Letter of the month: March 2005
[Web-master's note:As you can see, this letter
was addressed "To St. Georges Lodge No 10 AF&AM. Montreal, Quebec
Canada" but was sent to this website. I have no official standing with
the Grand Lodge of Quebec, and no direct connection with them. But I
thought I should try to offer this brother what advice I could anyway.
In general, it is probably better to send your comments to the person or
group you are addressing. You can find contact information for many
Masonic lodges and grand lodges listed in the Pointers section.]
Date: Wed, 30 Mar 2005 17:19:40 EST
Subject: Guestbook Mis-use
To St. Georges Lodge No 10 AF&AM. Montreal, Quebec Canada.
My brother Leon M. Adler just died and the family requested a Masonic
funeral. This was denied because he hadn't paid his dues for 15
I thought once a Mason always a Mason.
My brother and I were made Masons on the same night. Sons of Barney
Adler. At that time it was quite an honor.
In the years after my situation changed as did my brothers and we
could not pay our dues. I moved to Texas in 1979. My late brother had
mental problems and as far as I know no one from the lodge ever paid him
Good old Masonic brotherly love.
I still consider myself a Mason And I have no affiliation here.
cc: <firstname.lastname@example.org> (Grand Lodge of Quebec AF&AM)
Subject: no Masonic funeral
Date: Wed, 30 Mar 2005 18:32:58 -0500
Dear Bro. Adler,
I am truly sorry that your brother did not receive the Masonic
funeral that your family requested, and my condolences on his
Here in Massachusetts, a few years ago, the Grand Master ordered that
any family that requests a Masonic funeral is to get one. That
is now the rule here. It used to be that a man had to meet his
responsibilities and maintain his membership to get a Masonic service at
his funeral. But for several years now, anyone who asks for the service
will get one, and the Grand Lodge will clear up any inconsistencies
afterwards. In practice, this has meant that:
- Masons who resigned from their lodges decades earlier and never
contacted the lodge in their life got a Masonic service -- because their
families asked for them.
- Masons who simply stopped paying dues, moved with no forwarding
address, and pretty much just disappeared got a Masonic service --
because their families asked for them.
- And in at least one case, I have been informed, when a man's aging
widow got confused and believed that her husband had been a Mason, even
though it turned out the man had actually been an Odd Fellow and a
Knight of Pythias, but never a Mason, the grand lodge directed a lodge
to perform a Masonic service at the funeral anyway -- because his family
asked for one.
Your Montreal Lodge, and the other lodges of Quebec, can hold a
strict policy of who deserves a Masonic funeral; that is their right.
They could have been more helpful. My personal feeling is that they
should have been more helpful. But they don't have to have the same
rules as Massachusetts. They are a separate independent grand
I can't be sure about why the lodges near where your brother lived
never paid him a visit. Did you ever write to the lodge to stay in
touch with the lodge members and remind them about your brother? On the
other hand, have you visited any ill Masons in
hospitals near where you live now in Texas, even though you don't
know them? These fraternal responsibilities have to be carried by
people just like you and me. There isn't anyone else -- it's just
Again, I truly am sorry that your old lodge was a disappointment to
you. You should contact them, or the Quebec Grand Lodge. Perhaps they
would be willing to hold a memorial service for your brother's memory in
the lodge? You find contact information about the Grand Lodge of Quebec
Please let the Grand Lodge know about your situation and ask for
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