Hello My Brothers All:
As I attended installation of Officers at the lodge level over the last couple of weekends, I had a chance to reflect and look forward on Freemasonry on the future. The one thought that kept coming to my mind was that Freemasonry is about people, the Brothers, ourselves. Perhaps the best modern definition of Freemasonry is in these words: “Freemasonry is an organized society of men symbolically applying the principles of operative Masonry and architecture, to the science and art of character building. The basic purpose of Freemasonry is about making “better men out of good men” by strengthening their character, improving their moral and spiritual outlook, and broadening their mental horizons. It is not about the buildings and infrastructure that we have amassed over the many years leading to our high of 4.1MM members in the US in 1959. Since then we have been trending down and are currently around 1.2MM members in the US. I suggest that we need to focus more on this basic purpose, rather than the infrastructure that we had built to support those 4.1MM member in 1959. If we right-size our infrastructure we put our lodges, and hence our members in a better financial position so we can focus on the true purpose of Freemasonry. Think about it my brothers, what will Masonry look like in 2020 or further ahead in 2030 and beyond if we focus on our purpose as opposed to futile efforts to retain the current infrastructure?
A special thank you to the Knights of Saint Andrew Honor Guard, here in the Valley of Orlando, who have participated in many installations in the Central Florida area. They looked sharp with their new ties and tartans. Additionally, the swords that were raised to create the “Arch of Steel” were sharply polished and put a certain sheen on the Arch. To all those Knights who participated – thank you, you looked sharp and made a difference!
Remember, the January tyled meeting on the 27th allows me an opportunity to share with you a “State of the Valley.” I am confident that this is a meeting you will not want to miss. Hear first-hand where we are as a Valley and understand the opportunities that lie before us.
Until next time, remember the many things for which you are thankful! Be safe in your travels; “whisper wise counsel in the ear of an erring brother;” and respect the dignity of all, as it makes you and our fraternity stronger one action at a time. We are realizing the benefits of Scottish Rite Freemasonry as we actively participate today. We want to ensure that what we are enjoying today will be strong for those who will follow. Simply stated – “We lead the way today, so those who follow us can lead the way tomorrow!” Thanks for your continued support and participation; and may the “Spirit of Fraternity” reign supreme within our “Valley of Orlando!”
Ill:. Chester A. “Chet” King, 33°
“People forget what you say, and forget what you do, but forever remember how you make them feel!”