NOTHING IS THICKER THAN BROTHERHOOD...
I’ve had the privilege of knowing and working with our Junior Grand Warden, Right Worshipful Brother Dave Lynch for many years. With more than 31 years as a Master Mason, he has a long tenure of commitment and dedication to us, his Brothers. Besides being an active and dedicated Grand Lodge Officer, Brother Dave is a Past Master and the current Secretary of Crete Lodge No. 763. He is also a member of Green Dragon Lodge No. 821and holds Honorary memberships in several lodges for very simple reasons, Brother Dave serves generously and is loved broadly.
Brother Dave and I share a deep passion for advancing the knowledge of the Brethren and helping our lodges be more successful. Serving for five years as a District Deputy Grand Master, eight years as an Assistant Area Deputy Grand Master, and then three years as the Area Deputy Grand Master for the Northeastern Area, he dedicated 16 years to helping our Worshipful Masters, Wardens and Brothers develop and grow through a quality Masonic lodge and membership experience.
For the past seven years as a Certified Lodge Instructor, Brother Dave has provided hands-on instruction to the Brothers and Officers of our lodges on the proper execution of our important ritual work. Also, he serves on the Grand Lodge Finance and Illinois Masonic Student Assistant Program committees. In 2014, Brother Dave joined a distinguished group of Brothers when he was recognized and awarded “Mason of the Year”. This good Brother has served us well and continues to be a valuable member of our Grand Lodge senior leadership team.
In my travels, you’ve heard me talk about the importance of Enlightenment and the power that knowledge has for the growth and development of our ancient and honorable fraternity in Illinois. The cornerstone of our brotherhood is the fact that we are a gathering of good men who share common values. As Masons, we know that honor, integrity, freedom, equality, tolerance, brotherly love, learning, and service to mankind are the elements of a well-spent life. These values are timeless and have attracted good men to our fraternity for centuries. Inspired by the light that we share with one another, we achieve an important goal of Freemasonry which is to “accept a good man - make him better - better than the man he was six months ago - and ultimately, to help him become the best version of himself.” Because of the tireless work done by men like Brother Dave, our members are positively advancing their roles as fathers, husbands, and sons. This is Freemasonry! Our quality Masonic work is being felt in our Brother’s homes, workplaces and communities.
We have a proud story to tell about who we are and the positive work that we do across our state. In this digital age, we are stepping forward to reclaim the message about Illinois Freemasonry. We have implemented a new marketing communications and brand management discipline for our Grand Jurisdiction to help us achieve that goal. Recently, we launched a new version of our Grand Lodge website, ILMASON.ORG and new public Facebook page which have been combined with our other digital assets into an integrated communications approach for Illinois Freemasonry.
Most importantly my Brothers, we are emphasizing our core values which are the foundation of who we are and why our legacy continues. A good example is the celebration of brotherly love associated with the upcoming 20th anniversary of mutual fraternal recognition with the Most Worshipful Prince Hall Grand Lodge of Illinois. Both of our grand jurisdictions are making a positive impact on men and communities across the state. Our mission is the same, our love for the fraternity is the same, and as Brothers, we are equals! A wise passage comes to mind, “Blood is thicker than water, but nothing is thicker that Brotherhood!”
As Masons, we enjoy unique fraternal experiences including the fellowship with good men of strong character, learning from one another, and banding together to “relieve the suffering of others”. Fundamentally, we are inspired by men like Brother Dave who are living Masonry each and every day; it is the reason that we honor him tonight. By following his example, along with many of you, we will be a beacon light in society today for a good man seeking to “become a better version of himself.”
Through the Enlightenment that we offer and represent, I am confident that the future of Illinois Freemasonry is bright!
Gregory L. Clark - Grand Master
"Masons living Masonry each and everyday"