Decatur Masonic Lodge 571 and and Geneva Masonic Lodge 621 – The Merger
After meeting at the same location since the inception of the Lodge in 1899, the Geneva Lodge was unexpectedly without a home when a winter storm in January, 1999, caused a large amount of roof and structural damage to the Lodge building. With declining membership already becoming a problem, members of the Geneva Lodge began to look at their options for the future.
After much discussion and exploration of its options, Geneva Lodge No. 621 decided to approach Decatur Lodge No. 571 about the possibility of a merger. These talks began in August, 1999, and continued for nearly a year. Finally in May, 2000, the two lodges agreed to merge their respective memberships.
On June 26, 2000, after over 100 years of continuous existence, Geneva Lodge No. 621 closed its doors and officially became part of the Decatur Lodge No. 571.
Members of the former Geneva lodge and community adjusted quickly to their new home with several taking active leadership roles. William E. Warren, PM, served as Worshipful Master of Decatur Lodge No. 571 in 2006. Terry Bollenbacher, PM, a resident of Geneva. joined Decatur Lodge in July, 2000, and served as Worshipful Master in 2007. Jeffrey Bauman, PM, is the current secretary of Decatur Lodge, having served in that position since 2002. Other former members of the Geneva Lodge continue to serve as officers and sit on various committees.