What's the Secret?
The secrets of Freemasonry are concerned with its traditional modes of recognition. It is a society in which all members are free to acknowledge their membership and will do so in response to enquiries for respectable reasons. Its constitutions and rules are available to the public. There is no secret about any of its aims and principles. Like many other societies, it regards some of its internal affairs as private matters for its members.
What kind of charity support do you give?
Freemasons are involved in many charitable causes, raising money from members and their activities - not from the general public. We distribute charity to members and their families as well as many others in the community. Charitable donations are made by Freemasons in a number of ways - internationally, nationally and within the local community.
Who do the Masonic charities donate to?
Whilst there are Masonic charities that cater specifically, but not exclusively, for Masons or their dependants, others make significant grants to non-Masonic organisations. In fact, Freemasons are the largest charitable givers after the National Lottery, and also make major contributions to international disaster relief funds and to medical research.
Don't Freemasons give preference to fellow members?
Certainly not! This would be unacceptable and may lead to action being taken against those involved. On joining, each new member is required to state that he expects no material or financial gain from membership.
How do Lodges work?
Freemasons meet in groups called Lodges which are only open to members.
Each Masonic Hall will normally be the meeting place for a number of such lodges.
What happens at Masonic meetings?
Most Lodges meet in the evenings, from September through to March or April. Meetings are usually in two seperate parts: a formal meeting and a somewhat more relaxed part which will normally include a meal.
The business part of the evening consist of a formal traditional ceremony or ritual, learned by heart and used:-
when admitting new Masons
and the annual Installation of the new Master of the Lodge and his officers.
These ceremonies aim to teach moral lessons and encourage members to live in such a way that he will strive to be a better man. Not better than someone else, but better than he himself may otherwise be. Our meetings also include the administration of the Lodge business for items such as charitable donations, correspondence and financial matters.
The second part of the evening is more relaxed but still maintains an air of formality. Known as the Festive Board, it consists of a meal, drink and conversation. It is an opportunity to build friendships, talk about the “work” of the Lodge, and discuss the usual topics of daily life. However, we refrain from discussing politics or religion. Although we have many whose job involves serving the community, Freemasonry tends to attract those with a concern for people and a sense of social responsibility and purpose.