Introducing Training

Mentors will come in all shapes and sizes. Some will be retired brethren with many years Masonic experience, whilst others may well have an age profile more in keeping with that of a much younger Candidate. As a result, the amount of time they are able to commit to training will vary considerably as will their availability to attend Workshops. However, there is one thing they will all have in common or certainly should have, and that is an enthusiasm for the concept of mentoring and a realisation of its importance to our Order.

Mentors are sometimes senior people in the Craft involved in other Lodge work, or in other Orders: frequently holders of an Office or position in their Lodge, or even in the Province. However, this should not necessarily always be the case, for the choice of Mentor should primarily reflect the needs of the Candidate, which may mean the appointment of a much less experienced Mentor who, nevertheless, has more in common with the Candidate. There is no one blueprint for success and each Lodge and every Province will doubtless find its own solution and make best use of the talents available to it. Impress upon the Mentor and the Lodge Mentoring Coordinators that they should never despair if the size of the task looks to be unmanageable, but should rather look to share the work with other brethren, the Proposer and Seconder, or even consider joining with Sister Lodges if necessary.

Nonetheless Mentors are often experienced people. It would not therefore be surprising if some think they have no need of training or, even if they recognise that some Mentor training may help them, feel they are too busy to find the time. Indeed, they may indicate, quite correctly, that they have more in-depth Masonic knowledge than you, their trainer. This is of course best addressed by acknowledging that they may well have a greater level of Masonic knowledge, but pointing out the initial task is to familiarise the Candidate with the basic tenets and the social side of Freemasonry, rather than to convey anything too esoteric or complicated. It is perhaps a good time to draw their attention to the content of After Initiation in the Mentoring Aids section, for this clearly indicates the level at which Masonic mentoring starts.