It is my honor to serve you, the Brethren of this Great State of Ohio, and I thank you for the confidence you have reposed in me by electing me to be your Grand Master. Looking back at my raising by my Father-in-Law in January of 2003, my journey has been a whirlwind and holding this office is one you never dream of. We have a super team of Grand Lodge Officers, and we are looking forward to a great year.
I first would like to thank our immediate Past Grand Master, MWB Keith Newton, for his leadership through what was a very difficult year. This pandemic has forced us all to consider our place in leadership positions, by making those hard decisions to protect our membership and our good name. As the pandemic continues into this new year, we will continue to make those “hard decisions” in the best interest of our membership. I would also be remiss if I did not recognize our friend and brother, MWB C. Michael Watson, for his service to our craft. He may have retired as our Grand Secretary, but he will still be a valuable asset to our Grand Lodge.
My theme this year is “Use the Tools”. We are provided a rich heritage and history provided by our forefathers. There are many lessons to be learned by studying the past, viewing their successes and failures, all of which are to be used as tools in your plans for the future. These lessons should be used in the growth of your Masonic as well as your personal life. Let us endeavor to not repeat the mistakes of the past by working diligently on our temple, and our contribution of making the world a better place.
Our charity for the year will be to support our Veterans and First Responders by raising funds under the umbrella of our Grand Lodge Charitable Foundation for Veteran/First Responder Issues. To all of those who serve, have served, and continue to serve, I thank you for your service.
I was delighted to hear many comments about my Deputy Grand Master rollouts, all of which were very positive. My rollout was done as a series of videos which can be used as reference throughout this year. They can be found in Grand View under Resources > Deputy Grand Master's Rollout. Although this is a new way of presenting plans for the next year while respecting the pandemic, I did miss the brotherhood that these meetings bring and the direct feedback on your ideas. I do see a value in the in-person rollouts and the instant feedback received so you can tweak your message as you travel the state.
My Brethren, please keep up the good work we do as Masons. Support your Lodge and its officers. We all enjoy this thing called Freemasonry, and we should all endeavor to live by the tenants of Brotherly Love, Relief and Truth. If we do that, the world WILL be a better place.
Richard A. Dickerscheid, Grand Master