5 ideas to encourage more Men to become Freemasons
Why you should read this blog post from an author will never probably ever meet in person. My ideas come from my years engaged in the fraternity in as Worshipful Master, Senior Warden, Junior Warden, Treasurer, and as well as numerous other positions that were appointed. The experiences I bring to the table are only meant to help you succeed. Either way, every brothers experiences matter and in a world where the internet makes us a little closer, hwy not share stuff like this. If it helps one brother or one lodge in the world, this article was worth writing. Enjoy.
1. Introduce Yourself.
Nothing stops a Freemason Lodge to setup a table at a local event. From a Farmers Market to the National Night Out, get a table at the event and share what you like about the fraternity. Invite a man to visit your lodge and take a tour to see it. Remember, to ask the visitors at your table what they want to get out the fraternity. It’s important to know what incoming candidates want but it is also stick to the fraternity’s values. Remember, we are a thousand year old fraternity, so if a potential candidate wants something that is unMasonic move on to a new conversation with a different person.
2. Engage The Community.
Participate in a program at Rotary Club, Chamber of Commerce, or Kiwanis Club. Please note, this idea is great for a brother that is good at public speaking. Talk about how the fraternity is active in helping support the community. Explain how the fraternity helping the community and it’s membership in detail. Then offer the club members to visit your lodge building and take a tour. You want to establish good relations with the club and it’s membership because you may be able to setup an event together, recruit some of the membership of the club into the fraternity and possibly get connected with other family members of club members that may want to join the fraternity.
3. Reflect On Your Efforts.
Ironically, so many times, we forget to consider what is working and what is not. But, what is even worse – we don’t stop to consider the ‘why’.
Set aside a time for the lodge brothers to look back at the last year. Ask them to write down on paper, a program that did not work. Afterwards, ask them to write the way it should have worked and the possible results that should have been attained. By looking at the product of the desired result, your brothers can really determine if this is worth doing and if there is a better avenue to achieve the same results.
By reflecting, it allows the lodge to consider the goals and how they need to align better with the craft. If you see that the goals don’t align with the mission of the blue lodge maybe it should be recommended that the lodge agrees on not doing it again. If it was somewhat successful make sure that the right fixes are implemented to get it right. Your lodge is too busy with degrees and numerous other things to want to duplicate something that isn’t working right.
Sometimes tradition make brothers think that they need to do it, but ask if it will help grow the fraternity in membership or not. Maybe the answer is having numerous smaller events vs. just one big event. Or maybe the answer is looking at community sponsored events that are looking for additional help. Each lodge’s reflections will be vastly different and the solutions will be different too. Remember, that reflecting once a quarter will drive more brothers to speak up and get engaged in the success of the lodge.
4. Make Printed and/or Social Media Pieces
This is a great idea because everyone is more engaged these days on the web or in person. To have business cards printed with the lodge’s dinner hour plus contact information, logo, and address works. In my lodge, we went to numerous city based events and handed out thousands of cards to people in our community.
Did we get thousands for dinner at a lodge meeting – no. But, did we get a few – yes. Some of those guests later went on to become brothers. Further, we showed the community – Freemasonry is alive and well. Plus we aren’t hiding either. I have found it was a great way to seal a conversation with a prospective new candidate.
Simply by introducing myself, trying to make a connection, handing them a business card with our dinner hour (I always offered them a free dinner on me), and then inviting to talk to other brothers at our table worked. My brothers would invite him to the meeting. Now several men are showing interest in a potential new candidate. Lastly, the candidate may feel like this group is for him because people are interested in him. In the meantime, this individual has our contact information and communicate with the Secretary who will be able to assist him in any way if necessary.
Okay, now on to the web. This is a mysterious place from websites to Social Media to apps. It can be overwhelming. My recommendation is setup a website and related Social Media business style pages. Facebook and LinkedIn are my top two places to connect with men online. Facebook is heavily used by most people but LinkedIn is used heavily by young professionals and active professionals. By placing your lodge’s brand on these platforms you are more likely to connect with the right type of men. Further, it stronger cements your lodge when people are looking for you online and they find you. Lastly, create a “My Business Page” on Google, it will literally drive people looking for Freemasonry in your community to you.
5. Create a Series of Small Events for Potential Candidates
During my life as a Mason, I spoken with brothers that strongly wanted to make Freemasonry the best kept secret in town. Why keep this fraternity a secret? We are an organization of secret but not a secret organization. Keep in mind that creating small events will actually get guys interested. These small events should be things that you actually do regularly. Do you like eating out , do you like shooting guns, do you like smoking cigars, or maybe it is playing cards or something else – invite them to join you.
You need to encourage the brothers to talk about these small events regularly and invite people they know to them. It should be happening everywhere you are, your work, at home, at the snack shop, at your service club meeting, and even on the sidewalk. Sure these small events are fun and exciting.
Take the time to invite or escort some potential new candidates personally and especially those introverted good men who might not go on their own. And once you get them there, don’t abandon them. Introduce them to the brothers in attendance and share things they have in common. Be sure that you are checking up on them during the event. If you have really extroverted men, let them mingle on their own, but don’t make them feel like you just dropped them off and then disappeared.
Make an effort to showcase the best attributes of your Fraternity everywhere you go. Eat meals together, go to community events together, hang out around town together, and wear your logos when you do these things. People will associate you, your brothers and your/their actions with the Fraternity. Both the good and the bad. Be mindful of this.
Did you want more Freemasonry topics to read? Good news, I am creating plenty for you to enjoy! I have been spending hours creating this information, so take a moment to read each one! Or maybe you want to find a lodge in your neck of the woods? Good news – I am creating a complete review of each Grand Lodge – it will take time but I wanted you to have this information at your fingertips! If you want to network with other Freemasons – check out our Facebook Group / Page now!