World Conference Of Regular Masonic Grand Lodges

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“WORKSHOP I - CONCLUSIONS"

Freemasonry as a social commitment. How the values of the Craft can change a Mason’s life and

how a Mason can change the society

1.. M. W. BRO. RADU BĂLĂNESCU, GRAND MASTER OF THE NATIONAL GRAND LODGE OF ROMANIA

"Freemasonry as a social commitment. How the values of the Craft can change a Mason’s life and how a Mason can change the society“

1. One of the fundamental qualifications for being admitted into Freemasonry is to be recognized as

a freeman of good report. Freedom and Morals are values without which inner and outer Peace cannot exist.

Freedom is the one that helps us to take the right decisions and to assume them, as individuals, as

well as an Order. Thee Universal Spirit is the one that connects us and guides our actions.

2. The mission of Freemasonry – making good men better – guides our steps from a good world to a

better world. This world is possible only if we try to achieve what Immanuel Kant used to define as

Eternal Peace. Peace is a goal that we assume when we are initiated into the Craft; we all together aim at this goal, within the Universal Chain of Freemasonry.

3. Fundamental values, such as Tolerance, Charity and Understanding are present and must always

be present in the society, where Freemasonry should accomplish its assumed responsibilities.

Freemasonry does not imply into politics or into games of power; each one of the members of the Craft represent Freemasonry with honor.

4. Our tradition gives us the reference points that show us for what and especially how we should

imply ourselves in the evolution of society. Our common future, put under the sign of Universal

Chain, depends on our judgment, on our Discipline and on the Unity that we will have to make

proof of.

  1. M. W. BRO. Rüdiger TEMPLIN, GRAND MASTER OF THE UNITED GRAND LODGES OF GERMANY

“Development of Freemasonry and their conferences in a historical review”

1. In the common world a way to a wider acceptance of Masonic ideas seems achievable in a

better way if freemasons, bearing a more modern and timely opinion, took position to actual, cultural and social problems reflecting regional aspects in their public engagements as fields of ethical and social Masonic concern.

2. “It is not freemasonry direct being active in the public but it is the capable brother who is in a

position to attend social processes”, as Bro.Tom Jackson pronounced. Although freemasonry does not represent any politics in today’s world. Within and outside their lodges freemasonry can and must contribute to the social discussion, to he discourse of values, to questions of the time being and thus to improve the civil society.

3. Increasing acceptance of Masonic topics with ethical and humanistic issue can be seen as the

result of positive and active public relations.

Helpful in supporting those processes might be scientific conferences including Masonic research

groups and lodges like Quatuor Coronati, philosophical conferences and Institutions for interested

people in different countries, as just done for Europe in Budapest.

4. In 2010 Joachim Berger was describing the development of Masonic network between 1850

and 1935 in Europe. During this period masonry were profiling itself in more or less three main

streams:

  • the Scandinavian-Prussian freemasonry with strong Christian believe,

  • the English, Dutch and German Freemasonry with a humanistic-tolerant deistic dominated

craft,

  • the Romanic craft with more cosmopolitics in freemasonry (France, Italy, Belgium, Swiss).

This described processes of freemasonry became the root of different activities, founding platforms

for international meetings and structures with the goal of informal conferences in Europe and later on

in Latin-America:

-the Bureau International de Relations Masonniques (BIRM 1903-1921) in Geneva,

-the Association Masonnique Internationale (AMI 1921-1950) in Geneva.

5. The Sinaia Protocol Conferences (SPC), meetings held up in Romania since 2000 for

supporting East European Grand Lodges, was thereafter developed to the European Masonic Forum

(EMF) during the meeting in Rome in 2006 by a support of UGLsG (Alfred Koska, Klaus

Horneffer). Follow-up meetings of SPC and finally the EMF in Prague of 2007 made clear that a

platform for an informal exchange of thoughts has come into existence for our continent. this

platform is appropriate to discuss problems of inner European jurisdictions among brethren in a

structural, cooperative, and solution oriented way.

6. Since the meeting in Prague in 2007 this platform has emerged to a new informal basis of all

European Grand Lodges with a special weighting for regular continental Grand Lodges, the

European Grandmaster Meeting (Paris 2009, Brussels 2011, Geneva 2013).

During the last five years it became necessary having a platform for discussion on urgent local

changes as seen in France. Those meetings of interested Grand Lodges resulted in a helpful

instrument for managing conflict situations in a special region of Europe.

7. Such meetings promote fraternal partnership in the worldwide and do not remain without any

influence in our relation to the society of today.

3.M. W. Bro. Ranko Vujacic, Grand Master of the Regular Grand Lodge of Serbia, A. F. & A. M.

"Freemasonry as a social commitment. How the values of the Craft can change a Mason’s life and how a Mason can change the society“

1. Freemasonry professes the importance of the individual and of individual responsibility in its

objective of taking a good man and making him better. The focus is always on the individual.

2. We masons are not a lobby group and do not have or express political opinion, neither do we talk

about religion. We only deal with men, and this is our aim: we work in order to offer our members the ethical tools to become better persons. Let me underline the fact that our aim remains human

development

3. We should be aware that quality of our membership is far more important than quantity. By

setting high standards for our membership we elevate the quality of the Organization.

4. The leadership of Freemasonry is responsible to present a positive image of our Fraternity in a

country. This will have as a result an improvement of ethical and moral values in the society.

5. We Freemasons have a commitment to our society, which is a commitment to our conscience.

Our every word and deed must be a reflection of our conscience.

6. The main problem that we Masons have today, in my opinion, is to find a correct way of

communication with the society around us. Freemasonry needs to be known and well accepted by the rest of the society. Our often negative image of what we are has to be adequately addressed. We need to fight that misconception and misinformation.

7. Freemasonry has to build a bridge towards community, to be more transparent regarding our

“raison d’être”. People should be made aware that we mean well and do good to society and that we assist local communities.

8. It is important to perform duties with satisfaction to ourselves and advantage to our society.

  1. R.W. BRO. JEAN ALEVINAT, DEPUTY GRAND MASTER OF THE GRAND LODGE OF GABON

"Freemasonry as a social commitment. How the values of the Craft can change a Mason’s life and how a Mason can change the society“

The first ambition that comes in the mind of a Freemason after the initiation is to change his own

life. The Masonic initiation is a matter purely individual and personal. It marks the personal desire to

improve himself morally and spiritually.

The Mason must work primarily upon himself. This work can be fulfilled only after reaching the

cubic stone initiatic stage.

Freemasonry can help improve the human condition.

5.M. W. BRO. OTWASUOM OSAE NYAMPONG VI, GRAND MASTER OF THE GRANDE LODGE OF GHANA:

"Freemasonry as a social commitment. How the values of the Craft can change a Mason’s life and how a Mason can change the society“

1. One of the most fascinating aspects of freemasonry has always been: how so many men, from so

many different walks of life, can meet together in peace, never have any political or religious debates, always conduct their affairs in harmony and friendship and call each other “Brother”.

We learn that freemasonry: is a voluntary association of men; is a system of moral conduct; is a way

of life; is a fraternal society; is religious in character; teaches the Golden Rule; seeks to make good men better; teaches morality through symbolism; uses secret rites and ceremonies to instruct its members; is based on a firm belief in the fatherhood of God, the Brotherhood of man and the immortality of the soul.

2. The purpose of freemasonry is to improve humanity as a whole, each freemason being charged to

walk uprightly before God and man, and his rectitude of conduct, encouraging others to conduct

themselves in like manner.

Freemasonry: is not an insurance or benefit society; it does not solicit members; it is neither a

religion nor a need; it is not a charity organization; it dictates to no man his beliefs, either religious or secular; it seeks no advantages for its members through business or politics; it is not a forum for

discussion of partisan affairs; it is not a secret society, as it does not conceal its existence, membership or purpose.

3. Freemasonry must build its strong message based on our uniqueness. We can be open and

confident that freemasonry can deliver things that the modern world is craving and that no other

organization can offer. Freemasonry offers self-development not linked to the materialistic world

or its superficial goals but opportunities to help the wide community and dare I say, enjoyment

and brotherhood.

We need to be bold to deliver this strong message to the Masonic and non-Masonic world.

  1. M.W. BRO. José Luis Pérez Aguirre, GRAND MASTER OF THE GRAND LODGE OF THE STATE OF SINALOA:

"Freemasonry as a social commitment“

1. Freemasonry has always been an institution of higher social projection and today it is the

time to resume and put into practice our principles, our teachings, our examples, for contributing

to the development of society and for social progress worldwide.

We can contribute to the development of society by respecting the obligations that we have

taken in our Masonic Oaths and by professing Discipline, Union, strength, industriousness,

perseverance and loyalty.

2. Freemasons ought to generate a social attitude that respects and professes the peaceful living,

righteousness and justice, in frank disregard of feelings that divide us, such as hate, fears, and

selFIshness.

3. In the 21st century, the Masonic Principles must become social principles and guidelines of

social conduct, whose aim must be: the freedom to think; the strive to act for the benefit of the

entire society; equality of all human beings, regardless the race, creed, color or political affiliation; a

universal fraternity, in which we are all truly brothers, accepted, loved and understood.

4. Each Freemason must act as a role model for the entire society, defending the justice and

truth, protecting the afflicted and acting as exemplary and moral citizens. The entire society would

respect this moral and social conduct and thus we will make progress in building the magnificent

temple consecrated to the Great Architect of the Universe.

  1. M. W. BRO, GILBERTO OTERO VENEZUELA, PAST GRAND MASTER AND PERSONAL REPRESENTATIVE OF THE GRAND MASTER OF THE GRAND LODGE “PACIFICO” OF THE STATE OF SONORA

"Reflections and a proposal on limiting debate on the religious and political ideas in Lodge

meetings“

The Universal Principles of the Masonry, in their global objective, require analyzing and

knowing the history of the political, religious, economic and cultural trends, as well as knowing

the great reformers of the various eras of human kind in order to guide with an enhanced certainty

and explicitness the strategies to obtain a greater progress of humanity, in the context of tolerance

and freedom of speech, thus aiming to promote equality and to strengthen the fraternity.

  1. M. W. BRO. Guillermo López Nájera, GRAND MASTER OF THE GRANDE LODGE “COSMOS” OF THE STATE OF CHIHUAHUA

"Freemasonry as a social commitment. How the values of the Craft can change a Mason’s life and how a Mason can change the society“

The presentation of the Grand Master of the Grand Lodge “Cosmos” of the State of

Chihuahua, Mexico, focused primarily, within an historical framework, on exhibiting the social

and cultural development of Mexico, where the various factors such as the conquest and the

religious evangelization have profoundly affected the development of a people that, being

multicultural, lead to the rooting of a common idea, that is going forward by means of the

progress.

Freemasonry as a social commitment. How the values of the Craft can change a Mason’s life and

how a Mason can change the society

To do this it is necessary that the Masons apply outside the Lodge everything they learn inside it.

Thus, they can become better parents, better children, better brothers and better citizens. Furthermore, he commented that it is necessary to remember that the Masonry, understood as the study of moral philosophy serving the practice of virtues, teaches us that the progress is not only about the material or earthly realm, but also about seeking an improvement or an evolution of spiritual nature.

And it is precisely here where one can distinguish the threshold between the debate and

controversy about politics and religion within the Lodge, which, in the case of politics must be

understood not as existing ideological trends at a given moment, but as forms of government, seeking

to come to power and hold on to it, this is what political science teaches us. Furthermore, particularly as

a mason, this is how it was possible for him to bring his contribution to society by conceiving legislative

proposals which sustain the creation and implementation of public policies to the benefit of society.