Can I wear a Freemason Ring as an Entered Apprentice or FellowCraft?
Well, the answer is maybe. Yes, maybe. Why? Well, the Worshipful Master in your lodge has the final say on if and when you are allowed to wear a masonic symbol prior to being raised to the sublime degree of Master Mason. Now, keep in mind that this may vary from Grand Lodge to Grand Lodge and Blue Lodge to Blue Lodge.
Is an Entered Apprentice or Fellowcraft considered a Brother in Freemasonry?
Yes, you are a brother in the brotherhood of Freemasonry. But keep in mind, you are still learning the ropes of the organization and from time to time, local lodges create unique traditions within their lodge. It is important to ask these questions prior to getting started. I suggest you always check the rules of your respective jurisdiction. Most Grand Lodges have a website with these rules readily available to new brothers to review. If you can not find it, just call up your lodge secretary to start the conversation.
Are there rules for wearing a Masonic Ring?
The rules vary from Grand Lodge to Grand Lodge. Some have a generalized rule regarding the paraphernalia is that you can only display what you’ve earned, while others don’t. In some cases, an Entered Apprentice or Fellowcraft is confronted with being quite limited in their options. During my time, in the 1st and 2nd degree of the fraternity, I felt no need to wear a ring or show off my status as a Freemason. It seemed to be something I wanted to reserve for my achieving my Master Mason Degree. Most Freemasons, I know personally have waited until they are raised before investing in jewelry. This is typically the respected path for earning the respect of your local brothers. If you look at Freemasonry as a lifelong commitment, it does not feel like a big deal to wait until you’ll have learned what the symbols mean during the Master Mason degree. As a 3rd Degree Mason, you are the highest rank in the fraternity, thus you are entitled to all the rights and privileges of a Master Mason.
Most everyone in the fraternity and those not in the fraternity is aware that the square and compasses are a big identifiable image of our fraternity. Most lodges have it on their building and their letterhead too because it is the most common and recognizable symbol of the Fraternity. Most of the time, the square and compasses are worn with pride by many Master Masons.
Is a 1st or 2nd Degree Entitled to wear a Masonic ring?
Yes, unless told otherwise. Any 1st or 2nd Degree Mason can wear a ring of an Entered Apprentice or Fellowcraft. He should think twice about wearing the Master Mason symbol prior to being raised as one. As a brother, you are entitled to display the Square & Compasses of the rank you currently hold. Many brothers have rings for various degrees and it is not uncommon to find these rings because a brother holds the teachings close to his heart.
Is a family member of a Freemason entitled to wear a Masonic ring?
No, unless he has been made a Mason. Remember just because your father, grandfather, brother, uncle, or son have been made a Mason doesn’t entitle you to wear any Masonic emblems.
Any local Freemason(s) may see it as an insult. Some may test you on the spot, while others will ask you to kindly remove the ring and to return to your family member. If you are lucky, that Freemason will have a conversation with you and help you learn “how to ask” to earn the right to wear the ring.
Unfortunately, if your family member learns of you are being a faker in the community. I guess it is best to have to answer to them about your actions. I know I would not ever want to embarrass my dad publicly. I also know I would not look forward to having to answer my actions to him either.
In our current environment, so many Freemasons have strong emotions on this, it would be wise not to wear your family member’s Masonic jewelry. Keep in mind, that many Freemasons worked hard to earn the right to wear the emblem. The ring was never meant to be a fashion statement. It represents the teachings of the degrees and that a man has been made, passed, and raised in our fraternity. The emblem is way to remember our obligations and promises to the fraternity.
Is an operative Mason entitled to wear a Masonic ring?
Yes but keep in mind, it doesn’t represent the Speculative Masonic Fraternity. He or she is a literal Mason, but not a Freemason. So, they could but it is very rare to see a man or woman who is working with their hands daily to wear such a fine piece of jewelry. It would most likely be damaged or lost based on their labors.
What is the Grand Lodge’s mindset of a brother wearing a Freemason Ring?
Depending on your Grand Lodge, you may be part of a conservative or liberal Masonic Grand Lodge. Please note, this can evolve from one Grand Master to the next. So don’t be surprised if you may receive a very different answer from one year to the next.
Ask your sitting Worshipful Master.
Being new to the fraternity, it is best to ask the sitting Worshipful Master of the lodge. He will inform you of his decision based on the annual communications of the Grand Lodge. The rulings and decisions of the Grand Lodge are final and if anything is set in the Grand Lodge Masonic Law then it needs to be enforced. Only the Grand Master can interpret the Masonic Law and give direction to his District Deputy(s) and Worshipful Master(s) on this topic if need be. If there is nothing written in the Masonic Law of the Grand Lodge, then a particular lodge’s Worshipful Master can determine to allow to wear an Entered Apprentice (1st Degree Mason) or a Fellowcraft (2nd Degree mason) to be allowed to wear a ring or simply deny such a request.
Just remember that your Worshipful Master has only the best interest of the overall fraternity in his heart. So, if you do approach him with any request, keep in mind his answer is mostly for what is in the best interest of the Craft.
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