Monday, September 16, 2013

Why do Lodge presentations?

Today, we have a special guest post from "Dad" Dan Loughin, Chapter Advisor for Reading Chapter, in Reading, PA. He sent this article my way and it's surely worth a read! ~ "Dad" Seth Anthony

On September 12th, Reading, the Chapter in which I’m the Chapter Advisor, made a beautiful presentation of the Ceremony of Light, and had a 15 minute Q&A session, for the members of Reading Lodge No. 549.  Reading DeMolay and Reading Lodge have had a deep connection for half a century,and have always provided support for each other.  This presentation, along with the rest of the events of the evening, got me to thinking: why is it important for us as DeMolays to make presentations to the Lodges?  There are several reasons, and I would like to go over them with you.

One of the large reasons that we need to make these presentations to our l=Lodges is we need to show them what they are supporting.  Most of the l=Lodge members join Lodge for themselves.  They know that they are dedicated to charity, but they don’t necessarily know what that charity is to them.  Many of your sponsors donate a nominal amount each year to help you continue to perform and grow throughout the year.  Many of the members have had no interaction with DeMolay before they were members of the Lodge, and are unsure as to what we do in DeMolay.  This is a great way to show them what DeMolay is, what we do, and how we do that.  Most people need a tangible return on their investment, and this directly shows that.
Another good reason is for recruitment.  DeMolay survives with the membership and Advisors.  If we don’t refill the membership roles from majorities, and we don’t refill the Advisory Council from those who decide their time with DeMolay is finished, then the Chapters will cease to exist.  I hate having such a sour attitude, but this is a harsh reality that we face each year.  Invariably, you will have members of the Lodge so impressed that they will want their son or grandson to join DeMolay.  Or, just as good as members, you’ll have a Mason who would like to be involved directly, and you will gain another Advisor.
What everyone is excited about is rewards.  If you make a presentation to a Lodge, you will gain at least Masonic service points towards your merit bars.  If you do a ritualistic presentation, like the Ceremony of Light or Flower Talk, you’ll earn ritual points on top of it.
So you may be saying to yourself at this moment “I don’t like talking in front of groups.”  This is understandable.  But, my response to this is always the same: you don’t have to be a centerpiece of the actual presentation, but go just to support your Brother who will be.  We may be a service and fun organization, but what we forget about the most is that we are also a support organization.  And who knows, you may actually enjoy talking to the members of the lodge, and want to join when you are old enough to.
The most important thing to remember with Lodge presentations is this: don’t wait!  Don’t wait for the Lodge to contact the Chapter to set up a presentation.  Get in contact with the lodge set one up.  If you don’t know how to get in contact with the Lodge, ask one of your Advisors that is a Mason.  He will gladly get you in contact with the right person.
Lastly, if you want to do a presentation, but have no idea where to start, please ask anyone that has done a Lodge presentation, whether they are an active member that’s done one recently, or one of us Senior DeMolays that did several back when we were active.  We are always willing to help you guys out, which is why we came back as Advisors.

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