What do we do ?
In our meetings, we practise age old ritual. This is a matter of learning and performing stories based upon the allegory of the building of the Temple at Jerusalem. Our ceremonies are designed to teach and remind us of important truths about our relationship with each other and to the world at large. It is a form of teaching that pre-dates books which has been going on in Masonry for many centuries and is enjoyed by freemasons throughout the world.
What do we get out of Freemasonry ?
If you asked ISM Lodge Brethren what they get out of membership, they might say many different things. However, most would point to fellowship and mutual support. A feeling of doing the right things. A sense of continuity with the past and future. The satisfaction of ritual well performed. Perhaps an enjoyment of the theatrical aspects. A great deal of laughter, a few drinks, a good meal and camaraderie and friendship. While many of the Brethren might be a little embarrassed to say it out loud, what we really gain is a feeling of something beyond ourselves. Something that lifts us onto a higher plane, makes us glad that we have become a freemason and makes us want to live up to the ideals of Freemasonry.
What about politics and religion ?
We never discuss politics or religion in the Lodge. Neither of these has any place in Freemasonry. However, if you want to become a Freemason and join us, you must have a belief in a “Supreme Being”. This belief, although necessary to become a Freemason, is entirely the affair of each individual and is not our business. You must also promise never to propose or countenance “any act which may have a tendency to subvert the peace and good order of society”. That is as far as it goes.
What do we look for ?
Decent, trustworthy men, of at least 18 years of age, who can afford the dues and the charitable donations and are willing to get involved. Creed, colour, race, religion or sexual preference are also of absolutely no importance. Freemasonry is open to all and as is ISM Lodge so why not become a freemason and join us.
What about charity ?
Freemasonry is second only to the National Lottery in charitable giving and 50% of freemasons’ donations are directed towards non-Masonic charities.
What does it cost ?
The initial one off registration fee is £115 and our dues are currently £145 a year. You may give about the same again to charity but the exact amount is entirely up to you and is a private matter between you and the charity steward, but should be commensurate with one’s personal circumstances. You will spend a bit on regalia but not normally in the first year and even then we can probably find you a used set.
What is the time commitment ?
It really does depend on you. We currently have five meetings a year. They are by no means mandatory but they do enable you to learn and practise the ritual in a friendly environment while getting to know your fellow freemasons.
What about the bad press ?
Attacks on Freemasonry commenced in 1693. None have any substance. We’d be happy to chat to you about them or answer other questions you may have about freemasons, Freemasonry and how to become a freemason.
Do we have secrets ?
Yes. There are indeed some ‘secrets’ in Freemasonry which have ancient roots; and while they mean little in themselves, they are important to us. The ability to keep a secret is considered a virtue and anyone wanting to become a freemason should be able to do so.