What is a Freemason? What does it mean to be a Mason? Why would I join Freemasonry? These are all valid questions and we would encourage anyone that has an interest in joining or who just wants to know more to ask as many questions as you wish. Below are some frequently asked questions, if you would like to know more or if you have a question that is not answered please contact Ivan Beckett at firstname.lastname@example.org
It is always better to “Ask Someone Who Knows” and we openly encourage anyone who is interested to openly ask their questions and seek the facts about Freemasonry, rather than the rumours. We in the Provincial Grand Lodge of Valencia openly encourage this and would like to hear from you.
Frequently asked questions
What is Freemasonry?
Freemasonry means different things to each of those who join. For some, it’s about making new friends and acquaintances. For others it’s about being able to help deserving causes – making a contribution to family and for society. But for most, it is an enjoyable hobby.
Freemasonry is one of the world’s oldest and largest non-religious, non-political, fraternal and charitable organisation. It teaches self-knowledge through participation in a progression of ceremonies. Members are expected to be of high moral standing and are encouraged to speak openly about Freemasonry.
What happens at a lodge meeting?
The meeting, which like those of other groups, are open only to members, it is normally in two parts. First, there are normal administrative procedures such as:
• Minutes of the previous meeting
• Proposing and balloting for new members
• Discussing and voting on the annual accounts
• Masonic news and correspondence
• News about charitable work
Second, there are the ceremonies for:
• Admitting new members
• The annual installation of the Master of the Lodge and his officers
Why do you wear regalia?
Wearing regalia is historic and symbolic. Like a uniform, the regalia indicates the rank of the wearer in the organisation.
How many degrees are there in Freemasonry?
Freemasonry consists of three degrees:
• Entered Apprentice
• Fellow Craft
• Master Mason
How much does it cost to be a Freemason?
There is an initiation fee when you join and each Lodge charges an annual subscription to cover its running costs.
Each meeting is normally followed by a dinner, with the cost depending on the venue. You will also be expected to wear a dark suit, white shirt, and black, or other suitable, tie and in due course you will need to buy your own regalia.
Members are invited to donate to charity, but this should always be within your means and it is entirely up to you how much you wish to contribute.
Costs can vary considerably from lodge to lodge, particularly for the dining, and your proposer and seconder should make them clear to you before you join.
Why do Freemasons take oaths?
New members make solemn promises concerning their behaviour, both in the Lodge and in society. Members also promise to keep confidential the way they recognise each other when visiting another Lodge. Freemasons also promise to support others in time of need but only so far as it does not conflict with their family and public obligations which should always come first.
Are Freemasons expected to 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 states that he expects no material gain from membership.
Who do the Masonic charities donate to?
Whilst there are Masonic charities that cater specifically, but not exclusively, for Masons or their dependents, others make significant grants to non-Masonic organisations.
What is Freemasonry’s relationship with religion?
All Freemasons are expected to have a religious belief, but Freemasonry does not in any way seek to replace a Mason’s religion or provide a substitute for it. It deals in a man’s relationship with his fellow man not in a man’s relationship with his God. We wish to help good men to become better.
Can anyone become a Freemason?
Yes – Freemasonry is open to people from all walks of life, regardless of their race, religion, sexual orientation or socio-economic position in society.
Are there women Freemasons?
Yes. Whilst the Grand Lodge of Spain (GLE), follows the example of medieval stonemasons, it is, and always has been, restricted to men, women Freemasons have two separate Grand Lodges, which are themselves restricted to women.
For more information, please visit the Honourable Fraternity of Ancient Freemasons [HFAF] and the Order of Women Freemasons [OWF].