Masonic Development Program
Table of Contents
I believe that men join our Fraternity looking for more; more knowledge, more friends, more service, and the “unknown more”, the things he thinks he wants to know, but isn’t sure what, those are the hidden mysteries that need to be revealed.
If a man doesn’t find what he is looking for, then has he failed the Fraternity or has the Fraternity failed him? Prior to becoming a member, if he is given the opportunity to understand the journey he is about to embark upon, then the likelihood of him staying the course is much higher.
If he has a basic understanding of what we offer and if that understanding aligns with his worthwhile goals and dreams for himself, then our Craft will fill a void in his very soul and make him a Mason for life. He will come back again and again to fill that void and pretty soon, through mentorship and leadership, he can help others fill the void in their own lives.
If a man isn’t allowed to understand what we are truly offering and align the goals of the Craft with his own goals and dreams prior to becoming a member, then his tenure as a Mason will be short. If he happens to make it through one or all of the Degrees of Masonry, then you will find that he pays his dues but doesn’t attend, he demits from your Lodge, or he stops paying dues.
However, if we can provide some of the “unknown”, the hidden mysteries of Freemasonry in the beginning and early on in his Masonic career, then we have a much better chance of developing life long, active members and most importantly, life long friends and brothers.
September 26 2019 - Long Range Planning,
Leadership Training, & Real Estate Committees
For every inquirer some form of the Six Steps program should be followed. Even if we "know" the man, he should have the opportunity to be asked and answer the 12 questions in the Traditional Approach document AND the Mentor Checklist should be completed for all inquirers - BEFORE they receive a petition.
On behalf of the Grand Lodge of Free & Accepted Masons of Washington, thank you for your interest in Masonry. Becoming a Mason is a serious and, potentially, life changing decision. It is not one you should take lightly and will require substantial commitment on your part. However, the rewards of being a Mason can be significant. This is not measured in material wealth, for the Lodge doesn’t offer business opportunities or other material gain, but a system of continual improvement, community involvement, self-discovery and comradery with like-minded men.
This pamphlet will walk you through the steps all men should take before requesting to become a Freemason. Historically, men became Freemasons through family or close friends who belonged to the Lodge. This connection ensured that members of good standing in the Lodge knew the character and background of the potential candidate for membership. However, today most men approach Masonry through casual connections (Internet, calling the Lodge, etc.) after their interest has been kindled by reading books and/or seeing videos about the Lodge. Because of this, the Grand Lodge of Washington
has developed this plan of six steps that will allow you to know if the Lodge is right for you and the Lodge to know if you are a good candidate to potentially be raised to the highest degree in Craft Masonry: Master Mason.
This is read and summarized by almost every inquirer these days (as long as we refer them to our website!) Approaching the Portal
Each candidate should be explained the overall process of the Inquiry, Petition, Degrees and Proficiency so they have an overall understanding of the process. For example, after he petitions, there may be a delay until the next Stated Meeting where the petition can be read aloud.
Then the investigation committee is appointed and there may be a delay before he receives a request to visit his home for the investigation.
Next, after the investigation the Lodge must ballot and there may be a delay before he hears back on the outcome of the ballot.
If the ballot is successful, then he would be contacted to identify a date that is suitable for the first Degree.
In between each of these steps or stages, there may be a period of silence that could be unnerving for a candidate if he is not made aware that there will be some time in between these stages if there aren’t already some events planned that he can attend.
Consider the section: For the man considering Masonry
For whatever reason this is not available to all Master Masons on Grandview, it appears to be available only to Secretaries or those with access. This document is used by the Mentor/Coach to ensure the new Candidate has achieved a full experience in each Degree.
Coaching\Mentor - Coach’s Manual / Mentor Packet
The objective of the New Candidate Education Program is to create good Masons and Lodge members by teaching them the basic philosophies of Freemasonry, educating them in the customs and ceremonies of the Craft and by having them develop a habit of attending Lodge, meeting his Brothers, and generally becoming comfortable with the organization. In addition to this document, you should refer to the Coach’s Manual produced by Grand Lodge.
This section could be provided one on one by the Coach, as a small study group, an online seminar, or even on a quarterly basis in a regional format.
Because the Washington Masonic Code requires that a Mason prove some level of proficiency in his degree prior to advancement, and because the Lodge is the sole judge of this proficiency, the following is provided with a focus on general education in Degree and may be used to provide a Mason with a basis for proficiency in his degree.
Sec. 20.10 B.L.
Proficiency in the Degrees.
No candidate shall be passed to the Degree of Fellowcraft nor raised to the Sublime Degree of Master Mason without proof of proficiency in the preceding Degree. As a minimum, a candidate must be able to demonstrate knowledge of the obligation, signs, words, and grips and all modes of recognition of each Degree.
The Lodge shall be the sole judge of the proficiency of the candidate in the preceding Degree, which shall be ascertained by examination, either in open Lodge or by a committee appointed by the Master of the Lodge and recorded by the Secretary.
The candidate may be offered the Masonic Development Program approved by the Grand Lodge in place of the Standard Posting Lecture as proof of proficiency at the option of the Lodge.
Regardless of which method of determining proficiency is selected, every candidate progressing through the Degrees will be furnished a copy of the Masonic Development Program by his Lodge.
The three proficiency documents provided here are a supplement to the lectures provided in each degree. The additional details further suggest many aspects of Freemasonry do not have a singular meaning, but rather an interpretive one and that this journey of interpretation and understanding is the true journey of a Freemason.
Proficiency 1 - Entered Apprentice
Proficiency 2 - Fellowcraft
Proficiency 3 - Master Mason
Consider the sections: For the Entered Apprentice, Fellowcraft and Master Mason
The purpose of the Lodge Officers’ Handbook is to provide all Masons, more especially the Lodge officers in this Jurisdiction, suggestions for successful Lodge operational practices. This Handbook is a compilation of previous versions; it is not to be considered definitive but only suggestive.
The Golden Rule, do unto others as you would have them do unto you. While the primary focus of the retreat is for Lodge officers, any Master Mason, including current Worshipful Masters or Past Masters, may attend based on a first come and space available basis. A variety of courses will be offered, including; Six Steps to Initiation, Lodge Finances, Temple Board Finances, Masonic Education Programs, Installation Planning (Coed), Public Relations and many others.
The continued success and growth of each Lodge is determined in large part by the skill with which its affairs are managed by those elected to leadership roles. The purpose of the Proficiency in Lodge Management (PiLM) exam is to encourage a study of the necessary details of The Standard Work (TSW), Washington Masonic Code (WMC) and Lodge Officers Handbook (LOH). It may also challenge any Mason to stay current with our Work—and be a better Mentor, Leader, and Mason.
Observing the Craft - Eight Steps: http://observingthecraft.com/EightSteps.pdf
Not for any reason other than it is an in-depth study of BLUE LODGE and the first 3 Degrees of Masonry. The Symbolic Lodge, Program 1 of the Scottish Rite Master Craftsman Program will familiarize students with aspects of the development of Blue Lodge Masonry and explore some of its developing symbolism.
...the symbolism of Masonry is, in my opinion, the soul of Masonry. When you shall have read what I have written, you may be led to take up and complete, or at least carry further the work. It is a wide field, and I am quite conscious how little I have done towards exploring it. If, as I said i our Western Country, I have ‘blazed the way’ for others, I am quite content.
Master Craftsman Program I: The Symbolic Lodge - (1º, 2º, 3º, using Albert Pike’s Esoterika: The Symbolism of the Blue Degrees of Freemasonry and Scottish Rite Ritual Monitor & Guide)
Consider the section: For the seasoned Master Mason
Select a track to focus on, completing at least 5 classes in a given track, plus an essay of not less than 500 words in one of the following disciplines:
Masonic Development Program Structure