DeMolay provides an experience that creates bonds of friendship and an extended family that our members will never forget. It is not just a youth program, but rather, a lifestyle that has sustained men, young and old, for nearly 100 years. Many have said, “You get out of this organization what you put into it” but many will admit that they got much more than they expected. Every member benefits from the fun and the learning and the leadership and life lessons that are experienced in their DeMolay Chapter’s program. The common thread that binds all members and DeMolay Chapters together are the beliefs that we agree upon, and a shared value system that governs the way we try to life our daily lives.
What follows is a description of those seven cardinal virtues– seven principles for a life well-lived– that help round out and develop the character of every member.
- Filial Love (Love for our parents and caregivers): Our parents/step-parents/guardians have provided love and care for us from the stages of infancy to the approaching years of manhood after high school. This lesson teaches us to understand the time and effort our parents have put into making sure we grow into respectful and moral young men.
- Reverence for Sacred Things: In the Order of DeMolay, we encourage each member to develop his faith in God according to his own family traditions and personal beliefs. We do not tell members what to believe, only that it is important to believe and to rely upon the grace of a higher power. We expect our members to seek, to learn, to question, to trust, and to participate in worship with their family and their brothers. Because we value religious freedom and teach toleration, we ask our members to be open to learning about the beliefs of others in a respectful and supportive manner.
- Courtesy: Courtesy is the basis of all human relationships. It is the simple life lesson to extend to others the same consideration we want to receive; to be dealt with fairly; to give and to be given common kindness. From the roots of courtesy we can grow our relationships with respect, friendship and love.
- Comradeship: Members of DeMolay share a common bond in the ideals we profess, and the promises we make to each other– to be better sons, better brothers, better young men in all that we do. As fraternal brothers in DeMolay, we support each other in our moments of triumph and despair. It has been said that “once a DeMolay, always a DeMolay,” meaning that our friendships will not end. Our commitment to each other is greater than that of casual friends, because we are pledged to be life-long brothers, and will help each other as our time and resources permit.
- Fidelity: We teach the lessons of loyalty and faithfulness through the example of Jacques DeMolay, the hero and martyr who never betrayed the trust given to him by his brothers. Trust is the most important gift we can give to and receive from another. The trust of our parents, our friends, our employer, our neighbors, must be earned by our reliable and constant behavior. A man who can be relied upon to fulfill his promises, if humanly possible, is valued and respected above all others.
- Cleanness: We believe in the ideal of cleanness in thought, word, and deed. This is easier said, than done, and it takes practice and dedication to keep a clean body, a clean mind, and a clean heart. This virtue reminds us every day that we must consciously work to avoid the many opportunities to indulge in behavior that weakens us both physically and spiritually. We are striving to grow and mature, but we must not be hasty in our journey to manhood.
- Patriotism: To love your country is to love the ideals which bind your nation together. Patriotism is that inner feeling of pride and devotion to the history, the customs, the rule of law and the people who share a common dream of a better life. DeMolay’s lesson of patriotism is not all pomp and bluster, but that of thoughtful consideration of the need for a military presence in the world, as well as the creation and preservation of peace through the acts of good citizenship.
San Jose Chapter of DeMolay meets on the 1st Monday of the month.