Royal Arch Widow Degrees awarded to wives of Masons
On Monday, Nov. 13, a group of ladies, whose husbands are members of Occidental Royal Arch Masons Chapter No. 235 of Warren, and Cyrus Royal Arch Masons Chapter No. 236 of Oil City, each received the Royal Arch Widow Degree in Oil City.
The idea of the degree was conceived several years ago in Cut Bank, Montana as a means of entertaining wives rather than a convocation of a Chapter. Royal Arch Masons of Wisconsin added humor to the Degree. The Grand Chapter of Missouri copyrighted the degree then relinquished the copyright to the Educational Bureau of the General Grand Chapter.
After the degree is completed the last speaker of the evening declares, “and now, a serious word to the new members. This degree has no connection with any Masonic degree, real or imaginary. Its sole purpose was fun, and to provide an evening of entertainment for you, our wives. Freemasonry was established for the purpose of making men better. You ladies leave nothing along this line to strive for, and the conferring of Masonic degrees would be superfluous. There is not one of us who does not realize the sacrifices you make in order that your husband may attend Masonic meetings. We assure you there is nothing done at such meetings which should make him a worse husband, but on the contrary, he should be a better one. Freemasonry teaches brotherly love, relief, truth, temperance, fortitude, prudence, and justice.”