Historical Meeting Places in Rugby:
Spread Eagle Hotel, Market place, Rugby – 1845
George Hotel, Market Place Rugby – 1850
The Town hall, High Street, Rugby – 1859
Masonic Hall, Albert Street, Rugby – 1888
Masonic Hall, Castle Street, Rugby – 1898
Masonic Hall, Elsee Road, Rugby – 1936 to present day
What is a Lodge?
Freemasons meet together in groups known as ‘Lodges’. A Freemason Lodge is a place where members will spend a significant part of their journey in Freemasonry and each member can freely choose the Lodge they wish to be part of.
Lodge meetings are typically held in two parts. The first involves more administrative procedures, such as proposing and balloting for new members and receiving news about charitable fundraising. The second part focuses on ceremonies, which might relate to areas such as the admittance of new members or the installation of the Master of the Lodge and his officers – a process made up of three degrees, or stages, each marked by a special ceremony. After the meeting, we get together for a meal, known as the ‘Festive Board’. .
The process of becoming a full member of a Masonic Lodge is divided into three distinct and very meaningful ceremonial stages known as ‘Degrees’. Each is loosely based on the ‘Journeyman’ system which was used to educate and advance Medieval Craftsmen who were the builders of our historic castles and cathedrals.
In the medieval era, stonemasons often travelled around to find work in different locations. To demonstrate their level of qualification, they would use grips, words and signs in order to distinguish themselves from unqualified builders.
At each distinct stage, before being allowed to move on to the next level, the Craftsmen were required to demonstrate proficiency skills. In Freemasonry, we use grips, words and signs in our ceremonies to help us advance through the degrees.
The Three Degrees of Freemasonry
When a person is initiated into Freemasonry, they complete the First Degree. At this point, they become an ‘Entered Apprentice’. The First Degree ceremony reminds us that all are equal – it is the responsibility of those that do well to look after those less fortunate.
Upon completion of the Second Degree, a member becomes a ‘Fellowcraft Freemason’. This encourages members to better themselves through education and focuses on self-development.
After this, the member will then undertake the Third Degree. This ceremony teaches them how to use their life wisely and be remembered for the right reasons. On completion, they become a Master Mason.
Freemasonry prides itself on its transparency and not only are Freemasons completely free to acknowledge their membership they are encouraged to do so.
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