Greetings brethren. Today we have a special piece for you that I am sure you’re going to enjoy reading.
We’ve tracked down a female freemason in the UK and she was kind enough to answer your questions (if you’re on my email list, you would’ve had the chance to suggest some questions too).
One of our most popular blog posts is “Women In Freemasonry: Co-Masonry & More” and yes, it is a very controversial subject.
That is why we decided to do this interview with this young lady (her identity will not be revealed), so you, me and any other individual interested in our Craft can understand this peculiar branch of Freemasonry.
Let’s get into the interview…
PS: Learn more about the “Order Of Female Freemasons” on Wikipedia.
Q: Please introduce yourself
I am a 32 year old female and a member of the Order of Women Freemasons (OWF).
I am currently a student nurse, a wife and mother of three children. I was SD last masonic year but currently a steward whilst finishing my Nursing degree.
Q: What got you interested in freemasonry and how old were you when joined?
I became a MM in 2012 aged 29.
I was first introduced to Freemasonry after my neighbor (female) briefly spoke of her involvement with OWF and made a suggestion about inviting me to join.
I don’t come from a family of Freemasons so this was a very new concept to me. I had heard about Freemasonry but I never realised women could join.
This intrigued me, especially as I am all for equal opportunities and empowering women.
The women of OWF are very passionate about freemasonry and equally very protective of the order, that is why you won’t find an awful lot of information about us.
This was just as apparent when I was accepted for interview, each lady Freemason is true to her word won’t discuss masonic matters until becoming a member.
I love having a sense of belonging, which is what freemasonry gives you, knowing that you have a role to play and people who depend on you is a wonderful feeling.
As a student nurse I see a lot of people in society that don’t have anyone, people don’t have family or close friends to help them in times of need especially in old age.
Being a freemason opens you up to a huge network of people who will be there for you in times of need, or to share happy times together in freemasonry we call this “brotherhood”.
I see older members of the order and look on them with true admiration, I know that to them freemasonry is a huge part of their lives which not just brings them joy but that sense of togetherness we all seek.
I know that when I am older and my social circle becomes smaller, I will always have OWF that will keep me from loneliness and always keep me on the level.
Q: What roles do you think female masonry plays in freemasonry in general?
I do believe having women involved with freemasonry helps keep the interest in freemasonry going.
Obviously the male lodges have been going for a long time and seem to do very well with new members, however times are changing and today’s society are always looking for something new and interesting.
I do find women in freemasonry have an allure that some male lodges don’t have; we are harder to find and more secretive. This seems to intrigue people and ignites a curiosity into freemasonry whether it is a male wanting to join a male lodge of female into OWF.
I do find that women in freemasonry often have husbands or fathers that are masons and this helps keep that sense of belonging not to mention save marriages, women actually know what “off to lodge” means now.
Q: Do you think female masonry will continue to grow and is there many young members involved?
I do think maybe we as an order need to open up more in-terms of social media and start to promote us to more younger audiences.
In my lodge we have young members which have grown up with freemasonry in the families. I think there are plenty of people that would join but with the demands placed on women today to work and have families later in life it doesn’t leave much time for anything else.
As an order we do have lots of lodges over the world and continue to gain new members, I think we will definitely continue to grow.
Q: Does being a member affect you in a positive/negative way on the world? If so, how?
I don’t think being a female in freemasonry has the same level of respect that men get, mainly because we don’t have as many members.
As more women are taking on more responsibility in the workplace and gaining managerial roles this may change the way people view women in freemasonry. However until we are accepted fully I think we have a long way to go before the world recognize us properly as freemasons.
One thing I was warned about when joining was to be vigilant when around male freemasons as a lot of men do not like women in freemasonry. It’s not that they don’t like women, it’s that they don’t like the idea of women being apart of something that has always been male.
I shrugged this off and felt that I would be as open as they are and wear my masonic ring with pride, however my first ever meeting outside of the lodge with a male freemason didn’t go very well.
He introduced himself as a freemason and so did I, this did not go very well as he immediately told me what he thought were home truths.
This encounter frightened me just like many other ladies have mentioned and is often the reason we remain quite low key.
Thankfully the rest of the British male lodges have been amazing and very welcoming with just the odd few older more traditional members that don’t agree with women as members. This does not bother me so much but I would like to see more acceptance.
The main problems I have encountered are from lodges in America, they have never heard of OWF and completely reject the idea of women being apart of it. I’m sure in time this may change as with most things.
Q: Do you think Freemasonry will stand the test of time when there are so much distractions out there?
I think freemasonry will always keep going as long as it adapts to the ever changing society.
It’s important to remain traditional but adapt how that tradition is delivered.
Some use the power of social media to communicate whereas before it may have been by hand written letter, the content is the same but the delivery is adapted.
The most important thing is to ensure the actual meeting of members is done in person and that virtual lodges don’t become the future.
I say this as I often see male members from all over the world discussing masonic matters virtually, this is a great way of meeting new members etc but the allure of freemasonry is lost with such openness.
One thing I have seen which is interesting is the university scheme where a lodge is attached to universities’ and gaining membership this way. OWF does not have this but the male lodges do, I think this is a great idea and one that will stimulate lots of interest from competitive students.
Q: With so many maternal organisations, including Eastern Star, why create a subset of Freemasonry?
I can not answer this question as OWF was created way before I was born, however I can say that OWF is not a branch of freemasonry just for wives, daughters or mothers it is an order of women freemasons.
Leave Your Questions Below
If you have any questions that you would like to ask to our female counterpart, you can leave a comment down below in the comment section.
I must add that all comments will go through moderation before publishing so please be respectful.
We know female freemasonry is a controversial issue but let’s all remember we’re all human beings.
Thank you very much and a HUGE thank you to our interviewee for her time, patience and detailed answers.