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Scottish Rite Masons helping their own in time of need
Valley of Chicago brethren know that charity is one of the great virtues of the Masonic Fraternity. Our Valley practices this virtue through the Scottish Rite Almoner’s Fund, Inc., a 501 (c)(3) nonprofit charitable organization. Together with endowed income, donations keep the Almoner’s Fund replenished and ready to assist distressed worthy Scottish Rite Masons and their loved ones in need.
In fact, the Almoner’s Fund is consistently our Valley’s most popular program, in terms of percentage of membership support. Even in the harsh economy, participation has increased, not just in amount donated, but the number of members donating even modest amounts. May God bless these brethren!
Our Valley of Chicago Almoner’s Fund is the keystone charity fulfilling our mission, the mission of being a Fraternity that strives to fulfill our Masonic Obligation to care for our members. Every dollar donated goes to helping those who face incredible hardships. Whether it be a natural disaster or personal tragedy, the fund exists to make certain a helping hand is there in times of crisis.
Discretely putting donations to the most effective use
The Scottish Rite Almoner’s Fund, Inc. was incorporated in 1965 to assist worthy distressed brother Scottish Rite Masons and their loved ones. Over the years, we have succeeded admirably in that regard. Sometimes we are called upon to help a brother maintain the necessities of life in time of dire need. Or we may assist a brother’s widow as she struggles to manage her husband’s end-of-life affairs during a time of great stress and grief.
Referrals to the Almoner are confidential. A discrete inquiry will promptly follow a referral and, if found worthy, assistance will be granted as appropriate for the situation. Under no circumstances does the Almoner disclose the identity of anyone in distress so as not to cause them embarrassment. And always, those receiving assistance express profound gratitude to the brethren who made this welcome assistance possible. It is often apparent it was one of the most moving experiences of their lives.
During the global pandemic crisis of 2020, our Scottish Rite Valley proved their dedication to us as members of our beloved Valley and respective Masonic Jurisdiction.
I held my Valley to its words- “Brotherly love, Relief and Truth.”
I was sick with a life threatening virus, whilst dealing with the harsh reality of losing my job in the process.. This was indeed the most trying time of my life. A few brothers from the Valley of Chicago reached out to me, I was assured that that I had a warm hand ready to be extended in times of darkness as well as in the light.
I would like to acknowledge the Valley of Chicago’s Almoner and I would also like to personally thank our members for generously contributing to our Almoner’s fund. Your assistance has helped inspire our brethren and give us hope in times of despair. It is your continued contributions that help make our Scottish Rite cathedral, the “Valley of Excellence.”
“What we have done for ourselves alone dies with us; what we have done for others and the world remains and is immortal.”
I’m a member of the VOC. I’m the type of person that try’s to make ends meet. Like we meet on the level. I was on some hard times. And needed help paying my Mortgage and some of my bills. I didn’t want to do this. But the VOC offered help. So I strapped up my big boy boots and took the steps. To get help. Everything is confidential. The steps to get the help isn’t that hard. And even though it’s sometimes a one time or with Covid I was able to get a bit of help. Myself and family got help. I’d thank everyone that put money into this fund. To help fellow brothers like myself. Taking medicine is hard and asking for help is a HARD pill to swallow. The VOC is here to help and this fund does help.
The Scottish Rite was their in my time of need. I found myself in a destitute situation and the Almoners fund of the Valley of Chicago in which I am a proud member gave me relief. Being laid off from work, and looking for work. I called on my Brethren and they quickly assisted me after I called for help. This process was straight to the point. From them asking me “How can we be of assistance to you Brother?” to “You will receive a check in the mail soon with the funds you have requested. “This process from start to finish was less than a week. Since then I truly see the works of masonry through my own story of help, air and assist. I view the Brethren of the Valley of Chicago as my Brothers keeper.
Answers to FAQ’s about the Scottish Rite Almoner’s Fund
- Donations may be made by members at any time or via dues payments, annual appeals, bequests, and other gifts.
- Donations from non-members, non-Masons, private foundations, and charitable institutions are also welcome.
- Donations are tax-deductible to the extent provided by law; all donors receive acknowledgement to that effect.
- Donations may be “dedicated” (i.e., to the memory of a loved one); please indicate at the time of payment.
- Donations may be “restricted” such as for medical supplies or funeral expenses; however, unless specified otherwise, all donations are considered “unrestricted” and are particularly appreciated as this allows the Almoner the flexibility to disburse funds for the most effective purpose on behalf of recipients.
- Donors are acknowledged by having their names printed in an issue of the Scottish Rite Magazine.
- Donors may remain anonymous upon request, please indicate this preference at the time of payment.
Choose the most convenient donation method for you
Send a donation by mail
Scottish Rite Almoner’s Fund, Inc.
383 E. Lake Street
Bloomingdale, IL 60108-1191
(make checks payable to “Scottish Rite Almoner’s Fund, Inc.”)
Donate with your dues payment
Annual dues notices to members of the Valley of Chicago are mailed out in August by the Supreme Council in Lexington, MA. In addition to indicating dues owed, the payment form includes an option to include an Almoner’s Fund donation. Please consider writing in whatever amount you can afford!
Donate using a credit card
If paying dues online by credit card through the Supreme Council’s Member Center you may include an Almoner’s Fund donation to your Valley, but the system requires that dues payment be processed prior to any charitable donation.
Donate during the Almoner’s Appeal
Each year in November, the Almoner’s Fund sends a letter to the members of the Valley of Chicago encouraging them to consider donating. This mailing arrives in a colored envelope and includes a reply card to indicate donation amount and credit card information plus a return envelope. Keep an eye out for it!
Donate in person at the Cathedral
The Valley of Chicago Cathedral is located at 383 East Lake Street, Bloomingdale, IL 60181-1191. The office is open from 8:00am – 4:00pm weekdays except federal holidays. Members are welcome to stop by, and it is suggested that you call in advance (630) 439-3400 to verify that the office is open and the staff is available to process your donation.
Arrange a bequest or estate gift
Some of the most enduring acts of charity have been made by brethren who have passed away, via their wills. Should you wish to include the Scottish Rite Almoner’s Fund in your estate planning, please contact the Almoner who will provide the necessary legal documentation to formalize your generous gift.
Donate Goods or service
With limited exceptions, the Almoner’s Fund may accept non-monetary “in-kind” donations of goods or services as permissible by law, such as vehicles, clothing, or non-perishable food, as well as home repair, snow removal or local transportation assistance. Should you wish to discuss a donation, please contact the Almoner.
Contacting the Almoner
If you wish to arrange to donate, or if you, a brother Scottish Rite Mason, or their loved one is genuinely in need of assistance, please contact us so that a discrete inquiry can be made (or referral made to other charities or service providers, if necessary.)
The Almoner’s email is: email@example.com