Even at the best of times travelling to a Lodge meeting in Middlesex shows a remarkable commitment to the Province and of each Lodge member to his Lodge colleagues.
However, the prospect of being unable to meet in Lodge might possibly mean that the “bond” becomes loose and fall away over a longer period of inactivity.
Zoom to the Rescue –
The “Canny” Lads of Bushey Park Lodge, to borrow from the North Eastern vernacular, have overcome the difficulties of remoteness and embraced the modern technology now available to all.
They have Zoomed forward into a new era.
Scrupulously following the advice given by UGLE on the use of internet “gatherings”, on the day of their abandoned meeting they logged on to the Zoom platform, where Lodge matters were discussed and plans were made for the future on resumption of regular meetings.
Lodge members were able to enquire as to the health and well-being of their brethren and included regular Lodge guests.
Then at 9 o’clock all brethren raised their glasses at home in a toast to “absent brethren”.
Planning for the Future –
One of the better things that have come out of these new methods of communication is the fact that even during a period of long absence, Lodge members can work toward a consensus on important matters which can then be agreed in open Lodge at a later date and minuted accordingly.
W. Bro Paul Hilditch PProvJGW, Lodge Secretary, has intimated that this method of communication will be adopted for contact between members of the Lodge even when things return to normality.
Bushey Park Lodge is also currently applying to become part of the Universities Scheme and to be linked to the Royal Holloway College in Egham.
It is, therefore, to keep up a momentum even during lockdown.
Singing the Same Song –
This kind of story has been repeated by a multitude of lodges around the country.
Frequent on-line discussions will maintain interest and commitment amongst new brethren, much more than an email can.
Many newer Masons may be bewildered by the current circumstances and this kind of contact may be paramount in showing an inclusivity and portray masons as really having a caring nature toward their Lodge Brethren.
Even for the die-hard technophobes the masonic world must adapt to the new technologies available to ensure the progress of freemasonry into the future. No so much being canny, as meeting the future with alacrity.
A grateful thanks to W. Bro Frank O’Keeffe for his contribution to this article.
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