Sunday, November 25, 2007

Ask A Freemason... Is this okay?

I have been looking at the websites of different Grand Lodges, and I have discovered an interesting advertising campaign by the Massachusetts Grand Lodge. One of the main rules of imposed by Freemasonry is that we only accept members who actively pursue us. However, the Grand Lodge of Massachusetts has decided to introduce a new way to attract new members. At the site, Ask A Freemason, men are encouraged to inquire local lodges on becoming a part of the Craft. The site seems to incorporate different interactive features, i.e. a forum, a personalized questions index, FAQ section. Most importantly, the site includes commercials, both television and radio, that appear to have been aired. Is this okay? Are we allowed to advertise ourselves?
I have some misgivings about the advertising campaign. I know that we are hemorrhaging membership every year, but is this the answer? I believe that a major function that we serve is networking. Another side effect is that we get exposure from people that we may not want to join the Fraternity. I agree that we need to get out into the public, but is this too far?

1 comment:

Jason Standish said...

Good Morning Nick,
I just came across your blog yesterday while searching opinions of KT... I have found it quite interesting and am going to the beginning and working forward. I was raised last December (2011) What got me in the door was a similar (if not the same) ad campaign by the GL of MD. I had known that my grand and great grandfathers had been Masons as well as several other men in the family, but as we lived 3 states away I was never really exposed to them much... I had only vague ideas and rumors as to what Freemasonry was, and that I might be interested. My wife and I saw the ad, and she noted my interest and said "why don't you check it out?" And with that my father and I checked out the open house at what has become my home Lodge and began our journey.
I can see this from both sides of the argument, and I do believe that ads such as this do tread a fine line, but I think there are many men out there (like me) who were under the impression that you had to be asked, rather than ask... But I also believe whole heartedly that men do need to come to the craft of their own free will and accord- free from any influence or pressure(real or perceived).
Especially in this internet age, where so much misinformation and half truths about the craft are just a mouse click away, there should be some way to guide men toward the light of truth without violating our traditions and obligations.
Thanks for the blog, I look forward to exploring your more recent posts, and how your journey toward a decision on the KT has resolved