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Candidates and their questions (Read 3396 times)
kjforever1
Ex Member




Candidates and their questions
09/03/11 at 9:37pm
 
My question to anyone is this; is there a certain etiquette concerning how to mentor a new candidate?  The reason I ask, is because when entering the lodge I belong to now, I would ask about reading materials or just info in general.  I usually got the "why are you asking that question" look. I have also run into some of these brothers in my daily comings and goings. They act like they don't know me or are rude.  I have never offended anyone to my knowledge.  After recieiving my 32nd Degree recently, I am very certain that every lodge is not like this.  I have not been back to that lodge since I was raised as a Master Mason.  
    If it had not been for the Brother Masons from other lodges that I met while in Guthrie, I would have left and not completed the degrees.  Is it wrong of me to want to attend another lodge?
   I know I sound like the preverbial whiner,  but I am frustrated and want to be a part of a lodge that I have something in common with.  I am the youngest member at 38.   I have a lot to learn and have now found myself ever seeking that knowledge and wisdom.  
   

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Bobg
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Every heart is first
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Posts: 444
Guthrie, Oklahoma
Gender: male
Re: Candidates and their questions
Reply #1 - 09/04/11 at 4:45pm
 
Thank you for expressing this concern. You are not alone in your frustration. Nor are you tied to only one lodge. Yes, there was a time when a brother felt a certain obligation to stay with the lodge that initiated him. In the old days, we could experience 3-4 generations of men actively participating in lodge. This created a natural dynamic with lodge leadership changing with each generation. The younger generation held the officer positions and directed the work of the lodge while the older members became mentors and advisors to the younger men. This all changed with the WW II era men and the large outmigration of males from the rural area communities in the 1950's. What remained were one generation lodges. These fellows kept the ritual words alive and invested all their time conferring degrees. They learned little about Masonry because no one taught them; and they didn't particularly care. They just loved to perform the ritual. The result is that we had only one model of lodge operating in most communities over the last half of the last century.

But this is all changing.

Today, we have a global network of brothers who are learning from each other via the world wide web. They can compare experiences; and they are learning that there are lodges who are actively involved in their communities; there are lodges that focus only on the inner work--the transormative art of Masonry. There are lodges that are remarkably fraternal, and their focus is on their fraternal relationships. There are lodges made up of scholars where the study of Masonry is undertaken on a regular basis. There are lodges made up of professional men who enjoy quality social and fraternal time together. There are lodges of young men who are striving to redefine the lodge experience for their generation.  

The result is that there are a lot more choices today in the kind of Masonic experience a man can have as a Mason. Like minded men are discovering each other online and becoming friends. They are getting together in social gatherings and playing out the teachings of the fraternity in their lives and relationships. For them, making Masonry work both in the lodge and out in the world is their highest goal. This means that men are willing to try other lodges, travel farther to find a lodge that meets their needs, and, in some cases, organize to charter their own lodge to practice the kind of Masonry their own egregore demands.

This is all very exciting. But change occurs one lodge at a time. The face of Masonry is rapidly changing. Busy men have precious little time to stay with a lodge that has no vision of adapting to the contemporary culture of men. In the next decade or so, we can expect to see men seek out and own their own Masonic experience. They may keep their membership in their first lodge out of respect for those who initiated them, but they will be active in lodges that meet their needs as men and Masons.

You are a part of this global transition. Seek out brothers with whom you have an affinity. Communicate what expectations you have of a lodge and the fraternity. You will find others who share your interests. This is the first step to creating a lodge culture within which you will be fulfilled. And, in so doing, you will be going back to the old traditions of Masonry. You will be reclaiming what we once had. And you will be a player in the new renaissance that you will see in your time.      
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Robert
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Bobg
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Re: Candidates and their questions
Reply #2 - 09/04/11 at 4:49pm
 
If you like, I will be happy to spend some time with you at our next reunion. Let me know we met in this forum. Perhaps I can help connect you with other men who share your concerns. It's an exciting time to be a Mason. My prayer for you is that you will feel the same excitement others are experiencing. I will help if I can.
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Robert
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