The Principles Underlying Masonic Charity

Charity in Spirit and Deed

There is a great deal more to charity than money. Kindness of manner and generosity of spirit seem so often to be lacking in a high-pressure society, and as a result are more valuable than ever. These attributes are strongly encouraged within Freemasonry, and many of our members are well known in other aspects of their lives for the good work they do in their communities. Having said that, money is still very important, and contributions to various charities are a fundamental part of our purpose.

Brotherly Love, Relief and Truth

The cornerstone upon which Freemasonry rests is that of Brotherly Love, Relief and Truth. In practical terms what does this mean?

Brotherly Love – consideration and concern for the welfare of likeminded people and those for whom they hold responsibilities. Partners and families are the obvious ones but this spreads into the community and places where people live and work.

Relief – awareness that your fellow man is not always successful in his endeavours, be it caused by a disaster as devastating as the Tsunami, which affects many, or as small as some misfortune that prevents an individual continuing to support himself and his family, whether temporarily or permanently. Whilst the method of handling such diverse instances may be different, it is the commitment of every Freemason that, as part of his life and membership of the Craft, he will continue to give whatever support he is able in the form of charitable giving. However, not all relief is about money. Freemasons also give of their time and effort in serving their community in a voluntary capacity, be it on hospital advisory boards, as school governors, helping youth groups etc. It is this spirit, this willingness to help another, that is central to the importance of a Freemason’s membership.

Truth – It goes without saying that the basis of a stable society is one that is based on truth and respect for another’s point of view. This does not mean we cannot disagree, but rather than be confrontational about conflicting opinions, we seek to work together to gain better understanding of each other. The one truth we all share, irrespective of our personal religion or cultural background, is the belief in a Supreme Being.