THE OPEN DAY WILL BE HELD AT THE FOLLOWING LODGES:
Astrea – 3 Seventh Street, Waterval Boven
Central East Rand – 66 Jubilee Road, Boksburg South
Springs – 1st Ave., Springs
Unanimity – Masonic Hall, Ruiter Rd., Potgietersrust/Mokopane
Letaba – King Edward Drive, Tzaneen
Pretoria Masonic Centre – Jukskei Ave, The Willows, Pretoria
Freemasons Hall – 8 Park Lane, Parktown, Johannesburg
Lion of the North – 125 Munnik Street, Louis Trichardt/Makhado
What is Freemasonry?
Information about Freemasonry is freely available. The Book of Constitutions (our Rule Book) is available for sale to the public and is in public libraries, as is our book of ritual. Our meeting places are known. The headquarters of Grand Lodge in London are open daily to the public. Grand Lodge issues leaflets and produces videos to help explain Freemasonry to the public. Members of its Lodges do not deny or conceal their membership. As a society it falls very far short of being secret.
Freemasonry is a legitimate, moral, law-abiding, God-fearing association, which plays a useful part in society.
Freemasonry isn’t any one ‘thing’. . . Freemasonry has no grand designs, apart from being happy and communicating happiness’, as we say in our ritual. Freemasons are forbidden to discuss religion or politics in Lodge and so men from widely different backgrounds and with very different interests can meet as friends in Freemasonry. Freemasonry provides companionship and social activity for its members and, often, for their families. It emphasises charity, which extends beyond its own people and their dependants. It teaches, by means of ritual, morality or the practical basis of living in civilised society.
We try to instil into our members morality in all things. We insist upon a belief in God, the Supreme Being, from all members and candidates without defining who that Supreme Being should be. We endeavour to ensure that our candidates are honest, and have no criminal record. To achieve this all Lodges conduct searching enquiries which include the taking up of character references, interviews, and home visits.
Our teachings are concealed in dramatic stories very similar to the method of the ancient passion plays of the Medieval Masons. From the Bible (which English Freemasons refer to as the “Volume of the Sacred Law”), we derive much of our drama, especially the building of the Temple in Jerusalem by the Masons of that time.
The use of symbols in our ritual is also important to us. Freemasons wear aprons in Lodge emulating their forebears, the operative masons. We use the normal tools of a mason to illustrate the general principles of morality. For example, in the Initiation ceremony the 24 inch gauge is shown as being the instrument that enables an operative mason to measure his work. For Freemasons it represents 24 hours of the day – part to be spent in prayer to God, part in labour and refreshment, and part in helping any person in time of need, without it being detrimental to ourselves, our families, or our business.
The guiding principles for Freemasons:
Brotherly love, which means we show tolerance and respect for the opinions of others and behave with kindness and understanding to all;
Relief, which is a duty on Freemasons to practise charity and to care in the community as a whole by charitable giving and by voluntary efforts and works which help others; and
Truth, which demands that we strive for high moral standards in themselves and others.
Dear Sir and Brother,
We are writing to inform you of a most exciting event planned for the celebrations of the Tercentenary of the
United Grand Lodge of England in 2017: The Grand Ball.
On Saturday 30th September 2017, our home, Freemasons’ Hall in Great Queen Street, London, will be transformed into the venue for The Grand Ball. This will be the highlight of the social calendar for the Tercentenary celebrations, but will also be an opportunity for Brethren of any rank, and from all Provinces and Districts, to be present at one of the official UGLE celebrations with their families and friends. The evening will commence at 8.30pm with a Champagne reception, and finish with bacon sandwiches for the survivors at 3am! It will be a suitably grand event to befit the 300th Anniversary of the institution, and is being generously supported and subsidised by UGLE, enabling our iconic building to be beautifully prepared, and food and drinks to be available throughout the night—all included in the ticket price of £160 per person. Various entertainments will be placed in several different areas of the building, including the Grand Temple, which will be transformed into one of the largest raised dance floors in London. There will be considerable variety, including a big band, a jazz group, a ceilidh, discos (both ‘silent’ and noisy), and quieter rooms to enjoy a glass of wine and chat to your guests.
Although there will be plentiful and varied food available throughout the night, there is not a formal dinner. However, we will be looking into offering deals at local restaurants for those Brethren who wish to dine beforehand with their guests. We are also attempting to arrange deals in nearby hotels, so that you are able to spend what is left of the night (or weekend) in comfortable surroundings. We can promise all those who attend a fabulous night, and are hoping to welcome Brethren and guests from across the country, and from other countries. We would therefore be grateful if you could distribute this as widely as possible across your Provinces and Districts, and encourage all those that can attend to do so.
Tickets will go on sale via the website (www.thegrandball.uk) at 9am on Friday 30th September 2016 (exactly a year before the Ball), and will be sold on a first-come-first-served basis so that everyone has an opportunity to buy tickets. Even though there will be up to 1,500 tickets available, we expect demand to be high—so early booking will be essential. Please do encourage brethren to sign-up to our mailing list via the website to ensure they are kept up to date with all our planning and preparation in the coming months—and so they don’t miss out when ticket sales commence! There is also a Facebook page (www.facebook.com/thegrandball) and a Twitter account (www.twitter.com/grandball2017) which you can like and follow for updates.
If you have any questions please do not hesitate to contact us on email@example.com. We look forward to seeing you at the Ball!
Yours sincerely and fraternally,
The Grand Ball Committee