Curious?

Discussion in 'Becoming a Prince Hall Freemason' started by KO2134, Jan 1, 2013.

  1. Bill Lins

    Bill Lins Moderating Staff Staff Member

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    And my dear Bro. Hoff would know because he was around back then! :lol:
     
  2. towerbuilder7

    towerbuilder7 Moderator Premium Member

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    Good evening, Brethren.......I'd like to expound on what my Brother Bill_Lins77488 stated above.......as PHA Masons in modern times, we have sometimes been erroneously viewed as "irregular", in spite of the Original Charter for African Lodge #459 we have locked away in Boston; a lot of that is misinformation passed down from mouth to ear from different sources, rather than the RIGHT source. The MAIN issue with the UGLE and our PHGLoTX was just that if we wanted FORMAL RECOGNITION from THEM as a Grand Lodge in the Jurisdiction of TEXAS, we had to have a Compact Agreement of Mutual Recognition with the Grand Lodge already recognized by UGLE in our Jurisdiction (GLoTX, AF&AM) in place. THAT'S why the Compact was signed. Just for your historical benefit, KO1234, GLoTX was established by 6 Men who met in Brazoria in 1837, while still a REPUBLIC, and eight years before Texas became a State. The Grand Lodge of Louisiana helped to establish the GLoTX. The PHGLoTX was formed in 1878, some 50 years later, for obvious reasons, under what was termed "the order of the day". The Prince Hall Grand Lodge of Kansas helped to establish our Grand Lodge.........Black Men, some who were newly freed slaves, were not allowed to join Masonic Lodges in that time with their White counterparts.

    As recently as 1994, UGLE made the determination based on documentation provided from our Orignal Charter under African Lodge #459, as well as letters and correspondence archived from Prince Hall to the UGLE himself, that PHA Masonry was "regular in origin". I won't go into how I feel about the conditions of this "Mutual Recognition", because the lack of Intervisitation makes it idiotic; and, we have already established what quite a few of us feel about the need for progression.........

    So, back to your original question, Young Brother KO1234.......I have traveled to California and New York, and have gotten nothing but love and respect from BOTH sides of the fence.......I am on Instagram (towerbuilder7), and have even met a few Mainstream Brothers on there.........PHA Masonry isn't a different TYPE of Masonry, just a different NAME for the African American Lodges of Free and Accepted Masonry under the lineage of African Lodge #459.......In 1827, a News Article was issued, announcing to the community that the African Grand Lodge #1 was to become an independent entity unto itself, after repeated attempts to contact the UGLE, and send Relief payments, Rosters, Death Notices, etc.........with a Lawful Charter in place, they did what most other Masons at that time were doing-----establishing New Lodges to Men (of Color) interested in becoming Masons. The First Three Lodges established were in Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, and Rhode Island..........these three Lodges formed African Lodge No 1...........................

    The Brothers received NO response to their correspondence from UGLE for a few years after Prince Hall's death, so they had the fortitude to do what most Black Men would NOT do in THAT TIME-----branch out on their own, and establish a Grand Lodge of Free and Accepted Masonry for Men of Color. Out of respect for Brother Prince Hall, in 1944, States agreed to later rename the Grand Lodges of each State "The Prince Hall Grand Lodge of........" There are two exceptions, due to Lawsuits----Stringer Grand Lodge in Mississippi, and Union Grand Lodge in Florida......These are our RECOGNIZED PHA Grand Lodges in those two respective States........KO1234, I hope that tidbit of LIGHT was helpful to you........

    Humbly Submitted,

    Bro Vincent C. Jones, Sr., Bayou City Lodge #228
    Prince Hall Affiliation, Free and Accepted Masonry, Houston, Texas
    Most Worshipful Prince Hall Grand Lodge of Texas
     
  3. towerbuilder7

    towerbuilder7 Moderator Premium Member

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    Typo-----the three lodges formed in massachusetts, pennsylvania, and rhode island formed what came to be known as african grand lodge no 1...............vince
     
  4. dfreybur

    dfreybur Premium Member

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    There's one technical reason that is generally used as a dodge to not face the race issue.

    The American Doctrine of Exclusive Jurisdiction says that only one GL can be in charge of a territory. It's why NYS and CA (probably others) sponsors a few "Grand Lodge in Exile" for countries that are currently ruled by oppressive regimes. When California recognized there were votes each year in a sequence. First there was a vote that a Mexican GL could sponsor a Spanish speaking lodge without setting a precedent to break the Doctrine. Then there was a vote that PHA is regular. Then there was a vote on recognition. It took about a year before visitation started happening.

    The Doctrine says a GL can't go into another state and form a lodge. That would be an invasion. There's currently a lodge meeting near Chicago that was sponsored by one of the other non-recognized GLs in Ohio. If the invading GL ever wants to be recognized they will have to give up the lodge or Illinois will have to waive the Doctrine. Illinois already waived the Doctrine to recognize PHA and ever since there has been visitation and the two grand lines meet regularly. I predict it will never happen for this clandestine Ohio lodge. I've met the Ohio sponsored brothers. Great guys but I sure wish they would disband and join real lodges.

    The Doctrine needs to be rethought. Is it okay to have more than one GL active in a territory? It has to be for what I call "George Washington Affiliation" and Prince Hall Affiliation GLs to operate together. It can't be okay unless we are going to allow an invasion like the Ohio one. There was a time when such invasions had to happen because of the racism of the era. That time is now passed and those who remember it are dying of old age. But this is the history of why there are more than one PHA GLs in some states, like the Ohio one currently invading Illinois.
     
  5. dfreybur

    dfreybur Premium Member

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    Coming from the other side of that fence -

    Back when I was going through the line in Pasadena we had a first degree one night. After the degree I walked with two of our elderly members to the dining hall. One said to the other "My Father would turn in his grave if he saw what we just did". I asked him what he meant. The elderly brother smiled at me and said "I am glad you are too young to understand". I had to sleep on it to put the pieces together. The young EA I'd just presented at the door of the preparation room was a black guy. Not a detail that was of interest to me. My elderly brother had told me that he'd grown up with a racist in the previous generation and he'd had to get over it. He was glad that I was young enough to not understand having to get over being raised with it.

    Pasadena now has a PHA lodge meeting in our building as a tenant. Hiram #12. Our Stated meetings are on the first Tuesday so the two groups of brothers have a snack together after our meetings whether there was a visit or not.
     
  6. Blaster

    Blaster Registered User

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    the doctrine would have been fine if racism had not overtaken freemasonry. if there's a grand lodge formed because people were denied due to their race or religion or anything of that nature, then they too must be recognized and allowed to share the territory due to the mistakes made. today, that is not the case because PHA has always accepted all races and religions, so there would only be 2 per state in America that need to share territory. i don't think illinois should recognize another lodge that doesn't fall into that category.
     
  7. jwhoff

    jwhoff Premium Member

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    Course I would!

    And if I'd stepped out and missed it ... I'd ask you.

    :40:
     
  8. dfreybur

    dfreybur Premium Member

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    Bro Blaster,

    The history has led to many states having several PHA jurisdictions. It's a mess. Only one can be recognized. How to tell? The date of the oldest chartered lodge? The largest membership? There's no good way to judge. But having two jurisdictions remaining after the dust has settled still wounds the doctrine. Not that either group will offer unification or accept a unification offer.

    Religion? Let's go invade Florida until they mend their religious bigotry. I mean this facetiously not literally but the point remains. In November their GM issued an edict that does divide on religious membership. Same breach of our fraternal principles.
     
  9. Blaster

    Blaster Registered User

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    i'm not aware of any state with more than one PHA Grand Lodge. Brother Jones noted the 2 states with different names; other than those, what confusion is there?
     
  10. bupton52

    bupton52 Moderator Premium Member

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    There are no states with more than one PH GL. What each state does have is a myriad of GLs that have predominantly African-American membership that label themselves AF&AM.


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  11. MarkR

    MarkR Premium Member

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    Aren't there states with PHA and PHO?
     
  12. bupton52

    bupton52 Moderator Premium Member

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    There are, but PHO is an irregular body because their state GL isn't sovereign.


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  13. dfreybur

    dfreybur Premium Member

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    When I encountered this forum I read a ton of posts. One of them pointed to a court case between two GLs in California so I looked them up. Neither is the recognized GL that has a member lodge as a tenant in our building and that I've visited. I take it you would assert that by your definition neither are a PHA GL.

    I do not think it's as simple as each state having only one lineage to #459 and all other jurisdictions being clandestine with no lineage. I've heard the question "How many letters?" as an expression that there are more than one jurisdiction in some states.
     
  14. bupton52

    bupton52 Moderator Premium Member

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    It is actually that simple in most cases. Although Prince Hall Origin (PHO) possesses lineage to #459, their structure is irregular and they are not a body recognized by either PHA or any "mainstream" GL anywhere. The rest of those jurisdictions vary. Some have lineage to a man named John G. Jones, who was an expelled Prince Hall member who started to create lodges without the authority of his GL. Some are International Free and Accepted Masons, some are Modern Free and Accepted Masons, and some are just some random organizations that call themselves masons. 90% of the members of all of these bodies are African American. Because anybody can start a group and call themselves masons, it really sucks that men are tricked into thinking that they are REALLY masons and taught that we are all the same.
     
  15. Blaster

    Blaster Registered User

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    Prince Hall AFFILIATED is what to look for. PHA for short. It's that simple.


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