Freemasonry is the world’s oldest and largest fraternity. For three centuries, it has beckoned men of good character to its ranks. It has no regard for differences in race, color, creed, religion, or station in life. Using traditions and implements of antiquity, it seeks to inspire its members. They live by the tenets of Brotherly Love, Relief, and Truth.
The Lodge of Ancient, Free, & Accepted Masons
The Lodge of Ancient, Free, and Accepted Masons is also known as the “Blue Lodge.” It comprises the foundation of all the orders within the Masonic Family. Representing Freemasonry itself, all other recognized Masonic organizations arose from it. It is the world’s oldest and largest fraternal organization. It has no regard for differences in a person’s race, color, creed, or station in life. Its history and traditions date from antiquity.
It has two purposes:
- First, to inspire members to live by the tenets of Brotherly Love, Relief, and Truth.
- Second, to build a world where justice, equality, and compassion shine forth in the happiness of all humankind.
When a man joins a Masonic Lodge, he enters into an opportunity for personal development, character building, and the acquisition of leadership capacities. Through his Masonic journey and association, a mason learns the skills and finds the understanding to enhance his community and strengthen his family.
History of Freemasonry
Much of the Masonic Fraternity structure comes from the medieval guilds of stonemasons. They constructed the magnificent cathedrals in Europe during the middle ages. Similarly, modern Freemasonry’s moral symbolism draws from the art and science of these builders. Like these workers labored to build an expression of a community’s faith, Freemasons today labor within their communities to make them a finer place to live.
Our earliest Masonic documents date from the close of the 13th century. Present Masonic practice and structure emerged 300 years ago. Lodges of masons began to accept men of prominence and learning who were not stonemasons. In 1717, four lodges in England met and formed the first Grand Lodge with a Grand Master at its head.
Freemasonry in Maine
When Maine became a state in 1820, the lodges within its borders formed the Grand Lodge of Maine and elected Maine’s first governor, William King, as the first Grand Master. Today, there are 191 lodges in Maine, with a total membership of approximately 25,000 Freemasons. Since the first lodge was formed in Maine in 1762, Freemasons actively promoted education, supported stronger communities, and practiced charity.
This proud tradition continues through a wide range of community betterment programs, drug abuse prevention, scholarships, outreach efforts to the sick and needy, and child identification programs. Perhaps the civic service of Freemasonry to our communities is in no place more clearly evident than the laying of the cornerstones of public buildings. In this ceremony, Freemasonry reminds all citizens of the moral convictions and dedication to others necessary to any well-ordered, compassionate society.
While the moral philosophy of Freemasonry is founded upon religious principles, it is not a religion. Nor is it a substitute for one. It does not solicit membership but welcomes men with good morals and belief in a Supreme Being. Anyone who desires to serve humanity only needs to ask a member or contact us for a membership petition.