What would be the correct way to leave my mother lodge ?

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What would be the correct way to leave my mother lodge ?

Postby dan1971 » Fri Sep 12, 2014 4:21 pm

Hi all

Sorry to come to this forum with such a request. I have been quietly following some of the posts here for quite sometime and hope now to continue my journey in freemasonry with the added help and company of this forum :)

First a little background on myself. I joined freemasonry in 2013 and was made a MM in June of this year. I joined masonry at the glorious age of 41 after i had considered it on and off for about 10 years.
I was so happy, what a peaceful place the ritual was always enlightening and so exciting when trying to work it all out and make sense. Every time i read a little more or reread, it made a little more sense. Over the next year i attended what L O I's i could and noticed that there was a real divide between the younger brethren and the older fraternity. They were quite rude and very dismissive. I visited other lodges to see initiations and to grasp a bit more of what i would call the story of freemasonry. I witnessed the help and camaraderie at other lodges something which was severely lacking at mine. No one organised any events such as Charity Quiz nights, Ladies Nights even the Christmas get together that we pay for from some of the subs that we collect at L.O.I was cancelled until june because the older brethren decided that it was a bit too cold and foggy ?? I noticed that a few of us were forgotten when we were to be seated at the festive boards and often were dumped at the end of a table or in place of someone that had dropped out. I found that on the white table night my wife and i were forgotten and in haste they had placed us both on the top table. I was so embarrassed for my wife as the only women she knew (My friends wife) was seated on a completely different table. I noticed that there was a lot of bickering regarding titles on the summons and rank that had been missed and certain brethren that should be placed above other brethren on the summons while all along my address and sometimes name was totally incorrect as were others. I also noticed that no provisions were being made for any new candidates. There were lots of niggles and gripes but i wont bore you with all of them. The final straw came when they forgot to order my Grand Lodge certificate and asked me three times how i spelt my middle name and then when i finally got it my name was spelt incorrectly :( I then turned to the secretary and said this is ridiculous and he again said "you said 2 r's in Terence"??? I couldnt believe it i said "How could i spell my own name wrong 3 times?" I then voiced all of my concerns and said that i was thinking of leaving and was told "Not to worry its not for everyone" and he left. :( I was absolutely gutted and have heard nothing since from anyone (Obviously my friend i still see but i dont want to burden him or make him feel split.) So i am asking what would be the correct way to leave my lodge and seek another ? Do i resign at my present lodge and if i don't find another by March then how do i remain a freemason without continuing my membership at my present lodge???

Im sorry if this was all long winded but its difficult to explain in text :(

All advice would be great

Many Thanks Danny
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Re: What would be the correct way to leave my mother lodge ?

Postby kev146 » Fri Sep 12, 2014 4:43 pm

To resign you just have to give or send a letter to the sec and say you are leaving. You don’t have to give a reason. They will then give you a clearance letter to say you have left in good faith and all your dues are paid.
You will still be a mason that will not be taken from you. You will be able to visit each lodge in UGLE once each. when you find a lodge you ask them if you can join as a joining member.
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Re: What would be the correct way to leave my mother lodge ?

Postby Susurration » Fri Sep 12, 2014 4:47 pm

The important think is that you're wanting to maintain your relationship with Freemasonry and not just jacking it in.

You've done the mature and practical thing of speaking to the Secretary and making your concerns known. His reaction is disappointing to say the least.

I'm bloody-minded enough to stir things up a bit and challenge the old farts: counter-propose the cancellation; rally the younger members and organise a quiz night; start an "under-5's club" for members who've been MM for less than 5 years; find out who does the table plans for the festive board and get your oar in; propose a fish & chip supper for the festive board; generally, if you don't like it, change it. The mechanisms are there.

If, however, the old farts have got the Lodge sewn up tighter than a drum and your stirring is only going to frustrate you even more, I think I'd get my own stuff sorted - GL Cert, dues paid, etc. - then change to a 'non-dining member' at the next opportunity and then, with apologies submitted, absent myself from the meetings and spend the time in visiting to find a new Lodge. Once you've found one where you can regularly attend as a visitor and establish that it operates in a way that's more to your liking, a simple approach to the Secretary to ask about becoing a joining member will usually be welcomed and then the resignation from your Mother Lodge. In this way, there's no pressure on you to find a Lodge in any quick timescale, you'll be in good standing so you can visit the same Lodge repeatedly (I think UGLE's rules say you can visit a Lodge only once if you're unattached) to "vet" them. You'll make new Masonic acquaintances and widen your Masonic knowledge.

The important thing is that you continue your Masonic journey: don't jack it because of these frustrations - frustrations exist in every Lodge, every Chapter, every Order - just find a place where the frustrations are at a level you can either exact some change on or can learn to live with.
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What would be the correct way to leave my mother lodge ?

Postby jackal » Fri Sep 12, 2014 5:02 pm

Thanks for all the above Danny, there are many experienced brethren on here and no doubt they will come on here in time.

Your not alone in this and your not the first either.

I had an almost identical problem in my mother lodge, 10-12 years ago.

I stupidly resigned and left freemasonry for a couple of years before being persuaded to attend as a visitor another lodge. My original thoughts at the time were I had gotten freemasonry wrong but I was wrong.

Having visited a different lodge several times, I eventually became a joining member of it and then worked my way through all the offices and in 2009 I was honoured to become the lodges Master.

I rarely miss a meeting despite living 2 hours drive away now and thoroughly enjoy my masonry.

My point here is, maybe your mother lodge isn't for you, it certainly sounds like it from what you have described.

Have you spoken to your proposer and seconder about it and your feelings? That would be my first port if call if I were you.

Now to the rules regarding your request to leave.

Firstly, you can resign at any time you want. You don't need to give a reason if you don't want to.

To resign you need to either, send the secretary a signed letter stating you resign with effect from a date (no date means immediately) and if you wish you can say why.

This needs to be ink on paper to be effective so not by email, although you can advise him initially this way.

Alternatively, at the appropriate time in a regular meeting of the lodge (where I am from it would be during the 3 rising) you stand and verbally resign in open lodge. Your resignation then takes immediate effect.

Few resign verbally.

If you are only a member of one lodge, you will be considered unattached once you have resigned from your lodge.

The status of unattached imposes on you a restriction that you can only visit ANY other Lodge just once in your lifetime until you formally join somewhere else and pay that new lodge a subscription.

Visiting a lodge just once doesn't give you much of an opportunity to make sure BOTH you and the lodge fit each other but it stops freeloading members taking the mick.

Remember you should have paid your existing Lodge a subscription which I think you said runs until March next year. You don't have attend that Lodge but you remain a member of it presently.

Staying a member of your existing lodge could be a benefit as it means you could visit a potential new lodge several times to make sure all is good.

A point to note is you need to make sure any resignation you give is dated before your new lodge year begins as being a day late will result in a full years subscription being paid before you gain a clearance certificate to enable you to join a new lodge.

If you do resign from your lodge always ask immediately for a clearance certificate, especially given your comments regarding the quality of the Secretary.

My suggestion to you would be, talk to your proposer and seconder ASAP, get yourself out visiting other lodges as much as you can and find yourself somewhere you enjoy. Then look at resigning your mother lodge.

Good luck to you.

S&F

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Re: What would be the correct way to leave my mother lodge ?

Postby MrBenn » Fri Sep 12, 2014 10:02 pm

Can't add much to the above - I would agree with Jackal - every lodge is different - find one that suits you and values you as a member and that will welcome your work to keep it alive
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Re: What would be the correct way to leave my mother lodge ?

Postby admin » Fri Sep 12, 2014 11:34 pm

There is absolutely no reason why you can not remain a member of your Mother Lodge as a non dining member.

Then visit many other Lodges and seek out another Lodge in that process. I am sure if you give your location there are probably some here who would extend an invite to you. You can take part in ritual in other Lodges, you would have to be invited but if you let it be known you are looking round I am sure that will not be a problem.

There is no reason why you not attend another Lodge LOI done that many a time.

So I have a well worn phrase that might assist,

'ask not what Freemasonry can do for you but rather what can you do for Freemasonry'
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Re: What would be the correct way to leave my mother lodge ?

Postby Trouillogan » Sat Sep 13, 2014 1:59 pm

jackal wrote:A point to note is you need to make sure any resignation you give is dated before your new lodge year begins as being a day late will result in a full years subscription being paid before you gain a clearance certificate to enable you to join a new lodge.

Just a significant matter here, the resignation must be in the secretary's hands before the end of the Lodge's subscription year. That becomes the effective date of resignation, not the date of the letter and not the date of the next meeting. See both rule 183 B of C and, in the booklet given to you with the B of C when you were initiated called Information for the Guidance of Members of the Craft, you will find a section entitled 'Electronic Communication of Formal Documents', particularly the final paragraph. Understanding these will help you ensure that you don't cop for another year's subscription.

It is, of course, very sad that it has come to this with your mother Lodge but these things do happen from time to time. Perhaps the longer serving members will begin to see that something is not quite right in there being a division of interests, should several newer brethren depart over a period. On the other hand, it might be the sort of problem that will only be solved coffin by coffin.

With warm fraternal good wishes - and do read those items I've mentioned above.
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Re: What would be the correct way to leave my mother lodge ?

Postby dan1971 » Mon Sep 15, 2014 12:54 pm

I would like to thank you all for your kind advice and suggestions. I already feel much better about the whole situation and i am even more pleased that i have joined this forum. The whole journey of Freemasonry is a captivating and exciting phase for me at present and i was so worried that this would spell the end of that journey for me. With your kind words and advice i am even more determined to give Freemasonry my all and seek knowledge and fulfilment with like minded members.

Many Thanks

Danny
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Re: What would be the correct way to leave my mother lodge ?

Postby dan1971 » Mon Sep 15, 2014 1:53 pm

I hope nobody mind's but i have drafted my letter of resignation that i am going to send to my proposer and seconder ahead of my resignation letter to my lodge secretary. Please any advice would be much appreciated from you all.

Dear X

I write this with a heavy heart but feel I owe you as my friend and seconder in Freemasonry a brief explanation into my resignation from Lodge No.xxx. Whilst I feel my journey into Freemasonry is over at this lodge I do intend to gain further knowledge elsewhere at a lodge with like minded members that I feel are trying to achieve the same goals.

I have been voicing concerns to my proposer (?) for a while now and was hoping for some form of support from him but I feel this has just made his position awkward with concerns to his attachments within our lodge. The last thing I want to do is put ? or yourself at odds with any other member of ? Lodge. I have felt for some time that the lodge really has no time for new members and seems intent on procuring funds and promotions that tend to suit the individual rather than the majority of members presently at our lodge.
Saying this I realise it’s been a difficult time for the secretary as he has been thrown in at the deep end, but this only outlines to me that the unorganised haphazard managing of our lodge is quite deeply rooted. The present secretary has help from ? and I really think without him the lodge would be in serious trouble. I also notice that ? hard work and time he devotes freely is largely overlooked by the majority of lodge members and just because ? is of the character whereas he is outwardly unconcerned, this for me does not make it right. I also find that this approach to the running of the lodge just enables the buck to be passed when there is a problem.
I feel there is a lack of effort for fund raising events and events such as ladies nights and the November festive board is largely unsupported which makes it difficult for our families to interact. This is especially so in my case when myself and my wife are forgotten about until the last minute and then placed upon the top table which as I’m sure you can agree is extremely daunting for my wife as the only other female she knew was seated at the other side of the room also I noted that there was no other females seated near my wife at all, which is what happens when people are seated last minute. Therefore my wife was unable to relax and fully integrate with any other lodge member’s wife. I asked a few people who had set the table plan out for this meeting and was told “It was nothing to do with me”.
I find the way certain members speak to others is almost with contempt that they are not bowing down to their self imposed hierarchy, at which I also notice that positions and decorations are at the forefront of these certain individuals mind especially when posturing should there be a visiting officer. A lodge that has individuals that procures his positions to the detriment of any other brethren in that lodge does not sit right with me. Suffice to say that is true whether a fellow brother is oblivious to this or not.

On a personal level I feel I have been treated quite rudely and in an almost off hand fashion by certain individuals at our lodge and without causing discontentment I find it impossible to attend any more meetings or L.O.I gatherings. This saddens me deeply and in my opinion a member should never be made to feel like this.

It would serve no purpose to name names and for want of a better word expose anybody for I feel these members are clear to see. I will probably have no option but to become a non dining member at XXXXXX Lodge next year as I wish to visit lodges and take careful note of the running and above all camaraderie of any lodge that I am to join in order that my journey in freemasonry continues pleasantly and peacefully with much spiritual and personal reward as this was my objective when I joined back in September 2013.
On a personal note ? I would like to thank you for everything you have done for me both as a brother and a friend and I know we shall still frequent in each other’s company hopefully for many years to come.

All the best
Danny
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Re: What would be the correct way to leave my mother lodge ?

Postby Trouillogan » Mon Sep 15, 2014 5:14 pm

You've certainly voiced a number of concerns there and I believe you are very much of the right attitude.

May I stress that you find your next Lodge first, as has been suggested already, before handing in your resignation. Otherwise your visiting rights will be severely restricted, making it difficult for you to find one you really like.

All good wishes for your Masonic future.
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What would be the correct way to leave my mother lodge ?

Postby jackal » Mon Sep 15, 2014 6:56 pm

I concur with the above.

I believe you may be down XXXXX way, if that's correct, a truly fine mason lurks in here by the name of Lew Finis.

He may be able to guide you into somewhere else more suited to your thoughts and values.

Good luck on your journey and keep us informed how you get on.

Best wishes

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Re: What would be the correct way to leave my mother lodge ?

Postby dan1971 » Tue Sep 16, 2014 7:02 pm

I believe you may be down XXXXX way, if that's correct, a truly fine mason lurks in here by the name of Lew Finis.


Would it be proper and polite to contact this fine XXXXXXX mason through the pm system on this forum ???, I am indeed in Essex :)

Many Thanks again for all of your advice
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What would be the correct way to leave my mother lodge ?

Postby jackal » Tue Sep 16, 2014 7:14 pm

Yes of course it would.

He is a family man so he might not give an instant reply.

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Re: What would be the correct way to leave my mother lodge ?

Postby MrBenn » Thu Sep 18, 2014 9:31 am

MODERATOR NOTE


Have made a couple of edits to some posts above for privacy reasons - these can be undone if the relevant people wish - simply let me know via the message system on the forum

Thanks

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Re: What would be the correct way to leave my mother lodge ?

Postby rjgs » Thu Sep 18, 2014 10:28 pm

I am sorry to hear this. I have been in a similar position as you with my Mother Lodge - I resigned, rejoined and resigned! If you are not happy with your Mother Lodge and have tried to maturely discuss it the relevant members (without success), then I would find another Lodge. Your happiness is most important as Freemasonry should be enjoyable. We are not perfect and Freemasons do disagree. Finding a Lodge that suits you can be a difficult task as you need to visit a few times before you can really assess whether it would be the correct Lodge for you and also if the members get on with you. It would be preferable to look for another Lodge before you resign so that you could visit more than once. The BoCs restrict an unattached Mason to visit every Lodge under the English Constitution once only, so you could only visit each Lodge only once if you should resign.

I hope this helps you and wish you the best with you searches. Please don't let this put you off Freemasonry.
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Re: What would be the correct way to leave my mother lodge ?

Postby kingofthecut » Mon Oct 13, 2014 11:30 am

I, although it sounds perverse, am rather pleased about your initial message. It shows that rather than saying 'stuff this for a game of soldiers' you realise that it isn't Freemasonry but the closed group of Brothers you have joined that hasn't quite gelled. This is where retention of members either through lodges closing or just becoming disillusioned comes in to it. Many leave I think not because of masonry but because of circumstance whether it be handing in of a warrant or work or family or just not getting on with the lodge they have joined. I think we are all guilty of trying to grab candidates for our own lodges when if we looked at their circumstances another lodge might be better.

For example. We meet on a Saturday. The Brother who was initiated the year before me works at a large golf club with a manor house and organises the weddings there. These tend to take place on a Saturday therefore his attendance is poor but not necessarily through lack of interest or desire but pure circumstance. If he was at a lodge that met on Tuesday afternoons he may have done far more perhaps??!

There is certainly a Lodge to suit you and your stance on masonry and it sounds as if you would be an asset to any of them. I think your attitude is wonderful and you shall go far and I am pleased to count you as one of my Brothers.

Not sure which part of Essex you are in but you are welcome to come and visit any of my Middlesex Lodges anytime but I agree with the others, look around, find some friends, find some common ground and even dates and times that can work for you and make sure your next move is the one you will take and stick with as you don't want to go through all this again surely!

Have to go now anyway as have to get tarted up to escort the Assistant Provincial Grand Master to a meeting at Uxbridge.

All the best,

Drew
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Re: What would be the correct way to leave my mother lodge ?

Postby David H » Thu Oct 30, 2014 6:00 pm

rjgs wrote:The BoCs restrict an unattached Mason to visit every Lodge under the English Constitution once only, so you could only visit each Lodge only once if you should resign.


First and foremost great good luck to you Danny - you will find a lodge which will suit you and I hope that leads to a fulfilling and rewarding journey in whatever manner you are seeking.

Is there any chance anybody could enlighten me as regards visiting by an unattached Mason under the constitution of the Grand Lodge of Scotland please?
Quo vadis, S & F

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Re: What would be the correct way to leave my mother lodge ?

Postby Kaiser » Fri Mar 27, 2015 1:37 pm

I had a similar situation when I joined Holy Royal Arch, I went to a Chapter away from my local area and thought that I would widen my circle of masonic friends. Whilst the people were all good people and I was never made to feel uncomfortable in any way whatsoever, I just simply didn't feel like I belonged there. I spoke to my proposer and seconder and explained to them about my feelings and they were both very supportive, I was asked if I wanted to leave Chapter all together or just leave that particular Chapter. I explained that I didn't want to leave completely and they have stood by me and my decision. As much as I initially felt like I was in going to make a difficult decision, I ended up seeing how supportive fellow masons can be. I would say speak to your proposer, you might be surprised how helpful they could be.
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Re: What would be the correct way to leave my mother lodge ?

Postby Ninth Arch » Fri Mar 27, 2015 4:31 pm

I think you have had some excellent advice. The only recommendation I would stress is to remain in good standing in your current Lodge (even if you don't attend it) while visiting and seeking another where you feel more comfortable. Like employment, it is easier to seek and obtain another job if you are actually in work. I became 'unattached' when my Mother Lodge folded. It made the process more complicated and more restrictive.

And the best wishes for your search.
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Re: What would be the correct way to leave my mother lodge ?

Postby Richard George » Sat Mar 28, 2015 9:25 am

First and foremost, I realise that the OP was back in September last year so it's probably no longer relevant - but there is one thing I was to raise; the subject of the spelling of Danny's middle name.

The GL certificate is generated from from his Adelphi entry - which in turn is created from his original Form P. If therefore his certificate has an incorrect spelling, EITHER the Adelphi entry has been incorrectly entered and that would probably be down to someone in the Provincial office, OR he spelled it incorrectly on the original Form P. Either way, that is not the fault of the lodge secretary. If therefore he wasn't getting any joy from pointing it out to the lodge secretary (who should have reported it to Province), he could always have gone direct to Province, or ultimately, Registration. Province would most likely have a copy of the Form P (we keep copies) or Registration would go straight to the original document (yes, the vaults at GQS are FULL of original Form Ps!). If there was genuinely a mis-transcript Registration would reissue the certificate at no cost. If however the original also had the misspelling, it would cost him - and if Danny is reading this, I'd also point out that the form states that it must be filled out in the applicant's OWN HANDWRITING - it cannot be filled out by anyone else unless the applicant is physically incapable of doing so. So if the Form P is wrong, that's down to him.

And Danny; if it still hasn't been sorted out, contact your Provincial office.
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