There is an alarm at the door, one knock,
followed by four.
Commander-in-Chief: Even now, our call to
duty has sounded. Let us hasten to answer ere it is too late.
Captain of the Guard, open wide the door,
that he who knocks may enter freely. Master of Ceremonies,
receive him as an honored guest, for he brings us the rich gift
Captain of the Guard opens the door and
Constans, representing candidate, enters.
Master of Ceremonies, midway between the
Commander-in-Chief and the door: Welcome, my Brother, to this
Consistory of Sublime Princes of the Royal Secret. If you are a
suppliant, you bring us opportunity to serve.
If you are an ally, you may serve with us.
Advance with confidence and our Commander-in-Chief will hear
Choir: Thrice welcome we give to the Brother
whose heart With the heart of Mankind is akin.
Thrice welcome to all who would do a man’s
part In the war against error and sin.
For him Our doors are opened wide,
For him our love, what'er betide,
Thrice welcome we give to the Brother whose
heart With the heart of Mankind is akin.
Master of Ceremonies takes Constans by left
arm, conducts him to west of camp and returns to his place.
Constans: Commander-in-Chief, a suppliant I
come, that I may also be an ally. I know that none should be
admitted to your ranks save earnest and sincere men, - Masons,
not in name only, but also in deed. I am earnest and sincere, a
Mason, and a Grand Inspector Inquisitor Commander of the Ancient
Accepted Scottish Rite. I know full well my unworthiness, yet I
humbly aspire to serve with you for the good of our brother men.
The following colloquy should be slow, solemn
Commander-in-Chief: By what name are you
Commander-in-Chief: What do you desire?
Constans: To be admitted among you as a
fellow soldier and servant in the Grand Masonic Army of Sublime
Princes of the Royal Secret.
Commander-in-Chief: Why a soldier?
Constans: That I may shield the oppressed;
guard the weak; protect the innocent; and combat the enemies of
God and humanity.
Commander-in-Chief: Why a servant?
Constans: That I may help the needy; succor
the poor; relieve the distressed; and be a builder and true
Mason in the holy House of the Temple.
Commander-in-Chief: You ask much, for you ask
to be a co-worker with God. How have you prepared yourself for
this high employ?
Constans: It is not for me to speak. Unless
my Brethren can answer for me, I am indeed unworthy.
Master of Ceremonies: Commander-in-Chief, I
vouch for the Masonic progress of this Brother. He has been
regularly initiated as an Entered Apprentice; passed to the
degree of Fellow Craft; and raised to the Sublime Degree of
Master Mason. He has been chosen a Grand Elect Mason, proclaimed
a Prince of Jerusalem, consecrated a Knight of Rose Croix, and
promoted to the rank of Grand Inspector Inquisitor Commander.
Commander-in-Chief: Your progress has been
steady; yet all this does not suffice if you have not studied
and understood the lessons taught, and the principles inculcated
in these degrees. Behold the lines of our Masonic camp spread
before your view, and be tried by its discipline and tests.
Engineer and Seneschal rises and salutes: The
camp of the Ancient Accepted Scottish Rite of Freemasonry is a
nonagon enclosing a heptagon, within whose lines is a pentagon
which encloses a triangle in the center of which is a circle.
Thus do we find the mystic numbers, 3, 5, 7 and 9, all emanating
from the circle of infinity. As these numbers symbolize Divine
attributes and Masonic principles, so should Masonic labor
emanate from Divine love, be directed by Divine wisdom, and be
exercised in Divine power for the good of mankind and the glory
The second emanation from infinity is denoted
by the pentagon, each angle of which represents a division of
the Scottish Rite Army. Take heed while their attributes are now
Engineer and Seneschal salutes and returns to
Orator rises and salutes: The first angle
represents the Symbolic Lodge wherein are given the first
lessons in Masonry. The Entered Apprentice is the physical man
admonished to labor; The Fellow Craft is the intellectual man in
whom knowledge is joined to physical power as science directs
energy; the Master Mason is the triune man, in whom the
spiritual is united with the intellectual and the physical, and
whose works are eternal, because eternal love inspires
The Worshipful Master may be attended by his
two Wardens. They rise, and the Master salutes:
Commander-in-Chief, I here declare as a
Worshipful Master in Ancient Craft Masonry, that this Brother
has been raised to the Sublime Degree of Master Mason, has
dedicated himself at the Altar of Masonry, and has been inspired
by the Master’s word. He is a worthy Master Mason.
Orator and Worshipful Master salute and are
Hospitaler rises and salutes: The second
angle represents the Lodge of Perfection. Herein are taught
those duties toward our brother man whose performance leads
steadily toward a knowledge of God. We learn that selfish
endeavor defeats itself and debases the man who engages in it.
We are taught that by united labor for the good of all, humanity
is advanced toward the Ineffable Mystery wherein all should be
Thrice Potent Master may be attended by his
Deputy Master, Senior and Junior Wardens. They rise and the
Thrice Potent Master salutes: Commander-in-Chief, I here declare
as Thrice Potent Master of a Lodge of Perfection, Ancient
Accepted Scottish Rite, that this Brother has labored for the
upbuilding of the temple; he has guarded its treasures, and
delved into its mysteries. He has studied the Ineffable Symbols,
and has learned the Ineffable Word. He is a Grand Elect Mason.
Hospitaler and T.P.M. salute and are seated.
Orator rises and salutes: The third angle represents the Council
of Princes of Jerusalem. Here is taught the power of Truth to
release the captive of error, and to rebuild the temple of human
happiness when assailed by ignorance and vice from within, or by
injustice and oppression from without. Fidelity to trust,
honesty in public and private conduct, devotion to Truth, are
the attributes of a Prince of Jerusalem.
The Sovereign Prince may be attended by his
High Priest, Senior and Junior Wardens. They rise. The Sovereign
Prince salutes: Commander-in-Chief, I here declare as Sovereign
Prince of a Council of Princes of Jerusalem, Ancient Accepted
Scottish Rite, that this Brother has withstood temptation and
has kept his trust. He has labored with the sword of vigilance
in one hand, and the trowel of steadfast purpose in the other.
He is a Prince of Jerusalem.
Orator and Sovereign Prince salute and are
Second Lieutenant-Commander rises and
salutes: The fourth angle represents the Chapter of Knights Rose
Croix. Here the light promised to man from ancient times shines
in all its glory. The love which gives eternal life is revealed.
Faith, Hope and Charity are the pillars of the spiritual temple.
The new law is proclaimed, and men learn to "Love one another."
The Most Wise Master may be attended by his
Senior and Junior Wardens. They rise. The Most Wise Master
salutes: Commander-in-Chief, I here declare
as Most Wise Master of a Chapter of Rose Croix, Ancient Accepted
Scottish Rite, that this Brother has followed the Light. He has
learned the new law. He knows that good will overcome evil; that
life eternal will conquer death; that through love, our
brotherhood is everlasting. he is a Knight Rose Croix.
Second Lieutenant-Commander and M.W.M. salute
and are seated. First Lieutenant-Commander rises and salutes:
The fifth angle represents the Kadosh. By
impressive ceremonies have been taught the lessons that the
future is heir to the present; that the light of Masonry should
illumine the darkness of the world; that labor is noble; that
all worship is holy when prompted by a devout heart; that God is
found through service to men; that from God comes all good and
to God all good should return in loving oblation, Finally, that
as all men are sons of God, so should men be brethren working
together for good.
Chancellor rises and salutes:
Commander-in-Chief, I here declare as Chancellor of Knights
Kadosh, Ancient Accepted Scottish Rite, that this Brother has
studied the lesson of the ages; he has borne his Masonic light
into the world; he has sought to serve his generation that the
future may be better because he has lived. He seeks to know God
by loving His creatures. He is Kadosh, consecrated to God in
service to his fellow men.
First Lieutenant-Commander and Chancellor
salute and are seated.
Commander-in-Chief: Out of the fullness of
the heart doth the mouth speak. Sublime Princes of the Royal
Secret, you have heard. Shall Constans be admitted to our
fellowship? If such be your will, give the sign of assent.
Assent by right hand extended.
Commander-in-Chief: The Candidates will rise,
come to the Sign of Fidelity, and assume the obligation of this
Constans retires quietly, as the
Commander-in-Chief directs the Candidates to rise. The Master of
Ceremonies escorts the Exemplar to a position near the Altar.
Commander-in-Chief, to Exemplar: Advance to
Kneel on both knees, place your left hand on
the Holy Bible and sword, your right hand over your heart, and
take the vows ... Each candidate will say "I," give his name in
full, and then remain silent until I bid you speak.
I, …, of my own free will and accord, in the
presence of the Grand Architect of the Universe, do hereby most
solemnly promise and vow that I will be governed by, and in my
conduct conform to, the statutes of this or of any Consistory to
which I may belong, and by and to the Constitutions of the
Supreme Council of the Thirty-third Degree under whose
jurisdiction I may reside.
I furthermore promise and vow, that I will
never introduce nor give my consent to any one being admitted to
any of the degrees conferred in a Consistory of Sublime Princes
of the Royal Secret, unless I am fully satisfied as to his high
moral character, worth and standing as a man and Mason, and of
his zeal for, fervent attachment to, and exemplification in his
life of the true principles of Freemasonry.
I furthermore promise and vow, that I will be
loyal to the government of my country; and that I will always
support and obey the laws of the same.
I furthermore promise and vow, that I will
cordially and sincerely join with the Sublime Princes of the
Royal Secret in their noble project of uniting all Freemasons,
over all the earth, for the purpose of establishing peace,
harmony and concert of action within the Order.
I furthermore promise and vow, that to be
better able to serve the Order and mankind, I will strive at all
times to behave and demean myself as a Mason should, to be
worthy of being associated in the noble and glorious work of
making this world a Temple, a fit abiding place for the Grand
Architect of the Universe, and that nothing in my conduct or
demeanor shall in the least reflect discredit on this
Consistory, or on Freemasonry, or tend to destroy, or even
diminish, my capacity and power for doing good.
All candidates will repeat after me:
Should I ever willfully violate this, my
solemn promise and vow, may I be degraded from the society of
honorable men and Masons. Amen!
My Brother, you will arise. The class will be
The Investiture may be delegated by the
Commander-in-Chief to another officer.
I present to you the Golden Spurs of
Knighthood; they are a symbol of that zeal, energy of purpose,
and sense of duty that should ever spur us to action in a noble
and sacred cause.
The presentation of the spurs is symbolic.
The spurs should not be put on.
Receive this sash or cordon of the Order; its
color is an emblem of sorrow and mourning for the miseries and
sufferings of humanity. Receive also and wear this Teutonic
cross, the jewel of the Order. Deserve it by the service you
shall hereafter render to the good cause in which you now take
rank as a chief and leader.
In addition to the cordon and jewel, you, as
a Sublime Prince of the Royal Secret, should be clothed with the
ancient and honorable distinctive badge of a Mason, the apron,
which is to teach you that notwithstanding the high position to
which you have now attained, you should be ever mindful of your
obligation as a Master Mason.
On this apron is the special symbol of this
degree, the camp. On the flap is an All-Seeing Eye, the symbol
of Infinite Wisdom; beneath it, a Teutonic cross surmounted by a
double-headed eagle, supported by the flags of the Holy Empire.
Commander-in-Chief gives three knocks:
Captain of the Guard, advance the Standards. Sublime Princes,
stand at attention, uncover, and salute the Flag of our Country
by placing the right hand over the heart.
Standard Bearers will bring the National Flag
and the Standard Flag of the Consistory to the Altar, at the
right and left of the Commander-in-Chief. All join in singing
one verse of "The Star-Spangled Banner,’ No other form of
patriotic address is permitted.
Commander-in-Chief: No man can worthily serve
in the ranks of the Grand Army of the Ancient Accepted Scottish
Rite unless his heart thrills to the sentiment of a lofty
patriotism which will express itself in loyal obedience to his
country’s laws as well as in response to his country’s needs. It
is not given to all men to bear arms for the nation’s defense,
but every man may cherish his country’s flag with a devoted
love, may support his country’s laws with a willing obedience,
and may so live day by day that the commonwealth shall be
prospered through his industry, established through his
fidelity, and honored through his integrity.
Such service of country becomes possible only
when the individual man, strong in the integrity of his purpose,
develops his own highest manhood under the secure shield of
civil, intellectual and religious liberty. Man owes it to
himself and to his brother men to be his own best self. No
obligation imposed upon him by church, state or society can as a
last resort destroy the freedom of his spirit or abolish his
liberty of private judgment.
Patriotism thus founded and secured, gives
assurance of peace and happiness within our borders and is a
harbinger of that more glorious time when love of country shall
be joined to love of humanity and the Scottish Rite Standard
shall rise in peaceful triumph over a world-wide brotherhood of
man. So mote it be!
All: So mote it be!
The Standard and Flag are posted.
Commander-in-Chief: Sublime Princes and
Brethren, you will remain standing. To Exemplar: Kneel again at
the Altar. Exemplar kneels, left hand on Bible, head uplifted.
The Commander-in-Chief advances to the Altar.
In accordance with an ancient custom, as he speaks the words. "I
now proclaim you … he strikes one light blow on the Exemplar’s
right shoulder, and four light blows on the left shoulder.
Commander-in-Chief: To the glory of the Grand
Architect of the Universe, and by virtue of the authority upon
me conferred as Commander-in-Chief of … Consistory, I now
proclaim you, and each of you, to be a Sublime Prince of the
Royal Secret, Thirty-second Degree, Ancient Accepted Scottish
You are now and hereafter entitled to enjoy
all the rights, privileges and prerogatives of this degree, and
are solemnly admonished to fulfill its duties and its high
Commander-in-Chief, knocks once: Brethren, be
Princes! Brethren! In Allegory we seek to
convey the truth.
Man has the royal secret - the eternal gift
of God - Love. It cannot be imparted to him by others. It was
incarnate when the Father breathed into his nostrils the breath
of life, and man became a living soul.
Cherish this love as a divine attribute, a
precious birthright, a witness that man is indeed a son of God.
Blessed is the man who is so possessed by the
royal secret that he will resist the allurements of pleasure,
disdain power which enslaves and knowledge which is arrogant,
and be deaf to the call of selfish interest when it encroaches
upon the sacred obligations of the Brotherhood of Man.
Blessed is the man who, like Constans, hears
the call of humanity, even when it is not addressed directly to
himself, recognizes it as the voice of God calling him to labor,
accepts it proudly as his accolade of knighthood, and goes forth
in princely power. As the immortal poet, Lord Tennyson said, "To
ride abroad, redressing human wrong; To speak no slander, no,
nor listen to it; But teach high thoughts and amiable words, And
courtliness and the desire of fame.
And love and truth and all that makes a man."
I pray you give serious attention to the
Allegory of the Thirty-second Degree, about to be presented,
which will forever impress upon your minds the meaning of the
Royal Secret, the eternal gift of God - Love.
This scene represents the chancel of a
cathedral, with Altar approached by three steps. Crucifix and
Transparent windows, if possible.
Curtain rises. Organ march, modulating into a
Processional Hymn as Choristers enter. Two separate processions
-Church and Chivalry.
Crucifer, Acolytes, Thurifers, Priests and
Bishop enter chancel, and take positions on the right of the
Altar. Bishop, at Altar, for a moment of devotion.
Choristers may sing an appropriate anthem.
After a brief interval, the representatives
of Chivalry, Banneret, Herald and Trumpeter, Knights and Prince
Commander enter and take positions on the left side. Organ
Bishop: Prince Commander, and dearly beloved
brethren, the Church welcomes to its Sanctuary the
representatives of Chivalry who desire to present an aspirant
for Knighthood. Bid him keep his vigil here at this holy Altar,
and may God hear his prayers and keep him loyal and true.
Prince Commander: Most Reverend Father and
Sublime Princes, we are assembled here for the purpose of
admitting to our fellowship a worthy knight. His integrity and
fidelity in the past give assurance that he will regard honor as
duty, and princely privilege as opportunity for service.
Trumpeter, sound a fanfare; Herald, make proclamation.
Trumpet. Herald proclaims loudly.
Herald: Constans! Constans! Constans! Stand
forth and be tried by the tests of true knighthood. Make your
profession in the presence of all people. Keep your vigil in
lonely solitude before Cod. Thus only, may you hope to be
proclaimed a Sublime Prince of the Royal Secret.
Organ March. Enter four Knights in full
armor, two by two, with Constans clothed in loose flowing white
robe over a white costume. Each knight bears armor as indicated
Organ music ceases as soon as the knights
arrive before dais.
Knight Kadosh, loudly and solemnly: CONSTANS
Prince Commander: I greet you, Constans. He
who would be a prince among his equals should put away all pomp
and circumstance, all pride of rank, and here, in the presence
of the Prince of Peace, he should stand in humility, clothed in
the white robe of purity, outward sign of inward grace.
Constans, is the robe you wear a vain and
pretentious adornment, or a token of purity?
Constans: Not of purity, my Lord Prince
Commander, but of a desire and purpose to live chastely and
without offense among my fellows.
Prince Commander: You have answered well. Is
it your desire to be a knight, chivalrous in war, a prince
honorable in peace, a friend and a servant to your fellow men in
all their needs?
Constans: Such is my earnest desire.
Prince Commander: You ask much; and most
unwisely if you be not steadfast. Remember how great is the fall
of him who is exalted if he prove unworthy.
Constans: I will remember.
Prince Commander: Who stands sponsor for this
Knight of Lodge of Perfection moves to right
and forward as directed before.
Knight Lodge of Perfection: I stand sponsor
for his Fidelity, my Lord Prince. He has labored fervently in
Masonry; his work has been tested by the square, the level, and
the plumb. His desires have been circumscribed by the compasses.
He has learned the Master’s word and has performed Master’s
In token of my faith in him, I place here
this cuirass, that he may be girt in strength and stand
staunchly against every assault.
Places cuirass on dais before Altar and
returns to his place in line.
Knight of Council of Princes of Jerusalem
moves to left and front.
Knight Prince of Jerusalem: I stand sponsor
for his Truth. While some have actively opposed or tacitly
avoided, he has persistently proclaimed and nobly labored for
Truth. In token of my faith in him, I place here this helmet,
that he may be guarded against the crafty attacks of falsehood
and the evil blows of error.
Deposits helmet at head of cuirass and
Knight of Rose Croix: I stand sponsor for his
Love. In Faith he has established his purpose and fixed his
conduct. In Hope he has triumphed over every obstacle.
In Charity he has borne all things, believed
all things, hoped all things, endured all things. In token of my
faith in him, I place here this shield, that not only he, but
also those whom he serves, may be screened from the darts of
intolerance, and he sheltered from the arrows of persecution.
Deposits shield near cuirass and returns.
Knight Kadosh: I stand sponsor for his
Justice and Mercy. He has learned to judge others by first
judging himself. He is righteous in judgment, merciful in act;
seeking not to condemn but to save. A check on oppression, a
terror to evil doers, a staunch defender of innocence and
virtue, he is a true Knight Kadosh.
In token of my faith in him, I place here
this sword, confident that he will wield it manfully for the
right against the wrong.
Deposits sword and returns.
Bishop: Happy is the man who has such
sponsors; thrice blest he who justifies their trust. Fidelity,
Truth, Love and Justice are the true attributes of a servant of
God, and he who lives by these precepts will be worthy of
Prince Commander: Constans, you aspire to
princely honor. Remember that such honor can only attend
princely deed. Rank and title may be bestowed by others because
the givers have been deceived by fradulent pretense or bribed by
unworthy reward. In the same way rank and title may be revoked
by the givers, because they have been misled by envious deceit
or malignant slander.
But honor is above rank and title and is
self-earned; the unerring and unfailing reward of true Masonry.
Honor is likewise self-revoked, the
inevitable penalty of disloyalty.
From days of old, aspirants for knightly
honor have been left in lonely vigil before the Altar of the
Most High God - a vigil that is emblematic of that solitary
conflict which every man must fight out in the secret places of
his own soul, with no witnesses and no succor save the
all-knowing and all-mighty Father of men. Constans, we leave you
now to your vigil. In this sword and helmet, shield and cuirass,
behold symbols of all your powers for the service to which you
aspire. Without these symbols of service, you are bereft of all
ability to aid in our great work of making this world a Temple,
a fit abiding place for the Grand Architect of the Universe, and
become only another weak object of our labors; a suppliant, and
not an ally.
Guard well your armor, for, in so doing, you
guard all your powers for fixture good, all your claims for
future honor. Faithfulness to this trust will prove your
worthiness for nobler tasks. Recreancy will forfeit all that you
have won in the past, all that you may hope for in the future.
Constans: My hope is in God. Kneels by his
Bishop: Our hope is in God. May He ever have
you in His holy keeping.
Raises hands in blessing. Constans remains in
Prince Commander: Keep well your vigil.
Organ march. Knights retire in order. The
Prince Commander first, escorted by the four sponsoring Knights.
Organ modulates into the Recessional Hymn as the Choristers lead
the church party out of the cathedral. Lights dimmed. Moonlight
Constans is left alone in the Cathedral. He
slowly rises, views the armor, and speaks.
Constans: The Prince Commander said, "Behold,
in this sword and helmet, shield and cuirass, symbols of all the
powers for the service to which I might aspire."
He also said, "Guard well your armor, for, in
so doing, you guard all your powers for future good."
Picks up cuirass and meditates.
Constans: The Breastplate of righteousness,
Carl’s Cuirass, taken from his own breast and placed here in
token of his faith in my fidelity, that I might he girt in
strength. I will not break that faith.
Deposits cuirass and picks up helmet.
Constans: The Helmet of Salvation. Phillipe’s
assurance of my love and truth. I will make that assurance
Deposits helmet and picks up shield.
Constans: The Shield of Faith. Frederick’s
testimony of my love for all my Brethren. May that testimony
Deposits shield and picks up sword.
Constans: The Sword of the Spirit. Conrad’s
belief in my justice and mercy in the defense of every righteous
Inverts sword to form cross and kneels.
Constans: O thou most high and holy One,
grant unto me steadfastness of purpose, that with the whole
armor of God I may fight the good fight, and never stain the
honor of my sponsors, nor my own.
Lovingly handles the sword and replaces it
with the other armor.
Sounds of dance music in distance, guitar,
mandolin, tambourine. Enter Florio, masked, festival costume.
Carries domino and mask. Under no
circumstances should the character of Florio be played in an
effeminate manner nor should any tempter touch or pull on
Constans. As each tempter appears, Ignatius should be briefly
discovered by a soft spot light eavesdropping from the wings.
Florio: Constans! Hush! It is I, Florio. Come
to the dance. The city is wild with gaiety. Come away from this
weary vigil. Your lady love sends me to claim your courtesy. She
mocks at your vigil. She threatens your dismissal. Come,
Constans: You are no friend of mine, Florio,
to tempt me thus. Away! I will not go.
Florio: But, Constans, no man will know. See,
I have brought you mask and domino. You are young. Music, wine,
dancing, all are calling you. Come for an hour!
All is safe here. No man will disturb this
grim armor in this gloomy sanctuary. Come!
Constans: I tell you NO! Leave me in peace. I
will not leave my vigil.
Florio: Then you will lose your love,
Constans. Turns to leave, pauses a second, and returns. Would
you sacrifice a woman’s love, the kiss of ruby lips, the caress
of loving arms, a life of wedded bless, for a night of this
Constans: I will keep my vigil. My hope is in
Constans turns and kneels at Altar. Florio
looks at him a moment, then rushes away. During above, music has
continued softly as though at a distance, and at Florio's exit
dies down as though moving away.
Enter Urban in long white heard and wig. He
approaches Constans and speaks slowly and with dignity, in
contrast to Florio's lighter mood.
Urban: What seek you here, Constans? It is
Power? Station, Foolish man! All these you
can have for the taking. Rank the highest the world has ever
known! Power beyond all that has ever been exercised by man.
Station so exalted that no monarch dare approach without humble
obeisance. Why crave for that which you may command? Why this
cold and cheerless vigil when luxury and magnificence are yours
for the taking? Would you be rich? The Midas power is mine and
shall be yours. Are you ambitious? You shall triumph over every
opponent, and that without a struggle. You shall rise to
imperial power, and that without a rival.
Constans: I have my work to do. I will not
Urban: Work! Why work, when you may have the
power to make all men work for you?
Constans: I work for others and not for self.
This is my task and it is a joy to me.
Urban: Constans, I am your friend. I seek you
now to share my power. Knowledge is power; knowledge is mine.
With this power, I bend circumstances to my
will; I command all the forces of land and sea; I control kings
and princes; I conjure a million slaves and compel them to work
my will. Come with me, Constans, and you shall rule the whole
Constans: Who am I, that I should rule? Give
me to serve and I am doubly blest.
Urban: But think of all you could do with
this mighty power.
Constans: No, not I, but unhappy slaves
groaning in my bondage.
Urban: Constans, put not your hope in
princes, I can do …
Constans: My hope is in God. Leave me to my
Kneels again. Urban shakes his head in
disapproval and exits slowly.
Rufus in rural working clothes, enters
hurriedly, excited, panting.
Rufus: Constans! Constans! Come quickly! A
traitor knight has attacked your castle. Knowing you were here
he made stealthy assault and every moment increases his power.
Constans: I cannot go.
Rufus, more and more excited: Constans! Your
castle is even now in flames! Your property is being seized. All
your treasuries are in peril! Hasten to the rescue!
Constans: I insist keep my vigil.
Rufus: But, Constans, no man can condemn you
for responding to this call. O, Constans! Come! Triumph over
your enemies and save your home.
Constans: My hope is in God, I will not go.
Constans kneels again, Rufus runs out,
exclaiming: He will not come! He will not come!
Enter Ignatius, a monk, ascetic, brown robe,
rope-girdle, cowl. Constans is kneeling by armor.
Ignatius: Well done, Constans. Nobly hast
thou withstood the enticement of pleasure, the allurement of
ambition, and the appeal of selfish interest. But think not that
thy soul is safe from temptation, come, now, with me!
Constans has risen, startled.
Constans: I crave your blessing, Reverend
Father. I knew not that you were near.
Ignatius: Thou are watched when little
Flee from further temptation, so shalt thou
save thy soul from perdition! Come!
Constans: Where would you have me go, Father?
Ignatius: Far from this busy world where evil
lurks in companionship with men; remote from the society of thy
fellows where vice ever tempts and sin ever entices.
Come with me, I say, and in some solitary
hermit cell, where none can harass thee by insistent calls for
service, or beguile thee by insidious persuasions to vice, thou
mayest live piously, and by prayer and fasting win thy soul's
Constans: But, reverend Father, what of my
They are my brethren, children with me of the
same Heavenly Father. How can I help in their labors, Succor in
their affliction, comfort in their sorrow, if I depart from them
and live in solitude?
Ignatius: What is that so thee? Save thine
own soul from perdition. While in the society of men, thou art
in constant deadly peril. Satan walks to and fro in the crowds
to beguile thee. Temptations beset thee in the company of thy
friends. Pitfalls yawn for thy soul on every busy way. In
solitude only is there safety from sin.
In lonely meditation, in constant prayer, in
fasting that will mortify the body, and in self-inflicted
tortures that will weaken thy physical power thou shalt win
paradise for thy soul. Come with me, I say.
Constans: Reverend Father, of bodily torture
I have no fear, of physical hurt I have no dread. Too oft have I
dared the battle shock and the peril of war to be careful of
self. I cannot but think that God, the Father, created this body
for its work, made these arms strong that they might labor,
these eyes keen that they might see the need, these ears acute
that they might hear the call. To spend all this strength, to
risk all these powers in human service, I am willing. But how
dare I destroy, or even diminish, the powers God has given me to
do good? I dare not.
Ignatius: Spare not thy body, so that by its
mortification thou mayest save thy soul.
Constans: I will not spare my body if thereby
I may save the soul - or even the body -of my brother.
Ignatius with stern authority, holding up
cross and backing away: Who art thou, to argue with me? I
command thee, by the power of my holy office, to come!
Come, I say, or thy soul will be damned
Constans starts to follow and than stops: My
hope is in God. I will not leave my vigil.
Ignatius, with increasingly angry emphasis as
exits: Fool! Thou wilt be lost! Lost! Lost!
Constans looking sorrowfully after Ignatius:
Oh, miserable me! Is it so? Must I save my soul only by
abandoning all others to guilt and shame? I cannot believe it.
If what the monk said be true, why was Light revealed to me in
the East? Why was the white apron of service girt about my
loins? Why were the tools of labor placed in my hands? If it be
true that my soul’s salvation can be won only by solitary
meditation, why was the light of reason kindled and my intellect
quickened, that I might plan and learn and understand and teach?
If it be true that I am eternally lost unless
I save my own soul by incessant prayer and penitence, why was I
raised by the strong grip of a Master Mason or the Lion’s Paw,
and given the Word by which I might labor?
No! I cannot, I will not believe it. On the
five points of fellowship I am vowed to Mason’s work. Here is my
equipment pointing to armor and I will labor to the end.
Yet the monk has left me with a terrible
"Lost!" "Lost" he said.
Away with this doubt! Away with this selfish
fear! My hope is in God. Throws himself on knees by armor.
Gives grand hailing sign of distress, with
words. When I first sought light in Masonry my trust was in God;
so now, in this horrible trial, my hope is in God. Let me never
If it be true that by companionship and
service with my brethren I am doomed to eternal death, grant it
to me, O my God, that before that dreadful day of wrath I may
labor as a good Mason and by Thy grace lead at least one of Thy
children, my brothers, to the perfect light, where he may be
saved from eternal darkness.
Help me to labor for my brethren and I shall
trust to be saved myself by Thy loving kindness.
My hope is in God. Amen,
Windows grow darker. Everything quiet.
Suddenly a noise of alarm bell in far distance, faint shouts,
nearer, shrieks, offstage shouting of voices, "The enemy." "Save
us," "To the walls" etc. Trumpet. Clash of arms, nearer and
receding again, further away and nearer again. During this,
Constans starts, listens, arises, paces in growing agitation.
Constans: What is that? An alarm? Can it be a
treacherous assault? Or is it only another trial of my fidelity?
What shall I do? I was admonished to keep my vigil, limit the
city is in peril. They told me I must stay here. All my future
depends on my obedience. But how can I stay while children may
be murdered and women ravished. No, I cannot stay! I must go.
A cry without, Our leader is slain! Clash of
swords, flames red through windows.
Constans: Our leader is slain! And I here in
cowardly safety. My people are in peril; I must go. My hope is
in God. Grasps sword and shield. Rushes out,
repeating: My hope is in God.
Loud shouts and clashing of swords; noise of
battle; cries in unison of My hope is in God, all increasing in
intensity, then slowly fading out into silence.
At this point, curtain falls and lights are
extinguished for an interval of 30 seconds to denote passage of
Curtain rises, full lights. People enter
laughing and cheering. Cries of Victory. Bishop, priests and
Prince Commander to East. Knights enter last, worn and spant,
Prince Commander, stretching out hand:
Silence, my people. Lift up your hearts. The city is saved. Our
enemy is vanquished. Praise be to God, who in our hour of direct
peril sent us a mighty deliverer. With our leader wounded nigh
unto death and a prisoner among our foes, we were indeed lost
had it not been for the miraculous champion who appeared so
suddenly, rallied our forces, and snatched victory from defeat.
Under God, he is the saviour of this people. Where is our
champion, that all may do him honor?
Captain of the Guard, through battle-spent,
is not breathless. Speaks rapidly but clearly and distinctly.
Closing sentences solemn and impressive: My
Lord Prince Commander, he has vanished again as suddenly as he
appeared. We were utterly vanquished, and the city and all its
people were at the mercy of our ruthless foe, when he came among
us, radiant as an archangel, clothed all in white, his face
illumined, his eyes flashing. No armor had he, nor helmet, but a
broad shield with which in the first moment of his appearance he
saved me from a murderous spear, and a great sword which fell
with a flash like lightning and slew my foe. Then he cried out,
"My hope is in God,"
and fell like a destroying angel upon the
enemy. There was no resisting his assault. The enemy lied before
him, appalled at his wondrous power. Even the women and children
inspired us as they took up the cry, "My hope is in God" and the
battle was won. But our brave champion disappeared in the moment
of victory. Surely he was a man sent by God to save our people.
Bishop: We know not the ways of our Heavenly
Father, but we truly believe that this was a man sent by God.
Prince Commander, suddenly notices the armor
dais: But where is the aspirant whom we heft
here in vigil over his armor? Has he been recreant to his trust?
Can it be that he fled from the approach of the enemy? He has
abandoned his vigil, a craven coward?
If so, then even in this hour of rejoicing,
we shall not forget justice. We shall strip him of his dignity
and strike off his honors, even as he has dishonored his
Never shall Constans be created by us a
Sublime Prince of the Royal Secret.
Herald! Summon the recreant Constans.
Herald and trumpeter to right of steps. Blows
Herald: Constans! Appear!
Pause. Trumpet and call again. Pause, and a
third trumpet and call. Immediately after this third call, the
four Sponsor Knights enter, slowly advance to East bearing a
bier on which is the body of Constans, covered with battered
shield and by his side a broken sword. They stop center stage.
Knight Kadosh, solemnly and reverently:
Constans is here.
People gasp, sob, and some fall on knees in
Prince Commander kneels at bier, facing
Prince Commander: Constans Our Deliverer. How
vain is human wisdom! How blind is human judgment! In our hasty
anger we said, "Never shall Constans be created by us a Sublime
Prince of the Royal Secret." His martyr victory has made of our
unjust judgment his eternal glory. It was not for mortal man to
create Constans a prince. He was a prince, dubbed and created by
the King of Kings whose son he is. It was not for mortal man to
reveal to Constans the Royal Secret. It was enshrined in his own
unconquerable soul, incarnate in that Love which was his divine
When he forsook his vigil here, Constans was
true to the highest meaning and deepest spirit of his vow. He
obeyed the dictates of his conscience and, in loyal response to
his country’s call, rushed to its defense.
The cry of distress, the call of humanity,
found him obedient to the paramount duty. He was willing to be
called a recreant knight if by such a sacrifice he could save
"Greater love hath no man than this, that a
man lay down his life for his friend."
Constans Sublime Prince of the Royal Secret!
Lead us, too, behind the veil where we may see face to face!
Show curtain on tableau.
The Commander-in-Chief closes by declaration
- - -
The 33° of Freemasonry