With an auditorium filled with about 350 masons, representing over half of the lodges represented in Kansas. The public session began with the Grand Procession and reception of visiting dignitaries. Kansas Masons and their ladies were able to hear reports from the several appendant bodies recognized in Kansas.
The formal Tiled session began on time with the Grandmasters address, who wholeheartedly thanked the craft for giving him the opportunity to serve as Grand Master. Reports from the Kansas Masonic Foundation and the Kansas Masonic Home showed that Kansas Masons are working hard to continue their charitable endeavors.
At 1130, the craft adjourned to one of three breakout sessions before return to their work in the Tyled session. The afternoon session held debates and votes over 5 different By-laws Proposals. There was also the presentation of a petition to charter a new lodge.
Upon an overwhelming vote of he craft, Heritage Lodge #458, was created and the Grandmaster ordered the charter officers to report to the lodge room for installation once the Grand Lodge was at refreshment. This is only the second lodge in almost 50 years to be created by such a vote.
Grand Lodge officers and area Masons traveled to Emporia on Monday to dedicate the Bowyer Community Building — a multi-purpose meeting facility donated by NASCAR’s Clint Bowyer to the people of Lyon County.
A native of Emporia, Kansas, Bowyer drives the #15 5 Hour Energy Toyota Camry in the Sprint Cup Series for Michael Waltrip Racing. Early in his career, he drove for Richard Childress Racing. He won the 2008 Nationwide Series championship.
The building, which was completed in early March was made possible by a donation of $1 million by Bowyer in July 2010 and will be available for many uses including children’s and community events.
Grand Master Tracy L. Bloom presided over the ceremony, and was joined by Past Grand Masters Jimmi L. Grassi and Roy T. Sullivan, Deputy Grand Master Don Newman, and a host of Masons from across the state. On hand to watch the ceremony was a crowd of 250 spectators, community leaders and the media.
Additionally, Mark Snider, the Master of Emporia Lodge announced that Bowyer has petitioned for membership in Emporia Lodge No. 12.
With less than 14 days to go, the Grand Lodge of Kansas is rapidly preparing for the 156th Annual Communication in Salina. This year, like years past, will feature a packed agenda with much more for the attending brothers to do than sit through a legislative session. Breakout Masonic Education Session are again planned and will feature some very noted Masonic Authors and Educators.
Dr Jim Tresner will present on Dealing with Anti-Masons
G. Cliff Porter, who has presented in Kansas several time, will present on Subconscious Communications and Investigating Committees/back Ground Investigations.
There will also be a class on the New Petition for the Mysteries.
Each of these courses will be offered 3 times to allow as many as possible to attend as many classes as they desire. While the deadline for reduced meal prices has past, Kansas Masons have until March 6th to register and purchase meal tickets, however registration to attend the Annual Communication will be allowed at the door.
With a vote of 110 Yeah’s – 8 Nea -and 7 Absent, the Kansas House of Representatives passed House Bill #2499 sending it to the Senate on February 17th. This vote occured before the self imposed congresional deadline for new legislation to clear its respective house and has kept it alive.
A hearing has been set for March 8th at 830 am before the Senate Transportation Committe, it is still important that as many supporters of this project as possible, contact their Senator. This Bill must clear the committee before it can be brought to the floor of the Senate for a full vote.
The Masonic bodies in and around the city of Atlanta played host to Grand Masters and their delegations from all over North America and as far away as Japan and Bulgaria. The April session entitled, “Cultivating the Masonic Experience” boasted over 800 attendees at the Conference of Grand Masters in North America.
“This is an extremely valuable experience,” remarked Rick Reichert, Grand Senior Warden. “It’s a great place to network with other Grand jurisdictions, share ideas, and talk with champions of the Craft.
The event consists of the council of Grand Masters or their representatives who handle matters that cross jurisdictions, such as recognition of other Grand Lodges. However, the greatest value is the ability to talk in smaller groups about the great things in Masonry. Each jurisdiction has its unique ways of doing certain things, but the universality of Masonry is the amazingly reinforced.
In addition to the plenum sessions there are several break-out sessions through the conference with a variety of topics on interest to the Craft conducted by well respected brothers. Brother Cliff Porter was one of the presenters and will join us in Salina for our Annual Communication in March.
The 2013 conference will be held in Kansas City jointly hosted by the Grand Lodges of Kansas and Missouri. It will be held at the Sheraton near Crown Center and the Grand Masters to be are looking forward to the trip.
With the birth of Vision 2020, our Grand Lodge Strategic Plan adopted by the Craft in 2010, a lot of questions have surfaced. How do we achieve so many of these goals? Your Grand Lodge has worked tirelessly since then with the focus of achieving these goals.
One goal in our Strategic Plan concerns our image and visibility to the public. With that goal in mind, a bill permitting Masonic personalized license plates was introduced in the Kansas House of Representatives Transportation Committee on February 1st.
R:. W:. Joesphe G. Stiles, Assistant Grand Secretary, presented House Bill No. 2499 to this committee and stood for questions. The bill, upon passage into law, would allow for the production of a Kansas Masonic License Plate with funding from the plate to be used in part for the Grand Lodge Library and Kansas Masonic Charities Inc.
While many details of this bill and program are being worked out, it has cleared the committee and arrived on the House Floor for a vote. As with all House Bills, once they have passed, it will be presented to the State Senate and finally the Governor for his signature. Once published in the Statute Book as law, the Grand Lodge can begin coordinating with the Director of Motor Vehicles to finalize the design and logistics of getting this plate available to Kansas Masons.
This project helps Grand Lodge accomplish a great number of things towards our Strategic Plan. having our Masonic Emblem on License Plates goes along ways towards improving our Image as well as making it a more recognizable symbol. The funds raised from these plates would allow the Grand Lodge Library to enhance its collection as well as be a better conduit for providing Masonic Education to local lodges thus improving the Masonic Experience. Funding from these plates applied to our newest charity, Kansas Freemasons Charities Inc, will make great strides towards ensuring that the charity is fiscally sound and able to perform its duties.
Many Masons will also have an opporotunity to make their plate a bit more personal by celebrating their achievment of being a Past Master or other roles through the adoption of smaller decals applied to the plate. This is still being developed by Grand Lodge as well.
No large program like this has ever been successful without help and support from the craft. We ask that you visit with your State Representative and Senator while this bill is moving through the Capital Building and show your support for this bill. Check back with the Grand Lodge Website for updates on this project.
Click the Link Below to find your House Rep and Senator.
Following very successful Strategic Planning sessions in Morland and the Leadership Academy in Topeka last fall, Wyandotte Lodge No. 3 hosted a Strategic Planning session on Saturday, January 21, 2012.
Rick Reichert, Grand Senior Warden, led the session and started the day with a smooth flowing presentation on the importance of every lodge having their own individualized Strategic Plan to help assure future successes and growth. He outlined the components of making a successful Plan, based on proven business models, and how every lodge should address their specific needs in small steps. He emphazied that every Strategic Plan is uniquely different in respect to each lodge and, that the Grand Lodge of Kansas has absolutely no involvement in making a lodge’s individual Plan other than providing requested resources (such as these sessions).
With Reichert’s assistance, over 50 masons from 18 lodges openly brainstormed with each other, sharing thoughts, ideas, and strengths/weaknesses of their lodges. Many participants were able to flesh out major parts of a Strategic Plan, and all participants left with new ideas and a potential game plan for starting a Strategic Plan in their respective lodges.
The brethren and ladies of Wyandotte Lodge No. 3 were gracious hosts and allowed access to all parts of their spacious new building. Coffee and pastries were available all morning and a free hot lunch was served at the end of the session.
More Strategic Planning sessions are being planned and can accomodate any number of participants. If your lodge would like to host a session, a lodge representative needs to contact your Area or District Deputy Grand Master or Grand Lodge for scheduling with R:.W:. Rick.