Masonic Fundraisers are a means by which Masonic lodges can promote charitable causes in their local communities.
Some Masonic lodges organize fundraisers to donate money to the national level for the Salvation Army, Red Cross, Special Olympics, United Way and charities.
But most Masonic lodges organize their charity activities at the local level.
Why do Masonic lodges promote fundraising?
Freemasons promote fundraising as the principles of Freemasonry include Brotherly love, truth and relief.
Masonic relief is a kind of charity. Masonic relief is done to help others who need a helping hand due to various circumstances. These people may have entered these circumstances due to sudden misfortune and other unfortunate circumstances beyond their control. Some of them are hardworking and frugal people who still ended up in a poor state.
Various religions support Masonic relief as evident from their religious books. The Bible, Koran, the Gospels and the Epistles all support Masonic Relief.
“Give, and it shall be given unto you; good measure, pressed down, and shaken together, and running over, shall men give into your bosom. For with the same measure that ye mete withal it shall be measured to you again.”
Most Masonic lodges have a charity fund. The charity fund is made up of little donations given to the lodge from some members. Most of the fund comes from fundraising activities by the lodges in partnership with their community.
Donations from members and fundraisers from lodges provided the needed funding for the charity fund.
Masonic Scholarships are one major aspect of Masonic fundraisers. Every year, lodges form a committee and contact scholarship coordinators from local schools.
The school and the committee then find a student worthy of the scholarship, who needs it to help them further their education.
The student who receives the scholarship can be of any gender and from any religion or race. The person may not need to be affiliated with Freemasons in any way.
The school will then help the lodge in promoting fundraisers to obtain these funds. The schools will pass out flyers about lodge fundraisers which could be in the form of activities like breakfasts, pasta dinners and other feasible events.
Lodges can hold breakfasts and several other food events to raise money for Masonic Charity funds. Lodges can also hold other events like garage sales, car wash, golf events, donations, bottled water and drinks sales at events, sponsored events etc.
Before holding a fundraiser, Lodges should check the By-Laws of their Grand Lodge to ensure that they are adhering to the rules. For example, some Masonic jurisdictions and states in the US forbid contests, lotteries, raffles and bingo.
A special Charity Committee should be in charge of the fundraising activities. The committee will discuss fundraising ideas and share them with others in the Lodge.