Tidings From the East
Happy Fall, brethren! The smell of Fall is in the air, Nebraska is winning (I'd better not jinx them before the MSU game this weekend!), and the lodge is also gearing up to receive two new members in the near future as well. We just received a petition at this past meeting, so I'm in hopes that our officers will be able confer at least three more degrees before we change over in mid-January. We are also in the process of receiving a demit from another local lodge too, so the lodge will continue to grow even more as this year comes to a close. To think that we've done 17 degrees thus far in 2014, and will finish out with 20 degrees overall for the year is mind-boggling for me, but it's a great feeling to see the lodge chairs being filled up each and every month.
Its also an awesome feeling to see some of our senior lodge members attending the meetings on a monthly basis as well. With all that being said though, I will say that I take great pride in watching our newest members being active in the lodge and participating in almost every activity that we've had on our schedule. That in and of itself has motivated this lodge and breathed new life into it over the past year, as our senior members are taking charge and ensuring that these new Masons are being trained right, and are also on the right path towards taking a leadership role in the near future. As it stands right now, two of the six new joins now hold a billet in the lodge, and in 2015, four of the six will be in the chairs. The final clincher is the fact that most of these new Masons have proven up in the long-form of proficiency, so our ritual work will continue to improve as well. All in all, College View Lodge is growing, not shrinking, and I'm extremely proud of all the accomplishments that our lodge members have accomplished in the past nine months.
Trustees Meeting Notes
Building Maintenance Fund: As of January 1st, 2015, all four lodge building entities will contribute an additional $25.00 each month to the Building Maintenance Fund which will be set up in a separate checking account, and can be utilized to help upgrade the building, or fix broken items in the building. Previously dedicated funds (donations and garage sale proceeds) will be redirected to this fund as well on January 1st, 2015.
Lawn Mower & Snow Blower: A lawnmower will be donated to the lodge on behalf of WB Bob Brommer, thus eliminating lodge members from having to transport their own heavy equipment to and from the lodge each week, and also eliminating out-of-pocket repair costs for their equipment as well.
Outside Shed: The board was presented with two options for the purchase of an outdoor shed to house the newly-donated lawn care equipment. It was agreed upon that a "DuraMate", 8x6, vinyl shed with floor kit for $599.00 would be purchased, and that the cost of this purchase would be split four ways between all four lodge entities.
Kitchen Gas Line: The kitchen gas line was professionally removed from the kitchen area and sealed off at its source, eliminating a possible fire hazard.
Past Master Board: The previous Past Master board has been removed and new woodwork is being installed and all of the previous Past Master photographs are being digitized and will be printed off on 5x7 photo paper and then remounted.
Bulletin Boards: It was the recommendation of WM Curt Wolbert that four new bulletin boards be installed in the front foyer area, as there are only two out there presently, and it was his belief that all four lodge entities rated a bulletin board of their own to post their own lodge information. All members were in agreement.
Rear Entranceway Ceiling: It was brought to the attention of the board members by WB Jairo Cabieles that the back ceiling drywall in the rear entranceway is falling because there is either a leak in the soffit surrounding it, or in the roof itself. It was recommended that a contractor check it out and see what type of work needed to be done on it before winter set in and caused more damage to it. All members were in agreement.
Lodge Garage Sale
With the sale of WB Bob Brommer's treadmill and Schwinn exercise bike for $300.00 on Craigslist, and total proceeds from the garage sale at $374.06, and a $50.00 donation to the garage sale from Brother Terry Workman, the lodge's "Building Maintenance Fund" will get an additional $724.06 added to it in January. Thanks go out to all those who donated their items to the sale, and their time as well. On average the lodge brings in close to $350.00 with the garage sale proceeds each year, so this year's proceeds doubled that amount and the lodge would not have been able to do that had it not been for the effort and generosity from our members. Thank you!
"Flying our Colors"
One of our newest Master Masons, Scott Gossett, came up with the idea of having t-shirts made up for the lodge. So when he addressed this with me, I said, "Make it happen." So he did, and we now have College View Lodge t-shirts that are very professionally made and come in a soft antique-looking Heather Royal Blue color for $10.00 each. Scott's idea was that the lodge members need something "Masonic" and comfortable to wear when we're down at the lodge doing activities, and it's also good for us to have something with the lodge's information on it to wear out in town so that we can recruit new members as well. So far we've sold 28 shirts and will start a second order if we get enough interest from the members again. So kudos to Brother Scott for taking charge and stepping up to the plate and offering up a great idea for the lodge to "fly our colors."
Just so everyone is aware, I made up a roster of our local area members and split those 36 names up accordingly among our members who attend lodge on a regular basis. My purpose behind this was not to harass anyone on either side, but to ensure that we as Masons are doing what we have been taught to do, and that's to be there for our brother Mason. I'm a firm believer that a phone call from a brother Mason asking how you and your family are doing is much better that a written letter or an email.
So the purpose of the 'Calling Tree' is 3-fold, in that I've tasked our members with contacting a brother Mason and ensuring first and foremost that he asks how that Mason and his family are doing. Secondly, asking the brother to come to lodge for the upcoming business meeting, and lastly, asking if the brother needs a ride or any other assistance from the lodge. So if you get a call from one of the brothers, don't be upset with him for calling, please just realize that he's doing what a Mason should do and offering to help out a brother Mason. If you don't want him to call you any further, just thank him and let him know. But on the other hand, if you'd like to come to the meeting and just need some motivation and a ride, then please take him up on his offer, because he would love it if you did!
50/60 Year & Perpetual Membership Plaques
While working on the Past Masters board this past week, I noticed that our lodge does not have a plaque honoring our 50/60 Year members, or our perpetual members either! To me, these are two accomplishments that need to be acknowledged. Thus, this discrepancy was brought to the attention of our lodge members at the October business meeting and a motion to have a plaque made up for the 50/60 Year Members, and also one for the Perpetual Members was brought up and seconded, and both passed unanimously. A roster for both accomplishments will be generated by WB Doug with the help of the Grand Lodge and both plaques will be mounted downstairs in the Forrest Brown Fellowship Hall for members to view.
Headstone for PM Richard (Dick) Tracy
On September 16th, myself and WB Doug Johnson paid our last respects to WB Richard (Dick) Tracy, who was Past Master of College View Lodge in 1977, and passed away on June 18th of this year. Through the outstanding work of our lodge secretary, WB Doug Johnson, Dick Tracy's remains were cremated and the plot next to his wife, Lois, out at Roca Cemetery was opened up and his remains (and Fez and Cipher) were buried alongside his beloved wife. Unfortunately, Dick Tracy had no money to purchase a headstone prior to his death, and no one from his family or friends has indicated that they will ever purchase one for him either.
With that being said, it is my belief that a fellow brother Mason should always try to help out another brother Mason whenever possible. So what I'm asking is for our fellow College View Lodge members to please consider donating cash towards a headstone for our deceased brother. From what I've heard, if we were able to come up with at least $200-$300, that would cover the cost of a nice headstone for Worshipful Brother Dick. I myself am donating $25.00 to the cause and I'm also challenging everyone else in the lodge to either meet or beat my donation amount if they can afford to do so at this time. Anything you can donate though would be greatly appreciated, and I will guarantee that all of the monies donated for this cause will go to the purchase of a headstone for Dick Tracy's grave. So if you would like to donate, please send a check to the lodge and indicate on the check that your donation is for the purchase of Dick Tracy's headstone. Thank you.
October Meeting Highlights
Past Masters present: (8)
Master Masons present: (17)
Brother Cody Watkins was conducted to the one-third line and examined as to his proficiency in the Master Mason degree by Brother David Johnson in compliance with Section 2-402 of the Grand Lodge Bylaws, after which, there being no objection from the brethren, the Worshipful Master declared the brother proficient in Master Mason degree.
Reading & Approval of the Minutes: On motion of the Secretary, the minutes of the last regular communication, having been distributed before the meeting, were approved as printed.
Reports on Committees on Petitions/Balloting: None to report at this time.
Receiving & Referring of Petitions: The petition of Robert Berry was read by WB Doug Johnson and found to be in the proper format. An investigating committee consisting of WB Gary Kassebaum, Brother David Johnson, and Brother Scott Gossett was assigned by WM Curt Wolbert.
Reports of Committees:
1. Sustaining Membership - WB Doug reported that he is currently working on contacting the remaining names on our prospects list.
2. Trustees -WM Curt gave the report of the trustees meeting this evening. topics discussed were the implementation of the Building Maintenance Fund, purchase and installation of a shed for lawnmower and snow blower storage, removal of the unused natural gas line in the kitchen, and possible replacement of the basement entranceway ceiling which is rotting from water exposure.
3. Ritual Work/Proficiency - WM Curt discussed the Artificer Award established by the Grand Lodge and reminded the new Master Masons to ask for assistance if they needed help in completing this task.
5. Community Relations- None to report at this time.
1. Building Cornerstone -WB Doug reported that two contractors are continuing to develop written, firm quotes for repair or replacement of the buildings cornerstone.
2. New Lodge Directory -WB Doug requested that anyone with new updated contact information pass it along to him so he can update the lodge directory that will be published shortly.
1. All correspondence requiring action was taken care of under the proper order of business.
1. Calling Tree - WM Curt discussed his intentions behind the lodge Calling Tree and asked that if any brother found the contact information to be incorrect, to pass that information along to WB Doug.
2. Lodge T-Shirts - WM Curt discussed the lodge t-shirts and thanked Brother Scott Gossett for the idea, and also for taking charge and making the purchase happen.
3. 50/60 Year & Perpetual Member Plaques - WM Curt discussed his philosophy on why College View Lodge should have plaques set up for 50/60 Year Members, and also for Perpetual Membership individuals as well. A motion was made by Brother Scott Gossett for the lodge to purchase both items and it was seconded by WB Jairo. The motion passed unanimously.
4. Outside Storage Shed -WM Curt reminded everyone about the recommendation of the Temple Board to purchase a storage shed for the lodge to store their newly-donated lawnmower and snow blower. The recommendation of the Temple Board was to purchase the "DuraMate", 8x6, vinyl shed with floor kit for $599.00 and have all four lodge entities pay 1/4 of the cost. A discussion ensued and a motion was made by WB Jairo to purchase the shed, which was then seconded by Brother Scott Gossett. The motion passed unanimously.
4. Fellowship Hall Rental -WM Curt discussed his thoughts about how the lodge renting out the Fellowship Hall downstairs to outside parties could possibly generate funds for the lodge, plus promote the building's and the fraternity's image to the public as well. WB Doug informed the brethren that the lodge would have to check with their insurance carrier prior to ensure we were legally protected should an injury occur on site. WM Curt tabled the item to Unfinished Business.
5. Dick Tracy Headstone -WM Curt informed the brethren that PM Dick Tracy was buried in Roca Ceemtery with no headstone and that no family attended the funeral, only WM Curt, WB Doug, and four other friends of Dick Tracy were present. WM Curt asked that the brethren consider donating to help purchase a headstone for Dick's grave. A suggestion from Brother Ben Berck, who works at the VA, was to see if WB Dick was a veteran, and then to see if the lodge could possibly get him a government-issued one through that venue if possible.
6. Upcoming Events -
A. Oct. 29 - Masonic Education Symposium at Scottish Rite (7 - 9 pm)
B. Oct. 31 - College View Lodge's "Halloween Night" Open House (6 - 9 pm)
C. Nov. 5 - Regular Meeting (7:30 pm)
Good of the Fraternity:
At the order of the Worshipful Master, the Senior Deacon escorted WB Tom Anderson to the East, where he presented WB Tom with a certificate and pin for over 25 years of membership in the Masonic fraternity, and who also received the hearty round of applause.
WM Curt then had Brother Cody Watkins escorted to the East where he presented him with his membership card, pin, Cipher and Monitor, where he also received a hearty round of applause as well.
Brother David Johnson presented a book report to the brethren as part of his Artificer Award requirements.
Our next regular communication will be November 5th at 7:30 PM
No further business appearing, the Lodge was closed in form with prayer at 8:40 PM, peace and harmony prevailing. Following the close of the meeting, pictures were taken.