First and foremost, it has been over forty years since I pledged Omega Mu, but memories of the Castle and many brothers come back vividly. Again and again, they come back to me, fresh and alive. In terms of time, it was a blink of eye, but I carry these deeply held memories, and I am proud to be an Omega Mu Fiji. Each one if us carries these memories. Our fraternal memories are internalized in the Castle, or on the grounds, and when we return for Pig Dinner and walk through the house, each floor and room, as well as the grounds around the house, will elicit wonderful memories. These memories are the forging bond that link us together as proud Omega Mu Fijis through life, and we are proud that our historically linked fraternal brotherhood started in 1874. In historic scope and depth, vision and commitment, our fraternal history, at the University of Maine, is a chronicle of perseverance and determination. Thankfully, those fraternal qualities that started with our Q.T.V. brothers continues today with the undergraduate brothers living in the architectural richness of the Castle.
2022 marks the 148th year of our fraternal history, and we continue to forge a strong sense of fraternal purpose and identity, as the preeminent fraternal brotherhood, at the University of Maine. In short, we remain the flagship fraternal brotherhood at the University of Maine. That is a fraternal fact, not fraternal fantasy. All of this we know. It is a great fraternal narrative, and our fraternal brothers, our rich history, and our historic fraternal home give us just cause to be grateful and thankful.
In example, thought, and action, we are a resourceful brotherhood; we make things happen, and we still do. We have survived and endured through many historical circumstances, and we will continue to persevere. The three words that do not exist in our fraternal DNA are abdication, resignation, or renunciation. We do not give up. We have always embodied fortitude and loyalty. No brother is more important than the whole, and it has been that way since our founding in 1874. It is not improper to state, theologically speaking, that we are all courageously faithful. With a very down-to-earth fraternal attitude, when the odds are not encouraging, we collectively enflesh what George Washington succinctly stated: “Perseverance and spirit have done wonders in all ages.” A beautiful old truth that fittingly describes our fraternal brotherhood because cannot is a word that we do not know in our fraternal history. Everything we fraternally believe comes down to, in the end, the collective fraternal care we exhibit towards each other, knowing our rich history, and taking care of the Castle. These are the fraternal qualities that have made us last for 147 years. More than anything, these three things continue to create our enduring meaning and purpose of fraternity amongst men, 147 years on and growing stronger at the University of Maine. We never stop moving forward. It is our fraternal heritage since 1874.
The brotherhood and fraternal home that we love today is due to the linked, collaborative, and tireless efforts of generations of men, and it is an honor to be part of it. The many brothers who come back for Pig Dinner represent a small part of the sum total of fourteen plus decades of our fraternal history, and we have great expectations that our fraternal history will continue for another 147 years at the University of Maine. We have persevered through three tiresome and tedious years, and we are more than a little pleased to be coming home to the Castle for Pig Dinner this April. The rich festivity and sound of our Pig Dinners creates a unity of sentiment and joy that explicitly shows all three of these beliefs binding us together, and it will be shown again this April. It is always a memorable gathering of generations of Omega Mu Fiji Brothers, and our rich fraternal tradition of Pig Dinner will continue on April 30th. It is the great collective expression of our Phi Gamma Delta brotherhood, and it is time for us to re-express that generational connection in the Castle.
Historic milestones matter in our proud fraternal history. We are the proud legacy of those first Q. T. V. brothers, and the historic map of our fraternal narrative from Munson Avenue to Fraternity Row to 79 College Avenue truly captures our authentic perseverant and determined spirit, and that spirit will be on full display in April. With fraternal pride, good cheer, joy, and gratitude, we will return to the Castle to celebrate Pig Dinner. It will be fraternally overwhelming to see the Castle full with Omega Mu Fiji brothers again. Omega Mu hospitality will be alive and well inside and outside the Castle. There will be a wealth fraternal spirit on display from Friday to Sunday. It will be genuine; it will be Omega Mu. That is our long, proud tradition as Phi Gamma Delta Fijis, and we all have much to catch-up on at Pig Dinner 2022. We will celebrate our connection with one another. It is our greatest fraternal custom and tradition, forever unchanging, and there are no proverbs or aphorisms that adequately describe it, but I believe that Thoreau describes it best: “What a difference, whether in all your walks, you meet only strangers, or in one house is one who knows you, and whom you know. To have a brother…How rare these things are.” Perge.
The Castle Welcomes You
For Pig Dinner
“What if the space be long and wide,
That parts us from our brother’s side
A soul-joined chain unites our band,
And memory links us hand in hand.”
(Phi Gamma Delta fraternity song)
Chip Chapman, ’82