Things Left Unsaid

Discussion in 'General Freemasonry Discussion' started by Sirius, Nov 16, 2010.

  1. Sirius

    Sirius Registered User

    580
    8
    0
    In all of the discussion about the budget and the per capita, I have not noticed much discussion about the real issue. Namely, where we do we go from here? What is the future of Freemasonry?

    The answers to the questions will differ depending on what Freemasonry is to the individual. For those who see it is a social club, more of the same is expected. The plague of dwindling membership numbers will continue for at least a generation.


    But the ritual of Freemasonry tells us that it is more than a mere social club, it is the descendant of the Ancient Mysteries. Freemasonry is foremost an initiatic institution, the main purpose of which is to teach good men to subdue their passions, to become masters of themselves, and to become better men.


    Some Grand Lodges, like California and Massachusetts, have had the vision and foresight to embrace this powerful initiatic tradition as part of an action plan for the future.


    I am so proud to be part of Texas Lodge that has had equal vision. Two years ago the members of Fort Worth Lodge 148, adopted statements of Mission, Vision, and Principles.


    http://fortworth148.org/About_Declaration.html

    The Vision: To be known as a Lodge that ensures the advancement of Freemasonry and the quality of the Masonic experience.
    The Mission: Accomplishing the advancement of Freemasonry and ensuring quality in the Masonic experience by initiating well qualified men, providing quality Masonic education and engaging all members in continuing Masonic fellowship and activities.

    The Vision, Mission, and Principles define the Lodge, its members, and what its members expects out of Freemasonry.

    The success of the Lodge can be seen in the high numbers of young candidates who are attracted to Fort Worth Lodge because of its emphasis on the initiatic experience.

    I believe that the Grand Lodge of Texas could benefit from thinking about what its Vision, Mission, and Principles are. Then we can have a real discussion about the future.


    “The goal of Fort Worth Lodge is the cementing of brotherhood in support of the inner transformation of each individual on the divine path toward self-mastery. The Lodge views the improvement of the individual as the most fundamental aspect of improving society.â€
    I believe this should be the stated goal of the Grand Lodge of Texas not just one Lodge. What do you think?


    -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


    The Principles of Fort Worth Lodge are:

    Fort Worth Lodge is a fellowship of brothers united in a common pursuit of virtue. The Lodge observes traditional Freemasonry and works to cultivate an understanding of traditional societies and institutions among the brethren. The Lodge is dedicated to the preservation of traditional forms and meaningful human fellowship as a means of transmitting wisdom and improving society.



    Fort Worth Lodge has an initiatic focus and charges the brethren to ever remember that striving to improve themselves in Masonry and assisting candidates and fellow brethren in doing the same is chief among their duties. The Lodge performs ritual in a solemn manner and every effort is made to provide the most meaningful initiatic experience for each individual candidate. The Lodge seeks to create an atmosphere that leads to a positive transformation of the individual.

    Fort Worth Lodge
    believes that as the stated purpose of Freemasonry is to make good men better, a man should only be made a Freemason if he is good and is capable of being made better. Determining the qualifications of men seeking admission is essential to upholding the integrity of our ancient institution. The investigative procedures assist the brethren of the Lodge in determining the qualifications of candidates and provide the candidates with knowledge about the Lodge that they are seeking admission to.


    Fort Worth Lodge believes that Masonic Formation is a slow and careful process that requires great care and effort on behalf of both the candidate and the brethren of the Lodge. Each brother advances at his own pace with sufficient time between degrees to engage in intellectual study and contemplation. The candidate must demonstrate notable improvement in his understanding of Freemasonry and should also present a paper before the Lodge, preferably on the lessons and symbols of his current degree, before being advanced to the next degree. Each candidate is provided with assistance as he feels appropriate for his intellectual and spiritual growth.


    Fort Worth Lodge believes that a candidate should be able to create positive changes within his everyday life prior to becoming a Master Mason. Having to truly work, expend great effort and actually improve oneself is the only way to become deserving of this title. If this is properly observed every newly raised Master Mason will have grown into a better man and the bonds of virtue that tie together the brotherhood of humanity will have been strengthened.

    Fort Worth Lodge highly values the fellowship and friendship that the Lodge can provide and seeks to further cultivate this by holding an Agape after the meetings. The Agape is a festive board with good food and drink consumed in token of Brotherly Love.


    Fort Worth Lodge believes that Masonic meetings should promote the understanding of Freemasonry. Brothers present thoughtful and well researched papers before the Lodge as a service to their brethren. Papers usually discuss Masonic symbolism, history and philosophy, and focus on the spiritual path of self-transformation in the pursuit of virtue.

    Fort Worth Lodge believes that Freemasonry teaches duty and service. Brethren are expected to attend all meetings, and if unable to do so, inform a brother or the Secretary of the Lodge of the reason in advance. Active participation instills duty and is generally rewarding in a number of ways. It keeps all the brethren connected to the Lodge and affirms that their presence is valued, cultivating awareness of their self-worth and potential.

    Fort Worth Lodge believes that officers of a Masonic lodge should be selected based on their merit. Serving in any office within the Lodge is a privilege and not a right. Brethren are given positions of responsibility only after having demonstrated their good faith, ability to make a serious time commitment and ability to perform the necessary duties. The election of the Master is of great importance and only those brethren are considered for this honor and responsibility who are well versed in Masonic teachings, who have the resourcefulness to lead and whose personal character can serve as an example to be followed.

    The goal of Fort Worth Lodge is the cementing of brotherhood in support of the inner transformation of each individual on the divine path toward self-mastery. The Lodge views the improvement of the individual as the most fundamental aspect of improving society.
     
    Last edited: Nov 16, 2010
  2. Ashton Lawson

    Ashton Lawson Premium Member

    207
    7
    18
    I think I'm proud to be a member of Fort Worth Lodge.
     
  3. Sirius

    Sirius Registered User

    580
    8
    0
    We have a lot to be proud of a Fort Worth Lodge. It was long known for leading the way. And once again, it is rising up to meet the challenge of the day.
     
  4. Dave in Waco

    Dave in Waco Premium Member

    764
    2
    0
    I still need to get up there and visit you guys one night.
     
  5. Blake Bowden

    Blake Bowden Administrator Staff Member

    5,683
    997
    113
    Awesome group of Brothers for sure!
     
  6. Sirius

    Sirius Registered User

    580
    8
    0
    Please, do come see us and see what makes Fort Worth Lodge different.

    As a Grand Lodge we're going to have make some real course corrections soon. I belive, an emphasis on ritual and the initiatic experience ,as we have done in Ft Worth, is the answer to our declining membership numbers. Men have numerous choices to pick from, the choose Freemasonry because it is different. We have run away from out own traditions for to a generation and what has it got us? If we continue to go in the direction of a social club, I fear, we will end up like the Odd Fellows.
     
  7. Jamesb

    Jamesb Registered User

    198
    0
    0
    As the last vestiges of "Don't fix it if it ain't broke" pass, you will see the re-birth of Masonry. My lodge Fairbanks 1363 has begun to spread it's wings and I doubt that we would let it fall back into the "old ways" of doing things. We have 10 EA's right now and on Tuesday we had possibly the best MM degree our lodge has put on; a real goose pimpler
     
  8. Dave in Waco

    Dave in Waco Premium Member

    764
    2
    0
    I do believe we have been on cruise control for far too long. Times are changing, and if we don't change yourselves to meet those changes we will fall by the way side. I am one to ask when presented with the "This isn't how we used to do things" quip, "How much have our numbers dropped in the last 50 years, and then ask yourself how well we used to do things is working for us."
     
  9. Sirius

    Sirius Registered User

    580
    8
    0
    Exactly! Masonry lost touch w it's own vital center. How do we reconnect? It starts right here with us. We are the reconnectors. The organization of masonry is losing members because it has been trying so hard to be something else, a charitable social club. If all we are is a club, there are better options available. If we are an order of enlightenment, we have no equal.
     
  10. Frater Cliff Porter

    Frater Cliff Porter Premium Member

    391
    30
    0
    100% with ya Brother. A lodge should have a vision so that it can impart that unto its members. "We not sure what we do, and the little we do...do, is because thats what we've always done" is a bad idea whose detrimental effects on the Craft are obvious. I applaud you and your lodge Brothers for your forward thinking.
     

Share My Freemasonry