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Why the EA and FC should not wear a Masonic ring.
Posted: 07 July 2008 08:40 PM   [ Ignore ]  
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If an Entered Apprentice is truly a “Mason,” then why can’t he wear a Masonic ring? Likewise for the Fellow Craft?

In doing my research in preparation for my initiation as an Entered Apprentice, the only cogent answer I have found to these questions is simply that no one seems to make EA or FC rings.  If they did, the EA and FC would certainly be entitled to wear rings bearing the symbol of their degree.

The subtle differences between the symbols for the EA, FC and MM degrees may elude the untrained eye, but they are distinct and the fact remains that the Masonic symbol that is on the face of every Masonic ring is that of the MM. Thus, it would be improper for an EA or FC to wear a ring bearing that symbol.

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Posted: 08 July 2008 12:10 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1 ]  
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Dear Esquire:
Your point is valid. BTW, you are most likely a very through lawyer by trade.
Over the years I have written on and experienced the mystic of Masonic Jewelry.
As many Master Masons know, masonic symbols and the allure of the jewelry that conveys those subtle images are prized possessions. The lapel pins and tie bars, medallions and rings can fill many jewelryboxes in Masonic households. Sadly, when I go to an on-line auction website or a flea-market or even a major antique event, there will be countless pieces available to purchase, and mostly offered by non-masons. Family memorabilia of the masonic nature should be a prized possession to a family for future generations. The sight of a son inheriting his grandfathers masonic ring is a joy. As I recall from military headlines, wearing a service medal not awarded is a punishable offense. That is not the case in masonic circles, as we self govern with honor. Enjoy the symbols that you are entitled to and wear them proudly. Ronald Doucette - Moderator

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Posted: 08 July 2008 04:07 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2 ]  
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Dear Esquire:

There is no reason why an EA or FC should not wear a masonic ring or in that case any other masonic emblems. I agree with you in your opinion that the reason might be because it would probably not a be a good investment for masonic regalia manufacturers since becoming a Master Mason, in most US lodges, only takes a few months. However, as we all know, freemasonry is very different around the world. I was initiated, passed and raised in Peru, where it takes a minimum of five years to become a Master Mason, and obviously the demand for EA and FC masonic accessories is much higher, newly made brothers have access to a wide variety of rings, lapel pins, cuff links, etc with the EA or FC masonic emblem. Hope this helps.

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Fraternally,
I:. B:. Edgar Gonzales, 32º
Grand Orient of Peru #75
Grand Lodge of Mississippi #638

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Posted: 08 July 2008 04:24 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 3 ]  
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eag58 - 08 July 2008 04:07 PM

Dear Esquire:

There is no reason why an EA or FC should not wear a masonic ring or in that case any other masonic emblems. I agree with you in your opinion that the reason might be because it would probably not a be a good investment for masonic regalia manufacturers since becoming a Master Mason, in most US lodges, only takes a few months. However, as we all know, freemasonry is very different around the world. I was initiated, passed and raised in Peru, where it takes a minimum of five years to become a Master Mason, and obviously the demand for EA and FC masonic accessories is much higher, newly made brothers have access to a wide variety of rings, lapel pins, cuff links, etc with the EA or FC masonic emblem. Hope this helps.

I tend to forget that people from all over the world read this forum.  My comments were confined primarily to North America.

If it took several years to attain the 3rd degree, I can see where there would be a need for rings with the EA and FC symbols on them.

As an aside, since it takes five years to become a MM in Peru, do your lodges conduct regular business while open in the first or second degrees?  In the US, from what I understand, a lodge open in the first or second degree can only be open to confer those degrees. Any other business and it has to be opened in the third degree. Hence, to get anything done, everyone needs to be a Master Mason.

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Posted: 09 July 2008 08:32 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 4 ]  
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Dear Esquire:

That is indeed a very good observation, all our stated communications are held weekly in the First Degree, this way everybody belonging to our brotherhood can attend lodge. However, EAs and FCs are encouraged to only sit down and listen, while most of the decisions and communications are only given by the MMs of the lodge. I am a member of a masonic lodge in Mississippi and they have their stated communications in the Third Degree, but it only takes about 2-3 months to become a Master Mason, during this time the newly made brethren spend their time getting ready for their proficiency exams.

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Fraternally,
I:. B:. Edgar Gonzales, 32º
Grand Orient of Peru #75
Grand Lodge of Mississippi #638

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Posted: 09 July 2008 08:41 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 5 ]  
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Dear Esquire,
Regarding your post question on the allowance of the Entered Apprentice Mason or Fellowcraft Mason into a lodge conducting business on those respective degrees:
Jurisdictions in the USA and throughout the world govern that diplomacy.  Here in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts the Grand Master has allowed for the respective candidate to be present during the full lodge session in the degree that they are entitled to be present in.  That said, the Charter of a lodge will govern whether a candidate, masonic visitor, affiliating member, or any other non-certified member of that lodge may sit in on a business meeting, or during a session of voting on a candidate or affiliation membership. After that work is completed, the individual will be escorted again into the lodge.  Ronald Doucette - Moderator

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Posted: 29 January 2009 02:27 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 6 ]  
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Hello All,

So, if I am reading this correctly then it is considered bad form for American Masons to wear any(?) symbols before entering as a MM? I know the general idea for the ring, but does this include lapel pins, and more specifically a really cool hat I found?

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Posted: 29 January 2009 02:42 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 7 ]  
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Ryze:
Once that you are a Master Mason, you’ll be in a place where you can see around your lodge and get the feel of the members’ style. Rings and pins are fine, once you attain them, ie., I ran across a Masonic 50 year veteran’s medal ( really nice ) but not something that anyone would wear without entitlement. The Hat thing? I’m not so sure. Generally sitting Masters can wear a hat. There is a lot of protocol on these items. Again, go with the flow, and tempo of the lodge.
Ronald Doucette - Forum Moderator

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Posted: 29 January 2009 03:06 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 8 ]  
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Ronald,

Thanks for the quick reply. I’ll do that, maybe just ask around. I doubt anyone would be upset for asking such a question.

-Ryze

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Posted: 20 May 2009 03:37 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 9 ]  
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Im not sure about other areas, only in mine.  The reason for a EA or FC not being able to wear any kind of symbols implying them to be a mason is this;  When initiated and passed, you only know the brothers present to be a mason no one else in the world.  They can introduce you to a person outside the lodge as a mason but only in person.  You don’t want to be wearing a ring or pin and not be able to talk to a brother about masonry so you wait until you are a Master Mason.  Then if you see someone with a ring or pin on you will know the proper way to see if they are truly a brother.
Hope that made since, I was trying to make it simple.

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Posted: 22 May 2009 02:42 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 10 ]  
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The idea of fear of the giving away a secret in mixed company is instilled in every new mason and the protocal of how to assess the credentials of a man as a mason will always be touchy.

I believe the subtle little ways that we are taught to assess this without an uncomfortable testing in a social situation wins out. On the square and compasses display, (and, oh by the way: anybody can buy and wear anything) take it lightly and then reach out to again qualify the man. Nothing is wrong on putting a decal on the car, shield on the license plate, as an EA of FC.

So, rational and sensitivity win guide you.

PS: some of the coolest jewelry is so subtle, no one but a MM will ever know.
Ron Doucette - Forum Moderator

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Posted: 05 June 2009 10:06 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 11 ]  
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I just regesterd as a member of this site so my opinion may not bear much weight but here goes. I think there should be more ring’s and thing’s with EA,and FC symbols on them I would like a full set for display as a reminder of the travel to light.otherwise they would be of little use as you reach the MM degree you would be wearing MM symbols as not to be thought a EA or FC but the hat could be realy special tell and show it to your brothers they will apreciate it i am sure and that will bring it out for discussion on it being worn by you let the decision be made at lodge subtaly brought up I am sure the hat will prevail.
Bro Jerry
P.S. greetings from Colorado

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Bro. Jerry
Rifle,Co. #129

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Posted: 13 July 2011 05:18 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 12 ]  
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Masonry encourages thought.  Why can’t an EC/FC wear the sign of his appropriate degree?  Any mason seeing it will be able to discern what degree is represented, why not?  Non masons merely see it as “freemason”, but what matters is other masons…they will discern..  I’ve seen many different S&C pins, patches, etc, and instantly I have always seen and recognized what they represent.
Unless until the 3°, one’s membership in the craft is a secret, he should be proud…and regardless of who and how many people know, should be trusted as a brother to keep anything given to him, confidential as he promised.

My 2¢

I’d like to hear legitimate answers/comments to these questions.

Fraternally yours.

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Bro. Junior Knight
Chicopee Lodge
S. Hadley MA

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Posted: 13 July 2011 09:21 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 13 ]  
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Esquire - 07 July 2008 08:40 PM

If an Entered Apprentice is truly a “Mason,” then why can’t he wear a Masonic ring? Likewise for the Fellow Craft?

In doing my research in preparation for my initiation as an Entered Apprentice, the only cogent answer I have found to these questions is simply that no one seems to make EA or FC rings.  If they did, the EA and FC would certainly be entitled to wear rings bearing the symbol of their degree.

The subtle differences between the symbols for the EA, FC and MM degrees may elude the untrained eye, but they are distinct and the fact remains that the Masonic symbol that is on the face of every Masonic ring is that of the MM. Thus, it would be improper for an EA or FC to wear a ring bearing that symbol.

It’s kind of like wearing a rank insignia without earning it. You wouldn’t enlist in the army and wear the rank of a general when you’re only a private.
There’s technically no prohibition against wearing a Masonic ring, it’s just not respectful to those who have earned it.

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Christian Salazar
Progress Lodge #22 F&AM;, Salt Lake City, Utah
EA 7/19/11
FC 8/29/11
MM 10/10/11

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Posted: 14 July 2011 01:25 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 14 ]  
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I asked our Lodge’s WM after receiving my EA when it would be appropriate to put an emblem on my car. He told me I could at that point and explained it as when I was initiated into the fraternity I was made a Brother of the Craft and a Mason. I’m from PA so the etiquette might be different elsewhere.

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Posted: 14 July 2011 09:34 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 15 ]  
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burghguy - 14 July 2011 01:25 AM

I asked our Lodge’s WM after receiving my EA when it would be appropriate to put an emblem on my car. He told me I could at that point and explained it as when I was initiated into the fraternity I was made a Brother of the Craft and a Mason. I’m from PA so the etiquette might be different elsewhere.

At the end of our EA degrees, the WM hands out some gifts for the new brothers. they get the Massachusetts Freemason Handbook, A lodge of Instruction card, a cipher of the degree and a Massachusetts Freemason car sticker. They can put the sticker on their window immediately.

Rings and pins are a different story. It’s sometimes hard to tell if something is a “rule” or simply a tradition but the advice I received was to wait until I was raised before wearing a pin or ring with the MM design on it.

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John Ruggiero, 32°
Master, Ancient York Lodge, Lowell, MA.

God never sends us anything we can’t handle. Sometimes I wish He didn’t trust me so much. - Mother Teresa

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