The precise origins of Freemasonry have been lost in time, however, its traditions date back to the Middle Ages and to the stonemasons who built the cathedrals and castles of Europe. To construct them, it was necessary for men to have considerable knowledge of geometry, arithmetic and engineering. These highly skilled masons formed themselves into lodges to protect the skills and secrets of their trade and to pass their knowledge on to worthy apprentices. Importantly, these men were not bondsmen, hence the word "free" in Freemason.
By the 17th Century, when the building of castles and cathedrals diminished, Masonry began to lose its 'operative' aspects and worthy men who were not craftsmen were also accepted into its membership. It was from this time that Masons were known as 'free and accepted' Masons, as they continue to be known to this day.
The first Grand Lodge was established in England in 1717 and thereafter Freemasonry spread rapidly throughout the world. Freemasonry has been practised in Australasia since early in the 19th Century
One of the world's oldest and largest fraternal organisations
An organisation of men who adopt the fundamental principle of integrity, goodwill and charity as the foundations for an individual's life and character
A non-profit organisation that is heavily involved in supporting charity and community service
Comprised of men of good character with high ideals and worthwhile values who make a difference in the community
The Myths Dispelled
It is not a secret society but embraces confidentiality
It is not a religion or a substitute for religion
It emphasises universal harmony and does not permit discussion of religion or politics
It is not a benefit society and to join for personal gain will only lead to disappointment
Freemasonry in New Zealand
New Zealand is divided into three Masonic Divisions, each of which is divided into number of Districts. In each District there are a number of Lodges.
Each Division has a Divisional Grand Master who oversees the operations of the Districts.
Each District has a District Grand Master and a District Secretary.
Each Lodge has a Master, a Secretary and a range of other Officers to help with the running of the Lodge and its events.
Overseeing all of the Divisions, Districts and Lodges is Grand Lodge of New Zealand (GLNZ). Administration for GLNZ is done from Grand Lodge Office in Wellington