has been from those lodges which have abandoned the practice of being amateur property managers. They have sold their properties, invested income from those sales and become tenants in a substantially smaller facility.

As long as we have the privacy and capacity to conduct our degrees in a common and convenient place, does anything else in a meeting place really matter? I ask this because of a previous question that I also asked.  Do we exist to serve the building or does the building exist to serve us? I think in the past our numbers and demographics afforded us with the luxury of having beautiful buildings that served us well. However, today our significantly smaller numbers and lack of required talent often seem to put us in a position where our building had gradually become our end and not the means to a greater end. Do we really need it?

Senior Warden
B John Rivera


From the South...



It has been a long, hot and very dry summer, my house was 1/4 mile away from a large fire last week, but other than the smell of burning pine and a bit of a scare we suffered no ill effects.  Elsewhere Masons are doing their best to make do, and trying to do their part to parch throats!

Our brothers in Lodge No 34 last week held a very nice, well-run and extremely filling steak BBQ using the Lodge kitchen to good effect and serving a full room in the Lodge community room.  My daughter and many members of her "court" from Bethel 44, as well as few members of Bethel 3 attended and served at the event!  A good time was had by all who attended!

Additionally I was informed (rather gleefully!) that the summer had been a profitable one for our renting fellows with new members and some fundraising success for their plan to gain a new lodge facility!  Speaking of fundraising, I am now gainfully employed with two companies, no conflicts in schedules so far!

I have been busy with The "Widow's Sons" motorcycle club/lodge, enjoying Sunday morning rides as well as some volunteer work, as well as finding a few new places to visit with my wife in our "free time".

Yours in Masonry

B Rob Stevenson

Junior Warden


In Other News...

From the Secretary's Desk     

My Fellow Traveling Men:

Under the Washington Masonic Code, September is the month of membership inventory for Blue Lodge Secretaries.  Secretaries are obligated to send out dun notices for unpaid dues or assessments, correct membership rolls, and verify what brothers are still active in their lodge, have become inactive through non-payment of dues or assessments, or have died during the past year.   

Very few of our lodge brothers have yet to pay their 2016 dues and / or assessments, but if you have not or know of a brother, who has not yet paid this year’s dues, please get that done soon.  It will save the lodge concern and administrative steps in trying to ascertain the status of non-paying brothers.  If you know of a brother who is temporarily or seemingly permanently unable to pay dues or assessments, that can be taken care of properly and discretely by contacting me at the e-mail address or telephone number below, and we can keep that worthy brother on the active rolls of our lodge.

If you know of a disabled brother who would like to come to lodge but lacks transportation, contact me and we’ll get that brother to and from lodge one way or the other. As many of us get older seemingly by the day, the fellowship of a good lodge meeting with a group of brothers can make all the difference in the world to a month and put a smile on faces. Finally and sadly, if you know of a brother who has passed away in the last year and are not sure if our lodge has properly memorialized that brother and / or consoled his widow, please put a bug in my ear. I look forward to sitting in lodge with you this year, my Brothers.



B Chet Caskey

Lodge Secretary

(509) 863-2519


Audubon Park Masonic Building Association    


I hope everyone is enjoying the summer we are having this year.  I can’t believe it’s almost over. The leaves are already changing up here on the mountain. 

            The Building Association only met once over the summer. It was discuss to install rain gutters to keep the water away from the building. It was approve to get bids to see how much it would cost before going forward.

Over the summer we had problems with renters using our new commercial gas range.  The commercial range has pilot burners that are on all the time. We think the renters spilled something on the burners, which cause the pilot light to go out and they didn’t re-light them, which causes gas to leak into the building.  It was approved to get an estimate to install electric pilots. At this time the gas, to the range, is turn off and will only be turn on when in use and turn off afterward.

            Thank you to WB Eric Berman and VWB Chuck Young for taking care of the building this summer.  

Our lodge building has been really put to use this year and I would like to encourage everyone who has access to the Internet to bookmark the Audubon Park Masonic Building Calendar, found at this link:   You can also get to the Lodge calendar by going to our web site at:


WB Rich Hentz, Chairman


Happenings at the Lodge 

Audubon Park Masonic Foundation


How quickly summer days are giving way to the cooler autumn days.  Hope you will enjoy and find pleasure with each passing day and season.

When the founding fathers perceived the formation of our Foundation we sought the advice of wise masons and leaders of other organizations.  We consulted with District Judges, Boy Scout Officials, County officials, Grand Lodge officers and Committees.

Br. Richard Sayre, Attorney, who represented and guided us through the entire process, was very diligent in working with our Grand Lodge officers and committees.  The drafting and approval of our Articles of Incorporation, Bylaws and WA State and IRS approval went very smoothly.  The election and serving of Brothers of A.P. lodge on the BOD was the first and an ongoing process.  We have been fortunate to have talented brothers willing to serve.

Building a solid asset base was and still is the primary goal of the foundation.  That coupled with providing income to support our Lodge, Temple Bldg. and youth programs is why we exist.  The assets are held within a stock brokerage account consisting of an array of diversified mutual funds and a few stocks.

Fund raising began on October 19, 1989 APMF.  Several of the first donations include a refund check for 96 cents and another for 9 cents.  One 4th grader was awarded a bike from our "bikes for books" program.  At the next school assembly she donated from her piggy bank $ .26 to help us buy a bike for another student.  This thoughtful act brought a few tears to a number of us.

The foundation is grateful for every donation, large or small.  We held a number of events: dinners, dances, Clam Chowder, Corn Beef Dinners and Spaghetti feeds, etc.
Also we have experienced steady growth in our asset base.  Thank you to all of our donors and supporters of our events.  The future value of the asset base will depend on the overall performance of the markets.  We do anticipate there will be continuing change of value in any period or cycle.  The Foundation is here for the long term.

The Foundation has made grants of over $24,000 to our Lodge, Temple Bldg. and youth charities.  All of these groups will need continued and increasing financial support. 

By adding more bricks ($$) to our solid Foundation base the income generated can provide this relief and make the future of our Lodge even more secure.  For any Brothers willing to add more bricks ($$) to our base, your donations would be greatly appreciated.

President MW Br. Doug Tucker has scheduled a BOD meeting on Sept. 12 at 7 pm at the Temple Bldg.  All are invited.  Please feel free to contact me for a current financial report or any other question you may have.

Thank you one and all.

If you have comments or questions please contact me:  Cell:  509-590-9001  Email:


Fraternally yours in service.

WB Eric E. Berman

Audubon Park #272 Temple Board

 Rainbow Girls    


Rainbow Girls are meeting at Audubon Park Masonic Building the 1st and 3rd Mondays each month at 7 pm, all Masons are invited to attend their meetings. 

Call 710-1879 to find out what is happening at their meetings.

Job’s Daughters

            Job’s Daughters, Bethel #3, are meeting at Audubon Park Masonic Building the 1st and 3rd Sunday of each month at 7 pm.  The young ladies would love to see Masons attend the meetings.  Please come and support these young ladies.


Masonic Fact

“We represent a fraternity which believes in justice and truth and honorable action in your community…men who are endeavoring to be better citizens… and to make a great country greater.  This is the only institution in the world where we can meet on the level all sorts of people who want to live rightly.”  Harry Truman President of the United States – source: Center for Masonic Information

Who do I talk to?

Contact the Worshipful Master, Lodge Secretary, or WB Eric Berman if you know someone that is interested in renting the building. 

If you want something put into the Pillars contact the Lodge secretary:

Audubon Park Masonic Lodge #272

POB 9575    Spokane WA 99209-9575

Or call or e-mail

Secretary: B. Chet Caskey, Lodge Secretary (509) 863-2519

Pillars Editor: WB. Barry Rettkowski 509-928-0075 email:

Calendar of Events 

September 2016

9/12     APML Foundation Meeting – 7:00 p.m.

9/14     September Audubon Park Lodge Stated Meeting – 7:30 p.m.

Dinner before the Meeting 6:30 - 7:30 p.m.

9/19     Temple Board Meeting – 6:00 p.m.

9/30     Family Night Steak Fry and Pot Luck – 6:30 p.m.

October 2016

10/9     Grand Lodge Sec / Tres / Temple Brd. – 11:00 AM

10/12   October Audubon Park Lodge Stated Meeting – 7:30 p.m.

Dinner before the Meeting 6:30 - 7:30 p.m.

10/17   Temple Board Meeting – 6:00 p.m.

10/21   Family Night Pot Luck / Installation – 6:30 p.m.

10/22   District 27 Meeting – 9:00 AM – 1:00 PM


November 2016

11/9     November Audubon Park Lodge Stated Meeting – 7:30 p.m.

Dinner before the Meeting 6:30 - 7:30 p.m.

11/18   Family Night Pot Luck – 6:30 p.m.

11/21   Temple Board Meeting – 6:00 p.m.

Officers 2015-2016

Worshipful Master                  WB Barry Rettkowski

Senior Warden                        B John Rivera

Junior Warden                         B Robert Stevenson

Secretary                                 B Chet Caskey

Treasure                                   B Bret Anderson

Chaplain                                  B Rob Humbird

Marshal                                   B Eric Behlke

Senior Deacon                         B Justin Haldeman

Junior Deacon                         B Michael Staley

Senior Steward                       WB Richard Hentz

Junior Steward                        B Ivan Beliaev

Tyler                                        WB Richard Hentz

MWB Harold Tucker past Grand Master of the Most Worshipful Grand Lodge of Washington

MWB Douglas Tucker past Grand Master of the Most Worshipful Grand Lodge of Washington