Freemasonry is a fraternity of men bound together by vows of morality in public and private life, who believe in God and the constitutional rights of members to free choice of religion and political persuasion.
Masonry strives to make good men better — to teach its members to be “better than themselves.” It accepts only men of high moral character.
The fraternity of Freemasonry endorses free public education, encourages self-improvement, promotes patriotism and respect for the Constitution, sanctions equal rights under law, practices good will towards all men, and contributes generously to philanthropies.
Masonry is a Charitable, benevolent, educational and religious society (yet not a religion in its own right, just a society striving to help one another better understand and better react to and fulfil our own personal religious beliefs and ministries). Its basic tenets are Brotherly Love, Relief, (philanthropy), and Truth.
Through the improvement and strengthening of the character of the individual, Freemasonry seeks to improve the community.
Masonry is not a benefit society, or a charitable institution. It assists members by many means through times of hardship, but it is not an insurance society with sickness, death, disability or old age benefits.
Masonry is not a secret society. It is a well-known, nation-wide fraternity whose members proudly declare their membership. Masons meet in buildings plainly identified as Masonic Temples, and public announcements of their meetings are published in daily and community publications. There is no attempt to hide the names of community leaders who are Masons.
Masonic ritual is often considered by Masons as having been the most moving experience of their lives. Employing the tools of the stone mason as symbols of basic moral truths, Masonic ritual dramatizes a philosophy of life based on morality.
Men take part in an active social life that includes their families and friends.
Besides national philanthropic activity, such as scholarships and medical research. Masons maintain many types of local charitable projects.
Masons are quick to assist their fellows in misfortune with encouragement, kindness and tangible assistance.
The bond of faith and confidence among Masons is largely the result of the common knowledge that all, having experienced the memorable rituals, accept the high ethical standards as guides to their conduct.
Within a Masonic Temple, Masons do not discuss religion, or political matters, or any other subject likely to excite personal animosities. Masonry teaches men to be religious without advocating a particular doctrine, or creed. It requires its members to be good citizens, but free to choose their medium of political expression.
Masonry with its dedication to education, morality, brotherly love, non-sectarianism in religion and politics and equal rights is a steadying influence that balances and consolidates the social, religious and political life of the United Kingdom.