Attending Lodge Abroad

Discussion in 'General Freemasonry Discussion' started by Blake Bowden, Jun 21, 2009.

  1. Blake Bowden

    Blake Bowden Administrator Staff Member

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    Has any Brother attended Lodge where English isn't the primary language? How did that go?
     
    Last edited: Jun 22, 2009
  2. Nate Riley

    Nate Riley Premium Member

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    There is a cool story in Freemasons for Dummies about some brothers attending lodge in the Phillipines. I couldn't do the story justice, so if you have the book look it up. If you don't have the book, get it.
     
  3. JEbeling

    JEbeling Guest

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    Went to Two Lodges in Japan.. ! one was english .. ! the other was Japanize.. ! was very interesting.. ! you understood what was going on because the floor work was the same.. ! so you knew what they were saying .. ! but didn't understand exactly.. !

    Was great... ! want to attend a lodge in England .. and also in Czech Republic.. ! I speak Czech so I think that will be very interesting.. ! understand English Lodges are hard to get into.. ! but will see .. ! going next year.. ! will try to write a letter and see what the requirements are.. ?
     
  4. cemab4y

    cemab4y Premium Member

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    I travel in foreign countries to earn my wages. I work in Iraq now. I have visited lodges in 5 different countries. When I lived in Paris, France, I visited a German-speaking lodge there. (I speak German). The experience was awesome. Some of the brothers there, had risked being sent to prison, during the German occupation.

    I attended a Russian-speaking lodge in Moscow, Phoenix lodge #17. The ritual work was the French ritual, used by the National Grand Lodge of France (Identical to the ritual work in the German-speaking lodge I attended). I also speak Russian.

    I attended three lodges in Saudi Arabia, the American/British oil workers have lodges there. The sponsoring Grand Lodge is the Grand Lodge of Germany, and the ritual work is the Minnesota ritual, utilized by the Grand Lodge of Minnesota.

    The one English-speaking lodge in Paris,France is Stability/Concorde Lodge #19/42 . Previously, the two lodges consolidated, and merged the number, that is why they are #19/42.

    The sponsoring grand Lodge is the Grand Lodge of California, and they use the ritual developed by the Grand Lodge of Massachusetts.

    When you travel abroad, I highly recommend visiting the lodges in the countries you visit.

    See Charles Martin's Blog. Iraq, Afghanistan and Freemasonry about our attempts to establish a lodge here in Iraq.

    also see WELCOME TO THE ESM ONLINE fall 2005 issue, page 32
     
  5. Nate Riley

    Nate Riley Premium Member

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    Great post Bro. Martin. I told my wife that when we travel abroad, especially Europe, I want to attend lodge meetings.

    Did you work it out with your lodge/grand lodge and theirs before attending?
     
  6. Blake Bowden

    Blake Bowden Administrator Staff Member

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    GREAT insight Brother! I was under the impression that Freemasonry was banned in Saudi Arabia. Has that changed? Were you advised not to wear the S&C? Thanks for your input.
     
  7. cemab4y

    cemab4y Premium Member

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    Organizations and clubs are definetly banned in Saudi Arabia, especially organizations such as Freemasonry. In the American housing compounds, the lodges meet in private homes, very discreetly. As long as the lodges keep a "low profile", Saudis turn a blind eye to these activities.

    It is generally advisable not to wear any religious symbols in Saudi Arabia. The brothers wear Masonic rings, without any problems. I always wore my ring, and I never had a problem.

    I worked in Saudi in 1991, and again in 1997-1998. In the intervening years, things might have changed.

    In 1991, the United American-Canadian Grand Lodge of Germany (which sponsors English-speaking military lodges in Europe), sponsored the lodges in Saudi. Now the Grand Lodge of Germany holds their charters.
     
  8. cemab4y

    cemab4y Premium Member

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    Quote from Bro. Riley - Did you work it out with your lodge/grand lodge and theirs before attending?
    __________________

    Not exactly. Whenever you plan to visit a lodge, whether in the USA, or abroad, you need to determine if the sponsoring Grand Lodge, is in communications with your grand Lodge.

    Every lodge secretary should have a listing of all of the Grand Lodges (and their subordinate lodges). This book is a paperback book, usually with a yellow cover, and the book is published annually. You can find every legitimate lodge in the world in this book.

    You need to be careful when visiting lodges in foreign countries. France has five (5) Grand Lodges. Only one, the National Grand Lodge of France, is in communications with the Mother Grand Lodge in England. The other four, admit atheists, and women. These Grand Lodges, are therefore "clandestine", and legitimate masons should have no contact with them.

    Prior to travel, you should look up the Grand Lodge of the countries you plan to visit on the internet, and you can get the lodge schedule, as well as an in-country contact person, to help you find the lodge. Phoenix #17 (Moscow) meets in a hotel meeting room, for example.
     
  9. Dana

    Dana Registered User

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    That is very interesting. The differences like the countries banning Masonery and so forth. Being here in Texas having a lodge pretty much on every corner and to imagine not having one at all or taking your life in your own hands to be able to attend or to vote or as a single woman share my opinions makes me even more greatful to be an American with all our liberties.
     
  10. cemab4y

    cemab4y Premium Member

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    Masonry is banned in many countries. Countries with a majority Muslim population, often ban Masonry. Only Turkey and Morocco, permit Masonry to operate openly. During the years of the Soviet Union, and communism, Masonry was shut down all across Eastern Europe. There is a Scottish Rite of Iran (in exile) that is headquartered in California.
     
  11. Dana

    Dana Registered User

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    Being able to travel the world and experience these things first hand must be fascinating. I admire your courage to seek out Masonry in countries that it is forbidden. Thanks for the insperation
     
  12. cemab4y

    cemab4y Premium Member

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    I have no real "courage", more like a curiosity. I always practice discretion, and I take no chances, when it comes to Masonry. If it is dangerous to wear the S&C publicly, I leave my ring at home.

    Here on this military base, the lodges operate with no restrictions.
     
  13. Dana

    Dana Registered User

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    Discretion is smart.... and I am a very curious person myself. Normally that gets me into trouble lol but it does make for an intertaining life story. So are you in the military or work with them??? Forgive my ignorance I don't understand the bases over there I would think are close to the general population.
     
  14. Dana

    Dana Registered User

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    I read a lot of your blog... and it is official you are the most interesting person I know ... I have tons of questions and please let me know if I start to bother you... lol I am a single mom of 3 kids and have no life but a healthy curiousity... so I am going to ask you lots of questions... jsut not now because I have to get back to work. :+)
     
  15. cemab4y

    cemab4y Premium Member

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    I am a civilian technician, and I work on military bases in Iraq/Afghanistan. I have been here since 2004 (different contracts). The bases are controlled by the US military, and the Iraqi government does not have any jurisdiction on them.

    On Victory Base complex (where I live now), there are four masonic lodges, and two Eastern Star chapters.
     
  16. Ben Rodriguez

    Ben Rodriguez Registered User

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    I can recall reading that story from that book! It goes a little something like this:

    When they showed up at lodge, the Filipino brothers denied entry until they could possibly pass a test. They went back inside, the visitors could hear quite a commotion coming from the inside, once they were allowed into the lodge room they saw all furniture of the lodge piled up in the center of the lodge room, they were asked to place everything back to their original place, once they did so. They were allowed in!

    Quite a way to vouch for someone! Very interesting story!
     
  17. Blake Bowden

    Blake Bowden Administrator Staff Member

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    I would have to say any Muslim country that allows Freemasonry. I would love to see how they interpret the Craft.
     

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