Volume LIVFebruary 2007Number 1

A Message from the Grand Master

Brethren:

Happy New Year! If you're like me, every year you make a long list of resolutions, many of which you won't see through to completion. For 2007, however, I urge all Master Masons to adopt and fervently work toward the...

Grand Master's Top 10 New Year's Resolutions:


10. Call a brother you haven't seen in a while and ask him how he's been. Invite him to lunch or dinner, ask if he needs a ride to the next lodge meeting or if he could use some assistance. Many times when we don't see or hear from a brother, it's for a good reason, such as a family difficulty, health issue or another challenge in his life. Reaching out to show we care, as Masons Helping Masons, can make a real difference in another's life.

9. Make your membership commitment a priority. Attend lodge meetings more regularly. Volunteer to assist with a special event, fundraising project or membership maintenance efforts (see p. 18). Consider filling in a chair if there's a need. Offer to mentor a new candidate or brother.

8. Consider becoming an organ donor; talk to your spouse and/or family members so they know your wishes. Then contact the Masonic Organ Donor Program and sign an organ donor card. It's really that simple!

Join the Masonic Blood Donor Club and donate blood whenever you're able, to the American Red Cross or any of the blood collection centers in Pennsylvania, or even out-of-state. It's free to join; just fill out a new member form available on the Grand Lodge Web site, www.pagrandlodge.org/programs/donor/, and a card will be sent to you. You could even suggest that your lodge set up a bloodmobile as a community service project.

Imagine the difference you can make in another person's life by giving something you take for granted to someone who needs it to survive!

7. Register with the Members-Only Online Business Directory and gain access to the business listings, job listings and resumes posted online. It's easy, convenient and free! Plus, any time you're looking for a potential tradesman, service provider, employer or potential employees, you will have access to a network of Pennsylvania Masons who may fit your need. As more members register, the value of this directory increases for all who use it. So, log on today!

6. Support the Masonic Charities. You can do this through a variety of ways, in addition to outright contributions or planned gift arrangements. For example, if you sign up for the new Masonic Charities credit card, every time you use it a donation is made toward the Masonic Charities. Giving can be enjoyable, too. Plan to bring your lady to one of the holiday galas next year in Philadelphia or Pittsburgh. Or, gather a group of fellow brethren to play in one of the Grand Master's golf tournaments, enter a car in the Masonic Village Charity Mini Grand Prix or organize a creative fundraiser to benefit the Masonic Temple.

5. Visit the Masonic Village nearest you, take a tour and learn about the many quality services available to you and your loved ones. While you're there, visit with the residents. Chances are, there will be a member of your lodge or a widow who would be delighted to have someone brighten his or her day. You may even find your experience so enjoyable that you'd like to volunteer on a regular basis.

4. Become active with one of your local Masonic youth groups. After all, they are our leaders of tomorrow, and your time investment will be well spent. Work with your lodge and District Deputy Grand Master to coordinate a Masonic CHIP event to protect the children in your community.

3. Learn more about the Craft! Attend an Academy of Masonic Knowledge meeting (see p. 17) or borrow a book from The Masonic Library and Museum of Pennsylvania, where borrowing privileges are extended only to Pennsylvania Masons.

2. Sign up to tour Ireland with Norma and me this August! As we have traveled across the Commonwealth and even overseas, brethren and their loved ones at the various lodges, valleys, shrines and Grand Lodges have extended warm welcomes and fraternal love that can only be found within this international but very personal brotherhood. We look forward to getting to know many more of you personally through this exciting adventure.

If the Ireland trip is not going to work within your schedule or your budget, consider visiting your neighboring lodge. You don't have to travel far to experience the deep and meaningful bond that we enjoy as Freemasons.

1. Plan a visit to the Masonic Temple in Philadelphia with your family, fellow brethren or some friends interested in Freemasonry, the arts, architecture or history. Experience the magnificence of the building and outstanding renovations made possible through the generosity and dedication of Masonic groups and individuals committed to ensuring our National Historic Landmark is preserved for future generations. Peruse the Masonic Library and Museum and all of its masterpieces, exhibits, historical artifacts and voluminous resources. You will be amazed!

Sincerely and fraternally,

Ronald A. Aungst, Sr.
R.W. Grand Master

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