Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Prince Hall Masons

Recently I had the opportunity to associate with some Prince Hall Masons for an extended period of time. This experience served to confirm a thought I had been mulling over for quite awhile. The average Prince Hall Mason tends to take the Craft a lot more seriously than the average "mainstream" Mason. (I put mainstream in quotes because I believe that PH Masonry is just as regular as those lodges that are considered "mainstream".) These bretheren exuded a Masonic vitality that I have rarely seen outside Prince Hall Masons. The precepts of the Craft truly informed their actions. It was obvious that Freemasonry was much more than a social club to them.
Now, to be honest, I have never attended a Prince Hall lodge meeting. My conclusions are based on what I have seen outside the Lodge. If I can tell this from what I see outside the Lodge, I can only imagine what their Lodge meetings and functions must be like. How often have you attended Lodge meeting where half of the sideliners were asleep or totally disinterested? Or if they were interested, it was mostly to criticise the delivery of the ritual? How many members of your Lodge are under 60 years of age?
It pains me to say it, but "mainstream" Freemasonry is dwindling away with a lack of enthusiasm. In my opinion, if we want to be there to carry the Craft into the future, we need to take a few lessons from Prince Hall Masons on how to live the tenets of our Craft and not just pay them lip service