Tuesday, September 2, 2014

The Rules of the Game

Created for use at the Key Man Conference several years ago, the Brotherhood Contract was liberally "borrowed" from the Full Value Contract concept of the PA Masonic Youth Foundation's LifeSkills Conference.  It has been a very successful way of framing any DeMolay program, and it resonates with all of our members.  The Fidelity Pledge is used at the beginning of every Conference as a way of reminding the DeMolays what their responsibilities are during the time they share together.  These two elements have worked hand in hand to create an environment for growth and learning in DeMolay.

“The Brotherhood Contract”

All DeMolays agree to conduct themselves according to these basic ground rules:

·        SAFETY FIRST – The physical and mental/emotional safety of our brothers is paramount and must be protected by all.  We carefully consider how to conduct any activity to minimize physical risk.  No horseplay.  No name-calling or bullying. No unnecessary risks. No physical violence.  Period.

·        SHARED VALUES – We believe that the Seven Cardinal Virtues of DeMolay are the building blocks of adulthood, and to be treated like adults we need to act appropriately and take responsibility for our choices.

·        POSITIVE MENTAL ATTITUDE – DeMolays agree to support and encourage one another by practicing “valuing behaviors” like active listening, giving encouragement and supporting with positive reinforcement.  We value individuals as well as the group, and treat everyone with respect, kindness, courtesy and caring. Tolerance is a primary teaching of DeMolay, and we celebrate our differences, rather than divide over them.

·        LEARNING FROM EACH OTHER – Each DeMolay has the right to respectfully express his opinions, desires, and needs. Giving and receiving honest and constructive feedback is the beginning to finding one’s true self, and helping each other grow in our skills and relationships.

·        OPEN TO NEW IDEAS – Nobody “knows it all.”  DeMolays and Advisors are still learning about the Order, about leadership, about people, about themselves. Be open to new ideas and understanding a different perspective on what you think you already know.  When you stop learning, you stop living.

·        ACHIEVE – Moving forward in life means setting goals, and working hard to reach them.  But, you can’t step all over those around you to get where you want to go.  Serving others and helping your brothers to reach their goals will take you further along the path toward accomplishing your own objectives!

 “The Fidelity Pledge”

I promise that I will try to live by the DeMolay Virtues  in all that I think, say and do, and will expect the same effort from my brothers and Advisors.

When I fail to do so, I will take responsibility for my decisions, make appropriate amends, if possible, accept the consequences of my actions, and be as forgiving of my brothers as they are tolerant of me.

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