The North Carolina Mason

July/August 2019

North Carolina Mason

Issue link:

Contents of this Issue


Page 1 of 15

Page 2 The North Carolina Mason July/August 2019 By Beth Grace Mason Editor Grand Master Dwight "Mack" Sigmon would like to have a word with you at this year's Grand Lodge. e word? Invest. Invest in the future of Masonry, invest in our charities, invest in our youth, invest and practice Freema- sonry in everything you do and say. In other words, be the generation that ensures that the Masonry you know and love will thrive for generations to come. e grand master says he hopes to bring that thought – and other messages he has shared in lodges all year – home at the 232nd Annual Communication, to be held Sept. 27-28 at the Twin City Quarter (Embassy Suites and Marriott Hotel) in Winston-Salem. "My message this year has been to ask people to be a little kinder and more respectful, even when we have differences of opinion," MW Sigmon said. "I have asked brothers to be better men, be better Masons … be who we say we are. We can make this world a better place. It's our decision." He also will bring a wider message of charity to the meeting. "All lodges have been very charitable, holding events and fundraisers," he said. "But I want to remind brothers that we, as indi- vidual Masons, need to be personally charitable to our three charities – the Masonic Home for Children, WhiteStone, and the North Caro- lina Masonic Foundation. We need to invest in our charities, and in the future of our Grand Lodge. "I don't want ours to be the generation that has to tell our kids and grandchildren that they cannot enjoy the Masonic life we have enjoyed. I want to be the generation that ensures they can have the same opportunities and services we have enjoyed." His remarks will be the highlight of two days of meetings, votes, fellowship and fun – and a vote on the next Grand Master. e agenda is full, but with fewer proposed code amendments this year. Only five are up for a vote. e amendment with the biggest buzz is the proposed per capita increase and substitute amendment. e per capita has not increased in six years. As of presstime, the main amendment would increase from $20 to $25. A substitute amend- ment that would increase the per capita $5 effective Dec. 31, 2019; $5 effective Dec. 31, 2022; and $5 effective Dec.31, 2025, is up for a vote and would support the Craft for a much longer period. GM Sigmon strongly encourages brothers to search their hearts and invest in the future by passing this amendment. "ink of those who gave us this fraternity to grow and prosper," he said. "It's our turn to invest in our future. Every year, for the past several years, we have lost about $18,000 in income from non- payment of dues and deaths, and 400 to 500 members achieving the 50-year milestone of membership. We don't ever want to take that away, and the finance committee is continuing its hard work looking for areas to cut costs. We have recently negotiated a better rate on MORI and other areas. But it's clear that you can't offset an annual loss like we continue to experience without sacrificing something. It's up to us." He also encourages approval of the amendment allowing the Grand Lodge to collect $1 a year on all its per capita tax members on roll as of Dec. 31 for the George Washington Masonic National Memorial. e monument in Washington, DC, is Mason-owned and maintained, and is considered the most important edifice in the nation that identifies the significance of Freemasonry. More than 30 jurisdictions now give $1 per member each year to maintain it. Our Grand Lodge has given about $5,000 a year based on $5 per initiate, but wants to increase the gift to join other generous jurisdictions. Votes on Amendments 3 and 4 are tentatively set for be held on Friday; the other amendments will come up for discussion and vote on Saturday. Other major events will include the return of the "Masons Can" drive – bring a can of food or a donation. Gifts will be collected at the hotel and given to groups in need. Lion and Pillar honorees, including first-time Platinum-level lodges, will be specially recognized during the Friday session. Masters will be called forth to accept the honor and lodges can gather right after the session ends to have group photos made. Annual Communication focus: Our future Proposed Code Amendments for 2019 Here are the proposed amendments to be considered at Annual Communication, Sept. 27-28: Amendment Group 1 To raise the per capita rate owed to the Grand Lodge to $25 from its current rate of $20. SUBSTITUTE AMENDMENT: This amend- ment would increase the grand lodge per capita $5 effective Dec. 31, 2019; $5 effec- tive Dec. 31, 2022; $5 effective Dec.31, 2025 Submitted by Grand Lodge Finance Committee Amendment Group 2 To require the Grand Lodge to collect $1 a year on all its per capita tax members on roll as of Dec. 31, for the George Wash- ington Masonic National Memorial. Submitted by Sophia #767 Amendment Group 3 To require brothers to immediately notify the Secretary of their lodge of changes in contact information. Submitted by Mount Holly #544 Amendment Group 4 To require a majority vote to approve an Honorary Member. Submitted by Stedman #730 Amendment Group 5 To administratively suspend the membership of a member who has been charged with a felony. Submitted by Oak Grove #750 ANNUAL COMMUNICATION When: Sept. 27-28, 2019 Where: Twin City Quarter, 425 N. Cherry St., Winston-Salem, NC 27101 SCHEDULE Friday, Sept. 27 • DDGL Meeting, 8 a.m. • Grand Lodge opens, 10 a.m., Grand Pavilion • Grand Lodge reconvenes, 1:30 p.m., Grand Pavilion • Grand Master's reception, 4:30 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 28 • Grand Lodge opens, 9 a.m.

Articles in this issue

Archives of this issue

view archives of The North Carolina Mason - July/August 2019