Frequently Asked Questions
* in some circumstances, we can consider membership from University students aged 18 and over.
Your   family   is   very   important   to   Freemasonry   and   we   encourage   all   of   our   prospective   members   to   discuss   joining   with   their   wives   and   partners   before committing   themselves.      At   certain   times   throughout   the   year,   we   run   family   events   and   we   really   encourage   our   members   to   bring   their   wives, partners   and   children   to   these   occasions.      Some   may   be   quite   formal,   like   our   Ladies   Nights   that   are   really   a   special   night   out,   others   are   quite   informal like   our   open   and   entertaining   talks   on   non-Masonic   or   Masonic   topics,   typically   followed   by   an   informal   dinner.      It   is   not   compulsory   for   families   to   be involved, but we encourage it as it fosters wider fellowship and understanding.
Some   Freemasons   are   interested   in   the   important   charitable   work   of   the   movement;   some   of   these   funds   are   used   to   assist   Freemasons   and   their dependents   in   times   of   need,   particularly   the   sick   and   the   elderly,   but   most   goes   to   non-Masonic   charities   local,   national   and   international.   Freemasons   also   carry   out   voluntary   work   to   help   the   local   community. Others   join   Freemasonry   because   of   the   special   fellowship   it   offers;   members   can   visit   any   Masonic   lodge anywhere   in   the   country   –   or   even   worldwide   –   and   they   will   be   warmly   greeted   as   if   they   were   an   old   friend. Freemasonry   is   a   community   where   all   are   equal,   it   matters   not   whether   you   are   a   King   or   a   Cobbler,   you   are primarily a Freemason and you will always be shown friendship and goodwill.
© Sutton Court Lodge (7826) and UGLE, 2017, save where acknowledged
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In   a   way,   but   no   more   so   than   you   would   join   a   golf   club   to   better   your   skills   at   golf!      The   ‘personal   gain’   that   you   achieve   from   being   a   Freemason   is better   described   as   ‘personal   satisfaction’   of   being   part   of   a   worldwide   organisation   that   works   tirelessly   to   help   those   who   are   less   fortunate   in   the world.         It   is   sometimes   suggested   that   Masonic   handshakes   will   give   you   an   advantage   over   others   who   are   not   Freemasons   and   this   is   not   only   untrue,   it also   goes   against   one   of   the   basic   principles   of   the   movement.      Masonic   handshakes   are   part   of   our   ritual   and,   whereas   they   can   be   used   in   everyday society to acknowledge fellow Freemasons, the expectation of ‘favour’ or ‘preferment’ goes against the strict morality of Freemasonry.
Freemasonry   has   nothing   to   hide;   it   is   not   and   never   has   been   a   ‘secret’   society,   although   it   may   be   a   society with   secrets!     All   of   our   centres   from   Freemasons’   Hall   in   London,   to   the   lowliest   centre   in   a   far-flung   province are   open   for   guided   tours   to   the   general   public.      The   so-called   ‘mysteries’   or   ‘secrets’   of   Freemasonry   are revealed   to   members   as   they   progress   through   the   various   stages   of   development   and   are   little   more   than   good, sound   advice   on   how   to   lead   a   fruitful   life   in   the   community.      Learning   is   based   on   history   and   the   rituals   of Freemasonry   are   based   on   sound   moral   guidance   set   in   historic   context;   taking   it   step-by-step   makes   it   easier to learn and understand.
That   really   depends   on   you.      In   Middlesex,   most   of   our   Lodges   meet   four   times   a   year,   but   there   is   also   a weekly   session   where   members   can   get   instruction   and   learn   more   about   the   principles   of   Freemasonry,   at   the same   time   as   learning   and   understanding   the   ritual   that   we   use   in   our   meetings;   we   encourage   all   of   our members   to   attend   these   very   useful   sessions,   if   they   are   able.      Our   meetings   are   scheduled   to   start   late   in   the afternoon,   normally   at   5.00pm,   and   will   run   until   early   evening;   afterwards,   we   eat   together   at   what   is   called our   ‘festive   board’,   which   is   usually   a   three-course   meal.      Our   festive   boards   typically   finish   by   about   9.00pm, but   members   may   choose   to   stay   behind   and   meet   other   Freemasons   in   the   relaxed   setting   of   the   centre.   One   of   the   best   aspects   of   Freemasonry   is   the ability   to   visit   other   Masonic   Lodges   and   we   encourage   all   our   members   to   visit,   seeing   how   other   Lodges   work   and   making   new   friends…   but   we   always stress that your family and work comes first before Freemasonry.
Hardly   anything   is   the   quick   answer.     You   have   to   be   male,   aged   21*   or   over   and   be   of good   character.   You   must   also   believe   in   a   Supreme   Being,   but   Freemasonry   is   not    a religion; men from a variety of faiths are Freemasons.
You   are   invited   to   join   Fremasonry   by   a   member   of   a   Masonic   Lodge.   “But   I   don’t know   any   Freemasons!”   is   often   the   response   to   that   notion   -   this   is   not   a   problem as,   nowadays,   it   is   quite   common.      On   receiving   your   membership   enquiry,   a   local member   of   Sutton   Court   Lodge   will   contact   you   and   arrange   an   informal   meeting;   at that   meeting   any   remaining   questions   that   you   may   have   can   be   answered.      The member   that   you   meet   will   then   sponsor   your   membership   and   you   will   be   invited   to meet   with   other   members   of   the   Lodge   in   a   relaxed   setting.      There   is   nothing daunting   and   everything   is   conducted   in   a   very   friendly   manner…   the   purpose   of   the   meetings   is   for   you   to   decide   whether   Freemasonry   is   right   for you.   The first step is to make an enquiry, and we have made it easy… all you need to do is fill out our enquiry form that you can find here .