As Ancient and Accepted is our Order, so is the bond of brotherly love that we share. One might say Freemasonry is tried and tested through the fires of adversity, moulded and shaped through the times of peace, refreshed and revived through the moments of an Initiation and then Exaltation.
I was bereaved by the passing of My Dear Mother and so had to make a trip to my native land for her burial rites. Though this was expected to be a difficult time for me and my family I nevertheless searched for an opportunity to attend either a craft meeting or a chapter meeting. As the GAOTU will have it I attended neither meeting but rather was accorded the opportunity of attending the Annual Convocation and Communication of the District Grand Lodge of Ghana where I met and interacted with the District Grand Master, His newly invested Officers for the ensuing year and other brothers from all over the West Africa.
The Covid-19 Pandemic and its Lockdown has been particularly difficult for freemasonry and as such a lot of work will need to be done by all Brothers and Companions to help retain members and also attract newer and worthy members to our fraternity. One peculiar “workings” I noted while spending time with the Brethren from Sir Charles Tachie-Menson Lodge No.8058 was that for every meeting and festive board they attended, they made it a point to get to know a brother they’ve hardly spoken to before (not sure if it’s an officially adopted lodge workings). I believe the period between a brother being Raised to Master Mason and then taking up an Office is a particularly anxious moment which often equally applies to Companions of the Royal Arch. If Membership Officers of Lodges and Chapters in general could adopt this practice of teaching members to get to know other Brothers/Companions they will usually not talk to then maybe the future of freemasonry will be secured by way of retaining members.
Study shows that “people turn to have social anxiety when meeting acquaintances than when meeting strangers” and so as the Entered Apprentice song goes
Come let us prepare, we brothers that are,
Here met on this happy occasion!
We’ll quaff and we’ll sing, be he peasant or king.
Here’s a health to an Accepted Mason! …………..
Then join hand in hand to each other firm stand,
Let’s be merry and put a bright face on!
No Order can boast, so noble a toast
As a Free and Accepted Mason.
By Companion Robert Kwasi Addi
Composite Chapter No. 5727