From the Grand Master …
The months of May and June, in many parts of our Grand Jurisdiction, is the time of Installations where each Lodge thanks the Masons who have conducted the business of the Lodge be it the ceremonial or business side and to that end your Grand Master also thanks them.
However, this is not a time for the “new” Past Master to step aside. He has spent a year in charge and he knows what works well in his Lodge and what doesn’t work well and probably has ideas on how to fix what doesn’t work well. So, with a little diplomacy, he can make himself available to the new Master and give him a heads up on what needs improvement and also what is working well. The worst thing that could happen, in my opinion, is that he leaves office and disappears with all his knowledge.
At the District level, we also begin the process of ending the year of service of the District Deputy Grand Masters. The District Deputy Grand Master, who only a few short months ago, may have been wondering if he could ever make it through the Masonic year, now has much information. He had seen the good, the bad and perhaps the ugly in his District. He has written reports summarizing the work of his District, has tried to help those Lodges needing help and has praised those who have done outstanding work.
Your Grand Lodge is also preparing to hold its Annual communication soon, it is an opportunity for those eligible voting Brethren to exercise their democratic right however such is not always the case. “My vote means nothing,” says a Brother. My response as a Brother, who has faced many elections in Masonry, for close to twenty years, be it to be Master of the Lodge, District Deputy Grand Master of the District, Deputy Grand Master and then Grand Master is simply to say your vote counts. All votes count! It is your chance to shape Masonry in Ontario at all levels, I urge you to exercise your responsibility and vote.
My remarks to the outgoing District Deputy Grand Masters are exactly the same as to the outgoing Master with this notation, your knowledge is perhaps more important since it involves the management and direction of this Grand Lodge via your District. You MUST NOT walk out the front doors of Grand Lodge with all the knowledge of what works, what doesn’t work. You MUST keep involved with Masonry.
Shortly you will sit across the table from the several Committee Chairman of this Grand Lodge, pick a Committee you would be interested in and then go and talk to that Chairman, tell him why you want to be part of the Team. Yes, it’s true he may not pick you for his Committee this year but believe me there is a pretty good chance the Chairman may be looking for new members.
To those Brethren who are eligible to vote - remember - if you are annoyed with the way Grand Lodge works and you have a better idea; well then, this is your opportunity to make a change. Perhaps, a change for the better. Make yourself acquainted with those Brethren who have allowed their name to stand, for the different positions, and go to the Grand Lodge website where those same Brothers have written pieces for you to read. You will find out who they are and what they will do to make our Grand Lodge better.
My travels this month have given me an opportunity to witness how other Grand Lodge Jurisdictions conduct an Annual Communication. It also gives me an opportunity to hear how they are solving issues, similar to ours. I can tell you our problems are very much the same as theirs, however our successes in my opinion are far ahead of some Jurisdictions. Brethren enjoy this time of renewal in Lodge, your District and Grand Lodge. Please attend Grand Lodge and if eligible, please vote and remember the following.
“The difference between democracy and dictatorship is that in democracy you vote first then take orders, in a dictatorship you skip the vote”
- Charles Bukowski (German-American poet)