Good afternoon my Brothers of the Most Worshipful Grand Lodge of Free & Accepted Masons of Florida. This is your Grand Master John Westerman.
It is my intention to spend the next few minutes sharing my thoughts with you regarding our Fraternity’s present situation, our prospects in the short term as well as the long term. Today we find ourselves in circumstances that our Fraternity and our Nation have never experienced before. I have been continually reviewing the Covid 19 Virus Briefings and its effects on and danger to our membership. This illness is incredibly transferrable from infected individuals who do not exhibit any symptoms to others through multiple routes.
As you are aware, I have suspended all Lodge activities and Appendant Body activities occurring in a Masonic Lodge through the 4th of May. However, an individual officer may enter the Lodge Facility in order to carry out his responsibilities without meeting in mass. An example might include a Lodge Officer entering the Lodge in order to ensure the payment of monthly bills.
At the present time I am directing you not to accept any new Petitions and not to suspend any Brothers for the Non-Payment of Dues.
We all should exercise our ability to do wellness checks on the members of our Lodges via phone, email and texting.
Our Annual Grand Communication is still on schedule for occurring on the previously published dates. I am therefore requesting all Committeemen, Zone Chairmen, and State Chairmen to process and submit their required reports. With my complete and unqualified support our Grand Secretary has caused our Grand Lodge Staff to work from home predominantly. You may reach them by email or phone.
The staff will come in individually to the Grand Lodge Office one at a time on separate days. Please do not come to the office requesting admittance as I am instructing them to admit no one at this time.
I hope you will be pleased to know that our Grand Secretary and several very technologically skilled Brothers have been working on the details on how we can take care of our most pressing issues should we be forced to cancel our Annual Grand Communication. Be assured I will make such a decision as prudently as possible and with enough time for you to cancel your hotel reservations should it become necessary.
Your Grand Lodge Leadership Team is continually reviewing this ever changing situation to respond in the most appropriate manner. While the isolation is difficult, and we do not know exactly when the virus will pass. IT WILL PASS. WE WILL OVERCOME IT. REMAIN HOPEFUL MY BROTHERS. Please continue to follow my Directives and the CDC’s recommendations to stay healthy and safe.
May God Bless Each of You; May He Bless All of the Medical Personnel that are Striving to Restore the ill to Good Health; May he Bless All of Our First Responders, Military Personnel Wherever They Are Dispersed and May He Bless the United States of America.
M:.W:. John W Westerman, III
Grand Lodge of Florida F & AM