5 Comments
Jun 1, 2023Liked by Cameron M. Bailey

I immediately look at this as a business issue.

First, does the Lodge even have findable, viable contact information? They should be reachable by phone, email, website form, social media, and any other way it would be reasonable for someone to use. I have seen Lodges that don't even appear in a Google search except for outdated third-party directories. They are not in Google Places, and if anyone even suggests it's okay to just be in the "phone book" I am going to lose my cool really fast. Unless they have one helluva excuse, such Lodges need their Charters pulled.

The other possibility is that one person controls these contact points (phone, email, etc.) and unilaterally decides when and if to perform basic professional courtesies of reply. This is usually the Secretary. If this is the case, they need to be removed and prohibited from office, perhaps even Masonic charges should be filed.

At the core of this, it isn't most often some heartlessness or ignorance. It's lack of professionalism, common sense, and accountability. And that last part can cure a host of ills.

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While I agree with the sentiments, while a bit harsh, firing a secretary and pressing masonic charges would probably put that lodge in an even more difficult place than just having the secretary not returning a phone call. Almost every single lodge I know has secretaries that have been ensconced for years, simply because no one wants to do the job to begin with. One lodge has their published wired phone number, someone has to check the voicemail box because it's not like there's a secretary sitting at a desk all day answering phone calls. And messages can be mangled or dropped. It was probably not just one person involved in this mess anyway, considering it was apparently a lodge decision to end things. I don't think pulling the charter of a lodge is a fitting punishment for this particular case, but that's just my opinion.

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Jun 1, 2023Liked by Cameron M. Bailey

I'm not at all suggesting punitive action would be done because of ONE CASE. I'm saying there are Secretaries that do this as a habit, and Lodges that don't care about being reached, and that is KILLING the Craft. If there's no one to be Secretary at all except for someone who can't do the job anyway, the Lodge is already dead and they just didn't have the sense to turn off the lights, IMO.

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The school should take a small smidgen of the blame. Yes, the lodge was wrong on so many fronts and that is not how a group of masons should act. *But*, it was also wrong for the school to just assume things. At the beginning of each and every school year the school and the lodge should check in with each other to make sure the program is ongoing.

But yes, shame on that particular lodge for not honoring its commitments.

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Jun 4, 2023Liked by Cameron M. Bailey

Our Lodge, Lebanon #116 in Norridgewock,ME, has been doing Bikes for Books for the past 12 years. Each year I or someone else reaches out to the school and we select a date for the program to begin and end and a date for the giveaway. We give 32 bikes, helmets, and t-shirts to the kids. Each grade, pre-k through 6, are awarded 2 boys and two girls bikes. The happiness of the kids is heartwarming.

We work with local businesses to raise the money to help pay for the bikes. We list their names on the back of the t-shirt as a way to say thank you for supporting our program.

Fraternally,

RW Robert Smith

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