Address of M. W. Bro. Radu _Bălănescu
Grand Master of the National Grand Lodge of Romania
Distinguished and beloved Brethren, in the name of all the members of the National Grand Lodge of Romania, I would like to express our most sincere appreciation and thankfulness to all of you who made us the honor and pleasure to have you as guests at the 13th World Conference of Regular Masonic Grand Lodges.
The session of the World Conference held in Romania has been graced by the distinguished participation of most of the most important Masonic thinkers and leaders of our times. The vast majority of the Regular Grand Lodges around the world was represented at this session, which thus has proved from its start to be an incontestable success and the largest Masonic international conference and the largest gathering of representatives of Grand Lodges in history. Dear and distinguished Brethren, the National Grand Lodge is extremely grateful to all of you, who travelled from very far away to make this achievement possible. It is not an achievement of our Grand Lodge; it is a common achievement of the World Conference and of the entire Bond of Universal Regular Freemasonry. You made it happen, through your invaluable dedication.
Each Masonic Grand Lodge is sovereign and independent within its territory, and the strict observance of the principles of regularity is the tie that binds us in a whole Universal Bond of Universal Regular Freemasonry. Therefore, every one of us may search for the most adequate answers to the challenges which lie before us. Nonetheless, we can search for these answers altogether. The most adequate platform for developing this kind of dialogue is the World Conference, which not only brings together at every session a great number of regular and recognized Jurisdictions, but also puts together at the same round table Brethren who belong to very different cultures, who have been living very different histories and who have dramatically different cognitive patterns.
The session of the World Conference held in Romania focused on ensuring and enriching this round-table dialogue by means of the six Workshops whose vast variety of themes of discussions were centered upon the relation between Freemasonry and the civil society, the contributions that can be brought by the Regular Freemasonry for the benefit of the society, the role of the Masonic teachings and values in creating righteous characters and the ways in which we communicate with the society.
The dialogue, the share of realities and experience within the Workshops has managed to create a real synergy between the participants, who discovered how similar the problems we all confront with are, no matter the number of members, the geographical location or the nation state, especially when considering such matters as the necessity to identify the most appropriate adequacy of our dialogue with society.
One of the general conclusions is that the future of the Craft depends on our choices of today, especially because we are living at the beginning of a century which promises to be complicated and the bearer of some huge paradigm shifts. Our correct calibration within society, the clarification of some widespread misunderstandings of the society regarding our Masonic Works, and the identification of the best solutions for a dialogue with society are not collateral or low importance topics, but matters of highest importance.
This common Masonic Work has been relevant not only for the purely Masonic experience sharing. The Masonic share of realities has been interwoven with the share of realities of every country that was represented in the Conference. One of the results of the Conference has been the enrichment of our awareness of the fact that we are all Brothers and Sisters in spirit, who share the same beliefs and who profess the same moral values. This awareness generates a general understanding of our otherness and cohesion in approaching and solving common topics of interest.
Therefore, this Conference has also represented a benefit for all the countries whose Regular Grand Lodges were represented and last, but least, for the host country, our beloved Romania. On this occasion, we could offer to our esteemed guests the opportunity to discover the authentic traditions, profound spirituality, cultural inexhaustible richness and natural wonders of Romania.
Distinguished and beloved Brethren, in the end I would like to convey to you the profound feelings of fraternal love and thoughtful appreciation of all the Brethren who work under the Jurisdiction of the National Grand Lodge of Romania. We are much indebted to each one of you for giving us the opportunity and honor to work together with you in these memorable four days.
We do hope that this session of the Conference has been fruitful and delightful for all the participants and that you will take back with you only beautiful memories from your stay in Romania.
With deepest appreciation