Masons' mystique attracted its new master

Why not join them? The Masons and their good works date back to the Renaissance

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  • Goshen Lodge #365, Free and Accepted Masons of the State of New York at the Public Installation of Officers (from left), front: Leonard Berger, Jason Duval, Alain Panganiban, Past Master Charles D. VanDeMark, congratulating Master Elect Christopher Mackey, Philip Hennion, and Kenneth T. Skyer. Back: William Ferris, Clifford Bartley, Robert D'Arrigo, and William E. Eustance. (Photo by Geri Corey)

  • Goshenites Carol and Stephen Coon, a long-time member of the Masons, enjoy themselves at the officers installation dinner, held June 2 at DeLancey's. (Photo by Geri Corey)

“It’s one of the best choices that I’ve made, aside from having my daughter. There’s a lot of camaraderie, here and with other lodges.”
Christopher Mackey

By Geri Corey

— At a public installation of officers, Christopher Mackey was inducted as Master of the Free and Accepted Masons, Goshen Lodge #365. The formal ceremony was held on June 2 at DeLancey’s Restaurant.

Mackey became involved with the Masons, one of the largest and oldest fraternal organizations in the world, in 2009 and was brought into the group in February 2010.

“I’ve been moving up ever since,” he said.

Mackey said he found the organization “intriguing” since at the time books and movies like “The Da Vinci Code” and “National Treasure” were popular, and the masons, as a working group, went back to the time of the Renaissance.

Many customs of the Masons evolved from the period of cathedral building in Europe, from 900’s until the 1600’s. During that time, masons — the stoneworkers who built cathedrals and other buildings — formed guilds in various European towns and cities. With the decline of building large stone structures, the guilds, later referred to as “lodges” became social societies.

Today’s Masons promote brotherhood, nurture morality, and encourage lending a hand to people in need.

Mackey “absolutely” is glad he joined the Masons.

“It’s one of the best choices that I’ve made, aside from having my daughter,” he said, explaining, “There’s a lot of camaraderie, here and with other lodges.”

Mackey is married to his wife, Amanda, and they have one daughter, Hayden, age 7. He grew up in Florida, N.Y., and moved to Goshen in 2000, where he still lives.

Mackey thanks the members of his lodge for their diligent work that make them as successful as they are.

“The fraternity of our lodge is growing back strong. New young members are joining to carry on our legacy, like I’m doing,” he said.

A Masons roadside cleanup along Route 17M from the traffic light at the Valeria Restaurant to South Street is scheduled for the last week in September. The public is invited to help.

“Many hands make light work," said Mackey.

The Masons-sponsored “October Fest” is scheduled for the first weekend in October.

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