Reaching out to inactive Brethren's!!

Discussion in 'General Freemasonry Discussion' started by Bro. Staton, Nov 25, 2014.

  1. Bro. Staton

    Bro. Staton Registered User

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    Fraternal Greeting Brethrens I have a question in which I believe all lodges will or have dealt with and that is inactive brothers. How does your lodge reach out to these brethren to find out why they stopped coming and what is needed to get them back in the lodge? I have asked our current WM and PM's the membership roll to determine who those brother are within our lodge as I would hope to reach out to them and understand each of their reasonings. What methods do you deploy?? I think it's important to understand why many stopped coming and work on those areas of concerns so those do not affect the new brethrens coming into the lodge. Your response would be greatly appreciated.
     
  2. Zack

    Zack Registered User

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    Most members are satisfied with Masonry just the way it is. Eighty % are not going to participate no matter what you do. Free beer and dancing girls may help in the short run. Take their dues and stop worrying about them. Get on with our own business of being a Mason. Why make our own experience less by fretting about those who don't participate? It's their choice.

    Several years ago I stopped worrying about who attends, how many attend, falling membership and all the other ills that plague, or seem to plague, the Fraternity.
    I attend, participate in degrees and do what I am asked to do. The 15-20% of us who do so have grown closer because of our smaller numbers. Brotherly Love and affection is at the forefront. IS THAT NOT WHAT IT"S ALL ABOUT?

    Freemasonry will survive.
     
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  3. Bro. Staton

    Bro. Staton Registered User

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    Bro Zack
    Thank you for your insight and input as well. I guess the zell of being a new Mason such as myself wanting to know what can be done to bring them back. My view on it is slightly different as I see some of the inactive members are a part of the lodge history and some have great knowledge which should be passed on to the next generation of Mason. However, I do see your point that some will never participate even with the free beer and dancing girls as you stated lol. Again thank you
     
  4. dfreybur

    dfreybur Premium Member

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    Lodges thrive on their pipeline and on their dues paying members. Attendance at tiled meetings is only incidental to the flow of new petitioners. Whatever causes candidates to petition and complete their degree work helps lodges thrive.

    Try reading back as far as you like and you will find brothers discussing the low attendance at lodge meetings based on tiler sheets. There is a cadre of brothers who keep attending tiled meetings for the fellowship. It's worth trying to make meetings more interesting for this cadre but efforts to increase attendance of tiled meetings has low leverage. Ask around what lodges do well for tiled attendance and emulate their meetings. Or try something within your lodge for a few years and if it works brag on that when at district, area and state events. But in the end its' what happens in other events that drives how active a lodge is.

    Some of the flow of candidates is determined by forces outside of our direct control. Society's view of fraternities waxes and wanes. Right now we are about 1-2 decades past the most recent bottom and we are now seeing more candidates for generational reasons. As half of us are still members when we die, most lodges and jurisdictions are still seeing more loses to death than gains from petitioners. Also the world wars generated a huge spike outside of normal from previous centuries so the steady state membership as a percentage of the population is ending up lower than the Fred Flintstone generations. We can't control that so all we can do is "think global act local".

    At the local level lodges that have active social and/or service calendars have active pipelines of candidates. Who show up in droves at social and/or service events. Who show up at tiled meetings at the same low rate that has always happened. So put each candidate to work. Put them on the grill at a fundraiser meal. Put them on a ladder at a local scape and paint. Put them in chairs. Busy hands are the lodge's tools. Ideal hands are, you know the rest ...
     
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  5. Zack

    Zack Registered User

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    I've read the minutes of my Mother Lodge from 1927 and the biggest things were; lack of attendance, lack of participation in degrees and trying to raise dues.

    The more some things change the more they stay the same.
     
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  6. Glen Cook

    Glen Cook G A Cook Site Benefactor

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    Yup. I read the GL of UT GM address, C. 1874 (yes, eighteen). His lament? Only 10% of members attended lodge.

    That said, my mother lodge had miserable attendance in the last year, in part because many of us had duties which took us elsewhere. A simple phone tree at the beginning of this month brought our brothers we had not seen in YEARS. Your GL will have a whole set of techniquest; tips to help, but sometimes, just a phone call works.

    But......you just won't get 'em all.
     
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  7. Bro. Staton

    Bro. Staton Registered User

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    I agree that a phone call can often times provoke good intentions and new directions as well. I have reached out to members via email and FB oddly enough I have received good responses back. I see the issues that have been around for many years and certainly hope to see changes of this trend in the near future. Thanks for your insight and reponse Bro Cook.
     
  8. cemab4y

    cemab4y Premium Member

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  9. JJones

    JJones Moderator Staff Member

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    I personally feel that instead of wringing our hands over inactive members we should focus on creating a lodge experience that will interest and retain currently active members. I suspect consistently holding stated meetings to just pay bills and discuss fundraisers is largely responsible for much of the turnover in many lodges.
     
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  10. cemab4y

    cemab4y Premium Member

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    Most stated meetings are B-O-R-I-N-G. Sad to say, but true. Open the meeting, pay the bills read the sick list, close the meeting. Drink stale coffee, go home. Who wants to do this, when you can stay home and watch cable TV?
     
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