The current membership committee kicked off a new year in April 2023 after the annual communication. One of our first initiatives was to update our marketing materials and rebrand our dated resources. These efforts were enhanced by a film & photo shoot which included Masons from across Minnesota. Said images and footage were used in various periodicals, ads, and flyers throughout the year. 

We collaborated with MN Masonic Charities on an awareness campaign and ran a thirty second TV spot (November and December 2023) which highlighted the combined efforts of Grand Lodge and MN Masonic Charities. This campaign showcased the positive impacts made in medical research, all thanks to the charitable contributions from the Masonic family in Minnesota. This TV campaign coincided with an online banner ad campaign which featured head shots of MN Freemasons along with brief testimonials referencing why they joined the Craft and what they enjoy about being active in their respective lodges. These efforts were focused on brand awareness and regaining visibility both in local communities and across the state. Local and statewide visibility was also enhanced thanks to the successful rollout of the Fire Suppression Tool (FST). 

The Membership Committee participated in Area Conferences around the state over the course of the year (Minneapolis, Rochester, Duluth, Moorhead, St. Paul, Morton, and several individual lodges). We also hosted multiple membership “prospect” events at the Heritage Center (twice in Bloomington), Glen Avon Lodge (Duluth), and Mankato Lodge No. 12. These events were geared towards lodge prospects, along with brothers currently in a degree cycle at their respective lodges. These events gave attendees the opportunity to visit and tour the Heritage Center (Ames Lodge room, Ladd Museum) while learning more about Freemasonry’s enormous impact in Minnesota and around the world. We will continue to grow these events as they enabled members (new and tenured) the opportunity to fraternize with brothers from different lodges while building relationships with prospects and potential petitioners. 

We also collaborated with Grand Lodge officer liaisons on the current Lodge Recognition Program (LRP) and analyzed options on how to evolve the LRP metrics to focus on future retention, member involvement, and lodge community engagement. Collectively we are striving to evolve our focus to that of a long-term mindset in which we are genuinely engaging and retaining our new and existing members alike, with robust involvement. For more than a generation we have been preoccupied with aggregate membership numbers without revamping our internal best practices and reigniting key aspects of the Blue Lodge experience. 

This year we made great initial strides in our lodge travels while addressing the need to reexamine lodge education (Masonic AND relevant non-Masonic material) and ways in which we engage our local communities more effectively. This year we are excited to roll out the Civility School Project (alongside MN Masonic Charities). This curriculum will be a tremendous opportunity for lodges to interact in an impactful way at the community level. The Civility School Project will provide resources for young people on the many challenging issues faced by today’s youthand provide a foundation for success and confidence. 

On the technology side, we continue to reap the benefits of and Grand View systems. Lodges that have embraced Grand View are seeing more efficiency and ease of communication surrounding prospects/candidates, and continual communication. In the coming year we plan to increase grass roots initiatives at individual lodges to recapture community visibility, awareness, and relevance. We will do so with the continued use of social media and various technology to reach beyond our internal audience and widen our reach, bringing back “social capital” at the local level.

Our prospect potential is plentiful. Recruitment and retention will continue to be a focal point, but long-term involvement is key. The first step in doing so will be that of moving beyond the static mindset of equating “success” solely based on overall membership numbers. We have a huge area of opportunity in building a better foundation for our lodges to thrive, both now and in the future. We can do this, but it will require patience, consistency, structure, and commitment to sustainable progress. 

The Grand Lodge Membership Committee thanks MWB Dayton Berg and the entire corporate board for the opportunity to serve our fine state. Additional comments or questions can be sent directly to Reed Endersbe ( 

Arun Natarajan (2), Chair

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