What is Freemasonry?
Freemasonry is the largest and most highly respected Fraternal Order in the World. Freemasonry is a way of life….. Love of God, Family, Country and the Fraternity. A way of life which compliments your Religious and Civil beliefs. Freemasonry doesn’t replace, but rather adds to the qualities of life which we all desire. Quote from Indiana Masons Online: “Fifty years ago, a prominent Freemason referred to our Gentle Craft as “an organized association of men, symbolically applying the principles of operative Masonry and architecture to the science and art of character building.”” In brief, Freemasonry offers the good man an opportunity to become a better man.
What will Freemasonry mean to me as an individual?
Picture in your mind that you are shopping at the largest store in the world, though everything on the shelf is available….. you will only choose certain items as to your likes and personal tastes. Freemasonry offers an amount of education that is virtually endless, you choose and grasp on to those things which will benefit and better you and the fraternity with your talents and skills. Imagine that you could attend a university with an infinite amount of instructors and professors…. Being a member you will have ample opportunity to meet with informed and worthy men from all walks of life and vocations.
I’ve heard that the “Masons” is a “secret society”.
Not true, other than signs of recognition (passwords and handshakes), all information can be obtained concerning the organization. I like to compare it to marriage, though the act of marriage is rather standard in many ways, there are things about marriage, that because they become personal or intimate, you choose not to share with the rest of the world. Not that they are secret, but rather that out of respect for others and the desire for possessing something unique and special are important to you.
What are the requirements for becoming a Freemason?
Quote from Indiana Masons Online: “Twenty-two words describe the most important prerequisite to becoming a Mason, “…. We receive none, knowingly, into our ranks who are not moral and upright before God and of good repute before the world…”.
Under Indiana Masonic law, a person seeking admission must be a man, at least 18 years of age and a resident of Indiana for at least one year immediately prior to petitioning.
Further, he must profess his belief in the existence of a Supreme Being, by whatever name he may be known. Membership must be of one’s own free will and accord.
A man possessing these qualifications and being desirous of becoming a Freemason need only ask his Masonic friend for a membership petition. The petition having been completed and signed by two members of the Lodge petitioned, is read at a meeting of the Lodge. A committee of three is appointed to call on and visit with the petitioner and his family that they may become acquainted with the organization and its activities. After the committee reports back to the Lodge, the petition is voted on by the members and, if accepted, the aspirant begins the process of becoming a Mason.”
Will I be asked to join?
No, deciding to join the Masons, must be of your own free will and accord. Many who would make ideal Masons never join, because they simply don’t know that you must ask. The reasoning for this method, is that for you to get the most out of Freemasonry, you must have a sincere desire for improving your own character and thereby improving all situations (family, community, etc.) surrounding you and not for reasons of pressure from others or promise of material gains.
Thoughts from valued and respected Brethren and Friends concerning Freemasonry:
“Freemasonry, if properly applied, teaches us that there is no set standard of practice. Rural Lodges have their traditions and methods that have served them well over the years. Urban and suburban Lodges likewise have theirs. Regardless of the approach to Freemasonry, the core elements are the same, that is to demonstrate Brotherly Love, Relief and Truth in all
our dealings with mankind. It is this diversity that is to be celebrated, not criticized or taken lightly by someone who may have a differing viewpoint. The thrust of our message has been, is, and always must be -- "To make a difference in our towns, cities and states, our families and others' families by living out the teachings of the Masonic Fraternity."
We can't make a difference unless we show others what the difference is.”
Tom Fellows, WM
New Washington Lodge No. 167 F. & A. M.
New Washington, Indiana
Still seeking knowledge of the Freemason Fraternity? Please check out the Indiana Grand Lodge website: Indiana Masons for further and more in depth material.