Dear Dedicated Members for Change,
Dedicated Members for Change (or “DMC” as it is known in the vernacular) was formed in December of 2010 as the brainchild of three men: now-deceased Past Sovereign Grand Master and Past Grand Master of California Don Smith, Past Grand Master Rick Boyles, and me. The group quickly grew and continues to grow, and our e-mail list numbers hundreds of Odd Fellows and Rebekahs from throughout the United States and Canada. Our focus in 2010, and our focus to this day, is very singular: We are dedicated members of our Order shining a light on the sad decline in our membership and suggesting methods by which we can reverse that trend. We are a think-tank of ideas to improve and grow this Order. It’s all about membership, membership, membership. Nothing more, and nothing less.
I am asked from time to time: “Who are the Dedicated Members for Change?” And the answer is relatively simple:
- Dedicated Members for Change are long-time members of the Order and new members of the Order.
- Dedicated Members for Change are men and women of all ages, all races, nationalities and ethnic groups, all religions.
- Dedicated Members for Change are members who care about the future of Odd Fellowship.
- Dedicated Members for Change are concerned about the rapid decline in our membership and the concomitant decline in numbers of Lodges.
- Dedicated Members for Change take pride in our history, ritual and regalia, and the ability to properly conduct a formal meeting.
- Dedicated Members for Change believe that we need to reach out into our communities with good charitable and community works.
- Dedicated Members for Change promote social activities within our Lodges, recognizing that having fun is an important segment of fraternal life.
- Dedicated Members for Change strongly encourage Lodges to bring in new members every year.
- Dedicated Members for Change suggest that much of our ritual should be reviewed and modernized.
- Dedicated Members for Change support modern technology, use of the Internet, and social media.
- Dedicated Members for Change believe that each member of the Order is responsible for bringing in new members.
- Dedicated Members for Change welcome new ideas to energize and revitalize Lodges.
Bottom line: Our Order cannot continue to lose members and close Lodges like we have been doing for the past 60+ years. It is simply not sustainable. To continue to maintain the status quo and reject change will certainly result in more of the same losses. It is just not conceivable that continuing to do the same things we have been doing for the past 60+ years will suddenly result in a reversal of the decline. Change is, accordingly, necessary and inevitable if we are to reverse the trend. In this regard, some would say that we should all be Dedicated Members for Change.
F – L – T
Deputy Grand Master
p.s. Virtually all of the DMC Newsletters from 2010 to the present have been preserved for historical reasons and your reading pleasure at www.davislodge.org. You can find a link to the articles on the home page of that website. Special “thank you” to the webmaster, Stewart Savage, for recording and organizing the DMC Newsletters containing informative articles.