Sunday, September 16, 2007

Why Name A Lodge-Lincoln


My apologies for dropping the ball regarding the question of naming a Lodge--Lincoln. Now I remember a posting while back about an inquiry if the U.S. President Abraham Lincoln was a Freemason and being not a member why a Masonic Lodge was named after him.

From materials I read, the young Lincoln represented a civil case against a veteran counsel who was either the Master or officer of the local Lodge. The litigation was hotly contested and became personal. Though Lincoln expressed interest, some thought he had a cold feet especially when the other lawyer became the Grand Master. Talking about major back ball, I can understand why Lincoln did not even tried. While he was still in the White House, there was an article/book which narrated that the interest was still there. Lincoln still believed in what the Craft is meant to be but was concerned that he might not give enough time or attention as he was preoccupied in presiding a nation in the mist of Civil War. The thought was that he might have time after his term which unfortunately cut short. My point in this long winded introduction is that although Abraham Lincoln is not a card carrying, ring wearing and horse buggy decal/sticker displaying Mason; one would agree that he displayed, practiced, and acted what a real Mason should be.

As to why the Brethren from Bagong Buhay Lodge No. 291 decided to name the Olongapo based Masonic Lodge after a non Mason, I could only offer a speculation for I don’t have anything in writing that could explain the true reason. The Lincoln Lodge history which I just stumbled upon did not give us clear explanation. If there are any other resources that could enlighten this topic, I am more than pleased to be given further light.

My thought was that the Brethren from Cavite who moved and settled in Olongapo which at that time was under the administrative control of US Navy (known as Olongapo Naval Reservation), wanted to include and/or attract American Brothers in Naval Service stationed in Navy base or Yard as it was then called. It would not be far fetch to think that maybe our American Brothers also expressed interest and wanted to attend a real tyled Lodge instead of attending the informal Square and Compass type – clubs.

If I may expound my supposition, that by naming a very well respected American President it also signified that this particular Lodge will also be an English-speaking Lodge hence, a no-brainer for visiting American naval personnel as to kind of ritual are being used.

Let us not forget that the time frame was around the period when the older established Spanish-language Lodges under Gran Oriente Espanol and Gran Oriente de Francia were being absorbed or dominated by English-language Lodges warranted by American Grand Lodges to what we now know as the Grand Lodge of the Philippines.


No comments: