Men who wish to become Masons should contact the Lodge in their area.
Masonry is an organization of men of honor and integrity who believe that honesty, charity, love, trust, and education are paramount.
Masons don’t hide their beliefs; they proudly wear rings and lapel pins with emblems such as the Square and Compasses that recall its early roots in stone masonry. Lodge activities aren’t kept under wraps – they’re listed in local phone directories and newspapers.
Masons (Freemasons) are members of one of the world’s oldest fraternal organizations. They believe there’s more to life than pleasure and wealth, seeking ways to better themselves and helping their family, community, and country in return.
Freemasonry’s formal organization, the Grand Lodge, exists in every state and province within the United States. Local groups of Masons – usually in towns and cities – known as lodges have their traditions and methods for expanding membership opportunities; each club also refers both to both its members as well as where they meet; its symbolic meaning derives from stonemason shelters during the construction of King Solomon’s Temple in the Holy Land.
Historically, Masonry was predominantly male-oriented to reflect the social arrangements of its day – including slavery, indentured servitude, and bonding – but that’s no longer the case: today, Masonry has expanded and is inclusive with various women-specific organizations such as Order of the Eastern Star and International Order of Rainbow Girls joining it.
An individual wishing to join a Masonic lodge must be of legal age and recommended by at least two existing members, believe in God, be physically healthy, have good moral character, and have an outstanding reputation. He needn’t necessarily hold high-powered jobs such as bank president or janitor – although their personal growth could benefit more from the latter option than vice versa.
Masons come from diverse occupations and religions but share similar moral beliefs. While they don’t dictate which faith their members choose or how to worship Him, Masons do stress the importance of integrity within Freemasonry in everyday life and adhering to its principles in daily decisions.
A Way of Life
A way of life describes your approach to living and the most important things to you. It includes factors like character, worldview, talents, means, capacities, habits, and environment – for Masons, theirs is defined by honor, integrity, and a desire to grow personally while helping others do the same.
Masonry is not a religion but does believe in a Supreme Being. Members are encouraged to participate actively in their respective beliefs, with Masonry teaching that spirituality is essential to one’s overall well-being. Masonry also stresses the importance of education, particularly imparting values such as honesty, charity, and compassion to our young men.
Lodge refers both to a group of Masons and the room where they meet, recalling its roots in stonemasons’ clubs of the Middle Ages – where geometrical principles such as geometry, structural engineering, and mathematics were employed for cathedral construction – and is also a reminder that Masonry originated there as formal education was only affordable by social elites in those days; ever since Masons have highlighted its significance.
Masons spend much of their time doing acts of charity and learning in lodge rooms, but they also enjoy socializing outside these settings. Picnics, camping trips, and events to mark holidays or special events are organized, as well as clubs around mutual interests – such as one which features vintage Italian Lambretta scooters as a favorite pastime among Freemasons.
To become a Mason, one must be male (this is a fraternity), with a mental capacity capable of understanding its teachings. He must be at least the minimum age requirement in his state for Masonry membership, the sound of mind and body, believe in God, and have a good reputation; additionally, he must join and remain part of a Masonic Lodge, which acts as a local group; to complete three stages of initiation: Entered Apprentice, Fellowcraft, and Master Mason.
A Way of Helping
By becoming a Mason, a man commits himself and other men to do things together to improve the world. Additionally, joining one of the oldest, largest, and most revered fraternities, he joins a network of like-minded individuals from diverse backgrounds who share an appreciation of honor, integrity, and the pursuit of excellence as essential ingredients for an excellent life.
Men who join Masonry benefit greatly, both themselves and their families alike. It allows them to do something meaningful with other men while helping them grow as people and become better fathers and husbands. Masonry teaches members the values of charity, truthfulness, and fairness while inspiring them to do good in the world; plus, it gives them a way to meet new friends while building long-lasting relationships and learning the importance of family ties.
According to NPR, many great leaders worldwide were Freemasons, including George Washington, Simon Bolivar (the liberator of South America), Ben Franklin, Sigmund Freud, and Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart. These men joined because they believed Masonry offered moral guidance that could complement religion more directly.
Maintaining a lodge takes significant work. Most North American clubs meet once or twice monthly for business and to confer three degrees – Entered Apprentice, Fellowcraft, and Master Mason – which teach moral and ethical lessons to its members. Although these ceremonies are private for members only, they are imposing and informative.
Masons can be seen performing notable works throughout their communities. Listing all the projects completed would take pages, but among these projects are highway and street cleanup programs, helping needy families, providing eyeglasses for those unable to afford them, supporting education and early childhood literacy initiatives, assisting injured or disabled veterans, assisting injured service members as well as much more.
Masonic lodge members also find value in doing work that may not be visible; for instance, learning to be reliable people who put others’ needs before their own and developing inner strengths that enable them to overcome anger, lust, envy, and sloth. Masons become influential leaders who contribute positively to communities around them – their success rests upon how well they do the small things that help others succeed.
A Way of Growing
As soon as a man becomes a Mason, he joins an organization transcending religious, ethnic, social, cultural, and educational differences. By becoming part of this Brotherhood, he connects himself to like-minded men who believe honesty, compassion, love, trust, and education are at the core of human existence. By serving his community, family, and country, he looks for ways to become a better father, husband, and friend citizen backed by Brothers from various points along his journey.
He begins this journey by joining a lodge, from as formal as Grand Lodges to something as informal as a single room in a building. Clubs serve as places where local Freemasons gather together to share beliefs and each other’s company – during these closed meetings, Masons receive the first three degrees of Freemasonry.
Masons have always placed great emphasis on education since its origin. Even during medieval times, becoming a stonemason required significant knowledge in geometry, structural engineering, and mathematics – this education wasn’t readily available; you needed to be from a socially upper-class family to attend formal schools where this type of learning occurred.
Freemasonry’s global success partly lies because they were one of the few organizations that pridefully promoted and taught education to its members.
As well as education, Masons work to aid their local communities in any way possible. They may support charitable organizations that serve children or the elderly; collaborate with fellow Masons on building homes for those in need; take part in public ceremonies that support community causes such as installations of officers or cornerstone laying ceremonies; etc.
To become a Mason, one must be of good character, sound mind, and legal age (depending on the state) before petitioning a lodge for membership. At least two existing Masons of your club should recommend your petitioning for membership, and these requirements represent just formal requirements; Masons must also believe in God as they consider humanity necessary, treat others kindly, and display fairness, honesty, and courtesy throughout life.