I would like to tell a story about my family and Freemasonry, specifically my father, grandfather and I during my father’s raising. As I have mentioned in my first post, I initially learned about Freemasonry through my Grandpa. (It can be found here.) I discovered Freemasonry and found that I really enjoyed all the aspects of the Fraternity. During the course of my participation in different Lodge activities, my Dad grabbed one of the pamphlets at a booth that the Lodge was running during my first summer as a Master Mason. He told me that he might be interested in joining but he was not sure that he had the time. However, even with his concern for time, I gave him more information about the Lodge and Freemasonry in general.
I knew that he would really enjoy himself in the Lodge. After the summer ended, I asked what he thought about the Lodge. He really wanted to join and I handed him the petition. We began the degree work over the fall until we came to the third degree. I invited my Grandpa to come to the Lodge; my Grandparents live about an hour and a half from my parents’ house. I was asked by my brothers in the Lodge if I would like to raise my Dad. I knew that it would be more meaningful to my Dad if my Grandpa would raise him so I declined. It was really moving to see father and son together in the confines of the Lodge performing ritual that has been worked for centuries yet still as fresh as if it had been communicated in the quarries yesterday. And there we were, three generations of Masons together for the first time.
It was really different to bring my Dad into Freemasonry. The old trend was that a grandfather would bring in his son and the dad would bring in his son. My family bucked the trend and I really think that it is auspicious for our Fraternity. I have been told that this trend is becoming much more commonplace in Lodges today. During the Sixties, Seventies and even the Eighties, fathers were just not bringing in their sons or conversely, sons were not joining their father’s Lodge as they became of age. At least in my family, my Dad did not join the Lodge because he was in a different town than my Grandpa. When I joined, I became the connection for my Dad to join Freemasonry. I think it really creates a bond between all three generations that is different many men have.
If you have been a part of this new trend in Masonry, feel free to leave a comment. As a final question, what do I call my Dad and my Grandpa: brother? It seems kind of strange, but I guess that I will get used to it.