Grand Master’s Message – August 30, 2021

Grand Master Gary L. Stang

ARE FIRST IMPRESSIONS IMPORTANT?

     I have opened many doors into Masonic buildings and I have always had a first impression. On one occasion, I walked into a Masonic building that was so beautiful – everything was in its place. My first impression was WOW!! As I continued further into the building, nothing changed. The cleanliness and the shine of the floors made another strong impression on me. I walked into the lodge room and the secretary’s desk was spotless and everything in its place. When they opened lodge, I noticed that all of the Brothers were dressed in suits and ties.  Everyone looked good and had a great attitude and they all had an interest in bringing in new candidates. If you were a new candidate at this lodge, what do you think you would be feeling? 

     At another lodge visit, when we opened the door, we noticed carpeted stairs that hadn’t been vacuumed in months. A door into a closet at the bottom of the stairs was left open with junk falling out it. When we got to the top of the steps, we walked into the lodge room and noticed that the secretary’s desk was covered with papers and files so high that we couldn’t even see the desk. The attitude of the Brothers was poor as well as their dress. Some had dressed in shorts, t-shirts and flip flops and the remainder of the Brothers were poorly dressed as well. My impression of this lodge was not the same. No one at that lodge was interested in bringing in new members. 

    So, my question for you is, which lodge would you like to be part of?  Which lodge would you be more likely to bring in a new candidate? Would your new candidate be impressed with either lodge? If you were a member of the second lodge, would you be interested in coming to lodge or bringing in a new candidate?  Probably not!

    My brothers, we are getting a little lax. We need to “dress for success” as author John T. Molloy would say. At the least, put on a nice collared shirt, nice pants and wear shoes and socks. Look good so your members can be proud and watch them bring in new candidates. 

    I know that some lodges have financial problems. However, it doesn’t cost much to clean up the place. Wash the floors, vacuum the carpets and don’t forget to clean the bathrooms. I can tell you as soon as I walk into a lodge, how the bathrooms will look. Remember, it only takes a little effort to make a lodge look good. It’s those little things that make a big difference!

    So please, take time and walk into your building and take a good look at what you see. Ask yourself, if a new person walks into the building, what would he think? Go into your lodge room and make sure to file all those papers and spruce it up. Make your lodge something everyone can be proud of. Then sit back and watch your Brothers attitude change and more petitions come in.

    I am proud to be a Mason, and yes, first impressions do count.

    Remember, keep smiling and “Spread the cement of Brotherly Love” and let’s make this world a better place. 

Love ya Brothers!

Brother Gary

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