General Grand Master April 2019

General Grand Master's Update
David A. Grindle

General Grand Master

Greetings Companions,

Here we are half way through the Triennium, and we are a year into sending this electronic Newsletter. Our desire was to have a group of articles to send out every week. Initially, we were right on track, and then it slacked off for a while. Now we are closer to the desired communication level because we are more in the habit of writing an article and gathering the other information of interest to the craft.

On January 12th, the Regional Deputy General Grand Master for Europe, RPC Norman R. Draine, met in Frankfurt with the newly selected officers of the Supreme Grand Council of Cryptic Masons of Germany for their institution as a Grand Council Under Dispensation. Let us welcome them to the family.

By the time you read this, I will have completed 39 daily visits lasting 15 minutes to the machine pictured here:

Varian TrueBeam

My hope is that it has killed the remnant of Prostate Cancer that cropped up in May of 2017.  As one companion mentioned to me, I would glow in the dark after the first 15 treatments and not need a night light to get up at night; I'm still waiting on the glow.

I have several times talked about the four types of Masonic Members. These apply to all levels of Masonry, Blue Lodge, Scottish Rite, York Rite, etc. They are Members, Attenders, Participators, and Enthusiasts.

  1. Members. These are the card carriers that pay their dues on time and generally don't attend the meetings. They may not even know that their dues have been paid because their significant other pays them when the notice arrives and then they receive their new dues card.
  2. Attenders. These are the members that attend for the camaraderie and relationship, but do not desire to take an office in the Masonic body. They will generally do other work that does not involve being an officer like cleaning up after meals, setting up the meeting room, and helping with other paraphernalia.
  3. Participators. These are the members that regularly attend and take an active role in the body's activities. They take offices that will culminate in the leadership position of the body. They take parts in the conferrals and possibly learn new parts. These are the members most likely to become the next level of member.
  4. Enthusiasts. Other names for this member is Fan, Fanatic, Advocate, or Disciple. Yes, I said "Disciple". Disciple means a follower or student of a teacher, leader, or philosopher. Synonyms are follower, adherent, believer, admirer, devotee, ... In our case, I would classify a Masonic Disciple as a devotee to our Masonic morals and dogma. In a past message from our Pastor, she described the seven marks of a disciple, and when I heard them, I tried to determine a way they could be applied to Masonic Enthusiasts/Devotees/Advocates (Disciples). The seven marks are:
Be Logo
Be. I believe this mark means to be in a relationship with your Supreme Being, your fellow human beings, and your Brother Masons, in particular.

Give Logo
Give. We Masons have been the second largest charitable contributors in the United States. We are only surpassed by the United States Government. As we continue giving to our philanthropies, we are practicing our obligations and the moral duties taught in our degrees and lectures.

Practice Logo
Practice. This mark can mean several things, but the one most important is living a Masonic Way of Life. In other words, practicing "out of the Lodge/Chapter/... those great moral duties that are inculcated in it."

Pray Logo
Pray. This mark means what it says. It does work. Answers to prayer come in varying ways. But remember one of the first lessons you are taught in Masonry: "No great or important undertaking should begin without invoking the blessings of GOD."

Read Logo
Read. Read our ritual from cover to cover, especially the footnotes. Read books on Masonry by authoritative authors like R. Brent Morris, Robert G. Davis, etc. Dive into Albert G. McKay's Encyclopedia, it is full of useful information that can be used as educational presentation in meetings. Also, include some reading from our detractors so that you are familiar with what they are saying bad about us.

Serve Logo
Serve. To assist a distressed worthy brother, his widow, and orphans. To do anything in your power to provide Relief to humanity. To work with the lodge to provide a welcoming environment to ALL Members.

Worship Logo
Worship. This is the one that is probably the most difficult to connect with Masonry, but if we remember our Second Degree Lecture, we learn there that Operative Masons worked six days of the week at the construction of King Solomon's Temple and rested on the seventh day. This was in imitation of the Genesis Creation Story where God worked six on the creation and rested on the seventh. Operative Masons used the seventh as a day to honor the Supreme Being for his glorious work; therefore, since we are believers in a Supreme Being, we should imitate our Operative Brethren.
I'm sure many of you can categorize the members of your Bodies with these four labels. We can also classify the Enthusiasts by the Marks of a Disciple. The Challenge is how do you get the members in one category to move along to the next higher category, and how do we get the Enthusiasts to take on more Marks. That I will leave up to you Advocates to accomplish. Please let us know how these ideas are used in your jurisdiction.

David A. Grindle
General Grand Master

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