Freemasons in their later years

Discussion in 'General Freemasonry Discussion' started by Travelling Man91, Jan 5, 2016.

  1. Travelling Man91

    Travelling Man91 Registered User

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    I have often wondered what happens when a freemason is in their later years and can't remember everything pertaining to the craft. Does someone vouch for them ? Can they just show a dues card ? Does anyone know ?
     
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  2. MarkR

    MarkR Premium Member

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    If you mean when he visits other lodges, they probably shouldn't be making their examination of visitors so demanding that someone whose ritual proficiency has slipped can't pass. When I've been asked by the WM to examine an unknown visitor, I check the dues card, ask a couple of simple questions that any Mason should know, hit a mode of recognition or two, and call it good. I certainly don't expect anybody to be doing a "prove-up" to visit.

    If I was visiting, and they started raking me over the coals in the examination, I'd probably apologize for bothering them and take my leave.
     
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  3. Travelling Man91

    Travelling Man91 Registered User

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    Good answer brother. My first time visiting a new lodge, they examined me on all three degrees. It was nothing to it, things that any Master Mason should know.
     
  4. Warrior1256

    Warrior1256 Site Benefactor

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    This is excellent, totally agree.
     
  5. dfreybur

    dfreybur Premium Member

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    Most elderly brothers who attend tiled meetings are clear of mind though they may be infirm of body. There's always a younger brother by his side making sure he's okay. It is the most wonderful when it is a grandfather and grandson attending lodge together.

    I've seen brothers away from lodge long enough they only knew one sign. That and a current dues card got them in with a reminder of when to stand and sit. We take care of our own.

    I've seen brothers who were easily confused brought to open events by their wives but by the time they don't remember anything they are often in a care unit. Lodge officers sometimes go to them to deliver 50 year pins and such.
     
  6. Travelling Man91

    Travelling Man91 Registered User

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    That is what I like to hear. Where I live, there was a gentleman who was the oldest member of his lodge. The lodge had called him and said that they wanted to take pictures of him and another brother that was of age. They never came to take the picture and this guy became disappointed. He had spent so much time in the craft and they never even came and saw him while he was in the nursing home. I went to his funeral and never saw a Masonic burial. I oftern wondered if he quit paying his dues is the reason they didn't show up. Which broings the me to my next question, after you reach a certain age, do you have to continue paying dues ?
     
  7. Bill Lins

    Bill Lins Moderating Staff Staff Member

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    Under the Grand Lodge of Texas, any Brother who has been in good standing for 50 years or more is exempt from dues. There was a proposed resolution @ our Annual Communication this past December to raise the exemption age to 60 years. That proposal crashed & burned. ;)
     
  8. Warrior1256

    Warrior1256 Site Benefactor

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    This is great!
     
  9. Warrior1256

    Warrior1256 Site Benefactor

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    This is very sad.
    Same here in Kentucky.
     
  10. Companion Joe

    Companion Joe Premium Member

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    I would tend to think if someone is so old they don't quite remember everything and still traveling, they (1.) would be known anywhere they might visit and/or (2.) they probably wouldn't be traveling alone.
     
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  11. dfreybur

    dfreybur Premium Member

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    Different answer per jurisdiction. Some do some don't.

    California answer - No. In theory the obligation is to support your lodge for life so that's what the life membership (endowment) program is for. It is official policy in California to check if a member is current before doing a Masonic funeral. It is unofficial policy in California to be generous, do the funeral ceremony and forget to check dues status. We also permanently remit the dues of brothers in nursing homes or confined to home to keep the number of NPD members down to those who actually do just walk away and ignore the dues notices. The end result is similar to waiving dues but it's based on health and financial ability not on a fixed number of years.

    Bro Bill already posted the Texas answer. Note to self - Buy an endowment long before I ever have to ask if that's 50 years total or 50 years in that jurisdiction. Then continue to send my lodges checks most years anyways just as I always have.
     
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  12. Bill Lins

    Bill Lins Moderating Staff Staff Member

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    Total.
     
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  13. Warrior1256

    Warrior1256 Site Benefactor

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    I'm now paying on an life membership for the AASR. When that is done I will get one for my mother lodge. After that I will get one for the York Rite. That way if I become unable to pay dues in my latter years I will be O.K.
     
  14. Canadian Paul

    Canadian Paul Registered User

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    My lodge uses its Benevolent Fund to pay the Dues of older brethren who might find it difficult to do so. This is done confidentially and no one will know but the Master and the Almoner.
     
  15. Sammcd

    Sammcd Premium Member

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    Knowing there would be a time when my income will be drastically reduced I have purchased a perpetual blue lodge, a perpetual SR, and a Perpetual knights of St Andrews. Working on one for York Rite and Shrine. I'm in my mid 60s so the perpetual memberships are insurance against that time.
     
  16. Canadian Paul

    Canadian Paul Registered User

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    The Grand Lodge of Scotland no longer allows the purchasing of what it calls 'life membership'. The reason given is that the lodge is then burdened with annual expenses such as the brother's share of Grand Lodge Assessments and other lodge expenses every year. The point out that the money charged for such a membership was seldom invested to generate revenue, and that even if it was the annual interest usually failed to keep up with increasing expenses.
     
  17. dfreybur

    dfreybur Premium Member

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    Well managed trust funds take into account inflation and decade long interest rate swings. Well managed funds pay out 1 part in 20 or some fixed percentage lower than that. What this means in practical terms is if you were charged anything less than 20 times annual dues, the trust fund is not well managed. What this means in practical terms is if the withdrawal is in terms of the interest earned not in terms of a percentage of the balance (with that percentage 4% or less), the trust fund is not well managed.

    This is not the first time I've seen a jurisdiction have a negative reaction towards endowments rather than finding out how to manage an endowment. You should hear members of the grand line in Illinois talk on this topic - They have a formal training program for their advancing line that includes trust fund management and they often pass on that knowledge for use by the lodges in their jurisdiction.
     

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