Being A Lodge Officer Is More Than Just A Title
It’s a privilege to be asked to take a chair in the lodge, and not a responsibility that should be taken lightly. It’s a leadership position and with it comes responsibility. It’s not just a title.
First of all, if you’re going to take the role, then learn the chair, don’t just warm it. In fact, if you take a chair you should already know it. “Generally Masons after moving up into the next chair thought we “had a year to learn it.”
No, that is incorrect. “You’ve got a year to learn the next chair.” You should already know the chair you’re in if you’re in line. “Officers shouldn’t be learning chairs “on the job” while the lodge is trying to open and close.” It is seen that too many times–Past Masters feeding ritual and giving instruction to an officer that has no idea what he’s doing during a regular meeting.
It’s the responsibility of the officer to learn his chair. If you want the job, you have to do the work. If you need help, then ask for it. In Freemasonry, when it comes to ritual, we seek perfection in our work, but at the very least if you prove competent, you’ll get few complaints as long as you’re making the effort.
“Second, if you’re going to take the chair, come to the meetings. You have accepted responsibilities when you take a chair. If you can’t be there, then don’t take the chair.” Family and work responsibilities should always come before lodge. If your work life, or your family life makes it difficult to attend, then don’t take on the additional responsibility of being an officer in your lodge.
As Masons we have a tendency to get involved in a lot more than we should at times–always with the best possible intentions. It’s a big fraternity and for some of us, it offers a lot of irresistible new experiences, and of course we want to sample it all. But there’s nothing wrong in being “just a member.”
If you’re offered a chair, really think about it first. Do have the time to perform the duties right? Are you able to attend regularly? If you can’t, then do everyone a favor and decline. They wouldn’t have asked you if they didn’t really need somebody to do all aspects of the station.