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Requirements for Membership

A man or woman of good character, of any race, nationality and social status, who is loyal to his or her country and believes in a Supreme Being, the creator and preserver of the Universe, is eligible for membership. Odd Fellowship strictly forbids any interference with one’s religious beliefs or political opinions. Most jurisdictions require candidates for the adult lodges to be 16 years old. Junior Lodges, Theta Rho clubs or United Youth Groups accept members 8 to 18 years old (some jurisdictions have a minimum age limit of 10).

Lodges charge an initiation fee and annual dues. The amount of dues is set by each lodge.

Become A Member

To become a member at an Illinois Lodge and or any other Odd Fellow Lodge world wide, the path is the same.  Those interested simply would either contact the lodge, meet a current member or come to an Odd Fellow sponsored event and let us know your intention.  Once we are aware of your intention we strongly suggest the following:

1.) Research the order.  Information is in every library and all over the internet

2.) Attend lodge dinners and functions so you have the opportunity to get to know the members and see first hand some of the benevolent programs we are involved in.

3.) Visit other Odd Fellow Lodges in the area. 

4.) Keep in mind you are considering joining a world wide fraternal order.

5.) Consider the time you have to offer.  Odd Fellows are Odd Fellows 24/7 365.

6.) If after you have contemplated the above and wish to proceed you will need a sponsor.  If you don`t personally know someone in the lodge and wish to join and have made your intention to become a member clear then one will be appointed for you.

7.) This becomes your official start.  You will be educated on what is expected and you will be asked to be involved in various lodge functions and activities as well.

8.) When your sponsor feels confident you have gained the knowledge to make a well informed decision on joining the order, your sponsor will let the lodge know and the members will vote on you at a regularly scheduled meeting.

9.) The lodge will ballot to accept you as a member.  If the vote is favorable, you will be brought to the next initiation and start a life long journey of helping your fellow man and expanding your fraternal relations with the world.


The Grand Lodge of Illinois Independent Order of Odd Fellows (GL-IL I.O.O.F.) will not discriminate against any individual on the basis of disability, age (other than that of minimum to join the Order (lodge, club or group), ethnicity, gender, race, sexual orientation, religion, or other social identity.  The GL-IL I.O.O.F. will make reasonable modifications in policies, practices, or procedures when such modifications are necessary to afford its services and facilities to individuals with disabilities, unless the modifications would fundamentally alter the nature of its services. TheGL-IL I.O.O.F. will not exclude any individual based on disability, age, ethnicity, gender, race, sexual orientation, religion, or other social identity from the full and equal enjoyment of its services and facilities, unless the individual poses a direct threat to the health or safety of others, or him/herself, that cannot be eliminated by a modification of policies, practices, or procedures or by the provision of auxiliary aids or services. The GL-IL I.O.O.F. will not exclude any individual from the full and equal enjoyment of its services and facilities because of the individual’s association with a person of disability, age, ethnicity, gender, race, sexual orientation, religion or other social identity.