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Lodge Wallis Plains

No.4

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WHAT IS FREEMASONRY

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WHAT IS FREEMASONRY

Ask any of the 15,000 Freemasons in New South Wales and the Australian Capital Territory this question, and you’ll probably get 15,000 different answers!

Freemasonry means different things to each member.

Some would say it’s a personal development program which promotes family and community values.

Others would describe Freemasonry as a chance for both social interaction and "philosophical brainstorming".

Freemasonry also provides an opportunity for public service, and hands-on involvement in charitable or community issues.

The short answer to the question, "What is Freemasonry" is that it’s one of the world’s oldest and largest fraternal organisations.

Made up of 5 million Freemasons around the world, it has adopted the fundamental principles of integrity, goodwill, and charity as foundations for an individual’s life and character.

So, a Freemason strives to be moral and ethical.

He strives to show justice, act honourably, and be loyal.

A Freemason teaches and practices concern for people.

He cares for the less fortunate, and helps those in need.

And all this is done irrespective of cultural or ethnic background.

Irrespective of religious beliefs.

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FREEMASONRY AND SYMBOLISM

Freemasonry makes symbolic use of various practices and implements of those guilds from the Middle Ages.

The craftsmen of yesteryear adopted a series of exclusive signs and words to be able to demonstrate that they were trained masons, and to enable easy identification as they moved from site to site.

In that same way, the Masons of today use a series of signs and words to indicate their progress through the various stages of Freemasonry.

Stonemasons from centuries ago wore leather aprons to carry their working implements and to protect themselves from flying chips of stone.

Modern Masons wear an embroidered lambskin apron to distinguish rank. As the Mason’s proficiency increases, the design of his apron becomes more ornate.

Those skilled workers in times gone by used the square to test the accuracy of their stonework – to prove that it was square with the other sides and that angles were identical.

They also used compasses to mark out the ground from the scaled plans of their intended building.

Freemasonry uses the square and compasses to remind members of basic guidelines for their dealings with other men.

The square symbolises integrity, truthfulness, and honour, while the compasses symbolise the importance of self-control, or keeping emotion and prejudice within bounds

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COMMUNITY SERVICE

Freemasons are proud supporters of Surf Life Saving NSW.

Annually, that support is spread across a number of high profile events, including "Beach to Bush" Surf Education Tours, the Surf Rescue Challenge, and the World Surf Boat Championships.

NSW Masons provide winners and finalists with surf equipment, including inflatable rescue boats and rescue boards, for use by their respective clubs.

Freemasons look forward to continuing their partnership with SLS NSW, working together to educate the community and provide safe beaches for all to enjoy.

NSW Masons also supports the Keep Australia Beautiful Council’s Tidy Towns Award program.

NSW Masons recognise those individual members of the community who have shown outstanding environmental care and long term commitment to Tidy Towns.

In partnership with the Keep Australia Beautiful Council, we reward these citizens for their hard work with the presentation of Outstanding Individual Achievement Awards.

Freemasons also provide continuing support for a wide variety of community groups in their local areas.

Individually and collectively, Lodges donate their time and money to help an extensive list of beneficiaries.

These include Camp Quality, CareFlight, Burnside, the Red Shield Appeal, Cancer Research, the Royal Flying Doctor Service, and countless other organisations in need of assistance.

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