The Holiday Season is upon us, a time for our religious celebrations, family gatherings, traditions, sharing with others, caring for others and the list goes on. In Freemasonry, when we live up to our obligations, “It’s always the Season”. Living up to our Masonic Tenants of Brotherly Love, Relief and Truth gives a group of “Diverse” men from all walks of life an opportunity to join together. It is a time for those Brothers to bond and focus on common goals.
Hurricane Sandy was devastating to the people on the East Coast of the United States. Some of these people are our Brothers and their families. This was evident after looking at the Grand Lodge of New Jersey’s website. The Grand Lodge of New Jersey and the Grand Lodge of Wisconsin have had a long relationship of support and Brotherly Love. To that end as your Grand Master I decided to make a decision to send funds to the Grand Lodge of New Jersey.
I sent the following e-mail to the Chairman of our Service & Assistance Committee.
M.W. Brother Chamberlain;
We have been in contact with the Grand Lodge of New Jersey, through their Grand Master, Most Worshipful Brother Glenn R. Trautmann. I have also attached a letter from the Grand Lodge of New Jersey website. Hurricane Sandy has had a devastating effect on many of our New Jersey Brothers. The New Jersey Grand Lodge has opened their doors to many Brothers who are homeless or have found their homes uninhabitable.
I spoke with Most Worshipful Brother Brian Beermann, Grand Master of Minnesota. The Brothers in Minnesota are sending trucks with relief supplies as well as money to New Jersey. We asked the Grand Master of New Jersey what we could do to help. After that conversation, I am requesting that $10,000 from the Service & Assistance Fund, be sent immediately, to the Grand Lodge of New Jersey Hurricane Relief Fund.
It is also my wish that any disaster funds under the care of the Wisconsin Masonic Foundation be transferred to the Service & Assistance Fund for distribution when and where needed.
I have received inquiries from Brothers and various Lodges around the State regarding the devastation in New Jersey. In the Grand Master’s December Article, in the Wisconsin Masonic Journal, I will direct them to make any contributions to our Service & Assistance Fund for fund replenishment and future distributions. The receipt of these contributions will be coordinated by Wisconsin Masonic Charities Office and deposited into the Service & Assistance Fund.
I would ask that these funds ($10,000) be sent to the Grand Lodge of New Jersey Hurricane Relief Fund for the benefit of our Brothers in distress; from their Wisconsin Brothers.
My Brothers the Wisconsin Masonic Foundation made a contribution to the Service & Assistance Fund. The check has been sent to the Grand Lodge of Jersey.
After reading the e-mail to our Service and Assistance Committee and the letter from the Grand Lodge of New Jersey; I’m sure that you agree the right action was taken. This contribution represents about each Master Mason in the State of Wisconsin reaching into his pocket and giving 83 cents.
A memo has been sent to all the Lodges.
November 12, 2012
Memo To: All Wisconsin Lodges
Re: Hurricane Disaster Relief for our Brothers
$10,000 has been sent to the Grand Lodge of New Jersey to help our Brothers in need from their Wisconsin Brothers.
Our New Jersey Brothers have continually supported their Wisconsin Brothers that is why the direct gift.
- This gift reinforces the Tenants of Freemasonry.
- It also shows how a group of “Diverse Men” can unite for a common cause
I’m passing my hat to help Brothers in need
- As more funds become available we will be making contributions to Hurricane Disaster Relief based on your response. These funds will be sent to the Masonic Service Association for distribution as needs arise for assistance.
- I am asking each Lodge to literally “pass the hat” and send at least $100 to the Wisconsin Masonic Charities – Service & Assistance Fund
Each contributing Lodge and individual will listed in Wisconsin Masonic Journal with a running total.
The Sky’s the Limit – The Holidays are coming, “A time to share and help a Brother”
Now the rest of the story. I would like see some of the revenue used to establish a fund within our Service & Assistance Fund to help lodges within our state be proactive in dealing with natural disasters in their area. This fund would also be available to help out other Grand Lodge Jurisdictions.
Please make checks payable to:
Wisconsin Masonic Charities
Service & Assistance Fund
36275 Sunset Drive
P.O. Box 67
Dousman, WI. 53118-9349
We will print the names of the Lodges and Individual Contributors (not amounts) of gifts received in the Masonic Journal.
This just another example of the “Diversity” of people in this great Fraternity coming together for a common cause. This is not a special appeal or funding for a special project. I am doing what Masters should be doing in all Lodges, “I passing my hat around the Lodge to help Brothers in need”. Nothing else needs to be said other than Nancy and I wish each of you and your families a Happy Holiday Season and a Happy & Prosperous New Year.