Masonic Lodge #1354
Making good men better 

FAQ

  • What is Freemasonry?
    Freemasonry is a fraternal order or brothers that are dedicated to making good men better!
  • Are Masons just a bunch of old men? Isn’t Masonry dying out?

    As regards the United States:

    There is no doubt that the population of Masons is aging. There was a huge increase in membership in almost all fraternal orders after World War II, including Masonry. This peaked at sometime in the late 50s. During the social turbulence and generational strains of the 60s and 70s, new membership fell off, with the result that by the 1980s, total membership was in sharp decline.

    However, there are signs that membership has leveled out, or is gaining in some areas. In many lodges, there are a great number of 50-and-up members, and a number of 30-and-under members, with a gulf in between, representing where Baby Boomers would have been. Of course, we are speaking in broad generalities here– there is no way to know the demographics of your local Lodge without asking one of its members.

    The overall point is that Masonic membership, when talking on a national scale, has probably hit a stable membership base, after a huge surge and then fall in membership.

  • How do I become a Freemason?
    You must first ask a Mason to join, then you fill out and petition the lodge. After a vote is taken, you will be notified and will receive the first degree of masonry.
  • Do I have to be invited?

    Don’t wait to be invited– you will die waiting. Masons are prohibited from activelyrecruiting or asking non-Masons to join the fraternity, to insure that candidates come of

    their own free will.

  • Are there any Masonic functions that I can attend as a non-Mason?

    Yes. Many Lodges open their installation of officers to the public. Once a year, a new Worshipful Master takes office. The ceremony performed during his inauguration is public. It is not the same ceremony as would be performed in a regular Masonic ritual or degree, but it does have the flavoring of Masonic symbolism and allows the public to “get a feel for Masonry” without being Masons.In addition, many Lodges sponsor public functions throughout the year, such as dinners or charity functions, designed to allow non-Masons who are interested in Masonry the chance to talk with Masons and ask questions. For information, call your local Lodge.

  • What is the York Rite?

    The York Rite, like the Scottish Rite, is an appendant body of Masonry, and confers degrees beyond the Blue Lodge’s three degrees. It consists of nine degrees additional degrees: Mark Master, Past Master, Most Excellent Master, and Royal Arch Mason; the Cryptic Degrees of the Royal Master, Select Master, and Super Excellent Master; and the Chivalric Orders of the Order of the Red Cross, Order of the Knights of Malta and the Order of Knights Templar.The Shrine degrees, which comprise the top degrees of the York Rite are specifically Christian. Or at least, it can be stated that the oath is: in some Grand Lodges in the US and abroad, one need not be a Christian, but rather only be willing to take a Christian OATH. The difference here is that there are some who would willingly swear to defend the Christian faith on the grounds that they would defend any man’s faith. The Chapter (or Royal Arch) and Council Of Royal And Select Masters (Cryptic Rite), which comprise the first two sections of the York Rite, are not specifically Christian.

    As with most things Masonic, discuss any concerns with your local York Rite, who can advise you regarding your eligibility

  • What is the Shrine?

    The Shrine is not an appendant body of Masonry, though the distinction would escape many. The Shrine confers no additional degrees. It was founded in 1872 (the Mecca Shrine in New York City) and an Arabic theme was chosen. Hence, the distinctive red fez that Shriners wear at official functions.Members of the Ancient Arabic Order of the Nobles the Mystic Shrine for North America (AASONM is an anagram for “A MASON”) are members of the Scottish Rite’s 32nd degree, and/or Knights Shriner of the York Rite. The Shrine is most noted for its emphasis on philanthropy and its jolly outlook on life– it has been called “the playground of Masonry”. This is expressed as “Pleasure without intemperance, hospitality without rudeness, and jollity without coarseness.”

  • What is the Scottish Rite?
    The Scottish Rite is an appendant body of Masonry, meaning that it is not part of the Blue Lodge per se, but closely associated with Masonry. It requires that a man be a Master Mason before joining the Scottish Rite. The Scottish Rite confers the 4th through 32nd degrees. The degree work may be, but is not necessarily, completed at one time. Any Master Mason is eligible to join the Scottish Rite. The degrees of the Scottish Rite continue the symbolism of the first three Masonic degrees
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