UGLE's The Future of Freemasonry Report 2012 - Read the Report
UGLE's "The Future of Freemasonry" Report
The United Grand Lodge of England has released a report concerning the
state of Freemasonry and its future in the country of England.
"The Future of Freemasonry" report is the first ever independent study
conducted by a non-Masonic body, and was commissioned as part of the build-up to
the United Grand Lodge of England's tercentenary in 2017.
Produced by the highly respected Social Issues Research Centre (SIRC), an
independent, non-profit organisation based in Oxford, which conducts research on
social and lifestyle issues, socio-cultural trends and provides insight into
human behaviour and social relations, the report suggests that, contrary to some
misleading commentary, Freemasonry actually demonstrates genuine openness and
transparency and it concludes that it is arguably more relevant today than ever
In particular, the report highlights that Freemasonry acts as a 'constant',
providing members with a unique combination of friendship, belonging and
structure, with many Masons saying they have made valuable lifelong friendships.
The report also highlights the importance that Freemasonry places on charitable
giving, the part that many Freemasons play in their local communities and the
central role of the family. As well as instilling in its members a moral and
ethical approach to life – including thoughtfulness for others, kindness in the
community, honesty in business, courtesy in society and fairness in all things –
Freemasons are the largest charitable givers after the National Lottery, and
also make major contributions to international disaster relief funds.
The role of ritual is shown to be an important part of Freemasonry for many
members, with the report concluding that it provides both structure and
familiarity, in just the same way as the normal rituals of daily life do for
Nigel Brown, who has been the Grand Secretary of the United Grand Lodge of
England since 2007 and is leading the plans for the tercentenary celebrations,
"This is just one step in our ongoing efforts to demonstrate our openness and
transparency, and to inform people about the role we play in society.
"The tercentenary is a significant milestone for Freemasonry and while we're
keen to celebrate our first three hundred years, it's also crucial that we look
forward to ensure that we remain relevant and continue to grow our membership
over the next three hundred."
Peter Marsh, co-director of SIRC, said: "The "Future of Freemasonry" provides an
insightful commentary, not just on the organisation, but also on modern society.
Despite the many changes taking place – or perhaps because of them – our desire
to be part of something and to help other people is undimmed. It's here that
Freemasonry has an important part to play."
Nigel Brown concluded: "This report will form an important part of our
discussions as to how best to ensure that Freemasonry continues to evolve and
adapt to meet the needs of its members and also of wider society, while at the
same time retaining the distinctive character and intrinsic values that have
attracted members for centuries and continue to appeal to people today."
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