The expe­ri­ence of becom­ing a mem­ber of a Masonic Lodge is divided into three cer­e­mo­nial stages that Masons call “degrees.” These three degrees are loosely based upon the jour­ney­man sys­tem, which was used to edu­cate Medieval crafts­men. Sym­bol­i­cally the degrees rep­re­sent the three stages of human devel­op­ment: youth, man­hood, and age.

The first degree of Freema­sonry is the Entered Appren­tice degree. It is a candidate’s first expe­ri­ence with the cer­e­monies of the fra­ter­nity and like all Masonic cer­e­monies is a solemn and mean­ing­ful event. Though new to Freema­sonry, an Entered Appren­tice enjoys the title of “Brother.”

The Fel­low Craft degree is the sec­ond cer­e­mony and exposes a Brother to more of the sym­bol­ism and phi­los­o­phy of the fra­ter­nity. For skilled crafts­men this degree would have marked one’s progress from an appren­tice to a journeyman.

The Mas­ter Mason degree is the last of the Lodge cer­e­monies and with it a can­di­date becomes a full mem­ber, enjoy­ing both the rights and respon­si­bil­i­ties of membership.

Dur­ing all three cer­e­monies, a can­di­date is treated with com­plete respect. At no time, is he ever made to feel uncom­fort­able or harassed in any­way. Masonic cer­e­monies are a won­der­ful tra­di­tion shared by men such as George Wash­ing­ton, Harry S. Tru­man, Dave Thomas, and other men of integrity. These cer­e­monies are always con­ferred in such a way as to bring pride to the can­di­date and the mem­bers of the Lodge.