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Edict 2020-11-18

With the increase of COVID-19 cases throughout the state and many municipalities increasing restrictions, the Grand Master has issued a new EDICT, reaffirming the previoous EDICTS issued by MWB Brown and making a blanket dispensation for all lodges to be able suspend regular meeting(s) at their Master’s discression, to comply with local mandates or restrictions, or if he feels its in the best interest of the safety of the lodge’s members, with no further paperwork necessary from Grand Lodge, through January 31st, 2021.

The PDFs of the Edict and Dispensations are linked below. They are also in your Portal Resources.

EDICT 2020-11-18

Dispensation (COVID-19)- Cundiff Edict 2020-11-18

EDICT November 18, 2020

TO: All Missouri Masons under the jurisdiction of the Grand Lodge of Ancient, Free and Accepted Masons of the State of Missouri

WHEREAS, Grand Master Stanton T, Brown, II, issued the following Edicts pertaining to subordinate lodge operations in Missouri in response to the Coronavirus pandemic:

• Edict 3/11/2020 – Allowing lodges to close to protect members
• Edict 3/25/2020 – Suspending all Masonic Activity
• Edict 4/24/2020 – Resumption of partial Masonic Activity where allowed by City or County
• Edict 6/26/2020 – Revision to allow non-resident members to attend allowed activities
• Edict 8/27/2020 – Indefinite Extension of conditions of Edict 4/24/202 with emphasis on work allowed, temporary suspension of initiation and advancement time, and temporary suspension of Annual Communication attendance requirements

WHEREAS, on September 21st, 2020 Most Worshipful Brother Barry V. Cundiff was installed as Grand Master;

WHEREAS, in November, 2020, cases of the COVID-19 corona virus have been increasing, causing several municipalities in Missouri to implement more restrictive local ordinances that would directly impact the ability of Lodges to conduct businesses;

WHEREAS, these previous edicts state that all meetings so held shall be conducted in a manner which complies with all laws, regulations, requirements and guidelines of the State of Missouri and any city, county or other political subdivision in which the lodge hall is located;

THEREFORE, under the authority of Section 2.010(k) of the By-Laws of the Grand Lodge of Ancient, Free and Accepted Masons of the State of Missouri as Grand Master, I hereby issue the following Edict:

A. I reaffirm and hold continued in full force all the provisions of MWB Brown’s Edict of August 27th, 2020.

C. All meetings so held shall further be conducted in a manner which complies with all recommendations of the United States Centers for Disease Control (CDC) with respect to physical distancing and sanitation practices;

D. All meetings so held shall be considered open to all members of the lodge, members of other subordinate lodges of this jurisdiction, and members of any lodge in another Grand Jurisdiction which is in fraternal relationship with this Grand Lodge so long as the total attendance at the meeting shall comply with the remainder of this Edict in respect to physical distancing and local regulations;

E. The Master of the lodge may, at his discretion, direct that all in attendance at such meetings wear facial coverings as recommended by the CDC, provided, however, that no one in attendance may be prohibited from wearing a facial covering at his election;

F. Notwithstanding Section 7.060 of the Grand Lodge By-Laws, all meetings shall be conducted in the First Degree of Freemasonry so as to comply with all social distancing guidelines in the practice of Masonic Ritual;

G. No degree conferral, ceremony, education, or other business that cannot be conducted in a manner that complies with the above requirements may be conducted by the lodge. Any lodge in violation of this portion of the Edict shall be subject to Masonic Discipline, including but not limited to suspension of its functions;

Notwithstanding the above, the Edict issued March 11, 2020 allowing subordinate lodges to cancel or postpone stated communications at the discretion of the Master when the purpose of said cancelation or postponement is to prevent or limit the exposure of officers and members of the subordinate lodge to coronavirus or some other such infectious or contagious disease of a similar nature remains in full force and effect indefinitely, unless canceled or modified by future order, and all dispensations issued pursuant to that Edict remain in full force and effect.

A blanket dispensation allowing the suspension of lodge meetings under the above conditions through January 31st, 2021 will be included with this Edict, that will alleviate any lodge desiring to suspend their meetings from contacting the Grand Secretary to obtain an individual dispensation for their lodge.

This Edict shall remain in full force and effect until otherwise modified by further Order of the Grand Master.

Barry V. Cundiff
Grand Master

Missouri Residency Requirement

Re:  COMPLIANCE WITH THE BY-LAWS—Candidate Petitions

Worshipful Master and Brethren of all Missouri Lodges:

            While I know that this is a redundant letter, that I sent it to you last October and that my term has almost come to an end, I am again sending it to you to emphasize the importance of the investigation of candidates.

Your attention is directed to Section 13.020 of the Grand Lodge By-Laws, which states:

Except as provided in Section 21.100 (Waiver of Jurisdiction From Another State), a petitioner for the degrees must have had a permanent settled domicile or fixed abode in Missouri continuously for the six months immediately preceding  and presentation of his petition.  Residence is neither lost nor gained by the mere fact of location while employed in the service, either civil or military, of Missouri or of the United States.

All brothers recommending a candidate and signing a petition already should be aware, but if not should be immediately made aware, of this By-Law.  The Investigation Committee, the Lodge Secretary, and the Master each share the duty to insure that this and all other By-Laws are carefully and punctually observed.

When investigating a prospective candidate due diligence must be used to confirm the petitioner’s address prior to presenting his petition for a final vote.  Our By-Laws require that a candidate must be a Missouri resident for six months.  A Post Office Box does not qualify as a permanent Missouri address.  Falsely stating a residence or its duration on a petition is a Masonic Offense.  Petitions from non-residents of Missouri may be received only after the required jurisdictional consents have been obtained.  Should you have any questions, contact your District Deputy Grand Master.

I have included a brochure from the Grand Lodge entitled Manual for the Committee of Investigation to assist the members of your investigation committees in carrying out their duties.  Additional copies are available upon request from the Grand Secretary.

Fraternally,

David W. Haywood, Grand Master

September 15, 2015

New Secretary Database

Brother Secretary,

We’re pleased to announce that we have successfully converted the Grand Lodge Database to the new system.  We are in the process of verifying the information and customizing the operation of the system to suit our processes and by-laws.    We’re excited about the new capabilities it will bring our craft.

We will begin a phased rollout this week.  The system will be launched with essential features enabled and new features will be released in the coming weeks.  As the system is implemented we will be communicating through email and posting correspondence through the system itself.

As with any major changes in the processes and procedures of an organization there will be issues along the way.  We ask that you be patient with the implementation.

Training & Communications       

The implementation of such a system is a complicated series of events and training. In order to facilitate both, the Grand Lodge will be communicating with lodge secretaries on a regular basis.  We will also be posting information on the Grand Lodge Website www.momason.org

Once you follow the directions in this email to set up your account you will find training videos showing you how to use different features of the system.  Keep in mind that you will initially have view-only access to the system so some of the features in the videos may not be available.

Web based training sessions will be held at least once a week.  Please check the Grand Lodge Website for the schedule of web-based training sessions.  Sessions will be scheduled both during the day and in the evening to suit varying personal schedules.  These sessions will last approximately one hour and will allow you to see the screens and functionality while also providing an opportunity for questions and answers.

Getting help and reporting problems.

Should you have issues or need assistance after watching the training videos and attending a WebEx training session, please email smann@momason.org with a description of your issue and how we can contact you.  Please include pertinent information such as what you were trying to do, what lodge or member you were working on, and whether or not you received an error message.  If possible, please send screenshots as well.  This information will greatly reduce the amount of time it takes to troubleshoot an issue.

Creating an Account and Gaining Administrative rights

o   Please visit https://my.momason.org/membership_registration

o   Enter your home lodge number, member number, and last name exactly as it appears on your dues card.  (Case sensitive)

o   Set your username and password (Case sensitive).

o   Update your contact information.

o   Upon setting up your account you will have access to your own record.  The Grand Lodge will be notified of the creation of your account and will grant permissions for your lodge.  All you need to do is log back in to see the lodge dashboard.
What to do when you access your lodge dashboard for the first time.

o   Look around and get comfortable with the layout of the application.

o   If you find inaccuracies please make a note and send that to smann@momason.org .  We expect there to be some minor data irregularities so please be patient.  We will investigate the issue and report back the resolution.

What’s Next?

Over the next couple weeks we will be testing various features of the system.  You may receive emails from the Grand Lodge from time to time testing communication features.  Please be patient!   This is a large and complicated undertaking and we will be working to address issues and rollout the system as quickly as possible.

We appreciate your assistance and look forward to the capabilities this upgrade will bring to the Grand Lodge of Missouri, Constituent Lodges and the Membership!

Fraternally,

Jeffrey S. Pennington, Grand Secretary