Page 6 - Montana Freemason Feb 13
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Montana Freemason  February 2013                            Volume 86 Number 1

will not go into the details of the Tribunal as they are    for a reduction in per capita. If membership holds
already available and have been for some time. There        its average there should be no per capita increase and
is a point that I would like to shed some more light        possibly a reduction from last year.
on and that is the decision regarding RW Duffy’s title.
This question was posed to Jurisprudence, and after             The second fiduciary item involves a check that
careful review of the code, it was recommended that         was written to an appendant body for the amount of
a Grand Lodge Officer’s position was equitable with           $500. The check was authorized by RW Duffy and
that of a regular lodge of Masons. To this end, Duffy’s      presented to a Shrine Temple as a donation. This
title is Right Worshipful Past Deputy Grand Master          action was not approved by the Montana Masonic
because he is not entitled to the title of Past Grand       Foundation Executive Committee as such items should
Master as he did not complete the term and pass on          be authorized. Although I am a strong supporter of
the leadership to a successor. I support this decision,     charity, I do not agree with allocating funds without
and as Grand Master, issued the decision to the craft.      the approval of those entrusted with the oversight of
                                                            said funds. This information came to light in the late
    At this juncture, I would like to move forward          fall along with a proposed invoice from RW Duffy for
in the chronology of events and present some facts          reimbursement that was presented to the Executive
that came to light during the later portion of autumn.      Committee. However, it was established this request
Two important items are fiduciary in nature. The first      was in fact a submittal for reimbursement for a bill
is that there has been a great deal of rumors about         that had previously been paid.
the current year’s budget. It has been commented
that the Grand Lodge budget is somehow overly                   The Autumn months also bore witness to actions
inflated and that I may be to blame. To this end, it        that are outside the scope of expected Masonic
is important to note that the current budget is that        behavior. I am referring to RW Duffy’s actions
which was presented by RW Duffy for his term. It is          during a District Meeting and a meeting held in
a fact that the Grand Master’s travel budget for this       Three Forks in late November. I will never disagree
year is the highest to have been presented to date. It is   with Masonic meetings to promote brotherly love
also a fact, that RW Duffy stated in his initial officer’s     and friendship. However, I do not agree that such
meeting that he would do little traveling out of the        venues are for the improper criticism of a trial that
state. I cannot find a logical correlation between          has been conducted, adjudicated, and decided
these two facts. That is to say, why would there be so      according to a duly created Code and Constitution.
much funding allocated to travel, when less travel was      Nor do I agree that such meetings are for the
anticipated. It is also very important to note that the     purpose of maligning other brother Masons. RW
budget was not proposed and approved in the time            Duffy’s action in which he revealed his choice for an
that is clearly prescribed by the code, even though         elected position, with remarks about who his choice is
the Grand Treasurer provided numerous notices to            and who has been willing to become Grand Secretary,
help remedy this oversight. Members of the Finance          and thereby posing a blank ballot to another Mason
Committee were obviously upset at this action by            is not acceptable Masonic behavior. After consulting
RW Duffy, yet they agreed to approve the budget to           with Jurisprudence, it is in fact easily construed as
allow the operations of Grand Lodge. I want to be           electioneering - another clear violation of our code.
perfectly clear to the craft and express that a budget      A closely related action is the circularization of
for the upcoming 2013-2014 year was drafted with the        information about the Three Forks meeting to others
assistance of the Grand Lodge Executive Committee           in the form of minutes. This action was conducted
well before the code deadline, and at the time of this      by Brother Prewett, and likewise can be construed as
writing is awaiting approval of the finance committee.      unapproved circularization. Again, Jurisprudence
The proposed budget was compared to a five year             has indicated this is an action which violates our code.
average and great care was taken to lower expenses
especially those I feel were inflated. It was my directive      As one can easily understand, it has been a
to the committee to provide a budget that can allow         challenge to provide positive guidance and leadership

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