What issues are negatively impacting your Lodge?

Discussion in 'The Voting Booth' started by Blake Bowden, Jan 18, 2010.

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What issues are negatively impacting your Lodge?

  1. Unqualified members being elected as Lodge Officers

    8 vote(s)
    13.6%
  2. Lack of social events for Lodge members and their families.

    16 vote(s)
    27.1%
  3. Bickering and/or infighting within the Lodge

    13 vote(s)
    22.0%
  4. Proficiency exams. Does it make a Brother?

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  5. Lack of public information about the Craft

    7 vote(s)
    11.9%
  6. Complacency on a local and state level. Business as usual...

    11 vote(s)
    18.6%
  7. Focus too much on fundraising and less on Lodge members

    3 vote(s)
    5.1%
  8. Dues are too high

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  9. Conflicts with Religious beliefs

    1 vote(s)
    1.7%
  1. Blake Bowden

    Blake Bowden Administrator Staff Member

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    What issues are negatively impacting your Lodge?
     
    Last edited: Jan 20, 2010
  2. Payne

    Payne Registered User

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    Re: What's wrong with Freemasonry in Texas?

    Of the options listed I'd have to say that these are what is troubling most lodges:


    Lack of social events for Lodge members and their families.]

    Most lodges don't really get involved in the community, I feel that if the lodge was more active in the community we would get more Men wanting to join. Actions speak louder than words.

    Bickering and/or infighting within the Lodge.


    It's sad but I have seen Bickering and/or infighting within the Lodge all too much.
     
  3. Bro_Vick

    Bro_Vick Moderator Premium Member

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    Re: What's wrong with Freemasonry in Texas?

    I honestly think complacency, some men seem to feel that their lodge dying is a fact, and won't do anything to try to fix it. Or you have men who think they should sit in the East because they show up to every lodge meeting.
     
  4. TexMass

    TexMass Registered User

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    Re: What's wrong with Freemasonry in Texas?

    In MA, the District Deputy must visit every lodge in his district twice in a year, one "official" and one "fraternal". The top three officers of each lodge in that district MUST accompany him on each visit. So if you have 7 lodges thats 18 plus the district officers being introduced. Too often special visitors or guest of the DD are in attendence bringing it to maybe 25. I have been on a suite of over 132 Masons. It's good times for all! It really gets you involved and you meet other brothers that you may never have met in your district.
     
    Last edited: Jan 18, 2010
  5. Blake Bowden

    Blake Bowden Administrator Staff Member

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    Re: What's wrong with Freemasonry in Texas?

    Sounds like a great idea!
     
  6. Wingnut

    Wingnut Premium Member

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    Re: What's wrong with Freemasonry in Texas?

    This makes the assumption that there IS something wrong with FREEMASONRY in Texas... I would submit that there is a problem with some members that are freemasons, but the craft is fine...

    Allen lodge is filled to the point of having to bring in chairs at almost every degree and at every Stated Meeting and we have put on 30 degrees so far this Masonic Year.
     
    Last edited: Jan 20, 2010
  7. Blake Bowden

    Blake Bowden Administrator Staff Member

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    Re: What's wrong with Freemasonry in Texas?

    Good point...I rephrased it...
     
  8. MGM357

    MGM357 Registered User

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    Sometimes I feel quanity tends to be greater than quality. It's not just in our state, but through out the fraternity. Sometimes I wonder if the younger canidate, after he becomes an EA, is maybe dissapointed from what he has heard or seen from Hollywood, internet, books , etc.Then he doesn't want to desire more light.

    We should allow canidates to season in our teachings and values. I feel this would keep him interested. Today a canidate could become an EA and 32 days later be a MM. I know it would be almost immpossible but by law it could happen. There should be a time period before going to YR or SR. I was introduced to the YR because I kept asking questions that could only be answered by going to YR. Express Masonry to go needs to stop. We need to find a way to keep our new and future Masons interested.
     
  9. TexMass

    TexMass Registered User

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    A few things regarding MA Masonic education can be found here;

    Educate Masons
     
  10. Christopher

    Christopher Registered User

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    I agree with this. I would say that honestly, I don't personally feel my Lodge falls down on any of the points in the poll. We don't have family nights, really, but for me it's not a priority, though I can see why other Brothers would feel differently. The one thing that I feel like my Lodge is missing, which isn't in the poll, is something besides business in our stated meeting. I would like to see us start discussing our Craft during our meetings, either having guest speakers, or else having well-informed Brethren present papers or something. We say that we're "at Labor" during this time. If we're calling ourselves "speculative Masons", then it stands to reason, IMHO, that being at labor means we're "speculating".

    If nothing else, I think this would help to bridge some of the generation gap. Being 23 years old, it's hard for me sometimes to sit and listen to the older guys in the Lodge swap stories with each other. I think having some guided discussion on Craft topics would enable meaningful dialogue between the Brethren without a need for other commonalities (similar age, same field of work, etc.) as a starting point for conversation.
     
  11. Wingnut

    Wingnut Premium Member

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    The best way to learn is to ask questions. The old brothers have some great insight and many just are waiting to be asked. Like old PMs that havent been in lodge. We recently called and asked one to come help with a degree and he was extactic to be asked. Get involved. Over half of our 14 current EAs are participating in degrees and lodge functions already.
     
  12. owls84

    owls84 Moderator Premium Member

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    You should have plenty of oppurtunities for this seeing the average age for a Mason in Texas is 70. (As per a GL stat I requested last week)

    I would say this is a negative issue impacting Masonry in Texas. There are a lot of small town Lodges that are on the bring of demise because they don't have new members. I know of a couple that are only open because of plural membership.

    What are some ideas to reach out to the younger (under 40) population?
     
  13. Wingnut

    Wingnut Premium Member

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    To get anyone interested Masonry has to be relevant to THEM and THEIR lives. With all the other distractions going on thats the difficult task. Once you get them in, the lodge must make them active, show an interest in them and let them know that they are important to the lodge, not just another number on a dues card.

    Masonry is NOT a big boys version of the college frat, it actually requires work on everyones part. Those that dont put anything into it wont get anything out of it. As it says in the Candidate books (paraphrased of course) Masonry doenst explain its lessons in a direct straightforward explanation. It requires you (every mason) to actually learn and discover the lessons. Seems to me the best way to keep them interested is to provide a spark to get them into researching and learning the lessons. Get them involved in lodge activities and degrees. We have stopped telling EAs that they can take part in degrees... we ask them directly to take the Coin or the MOC or whatever and get someone to work with them to get to know that part.
     
  14. Dave in Waco

    Dave in Waco Premium Member

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    Re: What's wrong with Freemasonry in Texas?

    I think this is it in a nutshell. A lot of people want to get involved in their community, they just don't know how. I think Masonry is a great way to show them how. Plus everyone likes to be part of something they know is having a positive effect.
     
  15. Beathard

    Beathard Premium Member

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    What does it take to keep the under 40 year old? That's easy. Having been an under 40 mason for 14 years I can say for me it was:

    1) keep the family involved. Remember under 40s have school aged kids.

    2) Make sure to include significant others. They are the ones that cause a lot of young masons to leave.

    3) Make sure us over 40s include the under 40s. Yes, we may know the work better now, but they are the future. Make sure they know how important they are.
     
  16. tom268

    tom268 Registered User

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    This is a great quote, but it leads to wrong assumptions too often. The solution, that comes in mind to too many grand officers is, "let us make it easier or quicker, so they don't loose interest." Well, you just push the problem to the other and of the line. If it is that fast, they don't loose their interest in the beginning, but just at the end of the line of degrees. If you produce a boring news magazine, you cannot make it better by faster delivery.

    Masons don't want to be entertained, they want to think, they want to learn, and they want to wonder. Thinks, they are distracted from in the day-to-day life. But very often, they don't fight for it, because they are new. And quick they beome used to shallow entertainment, and after a while, get the opinion, that this is all, masonry is about.

    My opinion is, if we make masonry harder, take it more serious, protect the secrecy of our lodges, the interest will be there. With herder, I don't mean necessarily the ritual text. It don't need to be harder to learn, but to give lectures about symbology and mythical aspects, about philosophical aspects and history of the craft, that really brings the brothers to think, maybe even start studying it themselves, that will bring and keep the interest.
     
  17. JohnnyFlotsam

    JohnnyFlotsam Premium Member

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    It does not need to be any harder. It already is difficult. We just need to return our focus to actually learning the lessons and putting them into practice.
    Honestly, this subject has been beaten into the ground in forums like this, over and over. And still, far too many Masons continue to think that if we just get more men doing the same thing we've always done, things will be fine. If one defines "fine" as financially solvent, that may be true. But to paraphrase Brother Porter, Masonry is not about financial solvency, or membership growth, or meeting minutes, or philanthropy. As long as those things continue to absorb our attention, Freemasonry will not be "fine".
     
  18. tom268

    tom268 Registered User

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    Actually, this is, what I meant. But this IS harder for most of the brothers.
     
  19. Benjamin Baxter

    Benjamin Baxter Moderator Staff Member

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    The younger crowds heroes are not actual heroes for the most part. My heroes were my elder family members and the brothers throughout the community doing good works. Washington, Franklin, and even the duke were great role models to look at, but I don't think hey even teach much about them in our schools today. Now a days these younger guys look at people Lebron James, Kane west, and others that have no business in that role. These are people that are in it for themselves, so in turn that is what they are teaching our younger generation.


    Senior Steward - Granbury #392
    Junior Deacon - Glen Rose # 525
     
  20. Michael Hatley

    Michael Hatley Premium Member

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    A distinct lack of cowbell.

    Which I am working to rectify :24:
     

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