Book Review – The Masonic Tutor’s Handbook 2

‘The cement which binds a lodge together is the regular meetings of its members’.

For the first time ever, in our long history, we have been unable to meet.

We have taken part in a dangerous and compulsory experiment, for the first time in our long history we have had to submit our Craft to life support by placing it in an artificially induced coma and keeping its life breath of meetings flowing by using the artificial ventilator of the video get-together.

With the advent of vaccines, we are faced with the risky business of arousing this slumbering giant.

Because of the losses by death, resignation, and decline of interest, there is a real danger that the habit of monthly Masonry in our lodges will crumble and fail.

We need to do something, but what?

This book explores the options for a return to a new reality.

 

Review by: WBro Wayne Owens

The latest instalment of Robert Lomas’ Masonic Tutor’s Handbook series covers a subject that should currently be the topic of conversation for all Freemasons, Freemasonry after Covid-19, What will it look like and what can we do?.  

Robert starts with a historical look at the membership levels of Freemasonry, utilising graphs to highlight the changes in the popularity of Freemasonry from the steady growth in the years following the Word Wars, to the sharp decline caused by bad publicity from such books as The Brotherhood, and Inside the Brotherhood.

He uses a F-Number to show the health of Freemasonry over this time, it is a lot like the R-Number that we have all become familiar with during the pandemic.

Only in the case of Freemasonry we want a F-Number above 1, so that our membership will grow, and Freemasonry stays strong.

After considering the historical trends, as well as the current state that the lockdown has left us in after the unprecedented cessation of our meetings.

Robert moves on to cover two very important areas.

What we can do for our short-term survival, and what our long-term strategies should be when our meetings can once again restart.

In the short-term, Robert talks about how we can take stock of our lodges current situation.

Included are breakdowns of two real life lodges.

Lodge 1 is in a poor condition, and Robert explains why it is struggling and gives a suggested plan of action that it could follow to aid in its recovery.

Lodge 2 is in a strong condition, and Robert explains the steps the Lodge had taken in the several years before lockdown that has enabled it to be in its current state.  

This section ends with some tools and suggestions that can be used by Lodges, such as: while our meetings are closed the RLPI Podcast Initiative, and when our meetings reopen with restrictions, Hybrid meetings.

All the suggestions in this section have been fully trialled and used by Lodges since the pandemic started, so are known to work successfully with little technical knowledge required.

In the long-term, Robert breaks down Recruitment and Retention in the Royal Arch, and explains White-Table evenings, and Gavel Nights and how they are powerful tools in recruitment.

Included for your use is a full Gavel Night talk that Robert has used himself on multiple occasions to great effect. 

This book also launches Masonic Buddys, which Robert has setup to help newer members of Freemasonry connect with more experienced members, for help and advice. 

Put simply, our Lodges have been closed for over a year now, during that time we have had no ceremonies, meetings, or new members.

While we can now see the possibility of the resumption of meetings on the horizon, we as Masons need to be making plans for how we can recover.

This book is a valuable tool that every one of us should have in our toolbox to help keep our Lodges alive and active during this shutdown, and to use for aid in planning the Lodges future once we return to normality. 

I would highly recommend this book for everyone, but most especially for Lodge Membership Officers, Mentors, and Secretaries.

Paperback, 73 pages, illustrated
Dowager Books [Web of Hiram Publications]
ISBN: 9798721123085
£7.50

The Masonic Tutor’s Handbooks
Freemasonry – After Covid 19

By: Robert Lomas

The cement which binds a lodge together is the regular meetings of its members. For the first time ever, in our long history, we have been unable to meet. We have taken part in a dangerous and compulsory experiment.

For the first time in our long history we have had to submit Our Craft to life support by placing it in an artificially induced coma and keeping its life breath of meetings flowing by using the artificial ventilator of the video get-together.

With the advent of vaccines, we are faced with the risky business of arousing this slumbering giant. Because of the losses by death, resignation, and decline of interest, there is a real danger that the habit of monthly Masonry in our lodges will crumble and fail.

We need to do something, but what? This book explores the options for a return to a new reality.

 

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