Monday, May 1, 2017

Grand Lodge of Rhode Island turns to virtual worlds to increase membership


Cranston, RI - Faced with declining memberships and higher costs, the Grand Lodge of Rhode Island has issues that are familiar to many other Grand Lodges across the United States and Canada. However, with only two dozen active lodges, they are hit particularly hard by the drop in resources. But now, after several years of trying various ideas to increase membership, Rhode Island may have come up with the perfect solution. 

"You see, a lot of the younger guys that might be interested in Masonry are doing something else with their time," said WB Mike Teavee, as we sat in his lodge at the outskirts of Cranston. "And for most guys my age, that 'something else' is playing video games. So, with the permission of the Grand Master, I've been recruiting online." 

In Facebook, MySpace, or Google Plus groups?

"Oh, not at all," explained WB Teavee. "We've gone on to the next level for online Freemasonry, by chartering lodges in the various online game universes. We started with Minecraft because, well, I run my own server. We now have a dozen lodges, and the membership is increasing at almost ten times the rate as our real life lodges."


This reporter for The Past Bastard was surprised that they could get enough interest from gamers to attend, but WB Teavee claimed that since many gamers spend hours each night, digging or wandering around (virtually,of course), that it's actually relaxing to spend fifteen or twenty minutes at a lodge meeting once in a while. 

Only fifteen minutes?

"Well, sure, you don't think that we waste a half hour reading the minutes and all that, do you?" WB Teavee explained that they had dispensation to skip the minutes, the opening introductions, and the closing remarks from the DDGMs. "Do you realize how much of a time suck just those three things are? We discovered that an actual lodge meeting, unless you have a degree, is about ten, maybe twenty minutes, tops." 

When we asked if they weren't concerned about other Grand Lodge encroaching on their territory, WB Teavee explained "The virtual world is essentially infinite. And if Minecraft starts to get crowded, we're thinking about setting up some lodges in No Man's Sky," he said. 


2 comments:

  1. Victor TomaselliMay 2, 2017 at 5:34 AM

    This is somewhat disturbing, one of the main reasons for lodge is fellowship. If someone can't take a few hours a month to attend lodge, they have no interest in Masonry! Masonry is not a game and has no room for virtual reality. I am a Past Master and a Templar Knight and find this appalling! These virtual lodges should be treated as Clandestine lodges!

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  2. You guys �� crack me up. One of my Blue Lifges we introduce the Past Masters every single time... when we have no visitors and it is just the same 12-16 out of 20-25 guys standing up. I am a Past Master...and even my ego doesn't need that much attention. Lodges that do not distribute minutes electronically (and have some printed copies for Brothers not down with email), are just being inefficient. Love the nuggets of truth veiled in humor and illustrated by photoshop. Keep up the good work.

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