International Free & Accepted Modern Masons, Inc. and Order of the Eastern Star is the outgrowth of Ancient Free Masonry, as adopted by Modern Masons in 1717 at the Apple Tree Tavern, England. It adheres to the ancient moral principles of Free Masonry, but has been modified from time to time, that it may have all current and modern benefits to be offered by a Free Mason Fraternal Order. We have no quarrels with other Masonic Bodies, and will be glad to cooperate with them in building Masonry as a True Righteous Order based on the principles of the Holy Bible.
International Free & Accepted Modern Masons, Inc. and Order of the Eastern Star is a worldwide fraternity organized in 1950 by the late Dr. William V. Banks, a very prominent Attorney and a Mason with very high ideals. We received our charter in 1950. Dr. Banks dream became a reality with the birth of this new Masonic Organization. Our purpose is to provide moral, financial, benevolent, and charitable leadership to serve this present age.
Having been incorporated and chartered in August of 1950; our Charter empowered International Masons to practice Freemasonry, and operate as a Masonic Order, throughout the United States, its possessions and territories. This American issued charter empowers International Masons to the same rights as those charters issued directly from the Grand Lodge of England or the Grand Orient of France. Dr. Banks and his host of friends established a National Jurisdiction. Through their diligent efforts the same year, three States were incorporated: Ohio, New York and Illinois.
Youth Chapters were added with authority vested similar to that in the adult constitution. The purpose – to provide an apprentice workshop for the young children and adolescents in the charitable work of the Masonic Body. To inculcate certain moral principles, as exemplified by the Holy Bible and other moral sciences, which is highly regarded by our Masonic Order.
International Masons was founded upon those Christian principles that denies no person the right to fraternalism, regardless of race, color or creed. The cardinal principles of this organization are to appeal to its membership in such a manner as to:
International Free & Accepted Modern Masons, Inc. and Order of the Eastern Star extends from coast to coast; from the Great Lakes to the Gulf of Mexico, on the Bahamas Islands and Alaska. There are more than 3,500 lodges and chapters with a membership of approximately 400,000 families represented. In addition, our youth courts consists of over 2,000 members.
Other institutions of Freemasonry across the nation swell with pride at the great progress our Organization has achieved in this century. A large measurer of credits must be given to the well known reputation that Freemasonry enjoys throughout our nation and around the world.
Because of our beliefs in the Bible and Christian principles, we teach charity, and service to all mankind and we try to induce an ethical way of life which brings about those improvements necessary to the construction of good, clean respected citizenship.
According to The Beacon Light, a historical account documenting the history of International Masons' developed by Illustrious William K. Kirksey records the following as how the State of Florida came into existence within the organization.
It was in the month of August 1950, when International Masons was rapidly experiencing growth in membership throughout the country, that the State of Florida was organized. Under the direction of Rev. Rufus Beacham, Supreme Deputy at that time, Lodges and Chapters were organized in various sections of the state.
The Father Lodge for the State of Florida is Pride of West Tampa #1 and the Mother Chapter is Evening Light Chapter #2.
International Free & Accepted Modern Masons, Inc. and Order of the Eastern Star and its Youth Department provides members with the tools, instruction and encouragement to improve their moral standards and relationships with others. It provides a family atmosphere, making it possible to easily increase one's circle of friends.
International Masons provides the opportunity to travel with and meet new fraternal brothers and sisters from throughout the United States, the Bahamas and Virgin Islands. You will also learn to improve your leadership and communication skills, public speaking, and community involvement. Lastly, you will have a chance to improve your prestige, and enjoy many other benefits of membership.
International Masons develops, promotes and requires honest leadership. Our officers at the various levels of leadership are monitored for integrity by their respective memberships and superior officers. They are required to have all expenses, donations and other forms of compensation approved by their membership. Annual internal audits of financial records are required to insure fiscal responsibility.
International Masons is democratically sponsored and controlled. Members vote for and elect their leaders. To prevent perpetuation all heads of departments have term limits.
We are a true International Fraternal Order, having members throughout the United States, the Caribbean, and soon to include the continent of Africa.
We endorse the concept of "women's suffrage." A woman is welcome to join the Order of Eastern Star without the need of a male sponsor. She will be accepted and admitted on her own individual recognizance.
Youth and Young Adults may become members of our Youth "Juvenile" Department beginning at the age of 5. Youth, age 13 to 18, are enrolled in the "Junior Masons & Stars" Department. Youth, age 16 to 24, are enrolled in the Young Adult Department; however, at age 16 females may elect to become members of the Order of the Eastern Star, and at age 18 males may elect of become Masons.
There are six key benefits of joining International Masons:
Here at International Masons, we are a devoted group, working together to serve you. We serve Satisfactory 98% of our members. This is why over 400,000 families across the nation have joined our fraternity, and are yet joining at the highest rate of any fraternity in the nation.
If you are not a member, you are missing out on a lot of good things which you should be enjoying, such as ENDOWMENT protection and BONUSES for bringing in new members, and paid-up memberships after twenty good standing years.
CLEAN SOCIALS: Family events for both youths and adults. You are taught how to enjoy yourself without the use of liquor, gambling or other forms of vice. Planned excursions and picnics are a regular part of our activity.
PRESTIGE: You are no longer a lost soul in an asphalt jungle of houses; you become identified and respected as an important functionary of your community. You are given a definite and distinct part to play in making our community what it ought to be, and for our mutual help and enjoyment.
To begin with, we ask you to bring this message to your neighbors at every opportunity. Be a good neighbor, and you will have good neighbors. You will be doing yourself a big favor when you become a GOOD NEIGHBOR.
There is an old toast that goes: "May you have health, wealth, and love, and a long life to enjoy them." This is our sincere aim.
There is only one way to solve the problems of our times, and that's through practical application of the essential religious principles, the Brotherhood of Man, by the Fatherhood of Divinity.
That is a question of personal choice or preference. We believe that International Masons measures up with any other Order that you may have considered, and that given fair considerations we will be your first choice. We have democratically elected officers at every level of our fraternity. In most instances, in addition to defined terms of office, there are also specified term limits to prevent perpetual holding of office. This prevents stale leadership and provides opportunities for other to move into leadership positions.
The necessary checks and balances are in place to assure honest and fair leadership. All financial officers are required to be bonded, and funds are retained in approved financial institutions requiring multiple signatures for disbursement of funds.
The Masonic World News is the official publication of International Masons, and provides information of interest from the various states and Home Office. The Voice of Masters Among Men is the official publication of the Supreme Grand Lodge for Masons, and The Intellastar is the official publication for the Order of the Eastern Star. Both of these publications provide information, education and current fraternal events to their respective memberships. We believe in keeping our members informed and up to date.
So you ask again, which is the best Order? You be the Judge. Join Today!!!