The Entered Apprentice Blues

February 27, 2007

Frustration Two other Entered Apprentices just went through their Fellow Craft Degree the other night.  Myself and another Brother are going to go through our Fellow Craft Degree in a month on March 23.  Now that the date is finalized, it is going to be 4 months from my Initiation to Fellow Craft.

We were allowed to stay in Lodge to watch the testing of the memorized questions and answers.  They answered the questions alternatively and made it through word for word perfectly.

They then were required to recite their “Great and Solemn Obligation of an Entered Apprentice Mason” together.  The last section of the Obligation which dealt with the “penalties” were done separately however.

They had practiced this together for the first time a few days before, and I can vouch that the first couple of times were pretty rough.  The first problem was a difference in their respective accents which tended to throw each other off.  Then there was the problem of the “little words” in the Obligation.  A little mistake like switching “and” with “or” might not be noticed by itself, but when two people recite both at the same time is quite noticeable. 

The practice payed off though because they did a great job.  It was interesting to look around the room at the other Freemasons in attendance.  Almost everyone was looking down with their heads bobbing as they all quietly recited the obligation to themselves.  

I was hoping to see them go through more parts of “proving up” their Entered Apprentice Catechisms, but unfortunately the junior Entered Apprentices were forced to retire at this point.

We both sat outside the Lodge Room for the next hour and a half as the Fellow Craft Ceremony continued.  After the ceremony ended, we were allowed back in the Lodge for the closing.

I must admit that it is getting tough waiting for my Fellow Craft Degree.  I’ve had my memorization down for quite a while now, and I could have easily demonstrated all of my memorization that night. 

I realize that there is much, much more to learn and I continue to read about and research Masonry, but I guess I will get there soon enough!

This is my 15th post on Freemasonry and my experiences as a Freemason.  Here is the Table of Contents of my Masonic Journey.



  1. That sounds a bit like how I returned my EA. I went through with 5 others, but only myself and 1 other returned the EA lecture. We were asked alternating questions, and then we each had to recite the Obligation separately.

    The Lodge secretary as well as some visiting brothers commented that our proficiency return was the best that they had seen in a long while.

  2. I’m surprised that they haven’t offered to bring you to another lodge that would be doing an EA degree in the near future. We often do “courtesy work” with other lodges in the area.

    Yes, yes – it’s certainly worth waiting for, and all that. But the practice is so common in these parts that I assumed it was typical elsewhere. We rarely have candidates wait more than 2 months.

  3. Strange that the Blue system invented the memory game questions which teaches nothing. As in the beginning education and discussion were used. The fast track of 6 to 10 weeks to make a “Mason” cheets the candidates of learning each degree, its symbolism and its reason before being shoved to the next after one can repeat a description of the degree process. Shame… Masonry is for seekers of knowledge “The Sons of Light” but that light glows demly in a Blue Lodge.

  4. I’ve heard this before, and while to some extent I agree, I also have begun to ask myself: What is the “proper” amount of time between degrees? Six months? 12? 36?

    Those of us inclined to absorb and inculcate the mysteries will do so in our own time, whether we receive the degrees over a year or a day. Each time we watch or participate in another degree adds to our insight. Each time we pick up a book or have a discussion with other like-minded individuals adds to our insight.

    I try to remember that it’s the journey and not the destination that shapes us.

  5. You will love the FC degree – it’s great.

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