Ancient Order of Gleaners
First Introductory Degree


Opening Ceremony

CHIEF GLEANER: Companion Vice Chief Gleaner, you will announce the opening of this Arbor on the First Degree, first satisfying yourself that all Present are entitled to remain as First Degree Gleaners.
The Vice Chief Gleaner passes around the Lodge room and takes up the quarterly password of the degree.
VICE CHIEF GLEANER:
 Companion Chief Gleaner, I have examined all present, and find that they are all members of this degree and so entitled.
CHIEF GLEANER:
 Companion Vice Chief Gleaner, what number constitutes an Arbor of Gleaners?
VICE CHIEF GLEANER: 
Seven or more duly initiated members must be present when a stranger is balloted upon for admission to membership oh initiated into the Order; although three or more Companions may conduct the necessary business of the Order, provided that the Chief Gleaner, Secretary and Chaplain are present.
CHIEF GLEANER:
 Companion Vice Chief Gleaner, what are you duties?
VICE CHIEF GLEANER:
 To preside in the absence of the Chief Gleaner add assist in the work prescribed in the Ritual.
CHIEF GLEANER:
 Companion Secretary-Treasurer, what are your duties?
SECRETARY-TREASURER:
 To keep a correct record of all meetings of the Arbor, and to transmit all communications from the State Arbor to the members of this Arbor. To keep a just and true account of all moneys received from the members of this Arbor, and to furnish a statement of all moneys received and paid out when the proper officers so direct.
CHIEF GLEANER:
 Companion Chaplain: your duties?
CHAPLAIN:
 To see that the sacred Volume is upon the Altar; to open the same when the Chief Gleaner declares the Arbor opened for the regular dispatch of business, and to close the same when our labors are concluded.
CHIEF GLEANER:
 Companion Conductor, your duties?
CONDUCTOR:
 To guide the feet of the uninitiated; leading them in the well beaten path, that they may finally find rest and fellowship among the members of this arbor.
CHIEF GLEANER:
 Inner Guard, your duties?
INNER GUARD:
 To guard the inner gate, and allow none to enter except those in possession of the proper pass-word.
CHIEF GLEANER:
 Companion Outer Guard, your duties?
OUTER GUARD:
 To guard well the outer gate, allowing none to disturb this Arbor of Gleaners.
CHIEF GLEANER:
 Companion Vice-Chief Gleaner, what are the duties of the Chief Gleaner of an Arbor of Gleaners?
VICE CHIEF GLEANER:
 To preside at all the meetings; and he should so govern his Arbor with Charity, Firmness and Kindness, that those who enter may be better fitted for their many duties as workmen in life’s harvest after having received the instruction here imparted.
CHIEF GLEANER:
 In this spirit I shall endeavor so to preside that our labor may be successful, let us ask a divine blessing from the Lord of the harvest.
The Chief Gleaner gives * * * calling members and officers to their feet.
CHAPLAIN:
 Merciful and beneficent Ruler of the universe, we halt in the midst of our life-work, crowded as it is with the duties we owe to ourselves and those dependent upon us: and humbly acknowledging that Thou art the source of every good and perfect gift, we do implore Thee to deal mercifully with us. Guide us in our walks of life, so that when death’s harvest o’ertakes us, we may be likened to the golden grain ready for the sickle; having lived a life so pure and noble that we may be gathered in the garner with the perfect seeds of Thy harvest.
CHIEF GLEANER:
 Let the Companions all join in singing the Opening Ode:
Ho, Companions let us gather
In our Abor Shrine;
May this meeting be a blessing
Proved forever thine.
Chorus:
Ho, Companions, be on duty,
Every pledge fulfill;
Answer back the cry of “Rescue"
Coming with a will.
See the many reapers coming,
Patient Gleaners all;
Loyal friends about us gathered,
Answering to the call.
Chorus
May this Order’s noble teaching
Be our rule and guide.
And the future find us numbered
On the Master’s side.
Chorus
Give the Loyal hand of friendship,
Check the Orphan’s tear,
Ever onward be our motto;
Cheer, Companions Cheer.
Chorus
CHIEF GLEANER:
 I now declare this duly installed Arbor ready for the regular dispatch of business of the First Degree. Companions, you will attend the signs for the Opening of this degree.

Initiation

Preparations for 1st Degree: The candidate having paid the fees required, will be prepared in the ante-room. The hoodwink will be adjusted so as to be quickly removed and replaced. He is then conducted to a chair within the inner door of lodge room, the room having been darkened by turning down lights.
Appointment of Actors: On election the Chief Gleaner shall appoint members to act as 1st and 2nd Robbers and two assistants. The part of Heraut will be taken by the Chaplain.
CONDUCTOR, standing near Chaplain’s station: 
The day is done. Night casts her sable mantle o’er the landscape and findeth me with my journey but begun. I must push on though small encouragement be given me and alone I tread this narrow path. Sees candidate. Another belated traveler, a stranger in these parts it seems, has doubtless lost his way and now uncertain where to turn sits down to meditate on his misfortune.
Friend where goest thou and why art thou at this unseemly hour so far from human habitation? ‘Tis plain thou knowest not thy situation. To turn back is impossible, nor can we allow delay; no man can stay the hand of time for one brief moment. Thou hast chosen thy course and must proceed. Before lies life’s pathway, with its trials, uncertainties, and troubles; and let us trust that at the end, if our good efforts and strong courage but merit it, our compensation may be found. Come let us join resources and travel together.
Takes position with crook, on right of candidate.
CONDUCTOR:
 My knowledge of this road gained from those who have gone before hath partly prepared me. Temptations I am told are many and a multitude of dividing paths entice the weary traveler from his true course. To follow any one of these deceiving paths is death, though pleasant do they look to human eye along the earlier portion of their length.
Conductor halts and hesitates.

Behold, before us does our path divide, and which way we shall turn I cannot say. Upon our right there runs into a close and dreary wood, a narrow road; upon our left a pleasant thoroughfare well-paved, invites. yet have I many tunes heard the better seems the harder way.
Which say you stranger, the right or leftward path? Why hesitate in your decision, the sky is already thick with clouds of the impending storm. We will pursue our journey along the path leading to the right. Our way leads into the ravine and through the thicket. The long impending storm is upon us, take a firm hold upon me and let us strive to push our way through this thicket. Step carefully upon the jagged rocks and broken limbs. We no sooner pass through one difficulty than another is upon us: how are we to cross this mountain stream? Fortunate again, some traveler has prepared this slender bridge and we can cross to the other side in safety. Step carefully. At last another difficulty is overcome. See, our way leads over yonder jagged cliff. Let us push to its summit and from that elevation we may be able to get a glimpse of the City of Bethlehem. Let each step be sure; guard well every move; careful, careful, a slip of the hand or foot means certain destruction. At last we have reached the summit. See; way to the eastward point Heavenward the temple spires in the ancient city of Bethlehem. Beyond us lies but one ravine and when that is passed our way will be clear.
Now to retrace our steps. It would be impossible to return by the niches of the rock by which we gained the summit. Must we remain here, where human assistance is improbable with the close of our journey in full sight. No, I will tear my mantle into ropes by which we can make the descent with safety. Conductor tears cloth with which to make a rope. All is now ready. Grasp this rope with a firm hand, and then hand over hand let yourself down to the solid rock, many, many feet below. At last we are once more ready to pursue our journey. Refreshed by having caught a glimpse of the end of our journey We will hasten on. By those who’ve traveled all the length of life’s uneven way we learn that every good resolution is followed by difficulties hard to overcome but leading to their well earned reward, We have now reached the ravine; once through this and the way to the city is clear. Conductor suddenly halts. Alas, alas, we are lost! See, beyond yonder thicket a band of robbers: an ambush has been prepared for us. Let us take this by-path; it is possible we are yet unseen. No, they come; they come! Conductor and candidate hasten on and are captured by robbers, after which a struggle takes place.
1ST ROBBER:
 All that’s valuable on thy person must be ours. Comrades, seize the travelers and make search.
As this order is given Conductor starts with Candidate to escape, they are seized and as search is being made, the following dialogue us given:
1ST ROBBER:
 Take from them all their wealth, aye all their clothing that has value, and throw their bodies down that rocky cavern as food for vultures of the air.
Conductor and candidate are carefully starched.
2ND ROBBER:
 My liege, most careful search discloses but the poverty of our prey. Nothing of value find we in their raiment.
1ST ROBBER:
 And start you on a journey without gold, or have you met our kind before, who took it from you?
2ND ROBBER:
 
It may be they are but friends who’ve gone in search of those with wealth more than their need.
1ST ROBBER:
 They have no pike nor sword, and think you they were wont to rob with fingers for their weapons? Nay, they are none of us. But as their spirit seems as strong as body, what may they say to leaving off a life of poverty to east with us their lot, and take their share of captured riches. What answer, friends?
CONDUCTOR:
 
Two words, sir, we refuse.
2ND ROBBER:
 My liege, time presses, and as neithfealty nor gold is here, we should make haste. Comrades, we will chain this man touching candidate and throw him down from yond’er cliff. The spokesman of the two we hold for ransom.
1ST ROBBER:
 
Agreed. We’ll take him step by step to that cliffs highest point, and throw him on the jagged rocks below.
Candidate is taken to cliffs, rope adjusted, and he is swung off at the words given below:

Now, down, down, down. No fear of ever hearing more of him. Now, with our captive we’ll be on our way.
Robbers depart until their footsteps die away. After pause, Conductor appears at side of Candidate, who is lying chained.
CONDUCTOR:
 Ho, friend, are you here, and are you uninjured? Examines body. His pulse still beats, he lives! I’ll loose thy chains and we will hasten fence. The villains left me bound. A Gleaner chanced to pass that way, and with his sickle cut my bonds.
CONDCTOR, as they pass along:
 It seems that every firm refusal of the wrong but strengthens us to make our journey on. A fearful storm is coming on. Behold! Our way lies in a cavern, the entrance being nearly barred with undergrowth and branches. It must have been some time since any man has traveled through that pass. It was at most severe and trying task to make our way into this quiet cave. A twinkling, tiny flame lights up our way. Some hermit from the world, it seems, does choose to heave the haunts of man, and here has carved for him among these rocks, a lonely home, where, far remote from civilization, he hives with only his own thoughts for company.
HERMIT:
 Friends or roes. whichever ye may be, I have a word to say before speed the on thy way. Behold an emblem here of man’s mortality. Shows skull, hoodwink raised. These empty sockets did once contain the windows to the soul of living man. He thought, and lived and moved as you do now. He strived with all his might in all his battle through the world. At early morn he rose and went abroad to earn his bread. He had ambition. so have you. He met discouragement and strove to overcome all obstacles. At times he failed, at other times succeeded. The constant question that beseiged his mind was how to most increase his worldly means and still retain respect of man and love of God. Like every other one of us, he often chose the way his conscience did forbid, that he might for a time enjoy a transitory pleasure. Years passed, and as to all must come the time of sad farewell, his last sun ‘rose. This man went forth as was his custom, into the strife of life with highest hopes. At night his form lay in his narrow bed, his soul had taken flight. His friends looked upon his cold, white form and told their love with tears. What then to him were all his temporary joys; how trivial did success appear if bought at sacrifice of manhood. How foolish do we deem the man who lives but for today, without regard to what he shall subsist upon tomorrow, and how much more stupendous is our folly to live regardless of eternity. There’s nothing certain in man’s life but this; that he must lose it. Look you upon this skull and hold in mind this truth: The richest prize is dearly bought, if to obtain it, one atom of thy honor thou shalt sacrifice.
So live, that when thy summons comes to join
The innumerable caravan above,
Sustained and soothed by an unfaltering truth,
Thou wilt approach thy grave,
Like one who wraps the drapery of his couch
About him and lies down to pleasant dreams.
Drop hoodwink. Bell heard in distance.
HERMIT:
 The bell which ringeth in the tower of Bethlehem. It bids the traveler cheer and tells him that his journey nears its end.
Conductor and candidate pass twice around lodge room and are suddenly halted by inner Guard.
INNER GUARD:
 Stand Strangers what do ye here at this unseemly hour? The law commands that any traveler found on this highway at night, with no one known to warrant his mission shall be confined until the day doth break in yonder city’s tower. Away with you. Rush candidate toward door.
OUTER GUARD, just within inner door:
 Hold a moment! By these men’s garb I see that they are citizens of our country.
CONDUCTOR:
 We are, and law-abiding ones.
OUTER GUARD:
 Guard of the Gate of Bethlehem, but give these strangers in my charge, and I will vouch for their well doing.
INNER GUARD:
 Then take them in your charge, but mark you well, your life stands as a warrant for their conduct.
OUTER GUARD:
 Come strangers, I will take you to an Arbor of Gleaners now in session, and ask our Chief that you may be admitted.
Raps, Door being opened.
OUTER GUARD:
 While patrolling my beat before this Arbor, my attention was called to the arresting of two strangers. They appeared to be citizens of our country in need of assistance. I became pledge for their good behavior and now ask that they be admitted to this Arbor.
INNER GUARD:
 
Tarry a moment until the Chief Gleaner is informed of your request Turning to Chief Gleaner: Companion Chief Gleaner; while patrolling his beat before this Arbor. our Companion Outer Guard’s attention was called to the arresting of two strangers. They appeared to be citizens of our country and in need of assistance. As became a Companion Gleaner, he made pledge for their good behavior and asks that they be admitted to this Arbor.
CHIEF GLEANER:
 Let them enter. Conductor and candidate are conducted to Chief Gleaner.
INNER GUARD
: Companion Chief Gleaner, the strangers stand before you.
Here Conductor salutes Chief Gleaner and returns to seat.
CHIEF GLEANER:
 
Stranger. is it your desire to receive the privileges and benefits of the Ancient Order of Gleaners.
CANDITATE:
 It is.
CHIEF GLEANER:
 As a candidate for progression in to the Arbor of Gleaners of the field, you will take the position now assumed by me, position of giving sign of recognition and take the obligation appertaining to this degree, repeating after me:

Obligation

I solemnly promise upon my honor that no part of the working of this Order so far as now disclosed to me, shall ever be communicated by me, directly or indirectly, to any person unless lawfully entitled to such information, that I will cherish the lesson here given and strive to apply its principle in all my life.

Lecture

As our friend and colleague we greet you and rejoice to see and hear that which has happened and that which has been spoken on your behalf and accepted by you in your obligation.
In your future trials of life we cannot but expect that many times you will depart, for the time being, from your good resolution; to err in human: to forgive, divine. Yours shall be the duty from this time forth, to strive with all your moral power to live a life of rectitude and honor, befitting your newly made relation. Ours shall be the duty of lending timely aid and encouragement and exercising toward you charity for your failures while giving commendation for your exertions.
You have just done enacting a part in an allegorical life. At its commencement you were accorded the privilege of a conductor and counselor, who decided your movements with judgment and discretion. In this you were favored more than is mortal man. At the cradle he is the creature of command, as years roll on he takes upon himself authority, and presumes to direct his own movements. And here does his life’s work begin in earnest. At his first independent step he finds diverging roads. Oftimes the one of righteousness is rough and rugged, while that of sin seems smooth and pleasant. Here, he who hesitates for aught but prayer, is lost. Uncertain which course to pursue, doubtful of his own judgment, the wise man seeks the guidance of his Maker.
While he who seeks the broad and pleasant path, sees joys ahead and pleasure for a little time, e’er long the gathering clouds roll up before, and midst the awful scowling blackness of the night, he reads, “The Wages of Sin is Death." Gone are his anticipated pleasures and in his stead he has his bitter, vain regrets.
The narrow path, the pilgrim feels is hard to travel but all the time his conscience tells that at its end lie peace and joy. “Virtue is its own reward." and though he fail in earthly things, the satisfaction of his mind brings solace gold can never buy.
On commencing your journey, you were given opportunity to choose between the path of right and honor and the path of seeming ease but certain evil. You were conducted along the former, and overcoming every obstacle, resisting every temptation, you have arrived at your journeys successful close.
Who soweth good seed shall surely reap
The year grows much as it grows old,
And life’s latest sands are its sands of gold
Companion Conductor, you will conduct our friend to the Vice Chief Gleaner, who will give him information concerning his business relations to this Order.
Conductor advances and leads candidate to Vice Chief Gleaner.
VICE CHIEF GLEANER:
 Friend …, while you are not yet considered a Companion of this Arbor, your policy of insurance is from this moment in force. It will now be duly signed and deposited for safe keeping with the Secretary-Treasurer of this Arbor. Unless otherwise announced, the Companions of this Arbor will next convene … at which time you are expected to be present unless sickness detains to be finally initiated as Companion Gleaner, and receive the valuable instruction of the second and last degree. Only after receiving that degree will you be permitted to sit in a lodge of second degree Gleaners.
Vice Chief Gleaner then turns to the instructions of the last degree and gives recognition sign, general pass and current pass for first degree, giving full instructions as to their use. Conductor will then accompany Candidate to the ante-room on request of Chief Gleaner in these words:

Closing

CHIEF GLEANER:
 Companion Conductor, you will accompany Friend … to the ante-room pending the further disposition of business of this degree.
CHIEF GLEANER:
 
Companion Vice Chief Gleaner, you will announce the closing of this degree.
VICE CHIEF GLEANER:
 Companions, I am ordered by the Chief Gleaner to announce the closing of this degree. Together Companions attend the signs.
***.
CHIEF GLEANER:
 
Companion Inner Guard, you will announce to the Outer Guard that this Arbor has closed upon the first degree, authorize him to collect from those seeking admission, the words of the second degree. you demanding the same from those who enter by your station.
INNER GUARD:
 Companion Outer Guard, it is the order of the Chief Gleaner that this Arbor now open on the second degree, and that you demand from those who ask admission, the words of the second degree.
Inner Guard approaches Altar and reports as follows:
INNER GUARD:
 Companion Chief Gleaner, your orders have been obeyed and all is well without.

Ancient Order of Gleaners
Second Degree of Adoption



Opening Ceremony

CHIEF GLEANER:
 Companions, the time has again arrived to pursue our Gleanings in the field of knowledge and benevolence. Companion Secretary, call the roll of officers.
ROLL CALL. Any vacancies may be filled by the Chief Gleaner.
CHIEF GLEANER:
 Companion Vice Chief Gleaner, are all present members of the Order and entitled to the benefits of the second degree.
Vice Chief takes up full quarterly pass and reports same as first degree.
VICE CHIEF GLEANER:
 Companion Chief Gleaner, I have examined all present, and find that they are members and so entitled.
CHIEF GLEANER:
 
Companion Vice Chief Gleaner, you will advance and give to me the pass-word given you by all the members.
CHIEF GLEANER:
 I now declare this Arbor ready in the regular dispatch of business on the second degree. Together Companions attend the signs for the opening of this degree.
CHIEF GLEANER:
 We will now take up the regular order of business.

Initiation

CHIEF GLEANER: Companion Conductor. I am informed that a friend is in waiting to receive the information necessary to become a member of this order, as imparted in the second degree. You will ascertain if such is the case and report.
Conductor retires to ante-room and upon his return reports as follows:
CONDUCTOR:
 Companion Chief Gleaner, I find Mr. … in waiting to receive the valuable information of the second and last degree.
CHIEF GLEANER:
 
Companion Secretary, has Mr. … paid their required fee, and complied with all the requirements of the Order with reference to his advancement?
SECRETARY:
 He has, Companion Chief Gleaner.
CHIEF GLEANER:
 
Companion Conductor, you will introduce the stranger with due caution and in proper form.
Conductor retires to the ante-room, prepares candidate by taking from him all money and articles of value, allowing nothing to be carried into the lodge room which would be of use in the contribution, takes candidate by left arm and gives three raps at inner gates. No hoodwink is used.
INNER GUARD:
 While resting from our labors, an alarm comes from the inner gate.
CHIEF GLEANER:
 You will ascertain the cause and report.
INNER GUARD:
 who disturbs the quiet of our Arbor?
If a lady the Outer Guard reports as follows:
OUTER GUARD:
 A stranger who is exempt from taking the first degree of this Order, seeks admission.
If a gentleman the Outer Guard reports as follows:
OUTER GUARD:
 A friend has entered the outer gate, and now desires admission that he may receive the final instruction which shall make him a member of our illustrious order.
CHIEF GLEANER:
 
Companion Conductor, you will the stranger (or friend) that he may approach the altar in due form and receive the obligation of this degree.
CONDUCTOR:
 The stranger (or friend) is in due form, Companion Chief Gleaner.
CHIEF GLEANER:
 
Are you so far pleased with the principles of our Order and willing to proceed?
CANDIDATE:
 I am.
CHIEF GLEANER:
 
Before proceeding further, it will be necessary for you to take an obligation. I am pleased to inform you, however, that this obligation will not conflict with any duty you owe to yourself, your fellow-man, your family or your God. You will say “I", pronounce your name, and repeat after me: Candidate stands before the alter and with hand
resting upon Bible and sickle.

 

Obligation

I, …, in the presence of the Supreme Ruler of the universe and the members of this Arbor, do solemnly promise that I will receive and keep unrevealed the secret work and words of this Order. That I will obey the Constitution of the State and Supreme Arbors and the By-laws of the Arbor of which I shall become a member. That I will cheerfully comply with its requirements and ever stand ready to assist a worthy Companion in distress. That I will not speak ill of a brother or sister Companion, but rather defend their character so far as justice and honor will warrant. That I will answer all signs and words of the Order and give such assistance as is in my power. That I will not in any manner whatever, knowingly or willingly defraud a member of this Order, or allow it to be done by others if in my power to prevent it. That I will not propose the name of any improper person for membership, or allow personal feeling to prompt me to keep a worthy person from the Order. This obligation I shall consider binding at all times, and should I knowingly or willingly violate any part thereof I will accept the penalty, which is disgraceful expulsion from the Order forever, my name to be sent to the several lodges throughout this jurisdiction, that they may know that I am in longer to be called a Companion of this Order and respected as such, having broken this my solemn obligation.
If the candidate is exempt from taking the first degree the Chief Gleaner will, after giving the obligation as above, instruct the candidate as follows: 
Being exempt from taking the first degree by initiation, you will now be required to take the obligation thereof, which is as follows: Takes the first degree obligation. Chief Gleaner then instructs candidate as to sign and word of first degree.
CHIEF GLEANER, taking candidate by hand: 
Having taken the obligation of this degree, you will no longer be called a stranger but a Companion of this Arbor, and as such, entitled to a return to you from the Companions of the courtesies and favors which you have agreed in your obligation to extend to all Companions of this Order.
Companion Conductor, you will direct the candidate to a seat that he may take part in our deliberations. Candidate is seated.
CHIEF GLEANER:
 
Companion Treasurer, in accordance with our custom, you will pass among the Companions, and receive the usual offering for the benefit of the poor and needy.
Treasurer passes about room and to candidate. On failure of candidate to contribute, Chief Gleaner will address hum thus:
CHIEF GLEANER:
 
This lesson of poverty can be but poorly expressed upon you, surrounded as you are by friends and companions who would not see you in want. You will remember, however, that through all the remainder of your life it is your duty to be watchful of the needs of your Companions, not waiting for them to display to you their need before going to their assistance. You may have thought yourself occupying the true position of a Gleaner but I am constrained to inform you that there are other lessons which will be given you before you may presume to be competent to fill the position and fulfill the true offices of a Gleaner of this degree. Companion Conductor, you will present the candidate.
Conductor takes candidate by left arm and stands before Chief Gleaner.
CHIEF GLEANER, rising:
 
In the words to be spoken before you receive the unwritten work of this order, are truths worthy of an abiding place in your heart. Companion Conductor, you will conduct the Companion to the Chaplain’s station for further instruction.
Stopping before Chaplain and rapping twice with crook.
CHAPLAIN:
 Who appears before my station?
CONDUCTOR: A Companion of this Arbor, who has taken the obligations of the first and second degrees, seeks advancement.
CHAPLAIN: 
By what evidence do I know that he is entitled to further advancement?
CONDUCTOR: By the signs of the first degree.
CHAPLAIN:
 The first test has been made and you have not been found wanting.
 
Chaplains Lecture

This degree work and the teachings thereof are founded upon the scriptura account of Ruth. Naomi and Boaz, from whose noble characters the principles of this illustrious Order have eminated. It should bring to your mind the people of Bethlehem forced by famine to wonder to the indolatious nation of Moab. Among those left to dwell in Bethlehem were a father, mother and two sons. The father died. After ten years the mother, having lost both sons, sad, destitute, and alone in a strange land, with no kindred but her two daughters-in-law, decided to return to the land of her kinsman, asking them to depart from her and return to the home of their fathers. This, Ruth would not do, saying “Entreat me not to leave thee or to return from following after thee: for whither thou goest I will go and where thou lodgest I will lodge thy people shall be my people and thy God my God." These two finally took up their journey, and day after day of tiresome travel over a rocky barren country, they arrived at Bethlehem weary, sad and in want. In order to provide for herself and her mother, Ruth went into the barley field to glean after the reapers, who with their sickles left but little standing grain. Her efforts were but poorly rewarded.
She had been reared in luxury, and the work, together with the jeers she met, discouraged her. Before the noon hour, with scarcely two handfuls of barley as the fruits of her toil, she sought the quiet arbor to rest. At this time Boaz, the owner of the field enters. He was a man of wealth. Though kind, generous and charitable and respected by all his countrymen. He observed that Ruth was a Moabitish woman, and despised as the race was, Boaz’s manly charcter caused him to inquire concerning the stranger. Upon learning that she had journeyed many weary miles to aid, assist, and comfort her aged mother, he approached her to offer words of comfort. As he approached, Ruth drew away, fearing that she was to be driven from the barley-field, but instead, Boaz offered her encouragement, saying, ‘‘When thou art at thirst, go into the vessels, and drink that which the men have drawn." He then instructed the men, “Let her glean even among the sheaves, and reproach her not. And let fall some of the handfuls on purpose to her, and leave them that she may glean there, and rebuke her not.
When Ruth heard what Boaz had done for her, she inquired, “Why dost thou take notice of me, seeing that I am a stranger?" Boaz answered, “I have heard all that thou hast done for thy mother and hast come to a people which before thou knewest not. The Lord under whose wings thou art come to seek refuge, recompences for it. When Ruth returned to her mother with the story of the good friend she had found, the mother said, “Blessed be the Lord who has not ceased from his kindness both to the living and the dead. And these last words we have taken for the closing words for every regularly constituted Arbor of the Gleaners. Thus we learn that Ruth was rewarded for her loyalty and kindness, and Boaz received a ten fold blessing for his humanity and generosity.
From the character of Ruth we are taught that loyalty and kindness should be our guide through life, and that the giver of the harvest rewards those who remain truthful to the last. From the grand and generous character of Boaz, let us remember that it is our duty in life to comfort those in distress, never forgetting that charity, brotherhood and kindness form the link which makes man and man brothers; the children of one God and partakes in the bountiful harvests a kind providence has spread before us.
That you may be farther advanced into the Order. I entrust you with this banner with the order that you take it to the Vice Chief Gleaner who will impart to you the instructions of our Order concerning the three watchwords, Benevolence, Protection and Fraternity.
Conductor appears before Vice Chief Gleaner and gives three raps.
VICE CHIEF GLEANER:
 
Who appears before my station?
CONDUCTOR:
 A Companion who has taken the obligations of the 1st and 2nd degrees, and has received the instructions of the Chaplain of this Arbor, desires further information.
VICE CHIEF GLEANER:
 By what authority does he demand farther advancement into this Order?
CONDUCTOR:
 By word and by the banner which contains the first emblem of this organization.
VICE CHIEF GLEANER:
 He may advance and give me the word of the first degree. Candidate advances and gives the general pass.
VICE CHIEF GLEANER:
 The second test has been applied and you have not been found wanting.
 
Vice Chief Gleaners Lecture

It affords me sincere pleasure to address you to whom we are all united in fraternal bonds, and in the name of this entire Order I bid you welcome to our Arbor. Here you will find friends, and a safe retreat from the bitter bickerings of human selfishness. We are associated for the cultivation of pure friendship, social fellowship, and for extending mutual material aid; thus rendering our society a three-fold cord which is not quickly broken. The basis of all abiding friendship is conscious personal honor combined with a genuine love for others as children of the common Father. No man can properly esteem another who does not profoundly respect himself. And the foundation of all true self-respect is purity of intention. On these three principles as a golden rule character building and society building become alike profitable and delightful exercises. I
We would often think more highly of our neighbors if we only knew them more intimately, and, in turn, we should sooner learn their good qualities, if our social relations were nearer. Hence, the mission of our fraternity as a medium for the cultivation of lasting and profitable friendship.
Be it remembered, however, that friendship is a tender plant requiring a genial atmosphere. It is easily chilled by jealously, and dies quickly when frozen by cold neglect; hence, the plain-maxim: “He that would have friends must show himself friendly." Between these walls we meet as equals, save by the temporary distinctions of office to which all are alike eligible. Behold then, the ample scope here given for the exercise of those little amenities of life which tend so greatly to lighten its burdens and to enrich its joys.
“The friends thou hast, and their adoption tried,
Grapple them to thy soul with hooks of steel."
To do this effectually ye must also consider that sometimes a friend should sometimes bear his friend’s infirmities. It is the dictate of sound wisdom to build up associations founded upon equitable principles for the cultivation of those ennobling characteristics which adorn the three fundamental pillars on which our Order rests; Benevolence, Protection, and Fraternity. Here we shall endeavor through lectures, essays, discussions, and by various literary exercises to disseminate useful information and to cultivate a taste for whatever tends to improve the mind, adorn a good life, and thus augment the sum of human happiness. These are the benefits of Fraternity.
Likewise, it is the aim of our beloved Order to regard in a practical way those tender ties of love which impel us, while in life and health, to make provision for those near to us who may need earthly comforts when we shall have passed beyond the scene of our present activities. This protection is obtained by the payment from time to time of a comparatively small sum in the common treasury. This aggregate so accumulated, being prudently managed by officers of our own choosing, and having themselves a mutual interest in the honor. stability, and continued prosperity of this fraternal organization. Therefore, it may be reasonably expected that all our members will feel the force of a strong moral obligation to pay promptly all just assessments levied upon them for the accomplishment of this praise-worthy purpose.
I now intrust this banner to your care with orders that you take it to the Chief Gleaner and request that he impart final instructions.
Conductor and candidate pass twice around lodge room, advance to Chief Gleaner, and give three raps with crook, the Conductor advancing the banners before the Chief Gleaner’s station.
CHIEF GLEANER:
 
Who dares to approach this station without first giving the sign and word?
CONDUCTOR:
 Chief Gleaner, this Companion is without the final instructions of our Order. He seeks further advancement.
CHIEF GLEANER:
 
By what authority does he seek the final instruction of this degree, leading to the unwritten work of the Ancient Order of Gleaners?
CONDUCTOR:
 Having duly taken the obligation of the first and second degrees and having received the instructions of the Chaplain, and Vice Chief Gleaner of this Arbor. He presents as a token of his sincerity these banners intrusted to our care.
CHIEF GLEANER:
 
You will together give me the sign of the first degree. Both give sign.
CHIEF GLEANER:
 
You will give me the word of the first degree. Both give word.
CHIEF GLEANER:
 
The third test has been applied and you have been found not wanting. You are now entitled to the secrets and full information of our order.

Chief Gleaners Lecture

The beauty of a precept is in its practice. You have promised to exercise toward your Companions, benevolence; to extend to them the hand of fraternity, and by so doing insure for yourself in life and your posterity after your death, the protection of our Order. Remember your obligation nor feel that your dignity is in any manner lessened by your now position.
On every hand, each day of our lives the opportunity is given to gratify a depraved taste by making large our neighbor’s faults. Fall not into this evil way. Be generous not only with thy substance, but also in thy judgment of the actions of others.
The conqueror is regarded with awe, the wise man commands our esteem, but it is the benevolent man who wins our affections. The most desired of human gifts is therefore within reach of all.
In every movement of your initiation and attached to every emblem of our Order are lessons which are valuable if appropriated by the candidate, but useless if misunderstood or discarded.
The sickle indicating banner used from time immemorial as an implement of husbandry to sever the ripened grain from mother earth that it might be gathered into barns and store houses for use at the time of need, has been adopted by us as the first emblem of our Order. Associated with it are thoughts of diligence, and only by diligence and labor can honest man provide for the future sustenance of himself and those dependent upon him. In later years the sickle has been used to save from waste the grain left standing by the modern harvesting machinery and, which, but for the careful after gleaning must be lost. Here is a reminder of frugality, the progemtor of wealth and almost certain surety of a sufficiency for comfort in time autumn of life.
The sheaf indicating banner an appropriate companion of the sickle, is used by the Order of Gleaners to typify not only their principal occupation, but also as illustrative of the formation of our Order, for as many straws are here bound together to form the sheaf, so is a lodge of Gleaners formed of individuals bound by the ties of fraternity; the value of each sheaf and the purity of each lodge being determined by the constituent element thereof. The sheaves gathered into the shocks and the shocks to time stack or garner may be well compared to our complete organization of Local, State and Supreme Arbors.
The Hourglass indicating banner appertains not in the least to our craft, but is vitally connected by association to the life of each one of us members and to all the people of the earth generally. How precious to every man is the material from which he is made; time. It sweeps past us in his never ending tread, leaving each moment a source of pleasant memory or regret accordingly as we have made it useful or have allowed it to waste. Behold how rapidly the sands of life are running out. In but a little time the grains have sifted to the space below and are at rest. So wastes man, today he puts forth the tender leaves of hope, the next day comes a frost which nips the shoots, and when he thinks his greatness still aspiring he falls like autumn leaves to mother earth.
Yes brother (or sister)
Life’s sands are dropping, dropping: each grain a moment dies,
No stay hath time, nor stopping, behold how swift he flies.
He bears away our rares; they smile and disappear.
The cold grave wraps our fairest, each falling grain’s a tear.
Life’s sands are slowly falling death’s foot is light as snow;
‘Tis fearful, ‘tis appalling to see how swift they go
To read the fatal warnings the sands so plainly tell
To feel there’s no returning from death’s dark, shadowy dale.
Life’s sands gives admonition to use the moments well
Each grain bears holy mission, thus is the tale they tell:
Let zeal and time run faster, each grain some good afford,
Then at last the Muster shall double our reward.
CHIEF GLEANER:
 The Conductor will now form the members present about the altar in due form and you will be hailed as a Companion of this Arbor.
CHIEF GLEANER:
 
Stranger you now complete the sickle, the first emblem of the order, many a kind Providence spare each of us until his coining shall be likened to the reaper unto a field of golden grain; and then with a life ripe with good deeds may we enter that land where the Giver of life’s harvest has gathered onto his garner the faithful gleaners of this transitory sphere. May the noble characters here represented be the rule and guide of your life and when the harvest home coming time arrives in the ripening fall, may you have your well rounded shock of many sheaves of kindness gathered into the great and lasting garner above. The Companions will now recognize the stranger by the loyal grip of a Gleaner, after which the Conductor will bring the Companion to my station for further instruction.
CHIEF GLEANER:
 
Companion the secret work of this Order is never written. Upon reaching the outer gate of an Arbor you should give … If time Arbor is working under the first degree the inner guard will open the wicket and you should give him the general pass which is: … He will open the gate and you will approach the inner gate, giving … He will open the wicket, when you are to give him the … word of the quarterly pass. He will give you the … word, you then repeat both words and will be admitted.
On entering the lodge room, proceed at once to the altar on right angles and give the recognition sign to Chief Gleaner which is …
When he recognizes you by a return of the same sign, raise the … The Chief Gleaner will recognize you with same sign, when you will be sealed. The recognition sign should be also given when arising to address the Chief Gleaner.
If upon reaching the Arbor you learn that they are working upon the second degree, you will give … at the gate and give the general pass of the second degree, which is … You will proceed to the inner gate giving …, and where you will give the … word of the quarterly pass, the inner guard the …, you the … and he the … you then give whole pass. The quarterly pass is given in two section of two words each, the whole forming a complete sentence, th first two words being given for the first degree and the four for the last. Entering the lodge room you proceed as in the first degree to the altar where you give the sign of the second degree which
is … The Chief Gleaner recognizes you by the same sign when you give the second sign …, signifying recognition of the Deity, the Chief Gleaner will recognize you by the same sign, when you will be seated.
The sign of distress is given by … The answer is given in the same manner with the heft hand. Should you be in the dark or anywhere the signs could not be seen you should give the word of distress which is … The answer is the word … Should you at any time see these signs or hear the words it is your duty to immediately answer and give such assistance as in your power and consistent with your obligation as a member of the Order.
If at any time you wish to give a Companion a warning that he is liable to be defrauded or liable to meet with danger you should give him the word … which a French word meaning “Be on your guard." Or if impossible to give the word grasp his hand giving him the Gleaner grip and pressing the … firmly. You have thus done your duty as a Companion and he should at once withdraw and ask you for information.
If you meet a member of the Order and wish to recognize him as such …; the answer being given in the same manner.
When Boaz entered the fields where the reapers were at work he always saluted them with the words: The Lord be with you. Their answer was “the Lord bless you." This has always been and will continue to be the grand hailing words of the Order and can be given at any time when Officers of the Order are visiting an organization or when a member or members are being introduced as visitors to a local Arbor.
The grip is given in the following manner: … This my brother constitutes the signs, words and passes which our ancient brethren never allowed written and which you have been obligated to never reveal. You may be seated.
CHIEF GLEANER:
 
We will now return to the tenth order of business.
 

Closing Ceremony

CHIEF GLEANER:
 
Companion Inner Guard you will collect the Rituals, place them in the hands of the proper officers and announce the closing of this Arbor.
INNER GUARD:
 Companions you will form about the altar in due form and prepare for the closing of this Arbor.
CHIEF GLEANER:
 
Let all attend the signs.
CHIEF GLEANER:
 
Companions what is the aim and object of this Order, and the duty of every Companion.
COMPANIONS:
 To assist worthy Companions in distress and provide for the widow and orphans.
CHIEF GLEANER:
 Companions may you keep this ever in mind. Let all join in singing the closing ode.
Companions, we this Sickle form
To remind us of our trust;
May we as fruitful Gleaners here,
Beware the blade that rusts.
Companions pledge each other here,
In this our Arbor Shrine;
To live in peace, with hearts sincere
For days of “auld lang syne."
By this, our emblem and our guide,
Our pledge we will renew;
To care for those in dire distress,
The Widow and the Orphan too.
Companions pledge each other here,
In this our Arbor Shrine;
To live in peace with hearts sincere,
For days of “auld lang syne."
CHIEF GLEANER:
 Unite hands by making the double tie of this Fraternity and sing the last verse:
May our Arbor be a bower of rest
To all who are sincere;
And may the work of every hand
Bear faithful witness here.
Then here’s a hand in friendship clasped,
We ask a hand of thine;
Let’s give the Gleaner’s loyal grip.
For days of “auld lang syne."
CHIEF GLEANER:
 
I now declare this Arbor duly closed, so to remain until the next meeting as here announced. Let all repeat the grand closing words.