Thursday, November 15, 2007

The Beginning

What are Masons and what is Masonry? What is the future of Freemasonry? How can we attract younger members? What does Masonry offer me? Will I have enough time to be a Mason? Are you guys worshiping Satan? Are you guys like "The Da Vinci Code?" Is there really a National Treasure and is the Dollar Bill hiding a Masonic Symbol?

I have heard these questions day in and day out. The reason I think people are curious about what I think is simple; I am 25 years old. I am a Millennial or a member of Generation Y and I have a very distinct opinion of the Craft.

I should give a short history of being a Freemason. I am currently a law student from Minnesota in my last year. My first real grasp of Freemasonry was at Thanksgiving at my grandparents' house. I noticed a letter on the counter from a group called "The Knights Templar." I was intrigued and I asked my grandfather what it meant to be a Knight Templar. He said that it was an appendant body of Freemasonry. I knew that both of my grandfathers were Freemasons before but this was the first time that I had seen physical proof of them being members. I asked him how I can join and he told me he could arrange getting me into a lodge close to my house. I petitioned Corinthian Lodge #67 in Farmington, MN and was initiated in February of 2006, passed in the same month and raised to the Sublime degree of Master Mason in March, 2006. . At this time, I was in my spring semester of law school.

After my raising, I brought my father into the Fraternity and my grandfather being present at my father's raising. It was very incredible to see three generations of Masons in one place. During this time, I was appointed to the office of Senior Steward in the Lodge and have participated in many lectures for the degree work put on by my lodge.

I was initiated into Freemasonry when I was 23 . This fact seems to run counter to everything that has been going on in the Craft for the last 50 years. I think I can change this trend. The Y generation has lived in a world of collaboration and team building. Most participated in some extracurricular activities in High School, College and beyond. They live on Facebook, Myspace and many other social networks. They text each other constantly and are in direct connection with what their friends are doing through Twitter, Pownce and Jaiku. Generation Y can be the next brothers in the Fraternity, all they need to see is that it is still relevant to today. According to the Masonic Services Association of North America, Freemasonry has hit its lowest point ever with a little more than 1.5 million members. We can change this statistic; we just need to reevaluate certain preconceived notions of what young men want.

This blog will attempt to answer these questions and also my own personal views of where Masonry is headed and what is best for the Craft. I also would like any comments or feedback from my readers. If you have any suggestions for topics, post a comment and I will attempt to answer them as soon as I get them.


Tony said...

Not to nit pick, but Freemasonry has hit it's lowest point in terms of membership numbers sence 1925, NOT ever. Frankly, I don't care home many men are members. My mother lodge has some 350 members and after being active for three years I had seen about 50 of them, if that. Like Bro:. Defoe says, "We need more Masonry in men, not more men in Masonry."
Tony Melton

Millennial Freemason said...

Thank you brother Tony. I have been listening to many podcasts and reading many blogs and have found that many brothers agree with your stance that "We need more Masonry in men, not more men in Masonry." I think, however, that we are also a mutual aid society as well as a charitable organization that run very many charities and to be frank, they aren't cheap. As the membership dwindles, the Shrine hospitals, Knights Templar Eye Clinics and Scottish Rite Speech Therapy Centers will all have to make deep cuts in aid. We just need to be aware of that fact in the back of our minds.

joseph said...

Be the followers of the sacred book by practicing true virtue ,be the real lantern on top the mountain through our behaviours ,be active members of your lodges, remember the real reason why you joined,encourage others with words and actions,only then we will regain strengh. JOSEPH D.COLO N.Y