Frequently Asked Questions
Q: What is the difference between Freemasons and Masons?
A: Nothing. They are synonymous terms……….equal in meaning.
Q: What is Freemasonry?
A: Freemasonry is the oldest and most popular fraternity of men in history. As Master Masons we are dedicated to the up-building of moral character and the preservation of personal freedom.
Q: What is a Master Masons? What do they do?
A: Becoming a Master Mason means different things to different people. People get out of Masonry what they put into it. Here are some of the reasons why people join freemasonry:
– The charitable nature of the Lodge as an organization.
– The moral truths that are brought to light when they receive the degrees.
– The great history of the Masonic Lodge and being a part of an ancient institution.
– Some men join because their father, grandfather or childhood hero was a Mason.
– Many people simply enjoy the fellowship and social aspects of the lodge.
Q: How do people learn about the Freemasons?
A: Through the charity and good works of our Brother Masons and by talking to a Master Mason directly. Freemasons donate approximately $2 million dollars per day to worthy and legitimate charitable organizations
Q: Who can join Freemasonry?
A: Freemasonry is open to all men – regardless of race, religion and social status as long as: Qualifications
– They MUST be 21 years of age or older.
– They MUST be of good character and reputation. .
– They MUST believe in a Supreme Being and the immortality of the soul.
Q: Is Masonry a religion?
A: No. Every applicant must express a belief in Supreme Being, but no particular or specific religion is required to become a Freemason.
Q: If Freemasonry isn’t a religion, why have I’ve seen pictures of the Holy Bible displayed in Masonic Lodges.
A: In the United States, the book of faith is usually the Holy Bible. But not always. Lodges use the book of faith that is predominant within the Lodge. When a person becomes a Mason, the book of HIS faith will be used during the ritual.
Q: Do Masons perform the Last Rites upon the remains of a departed Brother?
A: When requested by the family to do so, Masons will recite a beautiful and meaningful time-honored Masonic Funeral Ritual.
Q: Can a woman become a Mason?
A: No. But Freemasonry has many appendant bodies. Some are for men, some for women some for both. Freemasonry also has appendant bodies for boys and others for girls.
Q: Once I become a Master Mason, can my wife attend Lodge?
A: No. But the Lodge does put on many events where you wife and family are welcomed and encouraged to attend.
Q: Do Masons become so involved that they neglect their families?
A: Absolutely not! Family comes first. Masons are taught that they should never neglect their families, their church or their country. Freemasonry comes after ALL these obligations are fulfilled. Please CLICK HERE to download a brochure that will assist you and your family when you begin your Masonic journey.
Q: Is Freemasonry a secret society?
A: Walk or drive down Main Street in Endicott and you’ll see our Masonic Lodge. There is a sign conspicuously posted on our front yard that pretty much tells everyone in the world that the building is a Masonic Lodge. We have far fewer secrets that most governments, corporations and even families. Over time, so much material has been published about Freemasonry – that very little remains secret. Much of the Degree Ritual is even published on the Internet. The “secrets” that exist today are basically the modes of recognition and passwords that Masons can use to identify themselves to another Mason. The problem for a Non-Mason looking at different authors on the subject of Freemasonry is determining what’s true and what’s not true on the subject. Some Non-Masons have purported themselves to be “experts” on the subject while erstwhile Masons who write on masonic subjects can only speak for themselves as individuals and not on the Fraternity as a whole. Grand Lodges are the only official source of information within the boundaries of any state. There is no “national” Grand Lodge. If material has been published by a Grand Lodge in one of the states, it is most likely a valid source of information. Opinions and speculation of individuals should generally be discounted and ignored.
Q: Is there a head of the Freemasons in each state?
A: Yes. He is called the Grand Master.
Q: Who is the head of the Masons in the United States?
A: No one. Each state is independent and has a Grand Lodge. The highest officer in the Grand Lodge is called the Grand Master.
Q: Is there an official spokesman for the Masons?
A: No, not for the entire fraternity. The Grand Master speaks only for his Grand Lodge.
Q: How many Masons are there in the United States?
A: About 2.5 million.
Q: Are there Freemasons in other countries?
A: Yes. Worldwide around 6 million.
Q: What notable people have been Freemasons?
A: Thousands of men have become famous Freemasons. Scores of entertainers, scientists, astronauts, teachers, professional athletes, world leaders and many, many other professions have been manned by Freemasons. Notwithstanding nineteen New York Governors and fourteen American Presidents. For a small list of Famous Freemasons you probably be familiar with CLICK HERE.
Q: Why are so many Masons in public office?
A: The ritual performed in Freemasonry helps a good man become better. One of the qualities a Freemason will excel in will be self-confidence. Most Freemasons will find public speaking rather easy as they move through the degrees. That said, it is a concrete fact that all Masons are strictly forbidden from discussing politics at Lodge meetings.
Q: Is Freemasonry a patriotic organization?
A: Yes, definitely. Masons are taught to obey the laws of the country in which they reside. Respect their leaders and honor the soldiers who protect our rights, liberties and freedoms. In the United States, Masons have many patriotic activities. And all our meetings proudly include the Pledge of Allegiance to the Great flag of the Unites States of America.
Q: When did Freemasonry begin?
A: Many centuries ago. Freemasonry as we know it today came into being in June of 1717, when the first Grand Lodge of England was formed. Masonry prior to that time was a guild or union of stoneworkers, who practiced their trade throughout England and Europe, and were responsible for the beautiful cathedrals and public buildings throughout the continent. The term “Freemason” arose because these builders were not bound to a single Lord, Earl, Duke, or King, but instead worked under a contract. And when finished, they were free to leave the country to take on another project. This was a very prestigious fraternity – the gentry of the time applied for membership, and were “accepted”, whence originated the “Accepted” part of our Free and Accepted Masons.
As time went by, more and more speculative Masons were accepted and the actual building of massive structures declined. Around the formation of the first Grand Lodge of England in 1717, the majority of Freemasons were as we are today – builders of men and minds, instead of palatial and impressive edifices.
Q: I have a very close friend who is a Mason but he has never asked me to join. Why? Doesn’t he think I’m worthy?
A: Masons are strictly prohibited from asking anyone to join our fraternity. If you are interested, you must ask. I’m sure your friend would most likely be thrilled if you did because it’s a great honor to sponsor a man to become a Mason! When you ask, we view your request as a huge compliment ……that you think highly enough of him and what he stands for. If you’re curious, just ask!
Q: How does a man ask to join if he is new to the area or doesn’t know anyone who is a member of the Lodge?
A: No problem!! just CLICK HERE to get started. We welcome any man who is of lawful age and well recommended to contact us directly. You’ll have to make the first step.
Q: Is my admittance assured or automatic?
A: No. We only accept honest men who are of good moral character. You will complete a petition (application) and our petition committee will conduct an investigation into your background. Then, your petition will be put to vote by the membership. Every man who belongs to our Lodge has gone through this process.
Q: Once my petition is approved and accepted, how long will it take me to become a Master Mason?
A: Again, Freemasonry is all about getting out what you put into it. Some men can reach the level of Master Mason in as little as 2-3 months and others may take a year……you’ll move along at your own pace. But typically – about three to six months is the average.
Q: How will I learn what I need to know to become a Mason?
A: A kind, patient and competent teacher will be assigned to assist you. From the moment your petition is accepted, you’ll be surrounded by many men who will immediately welcome you and treat you like a brother. Everyone in the Lodge has been “new” once; and you’ll be pretty hard pressed to find a more kind and genuinely caring group of men.
***Do you have more questions? Please feel free to CLICK HERE to speak directly to a Master Mason from the Round Hill Lodge.