Masonic Youth Organizations
The Order of DeMolay
The Order of DeMolay was founded in the Scottish Rite Temple in Kansas City, Missouri, on March 18, 1919, by Frank Sherman Land and nine young men between 16 and 21 years of age. DeMolay originally was for the sons of Masons and their friends. Today, membership is no longer restricted to relatives of Freemasons. All young men who merit the honor of DeMolay membership and who are between the ages of 13 and 21 and of good character can ask or be asked to join. The Order of DeMolay is a youth organization for young men whose purpose is the building of better citizens. The ritual of the Order sets DeMolay apart from other youth organizations. The two degrees – the Initiatory Degree and the DeMolay Degree – are dramatic and yet solemn presentations that impress an obligation on a boy to live and do right. The Initiatory Degree teaches the candidate the seven precepts of the Order: Love of parents, Reverence for God; Courtesy; Comradeship; Fidelity; Cleanness in thought, word and deed; and Patriotism in time of peace as well as in time of war. These virtues bolster a boy's character by their emphasis. The entire program of a DeMolay Chapter revolves about these seven cardinal virtues. DeMolay does not attempt to take the place of the home, church or school, but rather supplements them with a supporting program of teaching good citizenship to its members.
DeMolay accomplishes its goal of building better citizens by offering the teenage young man of today four items:
1. A wholesome occupation for his spare time
2. Worthwhile associates
3. The best of environment
4. An interesting and complete program of all around youth development.
The name DeMolay was chosen after Frank S. Land suggested, to the nine young men who formed DeMolay, several historic figures, including those connected with Freemasonry. Jacques DeMolay was the last Grand Master of the Knights Templar and was burned at the stake by the King of France as a martyr to loyalty and toleration on March 18, 1314. The spirit and inspiration of Jacques DeMolay, for whom the Order of DeMolay was named, guides countless generations of young men in the paths of truth, tolerance, courage and fidelity.
The Order of DeMolay includes several Appendant Organizations, including the Priories of the DeMolay Order of Knighthood (an advanced Degree for DeMolay boys between 17 and 21 years of age), the Courts of Chevalier (an Honorary Degree for distinguished DeMolay service), and Preceptories of the Legion of Honor (an Honorary Degree for outstanding leadership in some field of endeavor). The mothers of DeMolays can be involved in a Mothers Club or both parents of DeMolays can be involved in a Parents Club appended to the DeMolay Chapter.
The International Order of Rainbow for Girls
The Order of Rainbow for Girls is an international order for girls formed April 6, 1922, in McAlester, Oklahoma, by W. Mark Sexson and 11 adults, who comprised the first Supreme Assembly of the Order of Rainbow for Girls. The purpose of the Order is to prepare girls between the age of 11 and 20 years for a brighter, better and more beautiful womanhood. The Order has two degrees: (1) Initiatory; and (2) Grand Cross of Color (which is an Honorary Degree).
The ritual is based upon Faith, Hope and Charity and the 9th Chapter of Genesis: "And God said . . . 'I set my bow in the cloud, and it shall be a sign of the covenant between me and the earth.'" It emphasizes seven colors – those of the rainbow – red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo, and violet; symbolizing love, religion, nature, immortality, fidelity, patriotism and service. The Rainbow ritual teaches belief in a Supreme Being; great truths of the Bible – dignity of character, conception of higher things in life; effective leadership; church membership; cooperation with peers; patriotism – love of home; and service to humanity.
Local bodies are called Assemblies and are presided over by a Worthy Advisor and a Mother Advisor, and are sponsored by Chapters of the Order of the Eastern Star, Masonic Lodges or other affiliated or Appendant Bodies of Freemasonry. There is a Supreme Assembly presided over by the Supreme Worthy Advisor, which meets biennially.
Membership is open to girls recommended by an Eastern Star or a Freemason, but a girl does not have to belong to a Masonic or Eastern Star family. Rainbow Girls may invite friends to join. The age requirement is 11 to 20. The girls of the various Rainbow Assemblies engage in a variety of activities – service projects, charitable activities, etc. Those adults working with the girls believe that they are helping to imbue them with the dignity of character and helping them to become gracious, lovely young ladies.
The International Order of Job's Daughters
The International Order of Job's Daughters (IOJD) was founded in 1920 by Mrs. Ethel T. Weadmick to band together young ladies who believe in God and the teachings of the Holy Bible. This organization is truly international in scope as there are Bethels in the continental United States, Alaska, Hawaii, Provinces of Canada, Australia, Guam, and the Philippines. Girls between the ages of 11-20 years and having certain Masonic relationships are eligible for membership. Job's Daughters teaches reverence for God, respect for parents and home, loyalty to flag and nation, and love for all the world. In addition, IOJD helps the daughters build character and develop self-confidence and leadership qualities.
Meetings are held at a Bethel, meaning Holy Place. The Ritualistic Ceremony of Initiation is based on the Book of Job and is divided into three Epochs presided over by the three principal officers, with the story being revealed by the five messengers. In general, the Book of Job teaches us a Masonic optimistic lesson – not to fall in despair; it shows that Masonic ideas are imperishable. We see this exemplified in Job's life. Job saw the growth, the building of his home; he also saw its ruins, but again he beheld its revival and reconstruction. Special emphasis is given to the thought that "to be fair is to do good" and "virtue is a quality which highly adorns woman." Job 42:15 tells us that, "In all the land were no women so fair as the daughters of Job, and their father gave them inheritance among their brethren." Job's Daughters, being relatives of Master Masons, receive from us their heritage.
The officers and choir wear white Grecian robes similar to those worn by the people in the days of Job. The top three of the five line officers wear crowns and purple velvet capes over their robes as emblems of their office. The official regalia establishes and equality.
It is the duty of the Honored Queen to carefully plan and preside over the meetings of the Bethel and to exercise general supervision over its affairs. The daughters participate in the community, religious and philanthropic activities, as well as fun and social events. The IOJD is the only Masonic youth organization to have its own charity – H.I.K.E. (Hearing Impaired Kids Endowment). Local Bethels have fundraisers to benefit H.I.K.E. and those in need in the community 2-18 years of age. The IOJD Educational Fund offers the daughters scholarships and interest-free loans to assist them in completing their education.
A Bethel is not directly sponsored by Masonic Lodges or Chapters of O.E. S. but is self-supported and self-governed by the daughters under the supervision of an adult Bethel Guardian Council. The Associate Bethel Guardian must be a Master Mason. Those interested is establishing a Bethel in your area should contact the Supreme Deputy for start-up materials and ideas.