“It’s your Club House / It’s your Man Cave”

Brethren;

As boys we built tree houses, club houses and forts, they were our special places.  That special place was just for a select few of a special DVS-MWGM-Holding Hatgroup of friends.  They were also others who wanted to be part of the group but were never invited.  As men, if you think we out grew the concept of a club house you’re wrong, the name and place has changed but the concept remains.  As men we have cottages, boats, deer camps, offices, workshops, out buildings and the list goes on.  Those special places or “Man Caves” are as Diverse as those who inhabit them.

As Freemasons we belong to that special group of men who belong to Lodges that meet in Masonic Centers or their Club Houses.  How cool is your club house?  Your Community sees the outside of the Masonic Center.  What does it look like?  During my travels during this past year some of our club houses could use some cleaning up.  I also realize that for some Lodges their buildings have become burdensome and are consuming them financially.  The Lodge Trustees must become proactive needing to evaluate the condition of the building and make recommendations to their Brothers regarding the sustainability of their club house.

Your club house is like a billboard for Freemasonry.  It should look well kept, inviting, contact numbers, offer some mystique, mystery and curiosity.  If possible we should have some type of signage telling of some the programing that’s taking place.

There have been inquiries from Lodges asking what the Grand Lodge can do to help them with Building Projects.

  • 29.12 Committee on Temple Plans and Financing. It shall be the duty of the Committee on Temple Plans and Financing to prepare and maintain a book of plans, specifications and appropriate costs of Masonic Temples, to counsel lodges on costs, plans, requirements for building and financing and to make recommendations for approval or disapproval of such plans to the Grand Master.
  • The Grand Lodge is not in the Mortgage Business.
    • There are numerous reasons and ways for Lodges to raise funds for their Club Houses
      • Fund Raisers – Diverse Brothers uniting for a common cause
      • Members lend money to the Lodge – Promissory Notes
      • Regular Financing done with Brothers personally guaranteeing the Loan
  • Lodges can make a request of the Grand Master seeking permission to solicit funds from other Lodges in the justification of Wisconsin

Remember what we did to help our New Jersey Brothers devastated by Hurricane Sandy?  We stepped up to the plate and donated $10,000 in direct aid.  You contributed over $12,000 to our Service & Assistance Fund.  Now it’s time to offer some help to our Local Lodges for some club house updating.

At the Annual Communication, I will be asking the membership to approve the offering grants to help update our Lodge buildings. These grants would be offered through the Service & Assistance Fund.  My suggestion will be to have up to 40 matching fund grants of $500. (1-grant per lodge – up to a total of 40 grants)  A Lodge would send copies of bills and checks for up to $1,000 and receive a reimbursement from our Service & Assistance Fund for ½ up to $500.  It’s time for some Charitable Endeavors to begin at home.

My Brothers this is the last article that I will be writing as Grand Master for the Masonic Journal.  I have to admit that it seems like I’m always rushing to complete the Article.  These articles have been written to spur some discussion and to make us aware of the “Diversity” among us.  More importantly we need to support celebrate, honor, and respect that “Diversity”.

Fraternally,

Dennis Siewert

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