Sub Rose; Lodge Meetings and Degrees

Stated meetings and degrees are invitational only.  

Sub Rose….”Under the Rose” has been used in England to denote secrecy or confidentiality.  In the Middle Ages a rose suspended from the ceiling of a council chamber similarly pledged all present, those under the rose, to secrecy.

The rose’s connotation of secrecy dates back to Greek mythology when Aphrodite gave a rose to her son Eros, the God of love; he in turn gave it to Haarpocrates, the God of Silence, to ensure that his mother’s indiscretions, and those of the other gods in general, were not disclosed.

In Christian symbolism, the phrase”sub rosa” has a special place in confessions.  Pictures of five-petalled roses were often carved on confessionals, indicating that the conversations would remain secret.

Paintings of roses on the ceilings of roman banquet rooms were also reminder that things said under the influence of wine, Sub Vino, should also remain sub rosa.


All of our stated business meetings and degrees are “Sub Rosa.”  We believe that our body’s business is best contained within its lodge members.  We also believe that degrees should be an intimate and personal emotional experience between the candidate and the members of his lodge and not a performance for the entertainment of non-member sidelines.  

The white rose is used because it is the emblem of the English House of York and according to “Masonic history” the HOUSE OF YORK is very important to early masonic development.

California Masonic Code

§808.010. VISITATION.

"A Mason’s attendance at a meeting of a Lodge other than his own is not a right but a privilege. A Master Mason in good standing may request permission to attend which the Master or presiding officer of the Lodge may grant or refuse.….Before admitting a visitor, the Master or presiding officer of the Lodge visited shall satisfy himself that each visitor is a Mason and that each visiting Master Mason has in his possession written evidence under the seal of his Lodge showing that he is in good standing. A visitor shall prove that he is a Mason by an examination or avouchment.

A record of visitors shall be maintained by each Lodge on forms prescribed by Grand Lodge.

While not stated in the California Masonic Code, California ritual states that for a Master Mason to be allowed to travel he is required to have returned his third degree proficiency.  Entered Apprentices and Fellowcrafts are required to have the permission of their lodge master to be a guest at our tiled meetings.  All guests desiring to visit our lodge are requested to have their secretary make that request to our secretary thirty days in advance.  If your request is granted please be prepared to bring your own apron, dues card to show that you are in good standing and your travel card showing that you have returned your Third Degree Proficiency.  If you have any questions concerning this policy please contact the lodge secretary by email.

The Master may ask visitors to retire at any time and should do so when controversial, delicate or sensitive matters as well as lodge business are under discussion.

Meetings and events are posted on the GDMF Lodge App. 

For additional information:

Lodge Secretary Gary Jackson


Assistant Secretary Charles Malear