Robert Burns #243 Trestleboard
From the East
Summer is fast approaching, with only two stated meetings left before we go dark, now is the time to submit any potential candidates for the degrees. Otherwise they will have to wait until August.
Speaking of summer, I have a few group activities in the planning stages: Ladies night out, camping, BBQ�s and of course poker night. If you have any ideas for group activities please let me know. Remember to include our newest brothers along as well as the old timers we haven�t seen in a while.
May 5th will be the official visit of our District Deputy V.W. Boyd McPherson; it would speak well of our Lodge to have as many brothers who can make to attend. This would be a great opportunity to invite a brother you haven�t seen at lodge lately to attend.
From the West
A Past Master asked me the other evening how my installation and term planning were coming along. At the Warden�s Conferences there always seems to be a session on both these topics. Boiled down to a few words, plan early and plan often. OK, I am too late to plan early so now I�ve added to my stress level and will need to work much harder to pull things together. (Let me know if you are interested in becoming an appointed officer or how you might wish to help the Lodge next year.)
Of course, this got me thinking about our Lodge and how, as an organization we also can tend to procrastinate. For a meeting to be run successfully there needs to be a well thought out agenda; for a Master�s term to be successful, a plan must be developed; for a Lodge to succeed, it must have a plan (and a purpose).
What is our long range plan? What are our membership, leadership or financial plans? What is our mission? Are any plans written? Is there consensus among our members?
The Grand Lodge has a vision statement on their website:
Freemasons of Washington will be recognized as a relevant and respected Fraternity, committed to attracting and retaining all men of high quality who strive for self improvement and the opportunity to make a positive difference in their community.
Sounds good to me but is our Lodge in agreement with this vision? Is it our vision? If so, what is our plan to make it happen?
Most businesses and organizations have vision/mission statements and goals (long and short term). Someone once told me �if you don�t know where you are going, how are you going to get there.� Brethren, we need to discuss and agree on where we are going, otherwise the Lodge will be in a position similar to what I am in, having to focus on planning often when we could be more successful by planning early.
Jim G. Hamlin
From the South
As the editor of this Trestleboard, I have an advantage over the Master and Senior Warden; I get to read their submissions before typing my own. This month, I simply want to echo something in what they both have said or alluded to: we seem to procrastinate a great deal. I think this is in no small part to the busy lives we lead and the many interests we pursue.
I stand in awe of those people who are a part of the Grand Lodge as Deputies or in the Grand Line. The commitment of time and energy is immense. I don't have a conventional job outside the home, and yet I find it challenging to do all that is expected of me (and, more importantly, that I expect of myself) as a husband, father, member of other organizations, citizen, and Mason. The Grand Master's schedule is amazing, especially if he expects to keep his wife and job. Being retired would be a distinct advantage.
I can only assume that these Masons have seen fit to make our Fraternity a high priority item in their lives. I salute and envy their sense of purpose. I hope we can all dedicate ourselves in such a way to such a worthy cause. It seems to me that we must each choose what is important in our own lives, and stick to it. If one is not genuinely interested in taking on a project with all one's energy, say "no". If you say "yes," give it all you can. Half-commitments and skating by don't advance our cause. Of course, fate rears her ugly head from time to time, and we cannot always accomplish everything we set out to do. But I know I, and I assume most other Masons, are more than willing to carry the banner forward for a Brother who gives an honest, full effort to a worthy cause and falls short for whatever reason.
I have recently (too late, some would say) begun to try to figure my priorities for my year as Master (assuming the Brothers of Robert Burns see fit to elect me), and I hope that, to paraphrase Jim, by planning early I can have a good year, and accomplish a great deal. If anyone reading this has any suggestions or needs for 2010-11, please let me know. I know there are many years of experience out there, and I know I will need all the help I can get.
What: . . . . . . . . . . .Lunch
When . . . . . . . . . . .Last Friday of each Month
Where . . . . . . . . . . 'Oasis' at the Nile
Time . . . . . . . . . . . 11:30 'Til ?
Bring a guest and enjoy!
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"No, I shall not give in; I shall go on; I shall work to the end."
Edward VII, 6 May, 1910
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