I am sure that many times you have asked yourself why you
have not been asked to join the Masonic Fraternity. I would like to take this
opportunity to share with you some information that I hope will help you to
understand Freemasonry better.
Freemasonry is the oldest and largest of over 700 different
fraternal orders. We have over 3 1/2 million members worldwide with over 1 3/4
million members in the United States. In New Jersey, we have approximately
24,000 members in 120 Lodges.
Freemasonry, as we know it today, had its beginnings in England
in the early 1700's and came to America with the early settlers. George Washington
served as our first President and during this time, served as Master of his
Lodge. Many of the signers of the Declaration of Independence were active Masons.
Our purpose in this message to you is not only to tell you
about Freemasonry, our origin and our people, but also to clarify some misconceptions
- We are not a secret organization, ours is a well-known organization
whose members wear emblems and meet in buildings with our emblems displayed.
We publicize our meetings in the newspapers, T.V. stations, and radio stations.
- We are not a religious organization, but ours is an organization
of religious men with our teachings coming to life from the pages of the Holy
- We are not a charitable organization, but ours is an organization
of benevolent people, an organization that contributes over $450 Million dollars
a year or $1.5 Million dollars a day to assist people in need and to alleviate
the sufferings of mankind.
We attribute our success down through the years to the following:
- Our belief in the Fatherhood of God.
- Our belief in the Brotherhood of Man.
- Our method of membership selection.
We are anxious to clarify a misunderstanding concerning our
method of membership selection. One of the reasons for our success is that we
do not solicit our members, as do other organizations. Each of our members has
come of their own free will and accord. They have sought out one of our members
and asked for a petition for membership because they saw in that member character
traits that they would like to emulate or pattern their lives after. There is
no violation of Masonic Policy when a Mason tells a non-Mason that membership
is predicated on a request to join and not on an invitation.
We are anxious to let you know that if you want to be a part
of this truly great organization, it is very simple; JUST ASK YOUR MASON FRIEND
to get you a petition for the degrees and then, with approval of members by
ballot, you will receive the Degrees.
To be eligible for membership, you must have been a resident
of your city or community for six months. We ask you three simple questions
in our petition for membership:
- Do you believe in the existence of God?
- Do you believe in the immortality of the Soul?
- Do you believe in the resurrection of the body?
Once you have asked a friend for a petition for membership
and have been accepted by ballot of members, you will receive the Blue Lodge
Degrees (Entered Apprentice, Fellowcraft and Masters). Then you will be eligible
to join appendant or allied Masonic Bodies like the Scottish Rite, York Rite,
and the Shrine.
Likewise, you and your wife will then have the opportunity
to join the Order of the Eastern Star on ballot of members. Masonic Bodies sponsor
youth organizations known as the Rainbow for Girls and DeMolay for Boys.
Should you consider seeking membership in the Masonic Fraternity
you must take the initiative and request of a friend, who is a Mason, a petition
for the three degrees in Freemasonry.
Your Masonic Friend