My message for the coming year is like the wish you make when blowing out the candles on your birthday cake.
My message is for peace and harmony.
But it’s not an idealistic wish, it is something we can all strive for by controlling our emotions, thoughts, and actions. We cannot control what others do, but we can control what we do.
As we’re presented the trowel, the working tool of a Master Mason, we are told that Masons should use the trowel to spread the cement of brotherly love and affection, that cement that binds us and whom no contention should ever exist, but that noble contention of who can best work and best agree!
We forget this much too often. We can disagree with each other, but we should respect each other enough to accept the other person has a right to his opinion. We can agree to disagree! This allows for peace and harmony to exist!
Our ritual separates us from other organizations because it explains who we are as Masons, what we believe in and how we should live our lives to give it purpose. I think that is what is at the core for someone to join our organization. He is looking to be part of something that wants to do good, help other people, and show other people by our examples of doing good things, he can try and make this world a better place. That becomes our mission.
Our forefathers started this process, and their ideals help shape our great nation. They realized that the future lies with giving our children the tools to succeed. Provide them with opportunities to learn, educate them to find better paths. Teach them to be tolerant of others, know the difference between right and wrong, help others and the less fortunate help themselves. Lodges need to look for what they can be doing in their communities to help make them better. Do their schools need help to make their students’ lives better?
Peace, in the context of our Masonic fraternity, refers to the absence of conflict and the promotion of goodwill among its members. Masons are encouraged to resolve differences amicably and to treat each other with respect and kindness. This emphasis on peace creates a harmonious environment within our fraternity, fostering strong bonds of friendship and cooperation.
Harmony, on the other hand, goes beyond the absence of conflict. It encompasses the idea of working together towards a common goal, embracing diversity and finding balance in all aspects of life. Masons believe that true harmony can only be achieved when individuals come together, regardless of their differences, to work towards a common goal.
The relevance of peace and harmony to our Masonic fraternity lies in our core values and teachings. We are taught to seek peace within ourselves, our families, and our communities. By promoting peace and harmony, we strive to create a better world for all.
Peace and Harmony are essential principles in our Masonic fraternity. They promote unity, understanding and personal growth. By embracing these values, we contribute to a more peaceful and harmonious society!
Other goals for this year include finding a solution to one of our biggest problems, losing members for non payment of dues. Our father’s generation never considered not paying yearly dues. Their loyalty, their desire to remain a member, seems different from today’s Masons. I believe if we can make our lost members remember why they joined and provide an easy way to reunite themselves with us, many will.
I encourage every Lodge to find a project to help their community. Work with the Masonic Home’s Creating-A-Partnership program to take advantage of their two for one match. Do something positive, do something to help others, give our members, your members, something to feel good about and be proud of. Remind them why we are Masons, and what Masons do!