Jan 9, 2014 - Masonic Education    No Comments

California’s 3rd International Conference on Freemasonry

3rdannualconferenceOn March 22, the Institute of Masonic Studies and the History Department at the University of California, Los Angeles will host the Third International Conference on Freemasonry, bringing together a panel of prominent Masonic scholars covering unique perspectives on Freemasonry, Aesthetics, and Civil Society. You will have the opportunity to learn from renowned historians and interact with Masonic experts including Grand Master John Cooper. Open to the public, this event seeks to educate and inspire scholars of the craft.

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Why DeMolay?

demolayMidnight Freemason Contributor RWB Michael H Shirley has penned a post about DeMolay International (also known as the Order of DeMolay).  DeMolay derives its name from Jacques de Molay, the last Grand Master of the Knights Templar.  The organization was founded in Kansas City, Missouri in 1919.  It is an international organization for young men ages 12 to 21.

From the article:

I’m originally from Evanston, Illinois, the city immediately north of Chicago, but I’ve lived in central Illinois for the last twenty-five years. There are frustrations common to both places, but I’ve learned that one difficulty that rural areas have that urban areas don’t is the lack of a good-sized population to draw from when you want to do things in groups. So the problems inherent in trying to rebuild a DeMolay chapter in a small town aren’t surprising. Tuscola, Illinois, is the county seat of Douglas County, and has a population of only 4600, which makes it the major metropolitan area around here. There are a couple of other towns of some size nearby, but the whole county has only 19,000 people in it, so finding boys who would be interested in DeMolay is not the easiest thing. We have an excellent Chapter Dad, and my wife, Debra, who’s on the board of advisors, is a font of ideas, but, in terms of numbers, we haven’t had much success so far.  Read more »

Jan 5, 2014 - History of Masonry    1 Comment

Golden Gate Bridge construction begun

buildingthegoldengatebridgeOn January 5, 1933 construction was begun on the Golden Gate Bridge, the iconic suspension bridge sporting “International Orange” paint that spans the Golden Gate strait – the mile-wide, three-mile-long channel between San Francisco Bay and the Pacific Ocean. This famous bridge links the city of San Francisco to Marin County, bridging both U.S. Route 101 and California State Route 1 across the strait. The bridge is one of the most identifiable symbols of San Francisco. The American Society of Civil Engineers has declared the Golden Gate Bridge one of the Wonders of the Modern World. Read more »

Jan 2, 2014 - Masonry in the News    No Comments

Masonic Lodge changes with the times

millersville126John Russell for the Indianapolis Star writes about the sometimes controversial topic of a Masonic Lodge changing with the times:

The postcards go out every winter to thousands of households across the Northeastside, with language that could come straight out of “Mad Men” or maybe a Shakespearean play.

“You and your lady are cordially invited to an open house and lunch.”

It’s from the Millersville Lodge, the men’s-only organization housed in a massive brick and stone building at the corner of Kessler Boulevard East Drive and Fall Creek Road. Read more »

Dec 20, 2013 - Knights Templar    No Comments

Historian Ponders Modern Fascination with Knights Templar, Mysterious Templar Fresco

jasoncolavitoI read Jason Colavito’s blog with great interest and unbridled enthusiasm.  He’s a fascinating guy, with some serious knowledge.  His biography states “Jason Colavito is an author and editor based in Albany, NY.  He is internationally recognized by scholars, literary theorists, and scientists for his pioneering work exploring the connections between science, pseudoscience, and speculative fiction. His investigations examine the way human beings create and employ the supernatural to alter and understand our reality and our world.”

His latest post about the Knights Templar is no exception.  From the article:

The Telegraph has an interesting article published yesterday by scholar Dominic Selwood, author of a 1999 academic study of the Knights Templar as well as a new novel about them, pondering why the medieval order of warrior monks has captured the modern imagination. His conclusions are more or less exactly what I’ve taken so much criticism for pointing out. Selwood, who holds a PhD in medieval religious warrior orders, sees in the Templars a convenient focus for two distinct threads of alternative thought, which are not completely severable. Read more »

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