posted on Jun, 10 2010 @ 09:59 AM
Again the 'secret society' tag rears it's ugly head.
The only things we do privately are business meetings (pay the bills, etc.) and degree work.
It is a tragedy that the word "secret" ever got tied to "mystery societies". Sure, we have secrets like handshakes and passwords, but the real
purpose of Freemasonry is to learn about the "mystery" of life like so many esoteric, mystical and other societies have done before.
Our degrees are allegories, analogies, parables that help a man explore his beliefs and find out what the big "mystery" is for himself.
Our meetings are no more or less weird than any other social organization.
In my lodge we:
- Pledge allegiance to the Flag (US)
- Say a prayer
- Have a moment of reverent silence as the Senior Deacon opens the Bible that lays on the altar at the center of the lodge.
Then we start the meeting, using the basic Robert's Rules of Order that any other business meeting would use. We read petitions submitted for
membership, we vote on new members, we get a report from the Treasurer on our bank account, the Secretary reads any correspondence, if any Masons or
their Widows have died since the last meeting we read the obituary and hold a moment of silence.
Sometimes we will have a small educational program on the history of Masonry or a presentation from other groups like York Rite or Shriners.
Finally, it is asked if any of the brethren have sickness or distress to report. If a brother or his family are in distress we try to figure out how
we can help, from buying groceries, to giving them a ride to work, or paying their bills if they are in a bind.
Then the meeting is closed. Another moment of silence as the Bible is respectfully closed, and the Chaplain offers another blessing before we retire
for refreshments, card games, or head home.
The closing prayer at every Masonic event in my lodge:
"And now may the Blessings of Heaven rest upon us and all regular Masons; may Brotherly Love prevail and every moral and social virtue cement us,