We are very fortunate in Pendle Lodge to have W.Bro Peter Christie as our Lodge Almoner, and we are all aware of the work and support he provides throughout the masonic year to our widows and distressed brethren.
Nowadays the role of the Lodge Almoner can more properly be described as that of the Lodge Welfare Officer. He is the focal point or co-ordinator of information regarding the well-being of the Brethren, their dependents, and widows of past members of the Lodge. He should be able to assist and advise, and, where necessary, enlist the support of Masonic and outside organisations to obtain financial and other assistance for those who need it.
The nature of the work of the Almoner is often confidential so much of what he does will be unknown to the brethren. The role itself requires tact, diplomacy and discretion; distressed circumstances are not an easy thing to admit to a close friend and brother. It often hurts to admit what appears to be failure and inability to cope. Health worries are often kept hidden from others. This is where confidentiality and a caring approach can be the key.
The Almoner’s report is a regular item on every meeting agenda. The regular report will keep the Lodge up to date with the welfare of members and dependents, will emphasise the caring role that the Lodge is practicing and may stimulate a widening of Almoners role within the Lodge.
The very nature of Freemasonry makes every member a potential Almoner, and certainly we should all try to help in our own way. If you wish to make contact with the Lodge Almoner for any reason, or to inform him of a brother or lodge widow in distressed circumstances, you can e-mail him here.