more light #139
Squirrels Among Us
by Ed Halpaus
Grand Lodge Education Officer
Grand Lodge of A. F. & A. M. of Minnesota
From the newsletter of the Masonic Lodge in Forest Lake, MN we have the
Secretary’s column written by the then Secretary, W. Brother Mike Hill. I always
like Brother Mike’s insight and his writing; I think you will too.
Squirrels Among Us
Squirrels had overrun three churches in town. After much discussion the elders
of the first church determined that the animals were predestined to be there.
Who were they to interfere with God’s will? They reasoned. Soon the squirrels
The elders of the second church decided that they could not harm any of God’s
creatures. So they humanely trapped the squirrels and set them free outside of
town. Three days later the squirrels were back.
It was only the third church that succeeded in keeping the pests away. The
elders baptized the squirrels and registered them as members of the church. Now
they only see them on Christmas and Easter.
Sometimes it seems Masons follow the same course of action when it comes to
increasing membership. There are several men outside of our Lodges who have
heard about Masonry and/or have a sense of the good works we do. They want to
belong to an organization, which brings a sense of family and promotes community
However, once a Candidate begins his degree work we forget the tenets that
brought them and ourselves together. For instance, how many Lodges publish a
“Greeter Schedule” in their newsletters? Yes, that would be two Brethren
assigned to greet Candidates and visiting Brethren who attend Degree Work and
How many Lodges have a “Mentors Program” to help candidates with their
memorization work, which meets regularly? In fact, how many Lodges use the
Mentors Program to learn and improve their degree work? How many Lodges use the
Greeters & Mentors to learn about their new members and for the new members to
become comfortable with the elder Brethren?
How many Lodge Brethren call Candidates or new Brethren before Degree Work or
Stated Communications and offer to pick them up? How many Brethren go out after
a community event for a cup of coffee and a piece of pie to chat about the
highlights and enjoy the fellowship?
Lastly, it seems there are a lot of Brethren who believe it is up to the Grand
Lodge to come up with a solution on how to make Masonry interesting so men will
want to remain Masons and share the experience with their families…I wonder
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