The Order of the Eastern Star is the largest fraternal organization in the world to which both men and women may belong. Worldwide, there are over 500,000 members. The organization was created in the United States in the early nineteenth century to allow women to join with their Masonic relatives in promoting the values and charitable purposes that are such an important part of the Masonic fraternity. While the Order of the Eastern Star has evolved over the centuries, it still remains rooted in its charitable endeavors and fraternal fellowship.
We Are Coeducational
The Order of the Eastern Star is the largest fraternal organization in the world to which both men and women may belong with more than 650,000 members worldwide. In Eastern Star Chapters, Masons and their female relatives promote the values of charitable purposes that are such an important part of the Masonic fraternity. Male petitioners must be members in good standing of a regular Masonic lodge. A woman always serves as the presiding officer of an OES chapter, but Masons are there to advise and support. Females must be 18 years of age or older, and related to Masons in good standing or a member either active for three years or majority of the International Order of Job’s Daughters, or of the International Order of the Rainbow for Girls. If the Masonic relative is deceased, he must have been in good standing at the time of his death. Additional qualifications exist and we urge you to inquire for more information.
We are Inter-generational
An Eastern Star Chapter has members of all ages. Some are young men and women who are in college or just beginning their careers. Some are "Baby Boomers" or "Gen-Xers," and still others have been members of the Order of the Eastern Star for 50 years or more. It is an amazing mix that results in shared wisdom and ideas as members grow to appreciate and learn from the knowledge and talents of their sisters and brothers, both young and old.
We Believe in a Supreme Being
Like the Masonic fraternity, membership in the Order is open to members of all religious affiliations, but petitioners must profess belief in a Supreme Being. The Order is not a substitute for religion, but rather, a complement to each member's church and faith. The initiation ceremony features character-building lessons based on Biblical characters found in the Old and New Testaments.
What we do
OES chapters server their communities in a variety of ways. They collect food for needy families, donate school supplies to disadvantaged students, offer scholarships, support Little League teams and hospitals, participate in walkathons to fund research to cure cancer and other deadly diseases, and sponsor Masonic youth organizations (Order of Job's Daughters, the Order of the Rainbow for Girls and Order of DeMolay). Chapters also work together to support several statewide charities, including the Ohio Eastern Star Home and a long-standing OES scholarship program for future pastors and other religious leaders.