Sunday, May 20, 2012

How Does a Lodge Die?????

I sent this out to all of the members of Urbana Lodge. You are free to use it if you think it is worthwhile. I wrote it and take full responsibility for its content.

 How does an organization die? I think it starts by one person saying, “Oh what the hell, I don’t make a difference. They don’t need me to attend that meeting. My input isn’t important.” It starts by one person saying, “I don’t feel like working on that responsibility (ritual, membership, office, etc.). Only the old farts care if it is done right.” It starts by one person saying, “I don’t want to help other Lodges, it takes up too much of my time. Who cares if I don’t go to a degree at Western Star, Tolono, Mahomet. They won’t notice if I’m not there” When one person starts making excuses, then another person starts thinking, well he isn’t doing anything in the Lodge, why should I? It spreads like a virus, the Lodge gets sick and if nothing happens to cure the disease, the Lodge dies. A Lodge that was once healthy and proud and was looked to by all other Lodges a source of leadership fades away. A Lodge that was able to help all other Lodges with their ritual because they could do it all on their own, goes onto life support. A Lodge the at one time participated in competition at the Grand Lodge Sessions, held degrees at the retirement home, made appearances in local events, and contributed to the welfare of their fellow man goes dark and becomes something that other say, “I remember when that Lodge…” Those who disagree with me should wake up and start paying attention because the patient is already on life support. All it will take is one or two more members who don’t have the time or want to make the effort to kill the patient. Masonry is a unique organization because it allows all of its members input into the direction the Lodge will take. Sometimes that direction is to send the Lodge over the precipice. For those who do agree with me, please let’s do everything we can to get this ailing patient back on his feet. To prop him up to be the influential and proud organization it once was. Every single member of this Lodge is important and makes a difference. Just as one person can send a Lodge down the road to darkness, so can one man help to change the direction of the Lodge. Be that man! When you set a good example by showing enthusiasm and taking on responsibilities others will follow and right the sinking ship.

 Bradford Cronk Technology Supervisor Champaign-Urbana Mass Transit District 1101 E. University Urbana, IL 61802 217-384-8188

Tuesday, March 20, 2012


Subject: What It Means to Be a Worshipful Master .

I found this in an old Illinois ritual, describing the Office of Worshipful Master, and thought it was worth forwarding. The language is about 100 years old --

The Office of Master is of great antiquity and respect, and is one of the highest dignities to which we may aspire. Its incumbent, to rule well, should possess and practice several important prerequisites.

As a MAN, he should be of proven integrity and irreproachable morals, freed from the dominion of hasty temper and ill-governed passions, of good repute in the world, and practicing, as an example to his Brethren, the cardinal virtues of Temperance, Fortitude, Prudence, and Justice.

As a CITIZEN, he should be loyal to his government, obedient to its laws, prompt in the duties he owes to society; and, [should demonstrate] a pattern of fidelity in all social and domestic relations.

As a MASON, he should cling to the old landmarks and be sternly opposed to their infringement; be desirous to learn and apt to teach; be prompt to aid and relieve, and be ever mindful that, though elevated for a time above his fellows, he is elevated by them, and should therefore cultivate, everywhere and at all times, the golden tenets of Brotherly Love, Relief, and Truth.

As an OFFICER, he should remember, first of all, that he is an individual Mason, sharing in that respect a common lot with his Brethren, and therefore interested in the welfare of each and all; be devoid of undue ostentation and haughty overbearing; be accessible to all, cultivating the closest friendship and the most unlimited confidence with his associate Officers; be eager to take counsel with his Brethren and ready to give it; be ready to reward good; be devoid of favoritism; and, [be] wholly impartial.

Such are some of the most important qualifications the Master should possess and the errors he should avoid. It may be that most, if not all of us, have failed to reach this standard; but, it is attainable, and be it your purpose to reach it, and be a bright and shining example to those who shall come after you.


Steven K. Robison, PM

Jackson Lodge #146

Seymour, IN


Friday, February 24, 2012


It's official now

From: Masonic Service Association of NA

Date: Fri, Feb 24, 2012 at 8:22 A

Subject: Congratulations on being a Twain Award Winner for 2011

To: Greg Knott
St. Joseph Lodge #970 has achieved the distinction of winning a Twain Award for 2011. Your lodge clearly demonstrated Masonic Awareness both within the lodge and the community
You will be receiving some bookmarks listing St. Joseph Lodge #970 as one of the 2011 Twain Award Winners. Also, the Masonic Information Center is preparing a news release which will be emailed to you.
A date for presenting the Twain Award will be announced later. We recommend that it be at your next Grand Lodge Session. We will contact your Grand Lodge. Please let us know if there is a special time you would like the presentation if not at Grand Lodge.
Thanks for your cooperation in the 2011 Twain Award Program. We at the Masonic Information Center are very proud of what St. Joseph Lodge #970 was able to accomplish.
Sincerely and fraternally,

George O. Braatz, PGM

Executive Secretary

Masonic Service Association of NA

Masonic Information Center
8120 Fenton Street, Ste. 203
Silver Spring, MD 20910
301-608-3457 (Fax)


Monday, February 20, 2012



I am very happy to announce that St. Joseph Lodge No. 970 has been seleced a recipient of the 2011 Mark Twain Award for Masonic Excellence. We are one of the very few lodges in the United States and the first in Illinois to ever receive this award. Thank you all for you outstanding work this last couple of years. This was very much a team effort! Previous winners and back ground on the award are at:

Greg Knott

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

HOW TRUE..........

"The clock of life is wound but once, and no man has the power to tell just when the hands will stop, at late or early hour. Now is the only time you own. Live, love, toil with a will. Place no faith in time. For the clock may soon be still." 

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

A VISION.......

The Northern Light / May 2011

John Wm. McNaughton, 33ยบ


" the
Masonic fraternity must also have a revolutionary

In preparation for this turnaround, our Masonic
leaders must understand that we have to be
focused on our most valuable asset – our
members. The fraternity’s focus on the perfection
of ritual by its Grand Officers (known in some
circles as ritual police), charities which benefit the
secular world at the expense of the needs of our
own members, and our preoccupation with real
estate issues are hardly the elements of a
visionary revolution for any company, much less
the Masonic fraternity."

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

One Minute Mason....

One Minute Mason

Generally these are short scenarios about Masons and Masonry that can be read in just a few minutes. Occasionally I also publish some of my longer articles.
Steve Harrison

Missouri, United States

Editor, Missouri Freemason Magazine; Fellow, Missouri Lodge of Research; Liberty Lodge #31, PM; Kearney Lodge #311; Liberty York Rite Bodies; AASR, Valley of St. Joseph, MO, 32° KCCH; Ararat Shrine; Formerly, Oriental Chapter, DeMolay, Indianapolis; DeMolay LOH; Author of the book Freemasonry Crosses the Mississippi.

View my complete profile

Copyright Information

One Minute Mason is published under a Creative Commons license which allows anyone to: copy, distribute and transmit the work or adapt the work for non-commercial purposes, with credit to the author, under conditions outlined in the following link:

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Wanted: One Grand Master... No Experience Necessary

Gustavus V, King of Sweden, Nordiska Forsta Lodge, became Grand Master of Sweden on March 22, 1880 - at the age of 20!

Posted 12/21/2011 06:48:00 AM

An Ironic Tragedy

Brother Webster Wagner, Hamilton Lodge 79, New York, was the inventor of railroad sleeping cars. He founded the Wagner Palace-car Company, which supplied sleeping and parlor cars to all lines of the Vanderbilt system in the eastern US. Also a member of the New York state legislature, he continued to serve as his company's president until January 13, 1882, when, in an ironic tragedy, he was killed in a railroad disaster while sleeping in one of the cars he had invented.

Brother George Pullman of Renovation Lodge 97 in Albion, NY, perfected, but did not invent the railroad sleeping car, as some believe. Brother Pullman began working on his famous coaches in 1859, a year after Brother Wagner's cars first went into service.

Posted 12/21/2011 03:34:00 AM

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

California's Five Day Governor

Brother Milton Latham, Washington Lodge 20 of Sacramento, had the shortest term of any California Governor, serving only five days!

Having taken the oath of office on January 9, 1860, he resigned when the California Legislature selected him as California's US Senator to replace David Colbreth Broderick, who was killed in a duel. John G. Downey, Los Angeles Lodge 42, succeeded Brother Latham as Governor. Brother Downey, of course, has the distincion of being California's shortest serving Lt. Governor, an office which he held for the same five days.

Posted 12/20/2011 06:45:00 AM

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Charles Lindbergh's Surprising Time Magazine Cover

Charles Lindbergh, Keystone Lodge 243, St. Louis, once appeared on the cover of Time Magazine, not for any of his accomplishments in aviation, but for his role in inventing what was called an artificial heart!
Posted 12/17/2011 05:15:00 AM

Friday, December 16, 2011

Tom Mix

Tom Mix, early cowboy movie superstar, was raised a Master Mason at Utopia Lodge 537 of Los Angeles on February 21, 1925. He was so excited about becoming a Freemason that, in a day prior to life endowments, he immediately paid the dues for his first ten years of membership.

Posted 12/16/2011 07:54:00 AM

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

The Socialist Entrepreneur

King C. Gillette (1855-1932), Columbian Lodge, Boston, was the inventor of the iconic razor bearing his name. Founder of the Gillette corporation, he built one of the great companies of the 20th century and is considered a pioneer titan of industry in the American capitalistic system. In spite of that, Brother Gillette was a committed Socialist!

Ironically, Gillette founded his company for the sole purpose of financing the promotion of a new Socialist system.

Posted 12/14/2011 06:14:00 AM

Monday, December 12, 2011

Dan Brown On Freemasonry

“In a world where men do battle over whose definition of God is most accurate, I cannot adequately express the deep respect and admiration I feel toward [the Freemasons], an organization in which men of differing faiths are able to ‘break bread together’ in a bond of brotherhood, friendship, and camaraderie." ~Dan Brown, author The Lost Symbol

Posted 12/12/2011 02:06:00 PM

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