The Grand Master’s Message – February 2023

By the Most Worshipful Grand Master of Masons in Wisconsin, Brother Paul T. Tourville

I’m Proud to be a Freemason! 

I’m Proud of who we are! 

I’m Proud of what we do! 

My Brothers, 

2023 is off to a hot start! There is no doubt that 2022 was a year of great happenings for our Fraternity. Well… the word is out. The good men of your community want to join you, as Brothers. In 2022, we saw a 70% growth in Master Masons raised, more than we’ve raised in over a decade. Here’s more exciting news. The pipeline is even bigger!! That’s right, we currently have more men that have been elected by your Lodges and are waiting to become Master Masons than we raised in all of 2022!!! Take a breath and let that soak in…

To provide an optional method for their journey, we have some significant Masonic Day of Lights scheduled: 

• February 4th in Milwaukee, Green Bay, and Eau Claire hosted the Scottish Rite Valleys of the same. Yes 3 in one day! 

• April 1st in Oshkosh hosted by our York Rite 

The method of their journey is up to them. I believe they can learn the amazing lessons we teach as slow or fast as they prefer. The focus is on learning and becoming better. 

I continue to receive calendars of events from newly installed Worshipful Masters. If you are a Worshipful Master and have not sent me your calendar yet, please do so immediately at [email protected]. Your Brothers are counting on you to be their leader. Put your designs on your Lodge Trestleboard. Be active in the community. Show appreciation for your Brothers. Teach the lessons of our Fraternity. 

This is the time of the year when your Lodge’s Annual Reports are due and per capita is paid. I asked our Grand Treasurer to tabulate exactly how much of your per capita payments are returned directly to you in support. I believe you will be shocked to learn how much of it goes directly back. All of it! 100%!! In fact, the total per capita paid by you this year represents only 57% of the annual Fraternal Support provided by the Grand Lodge of Wisconsin and your Leadership Team! The decisions of your past Leadership have enabled the commitment to Fraternal Support by the Grand Lodge of Wisconsin to remain consistent year after year. Please make sure your Lodge’s reports are filed properly and in a timely manner. 

I’m Proud of what we do! 

Act like a Freemason every day. Act like a Freemason everywhere. Our communities are looking for leaders. Your behaviors matter. Every Day and Everywhere. Being a gentleman is infectious. When people see you demonstrating great behavior, they copy it. Whether it’s as tiny as holding a door for someone, a firm handshake, or a smile. It’s infectious. People will copy you. I believe we can change the culture of our country one person at a time. I have several quotes saved on my phone that I look to often. They include the following: 

“I cannot believe that the purpose of life is to be happy. I think the purpose of life is to be useful, to be responsible, to be compassionate. It is, above all to matter, to count, to stand for something, to have made some difference that you lived at all. 

by Ralph Waldo Emerson 

Please remember the unbelievable impact Freemasonry has on your local community. We matter! We teach others. We demonstrate good behavior. We serve our communities, making them safer and better places to live for all. 

I’m Proud to be a Freemason! 

I’m Proud of who we are! 

I’m Proud of what we do! 

Paul T. Tourville, 

Grand Master of Wisconsin Freemasonry