Tidings From the East
As this Fourth of July weekend approaches, College View Lodge is also preparing for our 4th Master Mason degree in the past 6 months, with two Fellow Craft degrees right behind that degree as well. I'd just like to say that every Master Mason degree I 've ever participated in has been extremely rewarding for me, in that I felt a strong sense of pride in knowing that I was present at a very momentous time in a brother Master Mason's life, and that I was also there to help him fully enter our fraternity of Brotherly Love. With that being said, I'd also like to say that this upcoming Master Mason degree is special for me in particular, in that Aaron Bruner is my son-in-law, and his joining of our lodge has been very special event for me. I have five daughters and no sons, so this is about as close as I'm going to get to having a son enter our fraternity, or at least it is until my male grandchildren come of age!
So I am definitely looking forward to Aaron's upcoming Master Mason degree, and also to the two Fellow Craft degrees for Brothers Cody Watkins and Scott Gossett as well, who will be raised up to the Fellow Craft degree on July 16th. Six new members into our lodge has been a 'breath of fresh air' to our lodge, and they will be an outstanding addition to not only our meetings, but to the line of future officers for our lodge as well. These new men are going to bring fresh new ideas with them as they hit the floor running, and no one is looking more forward to that fact than I am! College View Lodge is growing, and we're growing with members who want to participate, and to learn, and there's definitely nothing more refreshing than that when it comes to our Craft, brethren. So rest-assured that we're heading in the right direction as we head into the 2nd half of 2014.
Trustees Meeting Notes
Building Maintenance Fund: A Trustees Board meeting was held to address some building maintenance issues, and to also discuss some proactive measures that might be taken to raise funds towards a 'Building Maintenance Fund.' Members discussed the need for a building maintenance fund and one idea that was brought up was to have each lodge entity (Hickman Lodge, Bennet Lodge, Capitol Chapter #320 OES, and College View Lodge) each contribute a monthly payment of $25.00 to a building maintenance fund, which in turn would be deposited by College View Lodge into a separate savings account, which would then only be used to finance building maintenance projects for the lodge building.
Cornerstone: Replacement of the old cornerstone, which is deteriorating at a rapid pace, versus restoration was addressed by the board members. Two local stone restoration businesses are being contacted at this present moment, and both will be providing estimates on the costs to refurbish the stone versus replacing the stone. It was agreed by all members present that retention of the original cornerstone is much more preferential to replacement, more for its historical significance than anything else, but also for cost effectiveness as well.
Lodge-Owned Lawn Mower & Snow Blower: WM Curt Wolbert addressed the topic of the lodge building purchasing (or having donated) a lawn mower and snow blower for lodge members to utilize when the lawn needs mowed, or the driveway needs shoveled. WM Curt addressed this issue due to the fact that he has been lifting and hauling his personal lawn mower and snow blower to the lodge on a weekly basis for several years now, as did WB Doug Johnson before him for several years before that, and that the wear and tear on his back, and on the maintenance of his equipment, is starting to take its toll. WM Curt's recommendation is that the lodge building needs to purchase a used mower and blower and have them staged inside the lodge building until an outside storage shed can be purchased at a later date. WM Curt stated that he will never charge the lodge for his mowing and shoveling services, but he still wants them to be aware of the fact that if these tasks were to be paid for to an outside service, the estimated cost of both of these services would be approximately $1,500.00 (cost estimate provided by a local contractor), and that the lodge should at least be providing the equipment for its lodge members to accomplish these tasks.
Outdoor Sign: The topic of an outdoor sign being purchased by all four entities was addressed by the board members. One idea consists of an outdoor sign being mounted on the side of the lodge building which will help identify the lodge building as the "College View Masonic Center," and will also include the names of the respective lodges and chapters in it. In addition, anther type of outdoor sign was addressed, one that would be made out of brick and wood, and could be placed next to the flagpole, and would also give the lodge the ability to not only identify the lodge building itself, but would also allow for events to be advertised on an interchangeable sign board as well. Capital Chapter #320, Worthy Matron Cindee Lightall, had a tentative design drafted up which showed how the sign might be built. Both signage options were addressed with the lodge members and will be addressed at the August monthly meeting after cost figures are more solidified.
Visit from WB Stephen Kennedy - Personal Representative to MWB Joe McBride
WB Stephen Kennedy, who hails from Nemaha Lodge #4, and is also the Personal Representative for MWB Joe McBride, visited College View Lodge to see how we were doing, and to inform our members about what new things are transpiring at the Grand Lodge, and also to answer any questions that our members might have for the Grand Lodge as well. WB Stephen's duties cover the Southeastern area of the state, and his visit was very informative and it was a pleasure to have him as a visitor to our lodge.
Garage Sale Items
It's not too early to start thinking about donating your unwanted items to the lodge for its annual garage sale that's coming up on September 12th through the 14th! Remember that one man's trash might be another man's treasure, so if you have some unwanted items in your house, and you think that they're still in good enough shape to be sold to someone, then please consider donating them to the lodge's garage sale that's happening soon. The only items that we can't accept are tube-style television sets and computer monitors, as we can't dispose of those items via the Goodwill after the garage sale is completed.
So if you have any items to donate, please box or bag them up, and if you need them picked up, I will gladly swing by with my truck and take them off of your hands and take them to the lodge to put on the garage sale on your behalf. Just give me a call at 402-440-6860 and let know when you're available, or email me at email@example.com and I will coordinate a time and date with you. Remember that the proceeds from the garage sale benefit the lodge's 'Building Maintenance Fund.'
July Meeting Highlights
Past Masters present: (5)
Master Masons present: (13)
Reading & Approval of the Minutes: The minutes were distributed by WB Doug Johnson prior to the meeting and he made a motion to accept them as written. WB Gary Kassebaum seconded the motion and the motion carried.
Reports on Committees on Petitions/Balloting: There were no petitions to report on at this time.
Receiving & Referring of Petitions: No new petitions were received at this time.
Reports of Committees:
1. Sustaining Membership - WM Curt discussed a potential prospect that he had met and had delivered a petition to, and also asked if any other potential prospects had been contacted at that time. No other new prospects have come forward at this time.
2. Trustees -WM Curt briefed the brethren on the Trustees Meeting notes, consisting of a Building Maintenance Fund being established; the lodge purchasing a used lawn mower and snow blower for its weekly lawn care maintenance needs; an updated status on replacing or refurbishing the lodge building's cornerstone; and also on the status of the outdoor signage for the lodge.
3. Ritual Work/Proficiency - WB Bob Brommer stated that there would be no practices for the upcoming degrees. WB Doug informed WM Curt on the proficiency status of each of the new brother Masons, and if they would be ready to prove up prior to receiving their upcoming degrees.
5. Community Relations- WB Doug Johnson informed the members that the College View Neighborhood Association is in the process of getting approval from the City of Lincoln on whether or not a commercial parking lot can be built on the northeast corner of 47th and Cooper, which lies diagonal from the lodge. It is hoped that if approved, that College view Lodge members might be able to utilize the lot to park on meeting nights.
1. 501(3)(c) - WM Curt and WB Doug were continuing to discuss whether or not the lodge should apply for a tax exemption designation through the IRS, which would allow donators to write off their donations to the lodge on their tax returns. WM Curt stated that there is a non-refundable application fee of $300.00 for this designation.
2. Outside Lodge Sign: WB Bob provided an example of his idea for the outdoor sign for the building that could be mounted onto the lodge building itself. WB Bob stated that he didn't yet have a cost for the project, but estimated $80-$300 depending on the size of the sign, and the materials. WM Curt also informed the brethren that the Trustees discussed the item of whether or not the lodge needed an outside sign posted on the building itself, or one that would be professionally constructed in front of the building next to the flagpole. The tentative design for this wood/brick sign project, which was provided by OES Worthy Matron, Cindee Lightall, at the Trustees Meeting, was passed around for review by the members.
3. Cornerstone Restoration: WM Curt again informed the brethren that the lodge building cornerstone was deteriorating quickly, and that a company here in Lincoln by the name of 'Thunderstone', who specializes in stone restoration, was contacted and asked to provide an estimate on how much it would cost to restore the cornerstone, and also if the restoration would last long enough to warrant the cost, or if a replacement stone would be necessary instead. WB Doug Johnson also stated that he had been in contact with a company by the name of 'Renaissance' and that they too would be providing the lodge with an estimate to have the cornerstone repaired in lieu of replacement.
4. Past Masters Picture Board: Brother Paul Hadley informed the brethren that he and WM Curt were working to update the past masters board in the main foyer with current pictures of all of the past masters.
5. Bennet Lodge Fellow Craft Degree: Brother WB Doug informed the brethren that Bennet Lodge #94 is having their Fellow Craft degree on July 22nd at 7:00 pm and stated that the trestle board for it would be coming out soon.
1. All correspondence requiring action was taken care of under the proper order of business.
1. Garage Sale - WM Curt reminded the brethren that the lodge garage sale will go from September 12th- 14th, and that if they have any unwanted items for sale, to please bring them to the lodge and stage them in the downstairs meeting area.
2. WB Stephen Kennedy Visit - WM Curt introduced WB Stephen Kennedy from Nemaha Lodge #4, who is the Personal Representative for MWB Joe McBride. WB Stephen addressed the lodge on what new activities have been happening with the Grand Lodge, and also fielded questions by the brethren.
3. PM Dick Tracy's Passing-WM Curt informed the brethren that PM Dick Tracy had passed away, and that unfortunately he was suspended at the time of his death, so no Masonic funeral would be administered. WB Doug then briefed the brethren on Dick's final arrangements.
4. Building Maintenance Fund-WM Curt discussed the need for a building maintenance fund and informed the brethren that the Trustees had discussed the need for a building maintenance fund and one idea that was brought up was to have each lodge entity (Hickman Lodge, Bennet Lodge, Capitol Chapter #320 OES, and College View Lodge) each contribute a monthly payment of $25.00 to a building maintenance fund, which in turn would be deposited by College View Lodge into a separate savings account, which would then only be used to finance building maintenance projects for the lodge building. WB Doug made a motion to table this idea to 'Unfinished Business', and WB Gary Kassebaum seconded the motion.
6. Upcoming Events -
A. July 9th - Aaron Bruner Master Mason Degree (6:50 pm)
B. July 16th - Cody Watkins & Scott Gossett Fellow Craft Degree (6:30 pm)
B. July 26th - Membership Workshop at Grand Lodge (WM Curt Wolbert)
C. August 6th - Regular Meeting (7:30 pm)
Good of the Fraternity:
Masonic Education - Due to time constraints, WB Bob presented material from the Masonic Encyclopedia on "Lodge Pillars" and what their significance means.
Report of Sickness - WM Curt briefed the brethren that his mother, Bette Wolbert, was recovering well after breaking her hip back on Memorial Day. WB Jairo Cabieles also briefed the brethren that he and his wife Sarah, had taken their daughter, Calli, to the Shriner's Children's Hospital and it was determined that Calli's bone growth defect was not permanent and that she would not be requiring surgery for it.
The business meeting concluded at 8:40 hours.