Page 8 - Montana Freemason Magazine March 2014
P. 8

BRIDGING THE GAP- The Shrine In Montana

                                                                      Reid Gardiner (3), Grand Secretary

   Sometimes it seems easier for us - any of us - to                                                   then the pre-requisite that a Shriner be a Mason is
operate on a principle that says, essentially, that the                                                a throwback to tradition. Certain it is that Shriners
things that do not concern us (read: “me”), do not                                                     International and the Shriners Hospitals are
matter. Consequently, we may carry on without                                                          separate entities, filing with the IRS as their own
bneoetincinmgatrhkoersse tfhorinugss,wghivicinhgmuigshstigonthserowf icsoemhainvge                     ctoorcpoonratitniounes.oAns asucsehp, aifrathtee Ipmatphe,riaasl Siht rhinaes wstisahteeds
changes and new events. It then often happens that                                                     that it is not subordinate to Freemasonry’s Grand
we scratch our heads and ask ourselves, “What                                                          Lodges, it would be no different for Nobles to be
happened? How did we get here?” In looking back                                                        Masons than for men who belong to a Grange, or
donecitdheetsheatt,hfrinomgs,thwiselatperropvoidseitiocno,m“Omuenr thairnyd, siagnhdt                  othfeotEhlekrs,cMiviocoosreg, aKniiwzaatnioans,s,Rcohtoaroys,inogr taonyrenmuaminbienr
is 20/20;” however, the signs were there all along.                                                    the Shrine and Freemasonry both would be simply
                                                                                                       belonging to two different organizations.
   This article is written somewhere along the                                                         forTbhoisthis oarmgaonriezaptaiolantsabtlhea-nantod fsreieentdhleym-speolvseitsioans
ltoimokelbinaec,kbauntdbeevfaolrueattehasttatfeumtuernetsevaeftnetr athskesraucse tios                 antagonists. The standing of the Shriners in any
run. Our thoughts turn toward the Imperial Shrine,                                                     jurisdiction matters to the constituent lodges and
and the position it takes toward Masonic Grand                                                         Grand Lodges in theory because of the nature
Lodges and consequently Masons. In examining                                                           ojufritshperurdeelantcioen: asnhiapltebrentwateiveentothseeetiwngothine SMhraisnoenaics
iisnftohremhatoipoen) nboewin,gwceaumgahyt aovfof igdu(aordr,, aatnldeafsitn, dtihnagt                 an organization unrelated to Masonry save for its
ourselves forced to weed through a great mass of                                                       beginning among Masons is holding the Imperial
rhetoric to determine at which point this originated,                                                  Shrine to be “clandestine,” that is, as a body illegally
what are the salient facts in the matter, and leave it                                                 claiming Masonic authority.
to us to determine whether or not it matters.

   Discussing issues within the fraternity is                                                             We see, in fact, that the Shrine maintains that
sometimes problematic - how do we do so without                                                        they are not beholden to Grand Lodges, or Masonry.
provoking our friends, without crossing over into                                                      We also know that the purpose of a Masonic Lodge
bdeivciosmiveingshboueltliinggeresnotm, ewtiimtheosutfofualnlidngnaptrieoynatlolythine                 iLsodtogemisakteo FhreelpemLaosdogness; mthaekepuFrrpeoemseasoofnsG. rTanhde
politics? In short, how do we talk about ourselves,                                                    Purpose of Lodges and Grand Lodge is not to make
with dignity, decorum, and fairness? I think that the                                                  Shriners. This is a fair statement. There is nothing
answer is, that we already know how, we just need                                                      intrinsically Masonic about the Shrine, other than
tuonmdearkceotnhseidcehroaitcieontohdeores?o. So, what, specifically, is                               satlal ttehsefomr ennowin. TthheatgdroouespnaortemMeaasnonthsa, totrheinShsorminee
                                                                                                       is un-Masonic. We recognize the philanthropy of
The matter at hand is this: Do the Nobles as                                                           Nobles, and especially since the rise of the hospitals
members of their respective Shrine Temples                                                             programs close to 50 years after the creation of the
within the boundaries of Montana wish to                                                               organization.
sMaenvosewnrteartnsh,aeb?eccNoanuatnsueerctahtlileoyr,ne  twhiisthwtihllehGavreanad vLaoridegtye ooff
                                                          are a variety of opinions, and                  What is clandestine Masonry? Here are two
we do not all share equally in them. The follow up                                                     instances to consider:
qtoumesetimonbemrsigohf tlobdeg:eWs whhyodhoaevsetahisstaqkueeisntitohne mGraattnedr
Lodge of A. F. & A. M. of Montana?                                                                       •	 “cAlaibmoidnyg otof FbreeeFmreaesmonassoonrs,ouf nthitoinseg iimn paroLpoedrglye
                                                                                                           without the consent of a Grand Lodge...”
   One possible answer to the second question might                                                        -Mackey’s Encyclopedia of Freemasonry
be, “Because Imperial Shrine has declared that it is
not either an ‘Appendant’ nor a ‘Concordant’ body                                                      •	 “oTnodwahyatthecoMnsatistounteics waorclldanidsesetnintierelbyoadgyr,eeodr
of Freemasonry.” If this is the case - and traditionally                                                   a clandestine Mason; the one is a Lodge or
Pitaghea8s been perceived as a part of Freemasonry -                                                       Grand Lodge unrecognized by other Grand
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