[Square & Compasses]

Why did you become a Freemason?

From: "Jana" <RedRopers@aol.com>

Web-master's Note: An unusual departure: instead of Why I Became a Mason, here is an essay from a woman about why she decided to join Easter Star. I found this in an August '98 issue (#9823) of the Hiram Worldwide Newsletter I think there is quite a lesson in here for all of us.

SUBJECT: ON-LINE EXPERIENCES WITH MASONRY (OR, THANK YOU BROTHER MANNY)
From: RedRopers

Brother Manny (masontruth@aol.com) asked that I write a short article about my on-line experiences with Masonry. First, you have to understand that Masonry is a long held tradition in my family, every generation of my family has had a Mason in it back to 1774. My Daddy (he'll always be Daddy to me), and my husband Rodney are both Masons as well as my father-in-law.

So here's my story, I had always known about Masons. I'd spent a lot of years harassing them, especially Daddy, who just laughed me off. He never took much stock in what I'd said to him about it. My husband on the other hand had threatened to quit Masonry just to get me to leave him alone. I guess a lot of women would have been more than happy to hear those words. But, for some reason every year I sent that dues card check in,. I guess those roots go deeper than we think.

Well, I'd been on-line for almost 4 yrs, and was particularly bored one night and thought I'd check and see how many actual Masons were on- line. I did a members search, I found large numbers of people involved in Masonry in one form or another. Well, to make a long story short. I ran across a man who was with the Anti-Masonic faction. I talked to him for a few minutes, and decided he was okay, we downed Masonry, he told me a few "stories" which I took to heart. He invited me to come to the Freemasonry message board and help him stir up trouble.

Stir up trouble is exactly what I did. I really kept the Masons going for a few weeks. But, I started noticing something. There was a huge difference between the men. On one side I had the Anti-Masons, who were rude, and very inconsiderate men. They were rude to everyone who didn't believe as they did, they were inconsiderate of everything. My honest attempts to ask questions, my attempts to defend the Masons when I saw something I knew wasn't true. They were very rude to the Masons who posted on the board. On the other side, the Masons were never rude to me, they treated me as a lady should be treated. They explained my questions as best they could without divulging anything. They took time with me. Actually, I thought they were just being nice to me because I was the wife and daughter of a Mason. But, then I realized, they didn't know me. They didn't have to give me the treatment that a lady deserves. They could have raked me over the coals and called me the same names they were being called "liars and murderers".

I don't know if they knew it, but they were slowly pulling me in, changing my heart. Through their explanations of different aspects of Masonry, which I would research through the internet, question my husband and father, I found they were telling me the truth. Why not? they had no reason to lie to me. One thing I can say about Masons, they will tell you the truth, even if it gets them into trouble. I couldn't say that about the anti-masons. I researched their information also, I would ask my husband and father about certain things, which they would confirm or deny. I would also confirm or deny whatthey were telling me against the Masons through information posted on the internet. Most of their information, I found to be lacking in substance, not, how should I say this...it didn't seem to be the whole truth. I found holes in their information.

Well, little by little, the AOL Masons caused great talks between my husband and myself. No longer was there the animosity between us, it wasn't a jealous wife afraid her husband knew something she didn't, it was more like teacher and pupil. I learned a great many things from my husband. The biggest thing I learned, was something I knew all along. He was an honorable man, he set his life up to be honorable to other men. He made a vow to his Lodge, he also made vows to me, and their both equal. I came to a great understanding from my AOL Masonic friends. They have to take their bows in my education, for without them I would have never petitioned to become a Member of the Eastern Star in Greenwood, Arkansas.

I'm truly happy these men had the patience with me that they did, without them I don't think I would be where I am today. They have encouraged me to learn more, not just take the words of those telling me lies. They have helped to carry on a long tradition of those affiliated through Masonry in my Family History.

Thank you Manny, for your patience, your honesty, and your kindness. You're one in a million and I'm happy to count you as one of my friends.

Sister Jana


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