Freemasonry is not a Charity, but as in any fraternal setting, the need of a Brother or his dependents, will receive the sympathy and support of his Brethren, not always or necessarily, financial. Charity is a natural off-shoot of Brotherly Love and is promoted explicitly in the Masonic ethos, but it is not the ‘raison d’etre’ of the Order.
From its earliest days, charity has been the most visible Masonic activity. Freemasons have always been devoted to caring for disadvantaged children, the sick and the elderly. In fact, Masons in North America give away approximately $3 million to national and local charities each day, of which more than 70% is directed toward the general public. Masons are also actively involved in a great deal of community volunteer work.
Masonic principles teach the value of relief – or charity. Among their works are the Shriners Hospitals for Children with 22 sites throughout North America, including a burn center in Boston and an orthopedic facility in Springfield; RiteCare helping children with dyslexia and speech and hearing disorders; There are numerous other worthy causes and groups that local Lodges contribute to and help in their communities.