As a young boy in the 1960’s, I was always interested in NASA and the great adventures of our Astronauts, their missions and accomplishments. As we enter the summer months, I recall with great clarity the success and issues of the Apollo Missions. On July 20, 1969 man first landed on the moon. As Neil Armstrong stated, “That’s One Small Step for Man, One Giant Leap for Mankind.” What a moment for all of mankind, the culmination of a decade of focused planning, scientific analysis, and unified work. I first learned of trajectory with the space program. Trajectory is a medieval term from the 1660’s meaning to cast over or casting over. The geometric definition relates to the curve or surface that cuts all the curves or surfaces of a system at a contact angle. Trajectory is an important term relating to future or desired success. Trajectory in essence defines the pathway to success for complex systems. The Apollo 13 Mission, in April of 1970, illustrated the impact of change in trajectory. The movie is worth of a watch on overcoming adversity or changing trajectory for survival itself.
What is the Trajectory of Your Lodge?
Brethren, as I have previously stated, Lodge membership is our most important asset. While I am positive of the great influence we have as Freemasons and our future, and yet I am also greatly concerned about the trajectory of some of our lodges! Many Lodges are just beginning to study membership trends, financial and sustainability reviews, to address their trajectory and adjust course. Some of our Lodges have the path to success in front of them, while others are on a perilous trajectory that if uncorrected will lead to disappointment and perhaps devastation to their members. We continue to discuss the Lodge of the Future program and to address the complex issues that face Lodges today! Study will enable them to plan for a future trajectory for success. Collectively we need to set our Lodge target and trajectory for a successful future. Does your Lodge have a Vision and Plan for what you really want your Lodge to provide your members, improving communication to all of your members and to determine what you want your Lodge influence to have in your community.
I have been pleased hear from Lodges that are moving forward with the Lodge of the Future Program. I have been blessed to see the first fruits from this effort with Lodges being focused on improving our meetings, adding more educational programs and considering what will your Lodge trajectory be in the coming months and years. Your Grand Lodge is moving forward with membership and system changes that will change trajectory. How we use the tools will determine the success of Lodges who understand the great benefit to their members.
As with the Apollo missions of the past, we need to ask what will be the legacy of our leadership!
Just imagine what we can do when we consider the possibilities, and take steps to get the craft moving together on a trajectory for greatness. Take the small step forward and keep moving!
MASONIC EDUCATION LESSON PLAN, NUMBER 12
YOUR LODGE OF THE FUTURE
BACKGROUND: Improving the Lodge Experience for All Members
ISSUES: Delivering on our promise, Making A Difference to All Members
NEEDS: Lead the discussion with your Lodge members as to what has improved over the last 2 years.
Discuss what yet needs to be done to improve the Lodge Experience with your members.
ACTIONS: Use the Grand Lodge Membership System to update your membership roster
Ascertain how many of your members are not attending and reach out to them
Divide the membership list among your Officers and Active Members and call them to check on them and get email address if they have it. Welcome them to come back, share upcoming events and regular meetings.
Call or email your members on their birthday
Use email to keep your members informed.
Hold a Family Breakfast and invite your Lodge members and families to visit.
Plan a special educational program and invite all your members.
Visit other Lodges and build the fellowship
Have a Lodge Project for 2017 to unite the members in a project for the community or the Lodge.