I trust that you have come out of the “dark” and are hard at work providing the information and support your Lodge needs to be successful and supportive of the members. There are several things I will cover in this month’s issue. Many will concern our database system. In my District Secretaries Meetings we have covered the system generally. This issue will also cover other concerns raised by our brother secretaries. First, let’s address the database.
If you are not on the electronic database, please do so. This system allows you to keep all the information needed by your Lodge and by Grand Lodge current. Stale information is like stale bread – hard to trust. If you personally have an aversion to computers, ask your Master to appoint an Assistant Secretary to do this task for you. You fulfill your responsibility either way. Remember if your Lodge is not on the electronic database, you are required to file monthly reports each month with this office.
This is election season in many of the Lodges. Please notify this office as soon as installations take place. Secretaries on MORI should enter the information, certify the election, and notify this Office. We will approve the certification and the Lodge information page will be updated. If you use the paper reporting, the proper form is available on the website under Grand Lodge Forms, Form 25 – Report of Elections. In either case, do not wait until Annual Return time to update Lodge Officers.
You will receive your signed copies of last year’s Returns in a few days. We have needed them until now to be sure we have the correct data. Your help in responding to my recent request to verify the member data in the system has assured us of the integrity of the system. If you find data that needs to be corrected concerning your Lodge members, please correct it in MORI or mail / e-mail us if you are not on MORI. Please give special attention to personal info such as spouse, spouse’s birthday, anniversary, etc. This information will be valuable to you moving forward.
When you are printing labels with MORI, please note: on the “Print” page to select “Actual Size” as the appropriate option. If you do not, the print will “creep” upward on the labels and the lower labels will be unusable.
The Constitution and Standing Regulations state: “35. Resolved, That all inter-jurisdictional correspondence having reference to official business of the Grand Lodge or of the subordinate lodges under this jurisdiction shall be conducted through the office of the Grand Secretary, except as may be otherwise ordered by the Grand Master.” When you have a brother who is a member in another Grand Jurisdiction petition for affiliation with your Lodge, after reading the petition, proper protocol dictates that you must contact this office and obtain a Certificate of Good Standing from his home Jurisdiction. Upon receipt of that Certificate we will notify you and then you may vote. Entering the foreign affiliate into MORI requires the “approval” of this Office before the affiliate will be recognized by the system.
This Office is now open on Monday evenings until 7:30 PM. I will be here (except for 10/01/2012) to provide support for you. To the extent that I can, we can troubleshoot MORI together, brainstorm ideas that may serve the Craft more fully, or find ways to help you work more efficiently. We are here to serve the Craft by helping you serve the Lodge.
Remember, No job is finished until the paperwork is done.
Mark E. Rustin