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  • WHAT IS A LODGE?
    The term ‘Lodge' has two meanings in Freemasonry. Firstly, it is used to describe the place where meetings are held. It refers to the temporary buildings erected by Masons alongside their construction projects. These were used by the craftsmen as places to rest eat, plan the project, receive their wages, and socialise. Training and education would also have taken place in the Lodges. The second use of the term ‘Lodge' refers to individual groups of Freemasons and is more commonly today. A national structure evolved for the control of these Lodges and was called the ‘Grand Lodge'. Grand Lodges are lineal descendants of what are known as the ‘Mother Grand Lodges', the United Grand Lodge of England, the Grand Lodge of Ireland and the Grand Lodge of Scotland, all three of which were established in the early seventeen hundreds.
  • WHAT HAPPENS AT A LODGE MEETING?
    As in any organisation, the meeting is first called to order, and the ceremony of opening the Lodge is quite formal and draws on elements of the very foundations of Masonry. It serves to remind Freemasons of the virtues they seek to live by. Once this is complete, minutes and correspondence are read, projects are planned, and other business taken care of, very much like any other organisation. When new members are being received or are being advanced through the degrees of Craft Masonry, formal ceremonies are again used to teach Freemasons important moral lessons. Following the formal closing of the Lodge, it is usual for some socialising to take place, often over supper.
  • 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.
  • WHY SHOULD I BECOME A FREEMASON?
    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.
  • 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 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.
  • WHAT IS FREEMASONRY'S RELATIONSHIP WITH RELIGION?
    All Freemasons are expected to have a religious belief, but Freemasonry does not 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. It is one of the Fundamental Principles of Freemasonry, that neither in the Lodge, nor at any time in his capacity as a Freemason, is a member permitted to discuss or to advance his views on theological or political questions.
  • WHAT IS FREEMASONRY'S RELATIONSHIP WITH POLITICS?
    Freemasonry, as a body, will never express a view on politics or state policy. The discussion of politics at Masonic meetings has always been prohibited.
  • CAN ANYONE BECOME A FREEMASON?
    Yes – Freemasonry is open to people from all walks of life, regardless of their race, religion, or socio-economic position in society. Freemasonry is open to men over the age of 21 who are of “good character” and who believe in a supreme being. We are an organisation that is simply trying to make good men better”.
  • IS FREEMASONRY INTERNATIONAL?
    Freemasonry exists globally and the Grand Lodge of Ireland is one of the oldest in the world with Districts in many overseas countries. Our members are free to visit any of our Lodges abroad and will often find a warm welcome from fellow members who know the local country very well. In addition to our Lodges, many other counties have sovereign grand lodges, which our members are free to visit and whose members visit us when travelling. That said, there is no international governing body for Freemasonry.
  • HOW MANY FREEMASONS ARE THERE IN IRELAND?
    Worldwide, there are approximately six million Freemasons. There are 20,000 Freemasons in Ireland, with approximately 4500 of those in Northern Ireland.
  • DO FREEMASONS HAVE TO BELIEVE IN GOD?
    In Freemasonry we do not discuss religion of any sorts, but our members do believe in a ‘supreme being’ or a God of sorts, whether that be Christian, Muslim, Sikh or Jewish etc .
  • HOW MANY DEGREES ARE THERE IN FREEMASONRY
    Basic 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. 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.
  • MEMBERSHIP AND SECRECY
    Masonry is not a secret society, but it is a society with a few secrets. Very few, in fact, and these are solely concerned with modes of recognition. They are simply the methods by which a Mason can prove he is a member. Like many other aspects of Freemasonry these are traditional. Again for reasons of tradition, modern Freemasonry has retained the means of mutual recognition.
  • WHAT ARE THE THREE GREAT PRINCIPLES?
    Freemasons are expected to adhere to three principles: Brotherly Love Every true Freemason will show tolerance and respect for the opinions of others and behave with kindness and understanding to his fellow creatures. Relief Freemasons are taught to practise charity, and to care, not only for their own members, but for the community as a whole, by both charitable giving, and by voluntary effort. Truth Freemasonry strives for truth and requires high moral standards of its members.
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