SUGGESTED DUTIES OF THE OFFICERS
The Worshipful Master
The Worshipful Master has been elected by his Brethren to fulfill the highest honor which can be bestowed upon a Master Mason. No Mason should begin climbing the flight of stairs to the Master's Chair in the East without first pledging to himself that he will dedicate and devote all his energy and zeal to fulfilling his duties to the best of his ability. The trust placed upon him by the Brethren should never be violated.
A respectful and successful Master will:
1. Call the Lodge to order in stated meetings at the time and place set in the By-laws.
2. Call the Lodge in special meetings for degree work, emergency meetings, or social functions.
3. Preside at the meetings of the Lodge. (When absent, the Wardens by rank will preside. If all three officers are absent, the Lodge cannot be opened.)
4. Control all discussions and preserve harmony and good order within the Lodge.
5. Pass upon the proficiency of candidates for advancement or permit a vote by the Lodge members present.
6. Control the voting within the Lodge and see that each member present casts a vote or is legally excused from voting.
7. Prohibit the discussion of political and religious matters in the Lodge.
8. Know the Indiana Blue Book of Masonic Law and By-laws of the Lodge.
9. Preserve the Lodge Charter as its lawful custodian.
10. See that the degree work is exemplified with dignity consistent with the requirements of the Grand Lodge.
11. Carefully select all appointive officers and committees of the Lodge and see that they are at labor.
12. Approve all orders or vouchers drawn on the Treasurer with consent of the Lodge.
13. Fill temporarily all vacant stations and place with proficient members.
14. Read and discuss in Lodge the proceedings of the Grand Lodge.
15. Preside at the Masonic Burial or Memorial Service of a deceased member if requested, or cause the same to be done.
16. Make immediate personal contact with the family and offer assistance upon notice if the passing of a Brother or a member of his family.
17. Represent the Lodge at Grand Lodge Communication, area meetings, Lodges of Instruction, educational meetings, etc.
18. Answer all communications promptly and courteously.
The Senior Warden
It shall be the duty of the Senior Warden to look well to the West and serve as an assistant to the Worshipful Master in the government of the Lodge. It should be for him a year of planning, keeping in mind that a primary duty upon reaching the Master's Chair is "to set the Craft to work and give them proper instruction."
The obligations of the Senior Warden are:
1. Serve as Master in his absence.
2. Be able to open, close, and confer all degrees.
3. Know the business of the Lodge and have a knowledge of all committee work, and candidates in process, and coming events.
4. Help secure instructions for the candidates.
5. Have a knowledge of the finances of the Lodge.
6. Have a knowledge of the codes, which relate to proper discussions, Lodge procedure, Lodge jurisdictions, Masonic conduct, authority of the Master, etc.
7. Observe the various Brethren who would best fulfill the duties of a line officer, as next year he must appoint new officers. He should consider the following:
a. Does the selected Brother have the time to devote eight years of sincere application to the Lodge?
b. Will the appointment conflict with his vocation?
c. Does his family support him in his endeavor to become a devoted worker and Lodge officer?
d. Has he initiative and a good personality?
e. Is he capable of memorizing and presenting the work and lectures?
f. Will he develop into a LEADER?
The Junior Warden
The Junior Warden is primarily a liaison officer or coordinator of activities. This does not mean that he takes the spotlight, but is a vital member of the TEAM. Usually the Master and Senior Warden have more work to accomplish than time permits, and the Junior Warden is the one looked upon for assistance.
The obligations of the Junior Warden are:
1. To serve as the Master in the absence of the Worshipful Master and Senior Warden.
2. Know the opening, closing, conferring of degrees, and how to conduct a business and/or stated meeting.
3. Promptness and regular attendance at all Lodge meetings and special social functions.
4. Assisting the Senior Warden in "special functions."
5. Carrying out any duties assigned by the Worshipful Master, such as
a. Supervision when the Lodge is at refreshment.
b. Being a part of the Lodge Greeting Committee.
c. Serving on the Ritual Committee.
6. Continued study of the Grand Lodge By-laws.
7. Supervision of arrangements for visitations to other Lodges and return visitations.
8. To prefer charges as set forth under Indiana Blue Book Regulations.
This office, not the secretary, is the Lodge banker and should adhere to good business practice and habits. Receipts, records, monthly reports of expenditures and income, and proper investment of Lodge funds are his responsibility and duty to the Lodge. It is his duty to :
1. Receive all moneys from the Secretary and issue a receipt for the same.
2. Keep a just and regular account of the same.
3. Pay out money only by order of the Worshipful Master and consent of the Lodge.
4. Give an annual account to the Lodge.
5. Deliver all Lodge funds, books, vouchers, and all documents to his successor.
The duties of the secretary and the importance of his office cannot be emphasized too strongly. This is an office of confidence and respect. The secretary is the ambassador of good will and an administrator of Lodge affairs. His records are a part of the story of the Lodge. Prompt attendance to all business, neat and complete minutes and records are a must for this office. A secretary should never be late at the meetings, but be there in time to have everything in readiness, so the business may be conducted at the pleasure of the Master. The secretary should familiarize himself with his duties in the Book of Constitutions and By-laws and Secretaries Handbook.
It is his duty to:
1. Observe the will and pleasure of the Worshipful Master.
2. Record all proceedings of the Lodge proper to be written.
3. Receive all moneys paid into the Lodge.
4. Pay them over to the Treasurer taking his receipt thereof.
5. File all Documents of the Lodge.
6. Collect all dues of the Lodge and issue receipts.
7. Make monthly and annual reports on time to the Lodge and to the Grand Lodge.
8. Keep an up-to-date register of all members.
9. Keep in trust the Seal of the Lodge.
10. Perform all duties se forth in the Secretaries handbook.
11. Deliver to his successor all books, papers, records, vouchers, etc.
The textbook of the Chaplain is that Great Light in Freemasonry which forever sheds its rays upon every lawful assemblage of Masons.
He has the obvious duties to:
1. Open and close all meetings with prayer being careful to keep all supplications universal and common to all religions.
2. Attend all Masonic funeral services and give the prayers of that service.
3. Learn and deliver the scripture readings for the various degrees.
The Senior Deacon
The Senior Deacon is the messenger of the Worshipful Master. His most important duty is to welcome visiting Brethren and introduce them to the Lodge members so that they will feel at home. Both ritual and floor work are a part of the required operation of this station.
He should be prepared to:
1. Introduce and accommodate the visitors of the Lodge.
2. Receive and conduct candidates in all degrees.
3. Prepare the ballot box at the order of the Worshipful Master.
4. Be able to give or assist with the Senior Deacon's (middle chamber) lecture.
5. Proceed with the study of the Book of Constitutions and By-laws and the By-laws of the Lodge.
6. Attend and participate in the Lodge schools of instruction.
7. Carry out the duties assigned by the Worshipful Master.
8. Commit to memory the Worshipful Master part of the Entered Apprentice Degree.
The Junior Deacon
It shall be the duty of the Junior Deacon to be the messenger of the Senior Warden. His duty is the custody of the door opening from the Tyler's room. He permits no one to enter or retire without consent from the Master or Senior Warden.
He should be prepared to:
1. Understudy the Senior Deacon that he may relieve him whenever necessary and prepare himself for advancement to the duties of the Senior Deacon including the committal and delivery of the Senior Deacon's degree work.
2. Assist in the preparation of the candidate for the degrees.
3. Reach a high degree of proficiency with the rod and floor work.
4. Assist in introducing visiting Brethren and see that they feel at home.
5. Proceed with a study of the Book of Constitutions and By-laws.
6. Attend all called meetings of the Lodge except when he has been officially excused.
7. Carry out Lodge assignments given by the Worshipful Master.
The Senior Steward
A good Lodge will be recognized when giving value to the work of the Stewards. It shall be the duty of the Senior Steward to assist the Deacons and other officers in the discharge of their duties, and to see that the tables are properly furnished at refreshment, and that every Brother is suitably provided for.
It is his duty to:
1. Prepare and present candidates and to assist the Deacons and other officers in performing their duties.
2. Aid in making visitors feel welcome through introductions and providing a good seat in the Lodge Room.
3. Become proficient in rod and floor work.
4. Attend to other such duties as may be directed by the Worshipful Master.
5. Deliver memory lectures of all three degrees.
The Junior Steward
It shall be the duty of the Junior Steward to cheerfully accept the responsibility of aiding and assisting the Senior Steward.
He should be prepared to:
1. Become proficient in rod and floor work.
2. Assist the Junior Warden when the Lodge is at refreshment.
3. Extend to visiting Brethren such attentions as circumstances may suggest.
4. Learn and deliver memory lectures of all three degrees.
5. Be punctual in attendance at all Lodge meetings , and assist the Senior Steward to prepare and present the candidate.
The appointment of the Tyler to the Lodge is of extreme importance especially if the progression to the Office of Master is practiced. Just as the Tyler's Sword is used as a symbol to guard against the approach of cowans and eavesdroppers, so should it admonish us to set a guard over our thoughts, words and actions, thereby preventing the approach of every unworthy thought, word, or deed and preserving consciences void of offense toward God and man.
He should be prepared to:
1. Be prompt and early at all Lodge meetings and see that all Lodge paraphernalia is in place for all Stated, Called, and Special meetings.
2. See that all paraphernalia is kept clean and in good repair.
3. Assist the Senior Deacon and the Lodge Welcoming Committee to accommodate all visiting Brethren and act as host of the Lodge.
4. Inform the Master of a visiting Brother to be examined for admission.
5. See that all Brethren in the Lodge Room are properly clothed.
6. Register all regular and visiting Brethren and see that they are properly vouched for or examined.
7. See that all paraphernalia is put away at the close of Lodge.