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Lodge Spotlights

Damascus-Collingwood: Nobler Deeds, Higher Thoughts, Greater Achievements

By May 16, 2024June 7th, 2024No Comments

Read our recent interview with Brother Bill Herrick from Damascus-Collingwood Lodge #643 located in Toledo.

Tell us about Damascus-Collingwood Lodge. What makes it unique? What is it known for?

Damascus Collingwood is a humble, hard working Lodge, with Brethren of imagination and willingness to step up to pitch in on others’ ideas and efforts. The most impressive thing that came out of the Lodge was Camp Masonry, a brain-child of one of our most energetic and progressive Brothers.

What is the community of Toledo, Ohio like? What is your Lodge’s interaction in the community?

Toledo is a great place for families, friends, musicians, working people, and has a very diverse population that makes it an interesting place to live, play, and grow.  It has a rich history in industry, the arts, and architecture. Toledo boasts a great many social organizations of which to belong and enjoy by all. Damascus Collingwood’s membership is diverse and talented.  Most Brethren belong to more organizations than Freemasonry, taking their beliefs and values with them in an exemplary manner.  We strive to demonstrate that this is a fraternity that is well worth belonging to.

We’re aware your lodge has a saying: Nobler Deeds, Higher Thoughts, Greater Achievements. Can you tell us what that means?

Outwardly, this implies the encouragement of Freemasonry in general, and reminds our Brethren of what we are here to do. Ultimately, together we can do greater works by ensuring our tasks are executed with noble purpose, considering the loftier effects, and bringing exciting and more positive results.

What is the relationship between Brothers in the lodge? How do they interact with each other and engage in Lodge events?

Damascus Collingwood Lodge enjoys a membership of backgrounds that makes it a great pleasure to attend. Our Brethren are great friends and are as truly Brothers as true siblings, and perhaps closer. As with any group of people, the men of Damascus Collingwood have varied skills, interests, and occupations that allows for excellent provision for the satisfaction of Lodge and personal needs. Our Brethren are always very willing to pitch in and help with whatever needs to be done. Nobody has to ask, these great men see what needs doing and do it. Our experienced Brethren are very good at taking our new members under their wing to help them learn about Freemasonry and their part in what’s happening here. We are truly Brethren.

Image of Masons standing in masonic garb holding up old newspapers from Toledo, Ohio.
Men of Damascus-Collingwood Lodge with old Toledo newspapers.

Does your Lodge have any upcoming events you’d like to share?

We have several events. In May, we will put on a Ladies at the Table event with our significant others, mothers, sisters, and daughters to show them our appreciation and to let them know how they participate in our successes.  We have a guest speaker, our Past Grand Master’s Lady, who will speak at this.

In June, we will have a special dinner for the men just as we are heading into the summer hiatus.  Also in June, we will be having a Lodge Outing at the Mud Hens together for some fun and fellowship. In August, we plan to have a summer picnic. 

Can you tell us about your lodge’s relationship with Camp Masonry? What is Camp Masonry?

Camp Masonry was an outstanding program that was conceived, developed, and executed by one of Damascus Collingwood’s very active members.  It constituted a weekend at a local Boy Scout Camp where Freemasons from near and far could gather, learn, fraternize, and enjoy great fellowship. Those who wanted could stay overnight, or go home and return in the mornings. It was highly successful until the national pandemic shut down such activities.  Once the nation started to come out of the pandemic, the event did not make a recovery.  There is great hope that one day this event will be resurrected and become the great Masonic weekend it once was.

What about this Lodge made you want to be part of it? What type of Mason does it attract?

Damascus Collingwood has a great group of men, of various backgrounds, passions, skills, and occupations. With all of our differences, we all come together on the same playing field, as it were, and do our part to make our endeavors successful reality. For me, the meetings are convenient and enjoyable with fellowship at dinner before every stated meeting. We look to attract men who are intrigued by the insights into Freemasonry that we give to them during our dinners. We welcome prospective candidates to join us at Fellowship during dinner where our membership can socialize with them, answer questions they may have, and let them see what our Lodge looks like. It seems that our prospects like what they see because we have a steady stream of candidates coming in. We work hard to ensure that they feel welcome and to bring them warmly into the fold.

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