Friday, June 29, 2018

COGMNA committee urges Grand Lodges to stop using family men for leadership spots

Topeka, KS - Speaking at a small gathering after the recent Conference of Grand Masters of North America and Canada (COGNMA) Subcommittee on Increasing Masonic Service, Wil Hosmer, Past Associate Grand Master of Arkansas shocked some of his colleagues by suggesting that the best way to get more involved Masonic leadership was to recruit from the ranks of divorced men.

"I know it's not politically correct to mention this, but hell, we've all been thinking it, so it's about time that we finally admit to it. Going after family men hasn't panned out for us," Hosmer said to a crowd composed of past and present officers and Grand Lodge officers from various jurisdictions around North America and Canada. "Those guys are always needing to take time off to spend with their wives or families. It's always 'Oh, but it's my wife's birthday,' or 'I can't go, it's our umpteenth anniversary,' or 'I gotta watch my kid's soccer game.' Like anybody needs to watch another kid's soccer game, right?"

"That's why I'm proposing that we drop the pretense of looking for good family men, and instead, let's start encouraging masonic leadership -- hell, Freemason membership, in general -- as a good place for divorced guys with a lot of free time on their hands."

WB Hosmer's remarks were surprisingly well received by the crowd.

"There's a lot of sense in what he says," remarked John Tyler, Past Grand Senior Steward of Idaho. "I can't tell you how many times one of our guys has said that he's been out four or five nights a week, and that his wife keeps complaining that she feels like a widow."

Jim Stewards, Past Associate Grand Marshal from Georgia agreed. "I guess I had been afraid to say anything like that out loud, but it's true. I been divorced for the last six years, and my own Masonic career took off; I tend to think it's 'cause I got a lot more free time to spend on committees and stuff now."

Jesse Marshal, Grand Junior Warden of Alaska offered his opinion. "Back in granddad's time, we didn't like divorced guys because we didn't want anyone who might be tainted with a morality issue, of you know what I mean. But now, seems like half the guys have had at least one marriage, so maybe it's a good idea to keep an eye on the guys with, you know, ongoing marital problems and get them into a committee or put them up for a Grand Lodge spot as soon as they're separated."

"Well, I don't think Worshipful Brother Hosmer has gone far enough. Our fraternity needs guys who can make a commitment to the time and energy it takes to be in a leadership position," said Jacques Wardens, Past Grand Junior Steward of Manitoba. "Instead of sitting around hoping to grab some guy who might happen to get divorced, maybe we need to start, you know, quietly start encouraging guys, if you know what I mean. Like, you know, start pressing his wife to join Eastern Star. If that doesn't push them over the edge, I don't know what else would."


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