If you’re interested in becoming a Freemason, look no further than Lodge Kelso & Tweed 58. We are a small friendly Lodge in the Scottish border town of Kelso, 319 years old and still going strong. This makes us the ideal first choice to start your journey in Freemasonry.
If you are thinking of becoming a Freemason please click on this link to find out more about Freemasonry from the Grand Lodge of Scotland’s website or email us and we can arrange an informal chat.
We have also tried to answer some of the more frequently asked questions:
It is often said that Freemasonry… ‘Makes good men better.’ As well as being one of the World’s oldest secular fraternal societies, Freemasonry is an enjoyable association of like-minded men who work towards a common goal of being happy and communicating happiness to others. This is achieved by work in the Lodge and through our work in the community. The work in the Lodge is largely based on a series of ritual ceremonies. Their purpose is to seek to instil morality by teaching and practising high standards of conduct. This aim is furthered at the ‘Harmony’ held after Lodge meetings and at other social occasions involving wives and families
People become Freemasons for a variety of reasons, some as the result of family tradition, others on the introduction of a friend or just out of curiosity to find out what it’s all about. Freemasonry means different things to each of those who join. For some, it’s about making new friends and acquaintances. For others it’s about being able to help deserving causes – making a contribution to family and community. But for most, it’s an enjoyable hobby. They enjoy the challenges and friendship that Freemasonry offers and the participation in the ceremonies, providing a member with the opportunity to learn about himself and become a better person.
In Lodge Kelso & Tweed 58, which is under the jurisdiction of the Grand Lodge of Scotland, it is usual for candidates to be 21 years and over, but in some circumstances candidates between the ages of 18 and 21 can be admitted. We do not admit women, but equally, there are other branches of Masonry that accept both men and women, or women only such as the Order of Women Freemasons.
You should believe in a Supreme Being.
You should be coming to Masonry “of your own free will and accord”.
You should not have any criminal convictions.
You should enjoy the company of other’s from a wide range of social and working environments.
If you are a family man, it is very important that your family obligations come first, and your partner is supportive of your membership.
You should be able to afford the joining fees and continuing membership fees without hardship to your family.
Your time commitment will be to attend eight meetings per year, and as you progress you will be invited to attend committee meetings and practices.
You should be willing to take part in our rituals.
You should understand and accept that Freemasonry does not exist to assist its Members in their business or employment.
Kelso & Tweed 58 raises money for Masonic and non-Masonic charities through raffles, collections and social events. Members of the Lodge are not expected to contribute beyond their means and an individual’s contribution is very much a personal matter.
The essential qualification for admission and continuing membership is a belief in a Supreme Being. By this we mean belief in a God of any name, irrespective of its origins. Membership is open to members of any race or religion who can fulfill this essential qualification and who are of good repute. How you practice your religion is regarded as a strictly personal matter and members of different faiths happily co-exist in Freemasonry.
On entry to Lodge Kelso & Tweed 58, there is a one-off joining fee of £210 which includes the first year’s annual subscription. You’ll then pay an annual subscription of £45 which covers your membership of the Lodge.
It is entirely up to the individual member what he gives to Charity, but it should always be without detriment to his other responsibilities. Similarly, he may join as many Lodges as his time and pocket can allow.
A Lodge meeting is usually in several parts. There is a certain amount of administration such as reading and approving minutes of the last meeting, proposing and balloting for new Members, discussing and voting on financial matters, election of Officers bearers, news and correspondence.
Then there are the ceremonies for making new masons and the annual Installation of the Master and Office bearers.
Each of the three degrees, for making a new Mason, involve a series of short rituals based on ancient stories and customs, teaching the principle of the craft and the candidate’s various duties using drama, allegory and symbolism. Inside the Lodge everyone is equal and everyone must pass through the historic rituals that have remained essentially the same for hundreds of years. They may seem a bit strange, taken out of context, but they have a genuine and sincere purpose.
After the Ceremony is completed more administrative matters take place before the meeting is closed.
After the meeting we have a ‘Harmony Board’ which is an informal sit-down among friends with a light snacks, tea, coffee and drinks from the bar. On some occasions formal toasts are made by the Right Worshipful Master. A raffle is normal, with proceeds going to good causes supported by the Lodge and our members.
It’s a lot easier than you might think. You can ask someone you know is a Mason or send our Secretary an e-mail, providing him with your contact details. A Member of our Lodge will then contact you to explain in more detail what is involved.
We’ll arrange for a couple of our members to meet with you informally at a convenient location to enable you to ask questions. If we have a social function planned we’ll invite you along to meet our members and take a look around the Lodge room.
If you’re sure you want to join Freemasonry you will be invited to meet the Master and other senior members of the Lodge for an interview. Suitable candidates will be proposed at our next meeting and a ballot will be held and if successful, you will be given a date for your initiation into Freemasonry.
You will be supported, mentored and encouraged throughout your masonic journey.
If you have any other questions about how to become a Freemason we are very happy to help. To be a Freemason is an honour and a privilege, so to start your journey get in touch and we’ll do all we can to make it happen.