MORI User Guide

The MORI User Guide includes a great deal of information and directions for using MORI to run your lodge, chapter, jurisdiction or organization. In the guide you will find information on getting started with MORI, managing dues, members, and many other aspects of the system.

Thanks,

The MORI Team

The contents of this guide are © Vita Rara, Inc. (2004-2007)

This website is not MORI! Do not use the register function on this website! Please read and follow the directions in this guide to create your account.

Getting Started With MORI

To get started with MORI follow the directions in this section to create your account.

This website is not MORI! Do not use the register function on this website! Please read and follow the directions in this guide to create your account.

What is MORI?

MORI is a complete online system for managing your lodge's information. It includes complete roster management, lodge financials and dues tracking, and mailing list management.

What makes MORI different than MLSS is that it is an online application. When you use MORI you are actually using the Grand Lodge database. Once you start using MORI you will not need to send routine paperwork for registry updates to New York, because you have the ability to put them into the database directly yourself.

MORI is also the system that is used internally by Grand Lodge to run the registry deparment.

Why use MORI?

The main benefit of MORI is greatly decreased paperwork between your Lodge and the Grand Lodge office. You will be able to submit all routine registry events, such as initiated, passed, raised, address change, death notice, NPD, dimit, restore, and cleared events. Once you enter an event it is done.

The MORI Menu

When you first arrive at the MORI page you will see a menu at the top, which includes the Help, Language, and Account items. Become familiar with the menu, as you will use it to navigate the system and access different functions.

Placing your mouse pointer over the menu will cause it to open up, allowing you to select the function you need to use. To select the function simply click on it.

Creating Your MORI Account

Where is MORI?

MORI is available using your web browser at:

Creating Your Account

The first step in using MORI is creating your account. On your organization's MORI page, listed above, use the menu to go to: Account -> Create Account. You will need your Grand Lodge/Chapter number, the number of a lodge/chapter to which you belong, and your birth date (not required in some installations). Step through the screens by filling in the forms and hitting the appropriate button at the bottom.

You will need to enter a password of your choice for your account, which must be a minimum of eight characters and a mixture of letters and numbers.

Why do we use a password and a key?

Once you have created your account, MORI will assign you an account key. This is an additional piece of information that is required to access your account. MORI uses this to create a more secure system, discouraging hackers from attempting to access the account due to the greater amount of information needed.

Getting and Inserting Your Key

After your account has been created, Grand Lodge/Chapter will mail you a letter containing your key. Once you have received the letter, go to your organizations MORI page. On the menu go to: Account -> Insert Key. Enter the key in the form, and click the button to insert the key into your browser.

You will only need to insert this key once to be able to access your account on MORI.

Note for advanced users: if you use multiple computers or web browsers to access MORI you will need to enter the key into each computer or web browser.

Logging in for the First Time

Once you have inserted your key, on the menu go to: Account -> Login. Fill in the form with your Grand Lodge number and the password that you created, and click the button.

Logging In

Go to the MORI page. The login form will come up by default. Enter your Grand Lodge number and the password you created, and click the button.

Member Management

This section covers: looking up members, editing member records, edit addresses, entering a registry event, and other membership related functions.

The functions in this section are primarily for lodge secretaries.

Finding a Member

On the menu go to: Membership -> Find Member. This will bring up a form that will allow you to search for members, and widows in your lodge. You are only allowed to look up records for your lodge.


Figure 1

The form contains fields for last name, first name, Grand Lodge number, and status. By default the results exclude deceased, suspended and expelled brothers. Should you want to include them click the appropriate check box to remove the check mark and add them to the results.

Once you have done a search, if there are any matching brothers you will see a list of them. This list is scrollable within the page. (Figure 2 #1)


Figure 2

If there are more brothers than will fit on the list, there will links to page through the results. (Figure 2 #2)

Next to each brother/person there are four buttons: Summary, Edit, View and Profile. (Figure 2 #3)

Clicking the Summary button (Figure 3 #1) will change the brief display of information presented at the bottom of the page. (Figure 3 #2) This will allow you to get a quick look at a brother’s information to make sure you are working on the correct record.


Figure 3

Clicking the Edit button will bring the brother up in the edit form.

Clicking the View button will bring up the information on the brother in read only mode.

Clicking the Profile button will produce a PDF file of the brother’s Masonic history.

Editing a Member's Information

To edit a member's information you first need to find the member.

On the "Find Member" result page click the "Edit" button (Figure 1 #1) to open the member’s record in edit mode.


Figure 1

The Edit Member screen contains a multi-tabbed form. Look along the top of the form and you will see tabs labeled: member data, contact info, lodge affiliation, events, other info and lodge info. (Figure 2 #1) Click the tabs to become familiar with how they function. Each tab contains information pertaining to a particular area. Any field that is editable will appear in a small box. (Figure 2 #2) Click into the box or use the tab key to navigate the form.


Figure 2

When you are finished making your changes click the "save" button.

Editing an Address

To edit a member's address you first need to find the member.

On the "Find Member" result page click the "Edit" button (Figure 1 #1) to open the member’s record in edit mode.


Figure 1

Once the member's record has loaded click the "contact info" tab. (Figure 2 #1)


Figure 2

Edit the address to your liking. Then select the change source (Figure 2 #2), either lodge, member or post office corresponding to where you received the new address information from. Then click the "save" button. Use the two letter abreviation for states and territories within the United States and Canada.

Entering a Registry Event

To enter a registry event such as passed, raised, dimited, etc. look up the member using the find member screen.

On the "Find Member" result page click the "Edit" button (Figure 1 #1) to open the member’s record in edit mode.


Figure 1

Once the members information has loaded click the events tab. (Figure 2 #1)


Figure 2

On this page there is a drop down list of possible events next to the “Add Event” label (Figure 2 #2). This list will only contain the events that are Constitutionally allowed and the brother’s Masonic status permits. Select the appropriate event (Figure 2 #2), enter the date of the event (Figure 2 #3), and click the add button (Figure 2 #4).

NOTE: It is unnecessary to send a Registry Form to the Grand Secretaries office for events you have added using MORI. Should you need a certificate of dimit or clearance though, you will still need to contact the Grand Secretaries office.

Adding New Members and Other Parties

Adding a New Member

To add a new member to your roster go to: Membership -> Add Member

This form is separated into three parts.

The top of the form collects the members name, the lodge they are joining and other general biographical information. Any field that is highlighted in light blue is a required field.

The second section is for the entry of degree information. The initiation date is required, but if the member has taken additional degrees you can enter all of this information at this time.

The third section is for the new member's contact information. MORI requires the entry of a home address for a new member.

Once you have filled in the form click the "next" button. MORI will validate the information that you have submitted and represent the form for confirmation. If all of the information is correct click the "confirm" button at the bottom of the form to add the member to your roster.

Adding a Window to Your Roster

To add a new widow to your roster go to: Membership -> Add Member. Fill in the form, selecting the Widow option, just below the Spouse name field.

Adding a New Domestic Affiliate

To add a new Domestic Affiliate go to: Membership -> Add Affiliate. Fill in the form selecting your lodge, as the lodge to affiliate with. If you are adding an Honorary member check the Honorary check box. After you have completed the form click the “Next” button.

The next page will show you the brother’s Masonic status in Grand Lodge, as well as the other domestic lodges they are affiliated with. If the brother is in good standing click the confirm key to add the member to your lodge.

Once you have added a member to your lodge you will be forwarded to the Find Member screen. This allows you to immediately look the member and set their Lodge Member Type.

Adding a New Foreign Affiliate

What is a foreign affiliate?

A foreign affiliate is any Mason who wishes to join a lodge in your Grand Jurisdiction who does not belong to a lodge in your Grand Jurisdiction.

Before you can vote on the petition for affiliation of a foreign Mason you must get clearance to do so from your Grand Lodge via the Grand Secretary.

How does MORI handle foreign affiliates?

The MORI system is designed to collect information about foreign affiliates, which is conveyed to your Grand Lodge to allow them to check the status of the brother. Once the brother’s status has been ascertained the affiliation will either be approved or denied. If your Grand Lodge approves a petition for affiliation by a foreign Mason, then and only then can the lodge ballot on the petition.

Entering a Petition for a Foreign Affiliate

On the main menu go to: Membership -> Add Foreign Affiliate. This form is separated into three sections. The top section contains basic information, like name, spouse, birthplace, etc.

The second section requires the initiation, passing and raising date for the member, as well as the lodge they currently belong to. The last column is a drop down list of all of the Jurisdictions recognized by your Grand Lodge.

Checking the Status of a Foreign Affiliation

On the main menu go to: Membership -> Pending Foreign Affiliations.

This page is separated into four sections: New, Pending, Approved and Denied. Pending foreign affiliations when first entered into the system, before Grand Lodge has taken any action on them, will be in the new section. Once Grand Lodge has begun to work on a petition it will be in the pending section. If a petition has been approved it will be moved to the approved section. If a petition is denied it will be moved to the denied section. While a petition is moving through the process there will be notes attached to it, which can be reached through the link in the options column. These notes will allow you to see what actions Grand Lodge has taken, and what responses they have received from the foreign jurisdiction.

Dues Management

Learn how to initialize and manage member dues.

The functions in this section are primarily for lodge secretaries.

Getting Started with Dues

This section will guide through the process of setting up lodge member types and importing your current balances due from the system you used previous to MORI.

Part I: Lodge Member Types

Setting up dues in MORI is a simple process. In this series of posts I will cover:

  • How to setup lodge member types,
  • What each lodge member types pays in annual dues,
  • Assigning a member type to every member of the lodge,
  • Importing any arrears or dues balances for your lodge members,
  • Creating new dues entries for the upcoming year,
  • Configuring your dues notice, and
  • Generating and printing dues notices.

Creating Lodge Member Types

On the MORI menu go to: Lodge -> Member Types

This screen is divided into two sections: Member Types, which lists any existing member types that have been created for your lodge; and an Add Member Type form for creating new member types.

We will be using the "Add Member Type" form at the bottom of the page to create our lodge member types and enter the amount they will be billed for dues in the coming year.

The "Add Member Type" form has two fields "New Member Type," which is the name for the member types, such as "Regular," "Life," or "Hardship." The second field "Total Annual Dues" is where you enter the total amount the member type pays in annual dues. This is an important thing to understand, MORI only tracks one amount due for each member type, so you need to enter the complete amount you bill each member type on an annual basis. (ie. Include the Grand Lodge per-capita, lodge dues, meal fees, pet baby sitting fees, etc. OK, pet sitting is a joke.)

So, let's create a member type. We're going to create a "Regular" member who pays $100.00 per years in total annual dues. Enter "Regular" in the "New Member Type" field, and enter "100" in the "Total Annual Dues" field, and then click the "add" button. The screen will reload and you will see the "Regular" member type listed in the "Member Types" section at the top of the page.

You can create as many member types as you like. If your lodge charges a different amount for regular members just change the amount.

Now, create all of the member types for your lodge, common ones are "Regular," "Life," "Hardship," and "Honararium" for people like the secretary, if he doesn't pay dues. (NB: You do not need to create a member type for Honorary members. MORI already handles them transparently.)

In the next installment we will learn how to assign a member types to every member of the lodge.

Part II: Assigning Member Types

In this section we're going to learn a simple way to assign a member type to every member of our lodge. Fortunately MORI has a feature that allows this to all be done on one screen. You dont' need to look up every member of your lodge individually.

It is necessary that you have created your member types from our first installment before doing this step.

The Initialize Dues Page

On the MORI Menu go to: Financial -> Initialize Dues.

You can see that the form is divided into two parts, one for active members and a second for inactive members. We're only going ot be dealing with active members in this setup.

The form has four columns:

  • The members GL# and name, which you can click to view the members complete record,
  • A select list to set the member's lodge member type,
  • An input field to enter the amount in arrears the member owes,
  • An input field to enter the amount in current years dues the member owes.

We are only going to be dealing with the second column in this installment, so please don't enter anything into the arrears and dues columns until I have covered them. Doing so could really create a lot of unnecessary work if it is done wrong.

Setting the Member Types

Setting the member type or a member is very easy. In the "Member Type" column there is a select list for each member. Clicking this list will cause it to open up.

Click the member type you wish to assign to each member on the list next to their name. Once you have set the member type for all of your active members click the "update" button, and all of your information will be saved.

Once you have set a members type via the "Initialize Dues" screen you can not change it again on the "Initialize Dues" page. If you enter a member's type incorrectly and need to change it go to: Membership -> Find Member, look the member up, click the edit button next to their name, then set the member type on the "Member Data" tab, and click "save."

In our next installment we will learn about arrears and dues.

Part III: Entering Arrears and Dues

In my last two installments (I, II) we have covered creating member types, and assigning those to all of the members of your lodge. In this installment we will cover what arrears and dues mean in MORI, and particularly when you are doing your initial setup of dues.

We will be using the "Initialize Dues" page again.

Using it we will set the current amount of arrears, and current dues that each member of the lodge owes. It is very important to understand that you only need to go through this process once, when you initially setup the dues for your lodge. If you have already gone through this process and just wish to do dues notices for your next year I will be covering that in a future post.

So, let's define arrears and dues in the context of the "Initialize Dues" page. It is important that you understand this.

Let us assume that the current year is 2006, and that you are getting ready to do your 2007 dues in MORI. For the purpose of the "Initialize Dues" page any amount due for 2005 or prior would be arrears. Any amount due for the 2006 would be dues. Therefore if dues for your lodge were $100.00 per year, and a brother owed 2005 and 2006, he would owe $100.00 in arrears and $100.00 in dues. When you fill in the "Initialize Dues" page you would:

  • Enter 100 in the arrears column, and
  • 100 in the dues column.

No dollar signs are needed, and if there are no cents you just enter the whole dollar amount.

IT IS ABSOLUTELY IMPERTATIVE THAT YOU DO NOT ADD THE DUES AND ARREARS TOGETHER. ARREARS ARE ARREARS AND DUES ARE DUES. DO NOT ADD THEM TOGETHER.

Let's go through another example. Your lodge charges $100.00 per year. A brother owes 2006 dues. You would do the following:

  • Leave the arrears column blank,
  • Enter 100 in the dues column.

If a brother is right up to date with their dues payments and owes nothing to the lodge simply leave the arrears and dues fields blank.

When you have filled in the form hit the submit button. Again you only need to do this for your active members. Also, you can work on a few members at a time and hit the submit button. It will save the members you have made entries for, and you can come back to the page and continue your work later.

If you gotten this far and entered all of the dues that members owe you, you're ready to generate your amounts due for the next year. We will use MORI to do that. It only takes a few seconds, and then you'll be ready to create and print your dues notices.

Generating Dues Notices for a New Year

In this section we will cover: printing end of year reports, rolling current dues to arrears, generating new dues receivables entries, and printing dues notices.

Part I: End of Year Reports & Closing the Year

In this series of posts I will cover how to create new receivables entries for every member of your lodge, and roll any balances due to arrears automatically. We will also cover how to setup your dues notices, and print them, along with labels.

If you have not gone through the initial dues setup procedure please go to: Getting Started With Dues.

Print End of Year Reports

It is recommended that you print a few reports before rolling your dues to the next year. MOR provides reports for:

  • Payments Made
  • Dues and Arrears Owed
  • Dues Owed
  • Arrears Owed

Printing a copy of the "Payments Made" report for the year you are about to close, and a copy of the "Dues and Arrears Owed" is a good idea. You should print these repors and place them in a file, and label them final for the year you are closing.

Go to: Financial -> List Paid / Unpaid.

We'll assume that you are in the process of closing the year for 2006. So, enter 2006 in the "Year" input field on the "Payments Made" line and click the print button. This will download a PDF file that you can save on your computer for future reference, as well as print. The name of the file will be: PaidDuesReport.pdf.

Next on the "Dues and Arrears Owed" line select "active members" from the select list, and then click the "print" button. The name of the report will be: UnpaidDuesAndArrearsReport.pdf.

Save these reports, either by printing them in hard copy or changing their names to something like "PaidDuesReportFinal2006.pdf" for permanent record keeping.

Generating New Receivables Entries and Rolling Balances Due to Arrears

Generating new entries for your upcoming year is easy.

First we will check to be sure that our lodge member types are configured correctly. Go to: Lodge -> Member Types on the menu. Be sure that all of the amounts are correct for each member type in your lodge. If you need to make a change enter the new amount in the "Change Dues" column and click the "update" button.

Now go to: Financial -> Setup Dues. We're going to assume you are in the process of closing the year for 2006, and you want to generate dues entries for 2007.

In the "Year" input field enter "2007" and click the "setup" button. This process will roll any amount still due for 2006 dues and roll it to arrears, the create a new dues receivables amount for each member for 2007 according to their lodge member type. (NB: MORI automatically knows that honorary members are not charged dues, so you don't need to worry about that.)

Now, if you were closing the year 2007 and generating dues for 2008, you would enter 2008 in the "Year" input field instead of "2007".

You have now printed final reports for the year you were closing, rolled all past due amounts to arrears, and generated new receivables entries for the new year. In the next installment we will learn how to setup our dues notices, and print them.

Part II: Generating Notices

In our last installment we covered printing end of year reports, verifying our lodge member types, and changing their dues amounts if necessary, and closing the year and creating the new receivables entries for the new year's dues.

In this installment we'll cover:

  • Configuring our dues notices,
  • Printing our dues notices, and
  • Printing the labels for our dues notices.

Configuring Your Dues Notices

To configure your dues notices go to: Lodge -> Dues Notices


Figure 1

This page is separated into a left and right section. The fields on the left are used to enter what you want to appear on your dues notice. The panel on the right shows you a preview, in real time, of what the dues notice will look like.

The fields on the left are color coded to the area on the dues notice that they change, see #1, #2, and #3 on Figure 1.

Fill in the fields on the left until you have the dues notice looking the way you want it to, then click the save button on the lower left. (Figure 1 #4)

Printing Dues Notices

Go to: Lodge -> Dues Notices if you are not already there.

Click the "print" button in the lower right. (Figure 1 #5)

This will bring you to the Print Dues Notices Page.


Figure 2

You can select which lodge member types to print dues notices for, this defaults to all lodge member types. (Figure 2 #1) You can sort the notices by name or zip code. (Figure 2 #2) You can print either three notices to a page, or one to a page. (Figure 2 #3). Set these controls to your liking.

You are now ready to print your notices. Click the "preview notices" button (Figure 2 #4), this will generate a PDF file, which will be downloaded to your computer. This will either open in your browser, your browser will ask you where to save it, or will download to your default download folder.

If the PDF opened directly in your browser you can print it directly from there. If the file was downloaded and saved on your hard drive, find it and open it, then print it from there.

Printing Dues Labels

Once your notices have printed click the "preview labels" button. (Figure 2 #5) This will generate a PDF file of your labels. Print this using the same process as you did for the dues notices. These labels will be in Avery 5160/8160 format (three across by ten down).

Quick Guide

Find a member: Membership -> Find Member

Edit a member: Membership -> Find Member; Enter your search and click the search button; Click the “Edit” button next to the member you want to edit.

Enter a registry event: Membership -> Find Member; Enter your search and click the search button; Click the “Edit” button next to the member you need to add the event for; Click the “Events” tab; Select the type of event from the list, enter the date and click the “Add” button.

Print a member’s profile: Membership -> Find Member; Enter your search and click the search button; Click the “Profile” button.

Your Web Browser

Comaptible Browsers

The MORI system has been designed to be compatible with a wide range of web browsers. MORI is compatible with the following browsers:

Mozilla Firefox

MORI is extensively tested and primarily developed in Mozilla Firefox. It is recommended that you use Firefox for best results. Firefox is free software, and can be downloaded from Mozilla.org.

Understanding Annual Returns

What is an Annual Return?

An Annual Return, sometimes called a Recapitulation, is an annual report from a Lodge, or Chapter, to the Grand Lodge, or Grand Chapter. The report contains both a summary and detail of the changes that have occurred in the Lodge during the past year. Nearly every jurisdiction that uses MORI uses the Annual Return process.

What are the details included in the Annual Return?

The details of the Annual Return vary considerably from Jurisdiction to Jurisdiction, but at its core, an Annual Return details the Gains and Losses of members over the course of the year.

How does the summary math work?

To understand the math in the summary portion of an Annual Return, let's begin with an example summary for a Masonic Lodge:

Members at the beginning of the year: 200

Gains:
   - Members Raised:     5
   - Affiliations:       2
   - Restorations:       3
       Total Gains:                   +10

Losses
   - NPD:               10
   - Deaths:             5
   - Dimits:             7
   - Expulsions:         1
       Total Losses:                  -23

Variance:                              +3

Members at the end of the year:       190

To calculate the summary, MORI uses the final number from the previous Annual Return as the beginning number for this Annual Return. MORI then adds in the Gains and subtracts the Losses. That gives MORI a tentative final number (NOT SHOWN, but in the example it would be 187). MORI then counts the number of Members in the Lodge as of the end of the year (SHOWN). The difference between the calculated tentative total and the true final number is expressed as a variance.

Why would there be a variance?

It is extremely important that the final number be an accurate count of the members in the Lodge as of the end of the year. Sometimes the math does not arrive cleanly at that number. There are several reasons why this could occur: