Author Archive

The West Gate

Written by Paul Cameron on . Posted in Masons Only

There is a lot of talk out there about how our numbers are dwindling and we need to get more members. We've gone from "2B1Ask1" to "Want2B1?"

I've seen on many occasions, not just in our lodge in Wheaton, where a prospective member will show up to dinner for the first time and after talking with one or maybe two of the brothers, he's handed a petition! Personally, I don't think this is the right approach. Our DEO and fellow Grand Lodge Masonic Education Committee member, RJ Budler of Lombard Lodge 1098, gave a presentation at our lodge recently which included an excellent quote, "Those who are asked to join without much consideration, often will quit without much consideration."

I agree that we should find ways to increase our numbers, but ONLY with men who are [...]

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Re-Engaging Inactive Members - Addendum

Written by Paul Cameron on . Posted in Private

​After posting our recent article and video about the 3 ideas we will be trying to re-engage with our inactive members, we received correspondence from all over the world, literally, with more ideas! So I just wanted to share them with you here and ask that if you have more, let us know and we'll try those too.

First, our 3 ideas were: 1, continue active communication with former members through email; 2, request they help with degrees; 3, visit lodges near them and meet them there.

Here's the new stuff we learned:

From a Brother who is the JW at [...]

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Our Charge to Success - Wheaton Lodge 269

Written by Paul Cameron on . Posted in Public

Wheaton Lodge 269 celebrated its 159th anniversary in 2017, and has a very rich history of brethren who have passed through our doors. The first shot of the Battle of Gettysburg was fired by Lieutenant Marcellus Jones, a 5 time Master of our lodge. Masonry was re-introduced into Germany after the fall of Hitler by a former Master of our lodge, Peter Rassmusen. Many other men from Wheaton Lodge 269 have gone on to great successes as well.

However, this year, just like the Chicago Bears, we are in a state of rebuilding. We have over one hundred members, but a small number of active participants. We need to increase membership, we need to improve community involvement, we need to increase revenue for the lodge to meet our financial obligations, and we need to do a better job with educational content in our meetings. We have lots to do.

We do, however, have a great group of brothers who are committed to making a positive change this year. We are not only committed, we are inviting you on the journey with us. We will be blogging about our experience here and how we will go from the empty room you see in the Paul Revere Charge video, to a full house by our next installation meeting. ...at least that's the goal. We hope you will follow our journey and learn how we turn this around.

Lessons From Grand Lodge

Written by Paul Cameron on . Posted in Public

We are back from Grand Lodge! So I'll share how it went, what we learned, our favorite part of the weekend, and how we can better prepare ourselves for next year.

If you're already a subscriber to our YouTube Channel, then you saw that I posted a video before we left asking for suggestions on how we can prepare, but unfortunately it didn't get any responses. When I asked guys locally who had been there before how we should prepare, and they ALL suggested we just take it all in and enjoy it, which is great advice, but it's not a plan.

So we came up with our own game plan, and learned a TON of do's and don'ts when we got there. Hopefully this will help YOU better prepare for your next Grand Lodge meeting.

A Checklist for Grand Lodge

Written by Paul Cameron on . Posted in Private

This is the addendum for our "Lessons From Grand Lodge" post with the Checklist to help you prepare for next year. From our experience at our first Grand Lodge meeting, we made lots of mistakes, and had several successes as well. To make sure we don't make the same mistakes again, while keeping an eye on new opportunities to improve, we created a checklist that we will be using next year before the Grand Lodge meeting which we will share with all our members who will be making the trip.

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Best Practices

Written by Paul Cameron on . Posted in Private

Last Updated: 4/12/18 This will be an ongoing post that will be regularly updated as we learn new best practices. We hope to establish routine of sharing and learning new Best Practices from every lodge member we meet so as THEY learn new Best Practices from other lodges, they will share them with us and we will continue to update this list. Over time, as more and more lodges are involved, this list should grow faster and faster.

​​Best Practices for Masonic Lodges

Wheaton Lodge 269 (Wheaton, IL, USA): We emphasize lodge communications with [...]

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Re-Engage Inactive Members

Written by Paul Cameron on . Posted in Public

In this article we're going to start the conversation about how to re-engage inactive members. I think all lodges have them, members who attended for a while but then just stopped coming. Maybe they had kids and couldn't find time for meetings, or maybe they moved too far away to make the commute each month, or maybe they just lost interest, but today we're going to talk about how to start getting them involved in lodge again.

Essential Questions - Addendum with 61 Question Tool

Written by Paul Cameron on . Posted in Private

This is the addendum to the Post about Essential Questions to Ask Your Members. In the post and video, we list out 15 or 20 you can ask your members, however we use a more complete list of 62 questions.

As discussed in that post, you don't have to get them all in one conversation. The idea is to continue getting together and add more and more as you go. By having 61 questions to answer about every member, you can get together and just get 3 or 5 or 7 of them answered at one time.

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Essential Questions to Ask Your Members

Written by Paul Cameron on . Posted in Public

What do you REALLY know about your members? Why is it so important to get that information? And specifically what questions should you be asking to get it? Today we will cover all of those questions and give you a great template of questions to start from.

First, here's a quick update from our last post which was about Preparations you can make while the lodge is dark. As you know if you read that one, the purpose of this blog is to document the process of how Wheaton Lodge 269 is trying to turn our lodge around and fill the room for our next installation meeting.

Preparations While Dark - Addendum

Written by Paul Cameron on . Posted in Private

This is the addendum to the Blog about how to prepare for the upcoming Masonic year while your lodge is dark.

The first idea was about starting a public blog of your own. Although our first post was fairly long, in general, 600 to 800 words should be your cap, per post. Also, it's important to add images, not so much to help you make a point, more so because it makes the post extend down longer. If the reader can get through the post faster, and feel like they are skimming even though they are actually reading it, they will enjoy the post more.

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