of Antient Free and Accepted Masons
W Bro B.R. Brodie
P O Box 1304
Hamilton North 3240
07 829 5451
W Bro F.R. McHardy
32 Young St
07 889 6143
W Bro D.M. Hansen
Te Aroha 3320
07 884 8335
You are invited to the REGULAR MEETING of the Lodge in the Masonic Hall, Moorhouse Street,
Morrinsville, on Wednesday 1 December 2010 at 6:30 pm.
W Bro W C Merrilees GS, Secretary,
10 Lindale St
07 889 3092
Wednesday 1 December 2010 at 6:30 pm.
The Lodge will be tyled at 6:30 pm. Visitors will be received no later than 7:00 pm and the Lodge will be closed immediately to allow all to partake of a dinner.
Confirmation of minutes
Balances and accounts for payment
Notices from other Lodges
Collection for Lodge Masonic Aid Fund
Dinner in the Refectory
A hosted dinner at a cost of $20 per head will be held immediately after the Lodge has been closed. Wives, partners, widows and visitors are particularly welcome. Please advise the Master, W Bro Ross McHardy of your attendance no later than Friday 26 November.
Almoner: Any case of sickness or distress should be reported to Bro Colin Gordge , 6 Park Lane, Morrinsville 3300, 07 889 6431, firstname.lastname@example.org
Preceptor: W Bro L A Jeffrey PGSwdB, P.O. Box 302, Morrinsville, 07 889 4466, email@example.com
There will be no rehearsal this month
However the Worshipful Master advises that the Lodge will be working a First Degree in March and those who have participated in the past should prepare themselves for rehearsals in January and February in anticipation.
Unfortunately the minutes of the November meeting were not available at the time of sending this summons out. They will be sent as soon as they are available.
Please invite friends who might be interested in Freemasonry to join with us. And please ensure that widows, wives and partners are invited. Remember to advise Ross McHardy of numbers prior to Friday 26 November so that he can finalise catering. The cost is $20 per head.
"...without neglecting the ordinary duties of your station endeavour to make a daily advancement in Masonic knowledge."
Is this a postscript?
As most will be aware, Jan and I will be relocating to Wellington at sometime in, hopefully, the near future. Our house is on the market and when it sells, we will be on our way. When exactly? We don't know. As with all who wish to sell their home, it depends on someone with the wherewithal being attracted by our 100-year old villa. In the meantime we are applying at least one of the elements of Masonic philosophy—Hope! Part of the process of preparing to shift is that this is the last summons for Lodge Piako which I will prepare.
From time-to-time I look back over what I have written in this section of the summons. Initially I focussed on topics which I intended to convey some further enlightenment on an aspect of Masonic history and philosophy. I drew heavily on the writings of Harry Carr and Bernard Jones, among others, and often would research some small topic which had raised a query during one of our rehearsals, or Lodge meetings. An article on the word "bark" was one such. If I recall I managed to find a suitable sketch of a barquentine! In recent years, however, no doubt in keeping with my duties in Grand Lodge and other Orders, and with my increasing interest in promoting education, understanding and enlightement about Freemasonry and its part in our lives, I have found them tending to something more philosophical and even editorial. I am grateful to have been afforded the opportunity of expressing my thoughts and I hope that those who have read them over the years have found them worthwhile.
The opportunity has been especially important to me because I see education, understanding and enlightenment as being fundamental to ensuring that our Order survives in what, at present, looks to be a gloomy future. I recently expressed the opinion, in a paper published in the New Zealand Freemason, that the essential steps in the way forward are to understand our Order; to manage it; and to promote it. But, I commented, if just one of those steps is neglected, the future is very bleak. My articles in this forum have been aimed at the first step—understanding—based on the assumption that if we do not understand Masonic philosophy we have little hope of convincing others that they should join us: that is we cannot promote it. But we cannot extend understanding if we do not have a solid and properly managed program of education. There is that word "manage"—it applies to everything we do—the business of the Lodge; our ritual and ceremonial; and our education. It is sad that education has been badly neglected in many of our lodges. Someone recently said that 1% of Freemasons are interested in Masonic education and of them, less than 1% do something about it. Perhaps it is a sad reflection on our present state that I incline to the view that that 1% is probably, now, an underestimate: as our numbers decline those we retain, and those who join us are more likely to be interested in our philosophy and will seek to learn more about it.
Education can take many forms: personal reading; participation in ceremonial and ritual; lectures; discussions; visiting other lodges; participation in forums and other web resources; membership of lodges of research and instruction. Above all, though, it relies very heavily on enquiry. If something puzzles you: ask! Someone will likely have an answer. But often we don't ask—which is a pity. I used to tell those I lectured to that they should not forbear from asking a question lest they feel they make a fool of themselves. Rather they should forbear lest they make a fool of me! Generally, we don't make it easy for a newcomer. If he is lucky his lodge will have someone who is capable of, and is prepared to mentor him. Otherwise, he is likely to be left to his own resources and that well known phenomenon, osmosis! If, as I suspect, those new members are interested in philosophy and education, we need to ensure that they are provided with the resources to satisfy their desire for understanding and information. This is an obligation we must all be prepared to take on board. And it must be managed.
Too often we hear that a lodge does not have time to pursue education because it is too busy with ceremonial work. Good for them, if that is the case. But they could think outside the usual boundaries. If the lodge thinks education is important (even if they don't have the "time" to pursue it) perhaps they should "manage" their affairs a little differently. Why not, for example, allocate a definite time each meeting for something educational? It need only be 10 minutes, and it could be allocated to every member in the lodge on a rotating basis. But it should be part of a definite program and plan. Why not work ceremonies at emergency meetings, and have a lecture or discussion relating to the ceremony at the following regular meeting—perhaps the formal lecture of the Tracing Board followed by a lecture or discussion of it?
The future is in our hands. It is up to us to ensure that the Order survives. You may not agree with me, but I believe education in Freemasonry is an essential ingredient in our survival. Would you be prepared to wager that I am not correct?