The York Rite
Masonic history, both real and legendary, has centered around the search for the true Word. The lessons taught in the Lodge leave the initiate with the sense of having almost, but not quite, discovered the much-to-be-desired object of his quest. The first steps to take along this road should naturally tie in closely and enrich the degrees you have already received. Such are the Chapter and Council degrees and the Orders of the Commandery in the York Rite. These Masonic degrees are not merely degrees, but are exemplifications of homely virtues often neglected and lost sight of in the busy lives we now live.
The Scottish Rite
The Scottish Rite seeks to strengthen the community and believes that each man should act in civil life according to his individual judgment and the dictates of his conscience. Additional degrees are sometimes referred to as appendant degrees, even where the degree numbering might imply a hierarchy. Appendant degrees represent a lateral movement in Masonic Education rather than an upward movement. These are not degrees of rank, but rather degrees of instruction. See the links below for more information.
Shriners International is a fraternity based on fun, fellowship and the Masonic principles of brotherly love, relief and truth. There are approximately 375,000 members from 191 temples (chapters) in the U.S., Canada, Mexico and the Republic of Panama. Shriners International support Shriners Hospitals for Children, a one-of-a-kind international health care system of 22 hospitals dedicated to improving the lives of children by providing specialty pediatric care, innovative research and teaching programs. Since 1922, Shriners Hospitals have significantly improved the lives of more than 865,000 children.
The man who comes to the Grotto had his Masonic origin in a Symbolic Lodge. Where he was taught to revere the name of God and pray for guidance. He came on through the degrees where his knowledge of the dignity of Masonry was expanded and the Grotto was provided for him as a place where he might join with his brothers in letting human instincts for fun, pleasure and amusement prevail. The Grotto stands for for letting in the sunshine on discouragement, grief and woe and substituting hope for despair at all times. Membership in the Grotto gives a man the right to wear its emblem and to participate in its good work, as well as enjoy all its pleasures.