Brethren, it is always with great sadness that an APGM, or APGP attends a Lodge/Chapter Closing Ceremony. It’s a shame that we even have a Lodge/Chapter Closing Ceremony; however, it does not need to be this way!! I operate from a position of ‘If you can imagine it, you can achieve it’. As you read the rest of this article I want you to focus on that strapline.
Imagine yourself in a vibrant Lodge, or Chapter with Grand Officers, Past Masters/MEZs, young Masons moving up through the ranks and Stewards sitting on the bench ‘waiting their turn and enthusiastic’. This is something you can achieve.
Freemasonry was artificially enlarged after the war, with so many men coming back from Europe wanting to find that camaraderie and friendship they enjoyed before and during those times, so it is no surprise that we are closing Lodges/Chapters now because we shouldn’t have so many. But, and it is a big BUT, whilst the number of Lodges, or Chapters might reduce the number of Freemasons belonging and remaining actively involved in their success does not need to reduce and YOU can help achieve this!
So, you’ve got a situation where not many Members are still active, you’re rotating the same Members through the positions year after year, each meeting is a demonstration rather than a real ceremony! You are not alone; there are other Lodges and Chapters in your position. There are also very active Lodges and Chapters who would welcome you with open arms. You certainly won’t want to see your Brothers, with whom you’ve been meeting for many years, drift away from you and Freemasonry.
Now imagine yourself back where there are Initiates/Exaltees coming in, back where your guests are again enthusiastic to attend your meetings, back where you feel comfortable about introducing new Members, back where the festive board bar is crowded just before the Festive Board; back in an active Lodge and Chapter feels good doesn’t it?
When you read this, if you feel your Lodge, or Chapter might be heading this way, or worse still already talking about handing in your Warrant, get in touch with the Provincial Membership Officer, Nigel Harris-Cooksley PProvGSuptWks (07950 346 870 or Email MiddxPMO@Gmail.com) and ask me to find you a Lodge, or Chapter at your Centre that would be only too willing to welcome all your Members in and ensure that, whilst we might reduce the number of Lodges, or Chapters we currently have, we don’t reduce the number of active Freemasons.