Getting information about Freemasons out there

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Getting information about Freemasons out there

Postby Tazmaniac1977 » Fri Nov 15, 2013 2:28 pm

I was just flicking through the posts on the forum and one got me thinking. Lodges across the UK are struggling and the uni idea is a brilliant one but i know in my area we only seem to advertise/get word out to set groups ie County fairs, University and such like. We don't seem to do the "lower class events" like carnivals, street fairs. Please dont say i am being discriminatory as that it not my intention but i was brought up on a council estate and did not believe i could ever mix with the people who i do today through masonry. We dont seem to talk to the people who are the Minimum wage but the people who are more wealthy. I am not in a greatly paid job and don't feel that money/education should come into it. Would it be worth going to the Adult Collages, Working with events that we don't necessary look at. Raising our profiles at the places like supermarkets, Shopping Centers?

Wondering what you all think?

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Getting information about Freemasons out there

Postby Simmo961 » Fri Nov 15, 2013 7:04 pm

I think open house days are good too where the lodge opens its doors for the afternoon.

I am also surprised many lodges don't have a Facebook group page either.
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Re: Getting information about Freemasons out there

Postby Albamason » Sat Nov 16, 2013 4:06 pm

Stewart

I would say this probably tends to be more of an issue in England, maybe down to public perception. In my experience, Scottish lodges appear to have a far wider range of members, genuinely from all sections of society. I would suggest that in most Scottish lodges , the majority of brethren would consider themselves "working class" whatever that means nowadays.

Despite being told in 1st degree that masonry is free, we soon find out that this isn't strictly true. The costs are probably far higher in England , not just joining fees and test fees , but festive boards, ladies festivals etc. I don't imagine that there are many prospective candidates in Scotland who could cite financial circumstances as a reason for not joining a lodge but I am not so sure that would be the case in England.

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Re: Getting information about Freemasons out there

Postby MrBenn » Sat Nov 16, 2013 4:49 pm

Lodges are struggling because there are too many of them
The other question I would ask is who needs to change?
As you are well aware, freemasonry is open to all who take the trouble to find it - just because one group or section decide that they can't join without taking the time to look into it isn't really freemasonry's problem - it's the group that holds the perception that needs the adjustment

I would also add that universities, country fairs, etc aren't solely the preserve of the middle class - we aren't in the 1950's any more
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Re: Getting information about Freemasons out there

Postby MrBenn » Sat Nov 16, 2013 4:52 pm

Albamason wrote:Stewart

I would say this probably tends to be more of an issue in England, maybe down to public perception. In my experience, Scottish lodges appear to have a far wider range of members, genuinely from all sections of society. I would suggest that in most Scottish lodges , the majority of brethren would consider themselves "working class" whatever that means nowadays.

Despite being told in 1st degree that masonry is free, we soon find out that this isn't strictly true. The costs are probably far higher in England , not just joining fees and test fees , but festive boards, ladies festivals etc. I don't imagine that there are many prospective candidates in Scotland who could cite financial circumstances as a reason for not joining a lodge but I am not so sure that would be the case in England.

S & F

John


Depends where - in London dining fee's for the festive board are probably the highest in the country - but I know there are plenty of masonic halls where the dining fee is less than £20 per head. I wouldn't say that was excessive for a three course meal

Ladies festivals and the like are optional - I would suggest that the costs between Scotland and UGLE are not that disimilar if you look away from the South East & London
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Re: Getting information about Freemasons out there

Postby McClef » Sat Nov 16, 2013 10:30 pm

London can distort things just as it distorts property prices.

But there can still be a disconnect between what one would pay for a meal outside the Lodge and in a Festive Board although of course the situations are entirely different and part of the meal fee is to contribute towards the costs of running and maintaining the building. It's certainly not easy to try and put a price upon the special fellowship that happens.

But there can also be a general perception out there that one needs fabulous wealth to join - a friend of mine thought you had to be a high court judge or similar income (31) and perhaps the costs could be presented more openly than they are. It can almost be a mystic secret until the last moment! Of course Lodge fees vary but why not say what they are up front? One off registration/regalia charges should not be a secret either. Dining fees tend to be fixed by the Hall Committee which is often composed of several Lodges who use the premises and should be indicated along with whether dining is included or not.

We need to be more upfront with costs than we are, it might well be a pleasant surprise and dispel a few myths.
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Re: Getting information about Freemasons out there

Postby Mark Master » Tue Nov 19, 2013 5:43 am

As one would expect Craft and Chapter dues and for that matter costs of festive boards are not prohibitively expensive 'Down Under'' , well at least not in sunny [sometimes] Queensland. Obviously, I cannot speak for all State Masonic jurisdictions, but generally public perception does not view us as being of the 'Silver Tail' brigade .

By contrast, [ the Lodge or location is unimportant] I have heard of one that views itself as a private Lodge and levels exorbitantly expensive annual dues for members drawn from the legal profession, well you would expect that from a mob of avaricious ambulance chasers , would you not?!!
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Re: Getting information about Freemasons out there

Postby JohnIOM » Sat Dec 14, 2013 11:01 pm

Information about Lodge fees need not and should not be a mystery to any new Mason.
I well remember my initial interview by the Lodge committee where apart from the obvious getting to know you questions the Lodge fees were made very clear and I was asked how I would like to pay; on an annual basis or by Direct Debit on a monthly basis. I was also advised that there would be some additional costs involved in the form of charity donations and the raffle which takes place at each festive board. I also discovered at this time that Lodge regalia would have a cost implication. As this all worked out to be much cheaper than playing golf, my good lady and myself were happy about the financial responsibility of becoming a Mason.
With regard to getting information about Freemasonry that is not a problem as our Lodges make available an information tent at local community events (agricultural shows and Tynwald Day) http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tynwald_Day.

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Re: Getting information about Freemasons out there

Postby Richard George » Sun Dec 15, 2013 7:51 am

McClef wrote:... and part of the meal fee is to contribute towards the costs of running and maintaining the building.


huh??? That's not allowed, any more than you're allowed to make those dining pay for guests; that lot is supposed to come from the subs.

We pay £11 for a 2 course, and £15 for a 3 course in Cambridge, and I'm pretty sure that's the same across the Province give or take £1.
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Re: Getting information about Freemasons out there

Postby McClef » Sun Dec 15, 2013 11:25 am

What is or what is not allowed is surely a matter for the Hall Committee.

Nine Craft Lodges meet in Newport and each Lodge has two members on the Committee. The building is expensive to maintain and a major repair work had to be done on the rear wall that cost £38,000 and Lodges had to pay towards it. Then there are the other costs - heating, lighting, business rates etc. Chapters and other bodies also use the building and the downstairs is hired out for social functions but that income does not cover costs to a large degree. We pay £15 for a three course meal of which £2 goes into Hall funds.

All the financial details were laid out at a recent general meeting and it was agreed to establish a building fund.

Official guests are one thing regarding dining, but when I am invited by members, as opposed to WMs, to other Lodges I do not expect them to pay for my meal.
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Re: Getting information about Freemasons out there

Postby allan0406 » Sun Dec 15, 2013 1:31 pm

Like Trefor's Group, ours works exactly the same in that so much goes to the Hall maintenance funds. Our function room is hired out for celebrations which helps. Our meals are £16.50 for a 3 course, no longer any wine or cheese board, unless we pay more. Our group has been pushing through local media outlets about our work, the media also have shown an interest in us, since we have become a major contributor to our local food bank. Over the next 2 months I will be attending three 1st degrees at different Lodges, 2 being local men who have I believe enquired about membership.
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Re: Getting information about Freemasons out there

Postby Richard George » Mon Dec 16, 2013 8:30 am

Ah ok, but there's a difference between a levy per diner and what I understood from your initial post!
And when I was referring to 'guests', I meant guests of the lodge (ie official), not individual members guests.
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Re: Getting information about Freemasons out there

Postby Sebastian » Tue Apr 07, 2015 9:17 am

Yes and No. There is a huge emphasis on recruitment - but may I say something controversial and a little unfashionable?

It is not really necessary. Originally, at the beginnig of the 18thC it was a about 20 men meeting in a London tavern. It grew and grew. Not quickly, but gradually. The Craft is not a religion. It does not need to look for initiates or to evangelise. If it goes back to being 3 lodges in the whole of England, then so be it as long as tghe memberes are the 'right' people.

What attracted was the addition to the original number of the real Movers and Shakers in society, and we now lack these a little. Similarly, members of the Royal Family, Chancelllors of the Exchequer, and eventually most of the Square Mile.

In the Army, I find the 20-somethings attracted by the mystery...a perceived elitism...and this Genuinely Attracts. I can assure you they wouldn't touch Rotary or Probus with a barge pole.

If we recruit at all, let's look at a few Royal Princes...
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Re: Getting information about Freemasons out there

Postby Eckywan » Tue Apr 07, 2015 1:32 pm

Why ?? freemasonry is on the level
or should be
and open to all IF THEY show an interest
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Re: Getting information about Freemasons out there

Postby Trouillogan » Tue Apr 07, 2015 8:14 pm

Eckywan wrote:Why ?? freemasonry is on the level
or should be
and open to all IF THEY show an interest

I would agree that all may apply but it's up to each Lodge to determine whether or not an applicant is likely to be suitable material (stone) for the construction of his 'edifice'. There have been too many, in my opinion, accepted just for the sake of increasing numbers and for performing degree work. And I seriously believe that has lead to the degradation of our membership being uninterested in pure antient Freemasonry. I see it time and again where brethren have little or no idea what they are doing or, more importantly, why. Thinking that what takes place within the Lodge room has no relevance to life outside or the effect it should be having on the nature and resulting behaviour of each of them.
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Re: Getting information about Freemasons out there

Postby admin » Tue Apr 07, 2015 8:59 pm

Sebastian wrote:Yes and No. There is a huge emphasis on recruitment - but may I say something controversial and a little unfashionable?

It is not really necessary. Originally, at the beginnig of the 18thC it was a about 20 men meeting in a London tavern. It grew and grew. Not quickly, but gradually. The Craft is not a religion. It does not need to look for initiates or to evangelise. If it goes back to being 3 lodges in the whole of England, then so be it as long as tghe memberes are the 'right' people.

What attracted was the addition to the original number of the real Movers and Shakers in society, and we now lack these a little. Similarly, members of the Royal Family, Chancelllors of the Exchequer, and eventually most of the Square Mile.

In the Army, I find the 20-somethings attracted by the mystery...a perceived elitism...and this Genuinely Attracts. I can assure you they wouldn't touch Rotary or Probus with a barge pole.

If we recruit at all, let's look at a few Royal Princes...


I have said the above many times over the years so have to agree completely. I do not like the elitist tag but i know that it is true. If it is a good Lodge the elitism will soon be rubbed off.

I am a believer in the 'Build it and they will come' concept.

If a Lodge is founded on a good heart and genuine concern for others , it will shine like a lighthouse and they will see the light. So do not worry about numbers , concern yourselves with the quality of your members.
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Re: Getting information about Freemasons out there

Postby Trouillogan » Wed Apr 08, 2015 12:58 pm

In full agreement, Bill. In a nutshell - Attraction, not Recruitment!
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Re: Getting information about Freemasons out there

Postby najatuw4646 » Fri Sep 25, 2015 5:45 am

profiles at the places like supermarkets, Shopping Centers?
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