Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Oration Returns

I was pleased to see that UGLE have authorized the office of Orator at least at the Provincial and Grand Lodge levels. This is a concept well known in continental lodges and may be found in the French and Dutch lodges in the kingdom.

The concept is sound. One brother is responsible for creating (or at least finding) a Masonic subject for discussion. This is especially interesting in Dutch lodges where they will set aside some meetings to focus not on ritual around a lodge, but discussion around a table. The speaker may be any one from the lodge. I've witnessed brethren in Amsterdam sitting around a conference table with stern looks of concentration on their faces. Some take notes. All are engaged. At the end of the lecture, a brief pause and then a flurry of questions. The speaker stands at the lecturn, carefully thinking about each question and then answers. It's brilliant!

But the point of the Orator is not to astound with his brilliance, but rather to poke us in the side; get us away from our dinners and cocktails; and make us think about something. That is after all, why we are called Speculative Masons, isn't it?

Now that UGLE have led the way for "Anglo-Saxon" Masonry, I can't wait to see Orators in all of the lodges in Thailand. This will only benefit the Craft in the kingdom.


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