Our History

Independent Order of Odd Fellows

History of the IOOF



The Odd Fellows Lodge

The Independent Order of Odd Fellows continues to successfully promote a network of Lodges as a traditional Fraternity, catering for both men and women, in Australia and New Zealand through the Grand Lodge of Australasia. The Lodge is a timeless fraternity (or club) that promotes principle centred teachings through an order of ascending degrees of learning. The aim of the Lodge is to "elevate the character" of members through learning principles and morals, and through conducting business in a formal ceremonial fashion. Customs and etiquette form an important part of the Odd Fellows culture, and members are encouraged to learn not only procedures and protocol which are applicable to any democratic organisations (committees, boards, unions etc) but are also encouraged to build confidence, public speaking and an understanding of social formalities. If you are interested in being a member of an international Lodge, then the Independent Order of Odd Fellows is for you.


Personal Development Philosophy

The purpose of the Order for hundreds of years has been to provide a framework that promotes the personal development of members. The Fraternity is based on the principles of Friendship, Love, Truth, Faith, Hope and Charity, and these principles form the foundation of the lessons for the contemplation of members. These lessons constitute the Degrees of Odd Fellowship, which include written and visual presentations for members to participate in at meetings, and reflect on as they undertake their day to day lives. In addition, the structure of the Order is designed in such a way that members ascend the hierarchy, undertaking higher offices, and thereby learn how to conduct democratic organisations in the timeless archetypal Lodge structure. Leadership opportunities extend from one’s own Lodge, to State, Country, and then to the International structures which exist as the highest echelons of the Order. The objective is to enable members to undertake offices to their capacity and desires, and learn from experiences which may otherwise only open to those in the highest layers of business or government.


Odd Fellows World-Wide

The Odd Fellows Lodge is an international network of Lodges that extends around the world. If travelling is an interest, Lodge membership can provide you with a valuable network that will very much welcome an international visitor, and assist in their enterprises, and certainly their travels where possible. There are Odd Fellow Lodges in Australia, New Zealand, USA, Canada, Mexico, Philippines, Cuba, Venezuela, Chile, Iceland, Norway, Sweden, Finland, Estonia, Poland, Germany, Denmark, Netherlands, Belgium, Switzerland. State, country and regional conferences are also held each year, and provide the opportunity for formal involvement in business proceedings and networking while visiting. 

Social Activities: Being a fraternity means there are various social activities which members enjoy throughout the year from black tie to barbecues.

Community Activities: Around the world the Odd Fellows undertake various community and charitable projects.

Lodge Structure

The Grand Lodge of Australasia Incorporates Odd Fellow and Rebekah Lodges in:

Affiliated Lodges in New Zealand
The Grand Lodge of South Australia
The Grand Lodge of Tasmania

The Sovereign Grand Lodge Incorporates:

All individual American State Grand Lodges
The Grand Lodge of Australasia
The Grand Lodge of Europe
The Grand Lodge of the Philippines
Numerous other individual jurisdictions


Individual Lodge Structure

Lodge Officers in each Lodge in hierarchal order:

Elected Officers;

- Noble Grand
- Vice Grand
- Secretary
- Warden

Appointed Officers Chaplain;

- Conductor
- Inside Guardian
- Right and Left Supporter to the Noble Grand
- Right and Left Supporter to the Vice Grand

Grand Lodge of South Australia - Elected Officers;

- Grand Master
- Deputy Grand Master
- Grand Secretary
- Grand Warden


The Sovereign Grand Lodge (North America)

The Sovereign Grand Lodge is the highest jurisdictional body of the Independent Order of Odd Fellows. The Sovereign Grand Lodge holds an Annual Session, and you may be a Grand Representative at this session if:

You are a current or Past Grand Representative or Past Grand Officer for the Grand Lodge of Australasia or you are elected by the Grand Lodge in Session to be a Grand Representative.

The Sovereign Grand Lodge is the pinnacle of Odd Fellowship, the Annual Session is an enormous cultural event which is a real eye opener to a member who visits for the first time. The workings and proceedings of the Sovereign Grand Lodge are certainly Grand by the very size of the convention, which has hundreds of Grand Representatives and Official Grand Delegates from around the world.


Odd Fellows South Australia

Any inquiries please contact:

Brother Gordon Bitter
Grand Secretary
Grand Lodge of South Australia, I.O.O.F
Ph: (08) 8213 1113 or 0417 873 068
Email: gordon.bitter@keyinvest.com.au 

Ph (International) +61 8 8213 1113
Internet: http://www.ioofsa.org.au

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PO Box 3340 Rundle Mall SA 5000

Phone:  1300 658 904
Fax:  08 8231 4079