Brethren & Friends,
I wish I could tell you that we will be breaking bread soon, but my educated guess would be that we are still several months out before we can hold a tiled lodge event. We are however looking at ways we can bridge that gap by hosting events similar to the one we just presented on June 20th, the ‘Feast of St. John the Baptist’ on-line “Zoom” meeting.
This virtual gathering was attended by all your officers, lodge brothers, and missed familiar faces. It was a very enjoyable evening complete with speakers, and toasts to our leaders and Masonic family near and far. Please look to our website for more information and the group picture following the event.
On other topic, I wrote last week to Candler Gibson, the GL Director of Masonic Philanthropy to inquire on good news of the charitable giving campaigns to and from our brothers. Here is an excerpt of his response; “…First, I am proud to report on our charitable work during the quarantine. The Distressed Worthy Brother Relief fund has generated an unprecedented amount of Charity to help many of our brethren in need. Since late March, our Foundation has received more than $400,000 from more than 2,300 gifts from members, lodges and individuals. This is the most successful annual fund appeal in our history, which underscores the urgency of the situation and the desire to help address the emergency needs of many members.
Masonic Assistance has distributed more than $100,000 in cash grants to help brothers in distress due to the pandemic. We believe there will likely be a lot more need among our membership for this relief. As PGM and Chairman of the California Masonic Foundation John Heisner recently said, “our obligation as Masons is to care.”
One reason that our fraternity has been able to get this new assistance program up and running so quickly is because the Masonic Outreach Services structure was already in place. As of today, Masonic Assistance has received 120 calls, 45 applications have been reviewed and 44 of those have been approved. As with many MOS inquiries, there are many requests for information about community-based resources to which MOS refers applicants. Job placement and assistance are increasingly being requested right now.
Please make sure that your members are clear about how to access relief. For assistance requests, please contact Masonic Outreach Services at (888) 466-3642.” END
I want again to thank everyone who showed their brotherly love so far during these trying times, and assure you that should you need a helping hand going forward. Please feel free to call any of your officers for help. Our phone numbers and email addresses are always to be found in this Trestleboard.