My Brothers, we are on the threshold of a new, and very exciting exercise of promoting Freemasonry in the city of Portland, Oregon. Never forget the primary mission of Enlightenment Lodge, that of increasing the ranks of enlightened individuals by showing them who we are, and what we do. There are thousands of men in the city of Portland who would benefit themselves, and others, by becoming members of our order. You may ask: how do we do that?
It’s simple arithmetic. If each member of Enlightenment encourages one man, this next year, to ask about Freemasonry, we can double our forces. Think about that; if that progression occurs we will have four times our original membership in just two years. Is it likely we can do that? Is it even possible? The answer is: only if we believe it, and work towards that goal.
The next thing you need to know is exactly how we will accomplish that. How do we attract bright, moral men of good character to our Fraternity? The answer lies in each of us here. Ask yourself these questions: Do I respect a man because of what he says, or what he does. Do I place more value upon a man’s words, or his actions. Am I more likely to associate myself with people who seem to know everything, or people that display humility. The answers, for me, are completely obvious. When I see a man who lives his life honestly, I respect him. When a man consistently does his best to provide for his family, I respect him. When a man lives his life as though God is directing his every step, I learn to love him, and he becomes a Brother to me.
Become that man, for when you do, others will see the joy you get from life. They will know that you are a good man and true, and they will befriend you. Once your friend, they will discover that Freemasonry is, in part, responsible for making you the man you are. They will become curious and ask questions. Your answers will result in yet another petition, and you will have accomplished what few men have the opportunity do: positively influencing a man’s life and making him better than he was when he met you.
You will know when you become that man because of certain phrases that you hear from others, such as: “You always seem so happy.” “You’re always in a good mood.” “You seem to be such a positive person.” “I’ve never seen you get angry at anyone.” “You’re such a loving person” Or questions such as “How do you stay so even tempered?” “How do you maintain such a positive attitude?” “Why do you help so many people?” “How do you find the time to do so much?” “Why is it that you’re always happy?”
You should all know the answer: “Because I am a Freemason!”