Why do we hold stated meetings on the MM degree only?

Discussion in 'General Freemasonry Discussion' started by CLewey44, Jan 9, 2019.

  1. CLewey44

    CLewey44 Registered User

    1,600
    1,509
    113
    I understand some districts or GLs allow for stated meetings to be held on pretty much any degree. However, most BLs, whether allowed or not, hold their meetings on the MM degree. This is an old topic I understand but something I've been thinking about lately.

    We have four new EAs at my lodge. I am doing a presentation in a few weeks and wanted them to see it but don't expect them to come to the meeting, sit out in the hallway while we vote on paying the water bill and then have them come back in an hour later to see my 10-15 minute presentation.

    I think for one, doing things 'the way we always have' sort of cheapens the first two degrees and says to EAs/FCs, "you're inferior to us MMs" and can't really participate in LODGE unless it's a degree 'equal to or below you'. If I recall correctly, EAs and FCs were very much present at King Solomon's Temple, whether on the gnd fl or MC.

    There was a time and still is in some countries, being an FC was a big deal and to me still is here as they have a lot of 'light' imparted on them.

    Just to clarify, I've not read any GL stance or regulation on this so maybe it's one of those "it's just always been that way sort of things" and not actually a regulation at all.
     
    Raymond Walters and WX2CIB like this.
  2. coachn

    coachn Coach John S. Nagy Premium Member

    2,068
    2,051
    133
    re: Why do we hold stated meetings on the MM degree only?

    You can thank ...

    1) fear brought about by the Morgan affair,

    2) the meeting in Baltimore

    and, least we forget,

    3) the innovation to the Craft when they split the original EA degree in two and added the third that changed full membership from the EA level to the MM level.​
     
  3. Winter

    Winter Premium Member

    736
    862
    113
    Coach beat me to it. It was a knee-jerk reaction to the Morgan affair. Thankfully, many jurisdictions are coming around to rethinking how we do our meetings. My own EC Lodge conducts all business in the EA degree and only opens in the higher degrees to conduct the business of that degree. It means we don't have to rush a new Brother through the degrees because they are allowed to be full participating members after their initiation.
     
  4. CLewey44

    CLewey44 Registered User

    1,600
    1,509
    113
    I know some, if not all, appendant bodies will hold meetings on the 'lowest' degree or grade. It allows more involvement and you'd think BL would do the same.
     
  5. Elexir

    Elexir Registered User

    694
    521
    93
    Considering that most of the world has EA as full members this is a newer inovation then the 1730s.
     
  6. LK600

    LK600 Premium Member

    654
    710
    113
    Can you not have the presentation before lodge opens? We hold ours first (after dinner but before lodge) so most days the EA's and FC's can attend and then leave.
     
  7. CLewey44

    CLewey44 Registered User

    1,600
    1,509
    113
    I'm hoping if they come the WM will do so. Outside of that, I still wish the meetings were open to all degrees.
     
  8. dfreybur

    dfreybur Premium Member

    3,935
    2,387
    133
    The Morgan affair was in the 1840s. By the time the Anti-Masonic popular movement was forgotten there were a couple of generations of American Masons who had no memory of ever meeting in any degree other than MM other than degrees, proficiency and practices.

    Our entire ritual had evolved to show only a few signs that it had ever been otherwise, like the many officers reciting their stated meeting duties at the closing of a first degree.

    It may violate the world wide standard but lots of American Masons don't care in the least about world wide standards. The MM only policy violates no landmarks so it's just something Brothers in other countries view as just one more American oddity.

    All of my jurisdictions now allow Stated meetings on any degree, but that's only 3 states. If your jurisdiction does not yet allow this, I urge you to work through the line then present legislation on the topic once you have the authority to do so.
     
    CLewey44 likes this.
  9. Keith C

    Keith C Registered User

    809
    925
    93
    Last year our current RWGM made it a requirement for every lodge to hold at least 2 stated meetings in the EA degree. One of which is the annual District Visitation and the other recommended to be Past Master's Night. We are also encouraged to hold as many other meeting in the EA as seems appropriate to the makeup of the Lodge. As we currently have 2 EA Masons our next several meeting will be held in the EA degree and we adapt any programs to conform to that degree. Only the Stated Meeting for the election of officers is required to be conducted in the MM degree.
     
    Raymond Walters likes this.
  10. The Traveling Man

    The Traveling Man Registered User

    211
    226
    43
    My experience has been different. My Royal Arch Chapter meets on the Royal Arch Degree, My Cryptic Council meets on the Select Master Degree, my Commandery meets on the Order of the Temple, My Scottish Rite Valley meets on the 32°.

    Sent from my SM-G930P using My Freemasonry mobile app
     
    CLewey44 and Warrior1256 like this.
  11. The Traveling Man

    The Traveling Man Registered User

    211
    226
    43
    My Lodge can meet on any degree. If all present are Master Masons we'll meet on that degree. If there are EAs present we'll meet on that degree. If there are FCs present, and no EAs, we'll meet on that degree.

    Sent from my SM-G930P using My Freemasonry mobile app
     
    Hasaf, WX2CIB and CLewey44 like this.
  12. CLewey44

    CLewey44 Registered User

    1,600
    1,509
    113
    Oh wow, I didn't know that. I'm not a member of either actually. I've petitioned YR/RAM but haven't taken the Mark Master Degree yet. Does a member receive all Royal Arch degrees at once or over a period of time? The AASR (southern in Oklahoma at least) does all 29 over a weekend, if I'm not mistaken, or as in the northern jurisdiction, they take a few degrees (one always being the 32d degree) and then they are full 32d degree members of the Scottish Rite. In that case, they could open on the 32d since every member is such. Again, not sure about Royal Arch. I guess me comparing the BL to other appendant bodies is not a fair comparison. I do know the SRICF/SRIA meets on the 1st Grade (Zelator) typically to allow all members to attend Convocations.
     
  13. Tony_Twotones

    Tony_Twotones Registered User

    22
    14
    3
    Same at my Lodge


    Sent from my iPhone using My Freemasonry Mobile
     
    Hasaf and The Traveling Man like this.
  14. Glen Cook

    Glen Cook G A Cook Site Benefactor

    2,904
    3,339
    183
    It varies with both jurisdiction and chapter. My Utah chapter tends to perform one at a time. In England, we only have the one HRA ceremony. Much simpler.
     
    Raymond Walters and CLewey44 like this.
  15. Bill Lins

    Bill Lins Moderating Staff Staff Member

    4,344
    1,138
    183
    Since 2007, GLoTX Lodges have had the option to open for business in any Degree, with 2 exceptions. We MUST receive GL officers in a MM Lodge & we MUST open a MM Lodge for the installation of officers. If the installation is to be open to non-Masons, we call to refreshment & proceed, calling back to labor before closing.
     
  16. The Traveling Man

    The Traveling Man Registered User

    211
    226
    43
    I'm guessing most Chapters would confer each degree separately. I got my Chapter and Council degrees together as part of a Festival. I waited 8 months and then took my Commandery Orders separately.
    As for Scottish Rite, every Valley does things different. I'm in the NMJ and when I joined they didn't confer the 32°. I received my 32° separately on Scottish Rite Day. I'd assume that most, or at least many, Valleys confer the 32° at each Reunion.

    Sent from my SM-G930P using My Freemasonry mobile app
     
    CLewey44 likes this.
  17. David612

    David612 Registered User

    836
    668
    93
    We only go to higher degrees when doing degrees-
    We work in the first and our EAs vote.
     
  18. Scoops

    Scoops Registered User

    185
    150
    43
    Here is the same.

    Working in Emulation, I'm not sure there's even an option to open in a higher degree without first opening the lodge in the First Degree.

    Sent from my EML-L09 using Tapatalk
     
    Raymond Walters and CLewey44 like this.
  19. goomba

    goomba Neo-Antient Site Benefactor

    669
    687
    143
    This was result of the Baltimore Convention. After the Morgan Affair they suggested business on the 3rd and a few other changes (such as dues cards) for a level of protection for the fraternity. I for one believe this change has not been good from the fraternity and that we should get rid of it.
     
    Mike Martin and CLewey44 like this.
  20. CLewey44

    CLewey44 Registered User

    1,600
    1,509
    113
    That makes the most sense to me. I have been to a lodge in TX that was holding a stated meeting on the EA degree. The one EA that was there couldn't vote if I'm not mistaken.
     

Share My Freemasonry