Saturday, August 2, 2008

Practical Freemasonry

Ambassador's Jewel

I'm now officially a Masonic Ambassador for my lodge, having attended one of Grand Lodge's training sessions earlier this week. I even have a certificate and and jewel to prove it.

So what does a Masonic Ambassador do in Massachusetts? They are often the first point of contact for a potential candidate who calls Grand Lodge for information, or looks up a local lodge on the Grand Lodge web site. They answer candidates' questions, and follow through with them as they take the degrees so that they have a familiar face they can sit with at dinner, and most importantly know they can bring questions to.

Within the lodge, the Ambassador tries to help find ways to integrate new members, whether that's just introducing them to Brothers with similar interests, or learning about their hobbies/skills and putting them in touch with a particular committee where they can contribute.

Grand Lodge recognizes that it's about retention as much as it is about recruitment, and Ambassadors are charged with getting Brothers new and old engaged in their lodges again. The whole session was refreshingly pragmatic and quite encouraging overall. One plain statement presented during the evening was that it is important that lodges understand that membership is the only reason for our existence.

Now, now. All of the other things that make Freemasonry so unique and important to all of us are also reasons for our existence... but without new members who keep coming back the only place we'll be able to discuss them or enjoy the fellowship of one another is in the comments sections of each others' weblogs.

I also learned that there are some official Grand Lodge guidelines regarding web sites and what types of content are allowed on them, so I may be quiet here for another while until I can make sure I haven't committed any no-nos with content I've posted since last June.

No comments: