Mizpah Shrine Membership

Membership Chair: John Runge
EMAIL: Membership Team
DOWNLOAD: Petition for Membership

Membership is the core of Mizpah.  Without our members, patients don't go to hospitals, fundraising cannot succeed and the mission would fail!  The following are common questions regarding membership into The World's Greatest Philanthropy...

Who can be a member?  Any master mason in good standing is eligible to be initiated into Shrine membership.  Ceremonies are conducted throughout the year and clubs & units are on hand to help get you involved in Shrinedom.  A master mason must be a member of a Masonic Lodge in good standing and affiliated with Shriners International.  More information regarding freemasonry can be found HERE.

What do you do? The primary purpose of Shriners and Shriners International is the support of the 22 Shrine orthopedic and burn hospitals.  With a budget of 800-million dollars per year, the mission of the hospital is to provide unsurpassed medical care to children up to the age of 18, REGARDLESS OF THE FAMILY'S ABILITY TO PAY.  We provide transportation, care, and support to the patient, many of whom return to become Shriners themselves in adulthood and support the hospital that helped them regain their lives.
At Mizpah, we directly support the Chicago orthopedic hospital and the Cincinnati burn hospital.  We have nearly 2000 patients that rely on Mizpah for transportation and support to receive medical care, from once a week to once a year.

Do I have to pay dues?  There is a structure in place for dues, and of those dues, they are split to support the hospitals and the Imperial Consulate of Shriners International (the membership that oversees the work of Shriners Hospitals for Children).  The remaining balance goes to support the mission of Mizpah through facilities, overhead, and operational costs associated with membership.  Your membership dues make it possible that all the fundraising events we conduct for the hospitals can be utilized directly to those causes.  The only current exception to our fundraising is the circus, which accounts for the other part of our capital operating budget and does not go to the hospital.  This fundraiser makes it possible to never take money from other fundraising events to cover operational costs.  Additionally, some clubs and units have yearly dues that support their efforts to fundraise and support the shrine.

Do I have to be a member of the Scottish Rite to be a Shriner?  No.  The requirement to be a Scottish Rite mason no longer exists, but we highly encourage membership in both organizations, as it strengthens your walk in masonry.

Okay, what's with the silly hat?  The fez serves as an iconic symbol of the Shriner, and is worn at all official temple events.  It is considered one of the most recognizable of all symbols of a fraternal organization.  New members are provided the embroidered or 'non-jeweled' fez upon induction, and as your walk in shrinedom grows, the jeweled fez may become a part of your regalia.  Certain clubs and units have a fez that recognizes their specific unit; however, no member is required to wear a specific fez, except for the Divan (senior leadership) of the temple.  In the past you would see the fez of a 'Past Potentate', however, many of Mizpah's Past Potentates have adopted that a Potentate fez will have the year they were Potentate, and they would not change to a 'Past Potentate' fez.  This is not a requirement and won't be witnessed in most temples.

I have seen you in parades riding in cars, horses, and other vehicles.  Are those yours? Yes, all the horses are the sole ownership of each member of the horse patrol, and the Little 500 and other units either purchase their own or the unit conducts fundraisers to purchase their equipment.  However, not all units are parade units.  If you don't want to parade, that's okay!  One of the best parts of being a Shriner is being as involved as you can be, not as we want you to be.

I don't have a lot of time.  Is the Shrine for me?  YES!!!  The greatest thing about being a Shriner is that you are not required to give a minimum amount of hours to the organization.  Some people are only able to attend meetings or work at the circus or other events, while some are able to practically live there.  It's okay.  Even if it is one weekend a year, membership is what you make of it.  We encourage all members to remember their masonic foundation of God, family, job, fraternity, in that order. 

I live in a warm place during the winter.  How does that affect membership?  Your membership card allows you access to any of the Shrine temples in good standing with Shriners International.  Many of our members hold a dual-membership so they can vote and participate in many other events at different temples; however your dues card is all you need to attend stated meetings and other events.

My family is important to me.  Can they participate? ABSOLUTELY!!! The only way the Shrine grows is with the support of your family.  With very little exception (stated meetings and ceremonial degree work) the work of Shriners almost requires the entire family support you.  More than 30% of the volunteers during the circus are spouses and children, and our ladies' are part of every event we have in some capacity.

I'm a female, can I be a Shriner?  Shrine membership is restricted to men due to the requirement of master masonry.  There are, however, different fraternal organizations that serve alongside Mizpah and Shriners International:
    - Daughters of The Nile, Teti Sheri Temple 60
- Order of The Eastern Star (several local organizations) INFO

Okay, my son/daughter wants to get involved.  How do I help them?  The masonic bodies support two fantastic organizations, Jobs Daughters and the DeMolay.  These fine young people serve along side Mizpah at several events during the year, as well as conduct their own meetings and fundraising for their organization.
    - Indiana DeMolay
    - Indiana Jobs Daughters INFO

I still don't know... how do I get more info?  You can always email membership@mizpahshrine.com, or you can visit the official Shriners International membership site: