The DeMolay journey begins with the chapter, each a unique experience built around the same high values and leadership opportunities that have set DeMolay apart since its inception. Below are some aspects of the DeMolay program that showcase how it creates lifelong bonds between members that strengthen with time.
DeMolay events are unlike anything else. They span sports tournaments, formal dinners, children's hospital visits, chili cook-offs, and so much more. If you can dream it, you can do it in DeMolay. The young men are challenged to embrace new ideas and brainstorm creative approaches to fundraisers, service projects, membership drives, and fun events. Each year activities change and are reshaped based on their previous results. Some events lead to special moments in a young mans life. Like when a trip takes a DeMolay further from home than they've ever been before, or when they enjoy an activity they never would have tried on their own.
Effective meetings are the cornerstone around which a chapter functions and grows. Meetings give members the opportunity to be creative and turn their ideas into reality. Every DeMolay has a role in the opening and closing of meetings. Every 6 months new roles are selected for members, and an election is held for new chapter leadership. The leader of a chapter is the Master Councilor. This position provides hands-on experience through challenging the young man in charge to make decisions for the chapter and organize the “when, where, and how” of events. Guest speakers like veterans, teachers, and public servants, are often invited to give special presentations.
As Frank Land was putting together the pieces of his club that would become DeMolay, he asked a local writer, Frank Marshall to write some performances for his club, that represented the virtues he wished to impress upon them. Though he didn’t believe he could, Frank Marshall found himself compelled to try, and he wrote the degrees of DeMolay. What Marshall produced was so well written that a century later, the majority of his writing has gone unchanged. Many other pieces were introduced with time, and all together DeMolay boasts some of the most moving presentations a person can see. From a monologue honoring a Mothers’ love, to a sending off of brothers who have reached the age of majority, each carries a different lesson that the young men take with them beyond their time in DeMolay. Anyone watching a DeMolay performance for the first time is likely to be astounded by the ability and professionalism of the members - many of whom have no idea that what they're doing is truly special.
The titles of “Mom” and “Dad” are indicative of the kind of impact Advisors can have on the DeMolays they work with. Members often refer to DeMolay as a “second family” because of the level of attention and affection given to the young men. By surrounding them with the right people, and giving them assistance, while promoting individuality, DeMolay attempts to provide guidance which will bring the best out of each young man.
Once a year, DeMolay hosts an International Session, where Jurisdictions send their top ranked DeMolays along with their Executive Officer (adult in charge of the Jurisdiction). While there, they get the rare opportunity to meet some of the best DeMolays from across the globe. The location of session changes every year, often being held in historic locations like Kansas City, or Washington DC. The primary youth function during the week is the Congress Session where delegates from every Jurisdiction of DeMolay have their voice heard and vote on changes they would like to see on an International scale. Also during the week of Session, the youth representatives elect an International Master Councilor and an International Congress Secretary to be the youth representatives for DeMolay. These elected officers travel the world on behalf of DeMolay and are voting members of DeMolay’s Board of Directors.
The official name of the Order is The Chivalric Knights of the Holy Order of the Fellow Soldiers of Jacques DeMolay. Knighthood is not an honorary degree or award, but a working body whose purpose is to improve its members, and to serve the Order of DeMolay. It is standout from DeMolay and Squires in its attire, and if available, swords are worn on the hip and are used during their proceedings.
The Order of Knighthood made its debut in 1946.
The main functions of a Priory are to:
- Assist the Order of DeMolay and its Chapters.
- Maintain the active interest of older DeMolays.
- Provide an interesting program for the Priory members.
- Provide a proper example for all DeMolays.
Potential Advisors go through a rigorous screening process, mandatory background check, and yearly Advisor renewals, to help ensure the safety of our youth members. Dedicated and caring Advisors are an important piece of any successful Chapter, and just as DeMolays each have a slightly different role, Advisors lean on their strengths and experiences to guide how they support our members. Advisors give their weekends to drive DeMolays to and from events. They fill in as referees, DJ’s, moderators, set designers, and anything else an event calls for. They support DeMolays through some of the worst moments of their lives. They brainstorm ideas with their Chapter, and help recruit new members. Being an Advisor is like being a Swiss army knife of guidance, leadership, and assistance.