We are truly blessed in Missouri DeMolay to be able to make the decisions which will benefit our Order as a whole. We are able to make effective choices which will help sustain the foundation which are our Chapters. It is not who we are but how we choose to act which defines us. No matter our rank or title, each member and advisor in Missouri DeMolay can make the conscientious decision which will lead to a more successful time while in DeMolay.
This is the time, more than ever, which we must work together towards a better tomorrow. We must come to realize that our experience in DeMolay is to better one another and not to only focus on ourselves but to our service to mankind. Above everything else we move forward as a jurisdiction - doing as we will for our Chapters. As leaders, we must set an outstanding example for those who are lost and cannot decide for themselves. We must teach and practice the lessons we’ve learned through our Ritual and ensure the success of others who come after us.
On behalf of Missouri DeMolay, I extend to each member and advisor the opportunity for reflection. We are on a journey which will help us see a better future, but we are not at the close yet - we are merely recognizing that there is an end and that our beginning is the foundation to which our end will come.
Do what you would do for yourself but for others. Make your choices for the benefit of those around you. You can influence those who follow your lead because of the respect gained from the trust within them. Let us take three steps forward - instead of two and then one back. We are a progressive Order but we must also ensure that there will be a future for others and that what we leave behind is only for the betterment of that future.
To be a leader is to have the skill of engagement. To always be active with those who look up to you and those around you. A great man once said “You have to be close enough to inspire, but far enough away to motivate.” In this sense you must never forget where you come from as a DeMolay - just because we gain a new title means nothing to the bond we share or how we should treat one another. If a leader can use engagement, he will lead not only as a figure but as a connected leader.
Connecting with those you lead keeps you up to date on what is happening in the field along with a personal connection to everyone else. Staying connected gives the view that even though you have a new title, you haven’t forgotten about the ranks from where you came from. This is one of the higher aspects that create good leaders.
If there is one thing you should take from these few words, it is that you will find the flame that burns inside every one of us and that our friends and families are the fuel to make you a better leader, a better man, and a better son.
Has your Chapter ever wanted to plan a statewide or district event? Well, your Chapter is able and can do that! It doesn’t have to be something major as it can be as simple as a big dance that happens annually or some sporting activity.
Crestwood Chapter has an annual Back to School dance every year which encompasses a different theme; this year the theme was glow sticks. The event helped to bring together the surrounding Chapters for a night of dancing and fellowship. There were many people in attendance and everyone there had a great time.
This event is a great example of what Chapters all across Missouri DeMolay can be doing which is hosting events for other Chapters to come to. Then you can make your Chapter event an annual ordeal that Chapters look forward to each year. These events could be as simple as meeting up at a park to go for a hike or even having a state wide lock-in.
Your Chapter can choose anything that they may want to do and by hosting other Chapters, Bethels, and Assemblies, it’ll create more of an opportunity to share in the friendships we make through DeMolay. Think about new and creative ideas that might bring Chapters working together for the benefit of the rest of your area or even the state! The next time your Chapter wants to have an activity, why not invite those who are in your area to join you.
Thinking Differently as a Leader
I recently had the opportunity to attend “The University of DeMolay”. During my time there, I witnessed many excellent seminars presented by the staff as well as some fantastic guest speakers. One of these speakers was Dad Phillip Cole, who talked about being a leader, specifically on the state of mind a leader should have.
What I took away from this presentation is that being a leader is not just about being the driving force behind the chapter, or any group for that matter, but that the leader has to think in a way others can’t yet understand or grasp. A perfect example is the saying “think outside the box”. Everyone has heard this saying. It means to think of something that is outside of the limits of normality or reason. Dad Cole said that a leader does not have to do that, he can simply change how that box looks.
A leader must also learn to give his followers power to do things and learn to become a leader themselves. This is also known as delegating. If they do not get this opportunity then when it is their turn to lead they will have no idea what they are doing and the chapter/group will fail.
Finally, Dad Cole taught us that perception does not equal reality. This means that if a person sees something one way that does not mean that is how it really is. If one person has an opinion on something, the leader should not go only by their opinion, even if it the opinion of a trusted advisor. They should look at the topic from all points of view.
With all this in mind I feel that we as a jurisdiction can start to blossom like never before and grow a new generation of leaders. I have great faith that we can be the top jurisdiction for many years to come.
A Joyous Continuance
Just a few days ago, I had the incredible opportunity to be installed as Master Councilor of George L. Walters Chapter. We had a fantastic installation and I wanted to briefly share how it all went. We had a packed house. All of these people were there to support our Chapter. In attendance we had family members, friends, Jurisdictional Officers, Grand Lodge Officers, Sweethearts, Jobs Daughters, Rainbows, DeMolays and many others - all joining together to witness the opportunity that DeMolay provides.
Along with the attendance we were able to honor many deserving individuals. We collared newly elected ISC members Dad Grant Willis and Dad Jeff Kitsmiller, Sr. as well as awarded the PMC-MSA to our Junior Past Master Councilor Nick Cova. We were also able to present membership awards as well as a Knights Templar sword to our great State Master Councilor and International Congress Secretary, Quentin Cockerham.
Overall, it was a fantastic ceremony, and I was honored to become the leader of such a great group of young men. I have had the pleasure of seeing many of the young men who were installed grow through DeMolay thus far and I hope to further enrich their experience. It meant so much to the members to have such a fantastic installation and I am sure it will never be forgotten. Even though I had a great time myself, I realize it is important to remember that while we had a beautiful ceremony, it is just the beginning of a term filled with hard work but also of joy and success.
Benefits of New Members
There are many benefits to having new member such as filling Ritual parts in Degrees, having more and fresh ideas to benefit the Chapter, and spreading DeMolay more efficiently.
The Ritual is one of the best aspects of DeMolay. Nothing makes the experience better than having all the parts covered and having everybody know their part. By having all the young men participate, it helps by creating competition between them to learn their part and to do better. It also helps by having a good influence on a young member who joins and he sees that everybody else knows their part which in turn inspires him to do the same.
Having new members can also help the Chapter be better. New members can bring in new ideas that the other young men didn’t think of and new connections can be had to help in fundraising and services. When having fundraisers new members can begin to learn what to do and when they finally learn they can begin to take over and give the veteran members a break in some areas.
Getting new members in the Chapter is also a good because the more members you have the more committees you can have. As your Chapter grows in numbers, there will be more opportunities for the members to create more committees for a more successful Chapter term. As always, the more members you have the more you can spread DeMolay to build better leaders of tomorrow.
Hello again! We’ve had such an exciting last month that there is so much to share with everyone!
August started off right away with Masonic Youth Day which took place in Columbia and we had a blast spending time with our brothers (even though you guys dunked us in the dunking booth). It was great to see you all bonding and sharing your love for our Masonic family. August 8th was the annual Crestwood Back to School Dance and the theme this year was Glow in the Dark! We enjoyed dancing, taking selfies and visiting with you all!
On August 15th, Progression Chapter held their installation of officers where Griffin Hall was installed as Master Councilor. Congrats Griffin! We know that he will do a tremendous job. August 29th, George L. Walters Chapter held a beautiful installation where Joey Goldman was installed as the Master Councilor. We know that he will do an amazing job. Good luck to the entire Chapter and congrats to Nick Cova for a very successful term! His hard work and dedication to this order was well observed. We're so proud of everyone!
We hope that you'll reach out to us and let us know when your Chapter is holding an event. We would love to attend and support you on your endeavors! See you soon!
Your State Sweethearts,
Associate State Sweetheart