Following in their footsteps
The Members’ Pathway offers a structured route to help lodges in the recruitment and progression of new members
In the Spring 2017 issue of Freemasonry Today, Sir David Wootton, Chairman of the Improvement Delivery Group (IDG), reported on the development and launch of the Members’ Pathway – a series of steps for lodges and members to follow to attract, introduce and encourage new members while retaining and adding value to the existing membership.
The Members’ Pathway has been created to help a lodge plan for its future and to take a man who is interested in Freemasonry, but not yet a member, on a journey to becoming a committed Master Mason. The pathway draws upon the experiences of many strong and healthy lodges across the Constitution.
Why have a pathway?
For some time, there has been concern as to how to address recruitment and retention in Freemasonry in order to stem the decline in membership and meet the long-term needs of the Craft and the Royal Arch.
Evidence from successful lodges reveals there is good reason for optimism on Freemasonry’s future. There are many suitable men who would be attracted to joining if they knew more about it. The evidence also suggests that lasting and committed membership is most likely to be achieved when:
- Applicants and candidates are carefully screened to ensure they meet the qualifications for membership
- Both the lodge and the candidate make their expectations clear to each other
- There is a good match between the lodge and the candidate
- Both parties work at meeting each other’s expectations
How will it work?
Every lodge member shares a responsibility for introducing members, helping in retention by making the new recruit feel welcome and then supporting them.
Each of the 11 steps on the Members’ Pathway is set out in the diagram below. Further information is available in the Members’ Pathway leaflet, which you’ll have seen on the front cover of the Winter 2017 edition of Freemasonry Today.
In addition, comprehensive support material will be provided to Provincial Membership Officers and Provincial Grand Mentors to roll out via local workshops. It contains a brief summary that will also be made available to all members in the country.
Alongside these packages, the IDG will make the Pathway available via TeamApp on smartphones and tablets. This will not only be an effective communication channel for Pathway delivery but also for other updates on membership developments and initiatives.
‘The Members’ Pathway has been created to help a lodge plan for its future and to take a man who is interested in Freemasonry on a journey to becoming a Master Mason’
What happens next?
The Communications Team at UGLE has developed an information portal that will present together a number of important resources from the IDG, including the Members’ Pathway, the Masonic Halls’ Guide and, in the near future, supporting education and training information.
The new Members’ Pathway was formally approved in October 2017, and marks a further innovation in the structured and targeted way the IDG hopes to approach its key objectives in the future.
The IDG commends the Members’ Pathway to all Freemasons and recommends its implementation across all Provinces and Districts as well as Metropolitan, given the importance of this key area to the long-term well-being of Freemasonry.