The Rusty Nail Degree requires the participation of several members, and the decision to put on the degree should be made by the entire Lodge. It may be a good idea for several Lodges to go together and perform the degree. The Worshipful Master should appoint a Committee to be in charge of preparing the event. The Rusty Nail Degree is a great time to invite sojourning brethren into your lodge as well as those members of your lodge who have not attended in quite some time. Each member should make a conscious effort to contact someone who has not been in Lodge for sometime and offer to bring them to the event. You could also advertise in your local paper to reach the sojourning brethren. To assure that the brother does not get cold feet at the last minute, he should be called two days before the meeting by another brother, who should inform him that he will be picked up and brought to the Masonic temple for the degree. One brother could bring three other Masons with him to the Lodge.


1. To instruct the brethren present in the proper manner of giving the steps, due guards, signs, grips and words of all three degrees, and the personal conduct required of them when visiting a lodge, and in the opening and closing of a Master Mason's Lodge.

2. To promote Masonic fellowship, and to increase the bond of brotherly love and affection between the brethren present by affording them the opportunity to sit together in closed, tyled session.

TIME: Delivery time is approximately 35 minutes TEACHING PROCEDURE:


1. Introduce self, and all lodge officers present (Put names and titles on the chalk board)

2. Bring out any interesting information about the sojourning members present (e.g. total number of years in Masonry represented, how many different states represented)

3. Announce the Title of the Lecture

4. Announce the Objectives

5. Present Charter and show its important characteristics

6. Proceed with presentation

PRESENTATION: (most easily done with four assistants) Entered Apprentice:  

1. "My brothers, what we are going to do tonight is demonstrate and explain, in examination form, all of the important points of the first three degrees of Freemasonry, which were taught to you in the lessons of the degrees. At the conclusion of tonight's work, you should have no difficulty in gaining admission to any Masonic lodge, anywhere in the United States or abroad."

2. "Brother _______________, please assume the step of an Entered Apprentice and explain the step."

3. "Brother _______________, please go to the altar and kneel as you did for your Entered Apprentice Obligation and explain the due form."

4. "Brother _______________, please give me the due guard of an Entered Apprentice and explain."

5. "Brother _______________, please give me the sign of an Entered Apprentice and explain." Fellow Craft:

6. "Brother _______________, please assume the step of a Fellow Craft and explain the step."

7. "Brother _______________, please kneel at the altar as you did for your Fellow Craft Obligation and explain the due form."

8. "Brother _______________, please give me the due guard of a Fellow Craft and explain."

9. "Brother _______________, please give me the sign of a Fellow Craft and explain." Master Mason:

10. "Brother _______________, please assume the step of a Master Mason and explain the step."

11. "Brother _______________, please kneel at the altar as you did for your Master Mason Obligation and explain the due form."

12. "Brother _______________, please give me the due guard of a Master Mason and explain."

13. "Brother _______________, please give me the sign of a Master Mason and explain."

14. "Brother _______________, you may rise from the altar now, and thank you for your assistance.  Please pair off now, for the next phase of instruction." (In preparation for the next events, the instructor should draw a fist diagram on the chalkboard, and label with arrows, those knuckles used in the grips).

15. "Brother _______________, please assist me in demonstrating the grips, and the manner of arriving at them. Brothers, take each other with the grip of an Entered Apprentice."

16. "Brother _______________, please reply for all. What is that?" (etc., going through all the grips up through the Master Mason pass.)

17. "My brothers, we have now reviewed the pertinent parts of the 1st and 2nd degrees, and the first half of the 3rd degree. Before proceeding with a review of the second section of the 3rd degree, let's have a quick recap." a. Have everyone demonstrate the steps as a group. b. Have everyone demonstrate the due guards and signs. c. Have everyone demonstrate the grips and words.

18. "Great! Now, if you will all have a seat again, we will proceed with the second section of the 3rddegree." "During this part of the degree, you represented our ancient G.M.H.A. during the building of King Solomon's temple."

19. Tell the story - -

a. South gate

b. West gate

c. East gate

d. Temple rubble

e. Burial and acacia placement

f. The seafaring man

g. The 12 Fellow Crafts

h. The search by the 12

i. The wayfaring man

j. Solomon's charge

k. Acacia

1. The capture

m. The punishment

n. Again the search

o. Again the acacia

p. The grave

q. The jewel

r. The report to Solomon

s. The procession

t. The raising (demonstrate)

u. Stress the five points of fellowship, then convey the substitute word to each brother present, in the proper manner.

v. Demonstrate the Grand Hailing Sign and words.

20. "And that, gentlemen, concludes the first part of our instruction. The second part is simple. It's a quick review of the opening and closing of a lodge."

21. Review and demonstrate:

a. Gavel raps

b. Attending the East, with signs (Mention that the signs are used as private grand honors)

c. Attitude of prayer

d. Entering and leaving a lodge at labor (Check the bible)

e. First time visitor procedure

22. "That's it! We will now take a five-minute break. Then we will assemble back here, open lodge, take a refreshment break, then return and close lodge and be finished for the evening." You may want to advertise during the month prior to the Rusty Nail Degree to let the Sojourning Masons in your area know what you are doing. It is best not to put all of the information in the ad so that they must call someone in the lodge and you can talk to them and encourage their attendance.  A sample ad is shown below.  This will possibly bring in some sojourners, but you need to personally contact those members of your lodge who have not attended recently.


Have you not attended your Blue Lodge in years? Have you felt unable to attend another Blue Lodge, but would like to? Are you afraid you can’t gain admittance because your work is too rusty?  Then Tuesday, March 15th is your night!  Acacia Lodge No. 26 will put on a special “Rusty Nail Degree” that evening. Call the Junior Warden for details.



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