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VOL. II, No. 3: San Bernardino Launches Education Initiative
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New Education Initiative
in San Bernardino 

VMAP at the Valley Level—San Bernardino, California*

By Casey M. Latham, 32°
General Secretary, San Bernardino Valley

The Valley Membership Achievement Project (VMAP) has two subject areas that deal with Scottish Rite education—one for candidates (#5) and one for members (#6). While these are two separate and distinctive categories, it has occurred to me as Education Chairman for the Valley of San Bernardino that a candidate is only a member waiting to be initiated into the Scottish Rite Degrees

About two years ago, I was approached by a member who was interested in creating a Masonic Education program to be presented to Symbolic Lodges in our Masonic District. My Masonic Brother had a previous lecture based upon the Entered Apprentice Degree, which had previously been curated by himself and the Grand Master of Masons at the time that covered the Degree's historical beginnings with commentary on its symbolism. Starting out with the Entered Apprentice Degree had a distinct advantage—we could invite all Entered Apprentices, Fellow Crafts, Master Masons, and Scottish Rite Masons.

With such a wide scope of Masonic Brethren, this brought to my mind lessons of the Scottish Rite and how the Entered Apprentice Degree is expanded and further realized when traveling through the several Degrees of the Scottish Rite. I proposed to my Brother that we introduce another Lecture in order to introduce further ideas and esoteric information that are not explicitly taught in the Degree as well as introduce basic Scottish Rite philosophy. We thus created, “Everything You Didn’t Learn About The Entered Apprentice Degree.” We allowed for two sessions each firmly set at 45 minutes with an additional 15  for Q&A afterwards.

After we received permission from our Asst. Grand Lecturer and Grand Master of Masons, the presentations and marketing material were completed, and we advertised the program. The first presentation was held at our Valley’s Classroom, and we had many attendees from various Lodges in our district. The feedback was extremely positive, and we were soon invited to a Lodge to deliver the same education program to Lodges in that area. This created a real excitement among the attendees and have led to a few of those attendees to remain in contact.

This education program was a great start for our Valley, and we currently are creating an ongoing monthly education program that will be held before every stated meeting where further concepts and philosophy of the several Degrees of the Scottish Rite will be studied. As the group grows, we hope to have delivered at each meeting a paper or speech by a different Brother every time. 

*This is a shortened form of Bro. Latham's article. You may read the unabridged version here.
 

"VMAP Minute"—The Floor Is Yours

Do you have tips on achieving VMAP criteria you think might help your Brothers? The Tyler's Place podcast would love to hear from you. Please send an email with your idea to podcast@scottishrite.org. You may be invited to share it on the air!

The "VMAP Minute" is a regular feature segment of The Tyler’s Place podcast. Each VMAP minute covers one of the 10 VMAP areas, along with other practical applications that support VMAP initiatives.

You can download and listen to The Tyler's Place at http://scottishrite.org/about/media-publications/tylers-place/.

Participation Is Growing!

To date, 139 Valleys have demonstrated their commitment to improve the fraternal experience of its members through enhanced recruitment, new member engagement, degree proficiency, education, philanthropy, and administration.

To see the up-to-date list of participating Valleys click here.

Find More VMAP Resources on the Freemason Network.*

How to use Freemason Network:
  1. Log in to your existing Freemason Network account or create one*.
  2. Visit the discussion page: http://www.freemasonnetwork.org/groups/home/167
*First-time users' accounts must be approved before they will be able to view and write posts.

Remember, the goal of VMAP is to provide Valleys with a list of implementable activities to increase the engagement and involvement of their members.
For more information, visit the VMAP page at http://scottishrite.org/vmap.
Copyright © 2015 The Supreme Council, 33°, S.J. USA, All rights reserved.


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