Wednesday, May 4, 2016

Busy On Two Levels

When I arrived at the lodge last night I was not surprised to find that I was the first one to pull into the parking lot. Somehow, despite having left the office a little later than usual, I made it to the lodge in nearly record time… why can’t this be the case on meeting nights? After saying goodnight to my son and making my usual stop at the post office, I unlocked the double doors, turned on the lights, and immediately headed for the coffee maker. Still reaping the benefits of making that donation!

After getting a few more things done on the computer and with the coffee cup nearly at half full, I took a break from the illuminated screen and headed out the front door to enjoy the fresh air and the congested sounds of the modern main line. Like many nights before, it was only a couple of minutes and a few phone calls later that our first candidate turned the corner and made his way up the stairs. I really enjoy seeing a motivated candidate at the lodge on these nights.

It is great to get the updates from their perspectives as well because we need to know not only if we are doing our jobs in preparing them but we need to know how everything is being perceived. After all, anyone who has participated in degree work know that it is a combination of substance AND presentation (which includes the ritual). These are the first experiences that a man has as a mason and a memory that will last a lifetime so we need to take the time to make sure that we are on point.

Over the next ten minutes or so, many more brothers walked up and into the building filling the social hall and lodge room with the sounds of good work and education being done. The lodge has come a long way from when I first started attending these fellowship nights soon after being raised. The attendance is certainly up and the dedication in many of the brethren is clear. We have always had a few that put forth the time and energy to guide candidates and now we have many all shining lights on the path.

What is even more reassuring is the fact that we also have other candidates in process and at least one more petition that needs to be read. We are moving forward and there is a difference that can be felt among the brethren. There is a passion in our ritual, a dedication in our words, and a heartfelt commitment in our actions… this is the true difference between a lodge maintaining the status quo and one that is a living and breathing fraternity inspired by the light in each of our fellow brothers. And those lights are getting brighter.