My Brothers,

Thank you for giving me the opportunity to work on your behalf within our fraternity.  It is always uppermost in my mind that the elected officers work for you – the members.  It is a privilege to represent each and every member of our Grand Lodge.  Our system works in a manner that our government should work, the elected officers serve for a short period of time after which they go back to their Lodges as before.

One of the brightest spots in our fraternity is the Dyslexia Program that is able to help children across our stated due to your efforts to raise the money to fund the program.  In 2023, the Board and the Administrator of the program updated the curriculum to the current technology via the S.P.I.R.E. curriculum.  This one action allowed the Administrator and rank and file members to get our Dyslexia Program instituted into a number of new school systems.  In July of this year, for the first time ever, we are hosting an in-person teacher conference in Alexandria to continue training our teachers on the new S.P.I.R.E. program that they are using.  At this time there are 29 teachers signed up to attend in person with another five able to attend virtually.  This is a major win that is the result of several years of hard work by the Board of Trustees for the Masonic Learning Center of Louisiana and our Administrator, Michelle Dempsey. 

But remember, none of this would be possible without our members’ support and hard work raising the money to support this program.  This effort truly changes these students and their parents lives forever as well as the lives of our members who work so hard to support this program.  I believe that we are doing exactly as we were charged by our Lord and Savior in regard to children, “Whatsoever you do unto them you do unto me”.

One of the responsibilities of the Grand Lodge Line Officers is to make sure that our fraternity stays healthy.  I am concerned that we face a number of issues that affect each and every Lodge.  For example:

  1. Each of our Lodges and Appendant Bodies have major difficulty buying adequate affordable insurance for their Lodge buildings
  2. Many of our Lodges have a hard time covering just the operating expenses of maintaining a Lodge Building. After dues and fund raisers, they can barely cover this overhead and have nothing left for charitable works.
  3. The financial markets have and continue to change every day.  Our committees are investing your money the best way they know how.  Is there a better way to invest that will lead to increased revenue and insure the principle against loss?
  4. Promotion of our Fraternity to the general public.  Our Blue Lodges have a great story to tell, we have Brothers who earn their living by their skill at promotion.  We can all profit from their experience.

It is very encouraging to see the talent and dedication of our members.  Our job as elected officers, is to identify those brothers, give them the responsibility, and let them do their job.  In this way not only do we solve issues facing our fraternity but we build a poof of talented young brothers with experience to lead our fraternity into the future.

I believe in our system of governance, I also believe in having a long range plan that is reviewed regularly to adapt to changes in our society.  I believe in having consistency in our leadership.  Each elected officer agrees on a direction to move our Fraternity.  Each Grand Master is free to emphasize his ideas but must continue to move forward within the framework of the long range plan.

In closing, I’m going to repeat our Grand Master, Most Worshipful Larry Plaisance, words:

     “My Brothers, you are the Grand Lodge of Louisiana, and we, the Grand Lodge Officers, are here to help your Lodges grow.  Call upon us anytime for assistance!”

Fraternally,

R∴W∴ John F. Knox, Jr., D.G.M.