One of the most impressive and touching things in human history is that certain ideal interests have been set apart as especially venerated among all peoples. Guilds have arisen to cultivate the interest embodied in art, science, philosophy, fraternity, and religion, to train men in their service, to bring their power to bear upon the common life of mortals and send through that common life the glory of the ideal, as the sun shoots its transfiguring rays through the great dull cloud, evoking beauty from the brown earth. Such is Masonry, which unites all these high interests and brings to their service a vast, world-wide fraternity of free men, built upon a basis of spiritual faith, whose mission it is to make men friends, to refine and exalt their lives, to turn them from the semblance of life to homage for truth, righteousness, and character. Forming one great society over the whole globe, it upholds every noble and redeeming ideal of humanity, making all good things better by its presence, like a meadow that rests on a subterranean stream. He who would reckon the spiritual possessions of our race must take account of the genius of Masonry and its ministry to the highest life of man.
Joseph Fort Newton