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Florence Lodge #281 A.F. & A.M.
5903 Maple Street
Omaha, NE 68104

Lodge Secretary: (402) 661-0370
florencelodge281@gmail.com

 

 

What is Masonry?

Ask ten Masons and you get ten different answers. Some love Masonry for the fraternity and the fellowship. Others take pride in being part of an organization which includes American Presidents, actors, writers, generals and admirals, and leaders the world over, and has origins dating back hundreds of years to early guilds of operative stone masons. Others enjoy a few hours each week to reflect on how to be better men, contribute to society, and give back to the community.

Whatever their reasons for joining, Freemasonry is the premier fraternal organization in the world, with lodges in almost every country in the free world. It is open to men of adult age of any color, any religion, nationality or social standing. The only requirement of its members is a belief in a Supreme Being. The goal of Freemasonry is to enhance and strengthen the character of the individual man by providing opportunities for fellowship, charity, education, and leadership based on the three ancient Masonic tenets: Brotherly Love, Relief and Truth. Florence Lodge is proud to be part of this ancient and noble heritage.

Quick History of Freemasonry

Although the actual origins of Freemasonry are clouded in the mists of antiquity, it is widely agreed that'The Grand Object of Masonry is to Promote the Happiness of the Human Race' - Washington. Masonry dates back to the late fourteenth century and flourished during the middle ages when guilds of Masons traveled throughout Europe building the great gothic cathedrals. Apprentices were taken in and taught the craft by Master Masons who passed on the secrets of the trade. As building declined, the guilds began to accept members who were not actually stone Masons. From these roots evolved Masonry as we know it today.

Ritual, the initiation of candidates conducted within each lodge, has been the same work that has been done for hundreds and hundreds of years. Every Mason has been lead through the same traditions and instructed in the same mysteries and secrets of Freemasonry. But, make no mistake Freemasonry is not a secret organization. If it were, our buildings would not be easily identifiable and our members would not wear rings and other jewelry with the familiar square & compasses emblem.

Paul RevereThe principles of Freemasonry, Brotherly Love, Relief and Truth inspired the founders of this nation. Today, we recognize these principals as the Cornerstones of the American way of life. Early American Masons such as George Washington, John Hancock, Paul Revere, Prince Hall, Benjamin Franklin and many others were members of the Brotherhood of Freemasons. Together they deliberately incorporated Masonic principles into the most important founding documents of this country. May they long endure, for they are our true security.

Masonic Charities

Masons have many, many opportunities to give back to their community. Each year, Omaha lodges take part in the Omaha Home for Boys maintenance campaign. Florence Lodge sponsors families at Thanksgiving and Christmas. We raise money for scholarships benefitting local children. Our Scottish Rite philanthropy is the RiteCare Clinic, diagnosing and treating childhood language and literacy disorders. And our Shriners contribute toward Shrine hospitals and the Shrine burn units. There are so many opportunities to give back to the community, it would be difficult to list them all in detail! All told, Masonic philanthropies receive over $625 million dollars each year - that is over $1.7 million dollars per day!

Appendant Bodies

Freemasonry is a progressive science, and as such, has many levels of education and involvement. The first step that a man must complete in Freemasonry is that of Symbolic Masonry (often referred to as Ancient Craft Masonry or the "Blue Lodge"). Once the three degrees of that body have been completed, the Master Mason may optionally pursue a deeper understanding of the symbols and allegories of the organization by seeking admission into Masonry's appendant bodies. Any additional degree indicates that a Master Mason has chosen to pursue additional understanding and knowledge in Masonry.

 

 
 

  Florence Lodge #281 A.F. & A.M.