Monday, November 29, 2010

Somewhere Over the Rainbow

Rainbow. The magic word that all DeMolays hear when asking the question, “Are girls going to be there?” when talking about a dance, an installation, or some other social activity that they may be attending. This girl’s organization is a huge part of DeMolay, as well as Job’s Daughters. It seems that most guys feel that because Rainbow is a girl’s organization it’s dumb and girly because, let’s face it, who really wants to be involved with a ‘weird’ girl’s organization where they prance around in frilly white dresses? However, what most guys don’t know is that Rainbow and DeMolay are actually more alike than they think.

The International Order of the Rainbow for Girls was brought to life in 1922 in McAlester, Oklahoma by W. Mark Sexson because he, as well as others, felt there was a need for a female Masonic youth organization. He had great support from lodges and other participants in the Masonic family, including “Dad” Frank S. Land. (that name sounds familiar, right?) This organization was brought about as a ‘junior member’ organization of Eastern Star, and was fully recognized as such. In my research of Rainbow now and in the past, I have brought together a list of qualities that this beautiful Order teaches. One of the main qualities that Rainbow teaches is effective leadership. Effective leadership in the home, school, church, and community are an important lesson learned by both Rainbow and DeMolay in the act of service which we all perform. Cooperation with equals, acceptance of all, and patriotism for your country are all also important lessons taught in Rainbow, as well as in DeMolay.

I’m sure everyone has seen, heard, and taken part in the seven precepts of DeMolay; Love of Parents, Reverence for Sacred Things, Courtesy, Comradeship, Fidelity, Cleanness, and Patriotism. These are common words for DeMolay’s because in the Order, those virtues are taught, repeated and rehearsed until they are so worked into member’s minds that those words just roll off the tongue. Those words and virtues are easy for a DeMolay to remember. Although I’m currently a Sweetheart for DeMolay, I was still unable to think of the correct names and order of these Precepts. After doing a little research, I was finally able to put these words together.  For me, as an active member of Rainbow, I had a hard time replacing Rainbow’s bow stations with those of the Precepts. Rainbow has seven ‘Bow’ stations; Love, Religion, Nature, Immortality, Fidelity, Patriotism, and Service, one for each color of the rainbow. These stations and virtues are taught during different ceremonies throughout the Order, and then throughout life.

I was just thinking back, considering rewording my previous paragraph because I didn’t like the fact that I was unable to come up with the seven precepts of DeMolay without doing a little bit of research, but instead I decided to turn that into a little lesson. Why don’t I know the precepts? Why am I like most other Rainbow’s and DeMolay’s who do not understand and recall such virtues of the opposite group? Such virtues in both orders should be taught and respected among all youth, not just youth of that particular organization. Sure, we share a few of the same virtues, but what can be done to ensure that all members know and understand the others of the brother or sister youth group? I challenge all of you to learn and understand each of the precepts and bow stations and relate them to each other. Such teachings are important as we grow and form into the future of the Masonic family, may it be as a part of the Masons, Eastern Star, or any other adult organization involved.

I could write for hours about the importance of the youth organizations coming together, and I could continue to urge you to Take Control! and work together with the girls, but I’ll leave you with this familiar statement: “Food, fun, friends, and females”. Without Rainbow and Job’s Daughters, how incomplete would your DeMolay experience be?

Angela Lennox is no stranger to DeMolay or Rainbow. She is currently serving as Grand Hope for PA Rainbow as well as a current Chapter Sweetheart. She is also the twin sister to Bro. Denny Lennox, a past elected State Officer. Her e-mail address implies that she is the prettier of the set of twins. We'll let you be the judge!

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