Masonic Angel Fund Press Releases

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Masonic Angel Fund program adopted
By Paula Vogler/ Correspondent
Friday, May 27, 2005

The Paul Revere Masonic Lodge of Brockton is bringing the Angel Fund across town borders to help needy Easton students pay for clothing and other necessities.

     Carl Johannesen, a member of the lodge, recently gave the School Committee details about the fund.
     Through principals, nurses and teachers, children in grades K-6 who need help with items such as eyeglasses, seasonal items or after school and summer programs are identified. The funds provides $100 for each request.
     "All the things a child may need in the course of a school year but cannot afford (can be provided)," Johannesen said.
     Approval or disapproval is given over the phone and a check is delivered usually on the same day the request is made according to Johannesen.
     No personal or family information is given to the lodge nor is there any contact with the child being helped. Johannesen said the age, gender and grade of the child as well as the specific need that is to be filled and a receipt for services is all that is requested.
     "This is something we would gratefully like to participate in," School Superintendent William Simmons said. "The anonymity is the key part for us."
     "It is something so straight forward and easy to access," School Committee member Caroline O'Neill said.
     School nurses already had a preliminary list of children who could benefit from the fund and Johannesen said he expects to receive phone calls in the near future.
     The Angel Fund began with a lodge on Cape Cod in 1998. Since then it has been incorporated and is sanctioned by the Grand Lodge of Massachusetts. Many lodges in the state and on the East Coast operate Angel Funds.
      "There are very strict controls and oversights (with the Angel Fund); lodges have to have specific controls," Johannesen said.
     Easton's Paul Dean Lodge members voted in October 2004 to merge with the Paul Revere Lodge in Brockton. The 150 members from the Easton lodge brought membership in Brockton close to 400.
     Proceeds from the sale of Easton's lodge building on Williams Street will form a large part of the Angel Fund's money. Once earmarked for the fund, the money cannot be spent for any other purpose than Angel Fund expenditures. 

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n addition to the Angel Fund, Johannesen said the Masons also support two children's hospitals - the Shriner's Hospital for Children in Springfield and Shriner's Pediatric Burn Hospital in Boston. Both provide free care to children up to the age of 18 who qualify through an admissions process.
      Paula Vogler can be reached at 508-634-7563 or writedesk84@comcast.net