Update: August 26, 2005
Many Grand Lodges have received an invitation from the Confederation of the Grand Lodges of Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite to attend the 125th Anniversary of the founding of the United National Grand Lodge of Romania and the Ecumenical Masonic Symposium of the Future of Freemasonry in Eastern European Countries. Please be advised this Confederation is considered to be irregular, and the United National Grand Lodge of Romania is a Grand Lodge that has not met the standards for recognition, as defined by the Conference of Grand Masters of North America. The only Grand Lodge in Romania that has met the standards for recognition is THE NATIONAL GRAND LODGE OF ROMANIA, whose current Grand Master is M.W. Bro. Eugen-Ovidiu Chirovici.
ArmeniaThe Grand Lodge of Armenia has purchased land in the capital city of Yerevan, and intends to construct a Grand Lodge Temple on the property. M.W. Bro. Christopher D. Sahakian has been re-elected for a term ending in July 2008. The Third Annual Communication is scheduled for July 5-7, 2005 in Yerevan. The Grand Lodge is stable and is experiencing growth and acceptance in the Armenian society. The address of the Grand Lodge is: P.O. Box 65, Yerevan 375010 Armenia. For correspondence, the Grand Secretary is Paul Najarian, P.O. Box 23378, Washington, D.C. 20026-3378. BulgariaFreemasonry in Bulgaria is still divided into two major Grand Lodges; however progress is being made in the process of regularizing a number of the Masons that left the original Grand Lodge. The regular Grand Lodge is now known as the United Grand Lodge of Bulgaria, and is the only Grand Lodge in Bulgaria that is considered to meet the standards for recoganition. On November 27, 2004, Bro. Petyo Penkov was elected and installed Grand Master of the United Grand Lodge of Bulgaria, succeeding M.W. Bro. Borislav Sarandev. The Grand Secretary is R. W. Bro. Nikola Belopitov. The new address of the Grand Lodge is: 3, Kap. Dimitar Spisarevski Blvd. 7th Floor, 1592 Sofia, Bulgaria. EcuadorThere are still two Grand Lodges in Ecuador that claim to be the legitimate authority for Masonry in that country. One Grand Lodge is designated as the Grand Loggia of the Elders, Free and Accepted Masons of Ecuador, and was not the recognized organization. The Gran Logia de los AA. LL. y AA. MM. del Ecuador (Grand Lodge of Ecuador) was the recognized organization. Because of irregularities that occurred during the past two years, the Interamerican Masonic Confederation (CMI) withdrew recognition of the Grand Lodge of Ecuador. Last October, the Grand Masters of the two Grand Lodges signed a compromise that they will regularize the situation by April 15, 2005. Until that occurs, the Commission is of the opinion that recognition of any Masonic organization in Ecuador should be delayed. If the compromise is achieved, the issue of regularity will then be addressed by the Commission. LatviaThe Grand Lodge of Latvia was constituted on March 8, 2003, by the United Grand Lodges of Germany. Three regular lodges previously established by the United Grand Lodges of Germany were the foundation for this new Grand Lodge. The Grand Lodge of Latvia adheres to the established principles, tenets, and customs of the Craft, and uses the ritual of the Grand Lodge of A.F.& A.M. of Germany. It is the opinion of the Commission that theGrand Lodge of Latvia practices regular Masonry, and meets the standards for recognition. The address of the Grand Lodge is: Brivibas iela 106-6,, Riga, Latvia. LithuaniaThe Grand Lodge of Lithuania A.F.& A.M. was established on April 12, 2002, by the United Grand Lodges of Germany. Three lodges chartered by Hamburg Brukenbauer Lodge in Germany were the founding lodges for the new Grand Lodge. The Grand Lodge of Lithuania A.F.& A.M. promotes the tenets and customs of the Craft, and practices regular Masonry. It is the opinion of the Commission that this Grand Lodge meets the standards for recognition. The address of the Grand Lodge is: P.O. Box 1039, LT-2000 Vilnius, Lithuania. MaltaThe Sovereign Grand Lodge of Malta was constituted on November 18, 2004 by the Grand Lodge of Ireland. The new Grand Lodge consists of four craft lodges formerly under the Grand Lodge of Ireland, and one formerly under the United Grand Lodge of England. The Sovereign Grand Lodge of Malta states that the principles of the Ancient Landmarks, usages and customs are strictly observed. The Commission is of the opinion that this Grand Lodge complies with all the required standards for recognition. The Grand Master is M.W. Bro. Joseph Cordina, and the Grand Secretary is R.W. Bro. Anthony A. Pisani. The address of the Sovereign Grand Lodge of Malta is: P.O. Box 29, St. Julian's, Malta. Valle de MexicoContention still exists between the Grand Lodge Valle De Mexico and several state Mexican Grand Lodges. There are allegations that Valle de Mexico has continued to invade other Grand Lodge jurisdictions, and there are assertions by Valle de Mexico that four state Grand Lodges have invaded their sovereign jurisdiction. It appears the controversial issue here is what exactly constitutes the sovereign jurisdiction of Valle de Mexico. There still seems to be unresolved differences between Valle de Mexico and Baja California. The Grand Lodge Valle de Mexico has not been accepted back into the Confederation of Mexican Grand Lodges. These continuing problems contribute to the confusion surrounding Mexican Masonry, but as stated last year, these matters must be resolved by the Mexican Grand Lodges themselves. The situation appears to be very fluid, and caution is recommended when establishing fraternal relationships with these Grand Lodges. MoroccoThe Grande Loge Du Royaume Du Maroc (Grand Lodge of the Kingdom of Morocco, or
GLRM) was consecrated by the Grande Loge Nationale Francaise (GLNF) on June 15, 2000, with M.W. Bro. Emile Ouaknine as Grand Master. In 2002, a schism developed in the Grand Lodge, and Bouchaib El Kouhi proclaimed himself as the new Grand Master of the GLRM. Emile Ouaknine continued in his role as Grand Master of the GLRM. This resulted in two Grand Lodges using the same name. El Kouhi subsequently appointed Pierre Mouselli to represent him to the Grand Lodges in North America.
On February 25, 2004, R.W. Bro. Saad Lahrichi was elected and installed Grand Master to succeed M.W. Bro. Ouaknine. The name
El Andalous was added to the title of the Grand Lodge, to become known as, Grande Loge
El Andalous Royaume do Maroc. This has now been changed to avoid further confusion, and is now known as Grande Loge Reguliere du Royaume du Maroc (G.L.R.R.M.) This name has been registered in the records at the royal Archives in Rabat. M.W. Bro. Lahrichi continues as the Grand Master of the G.L.R.R.M., which is considered to the the recognized Grand Lodge in Morocco. The address is: 11 rue Dayet Erroumi, Apt. 8, Rabat Agdal, Morocco. RomaniaAn organization has emerged in Romania calling itself the Confederation of Grand Lodges of Romania. This group is composed of the United National Grand Lodge of Romania, headed by Petru Stetiu; and the Grand Lodge of Romania, headed by Cornel Visoianu. A third Grand Lodge is expected to join soon. None of these Masonic organizations have been determined to meet the standards for recognition, and this is considered to be an irregular organization. The National Grand Lodge of Romania, with M.W. Bro. Eugen-Ovidiu Chirovic as the Grand Master, is the only Grand Lodge in Romania that is considered to meet the standards for recognition. The Grand Secretary is R.W. Bro. Dan Tanasie, and the address of the Grand Lodge is: Sala Palaatului – 28 ion Campineanu Str., Et. 2, Sect 1, 010039 Bucharest, Romania. RussiaIn April 2001, a group broke away from the Grand Lodge of Russia, and formed an organization called the Regular Grand Lodge of Russia. This group, headed by Vladimar Lapuchin, has been expelled from the Grand Lodge of Russia, and is not recognized by any regular Grand Lodge in the world. The Grand Lodge of Russia is considered to meet the standards for recognition and is the only regular Grand Lodge in Russia. The Grand Master is M.W. Bro. Vladimar Dzhangiryan, and the address of the Grand Lodge is: Box 2053, 101000, Moscow, Russia. Miscellaneous Information
- A package was received from the Grand Lodge of Three Stars in Beirut, Lebanon, requesting recognition. This Grand Lodge did not provide proof of complying with the standards for recognition. The documentation did show a relationship with a number of Masonic organizations, all of which are considered to be irregular. No further consideration was given this request.
- The number of irregular Masonic styled organizations seems to be growing, and becoming more visible. Many of our Grand Lodges are receiving communications from these
seemingly legitimate groups. Care must be exercised when determining whether to communicate with them or not. The List of Lodges, published by Pantograph Printing, is an excellent source of identifying regular Lodges and Grand Lodges. The annual reports of this Commission present the results of investigating the regularity of various Grand Lodges. The Commission is a service to our Grand Lodges, and may be consulted on questions of regularity and recognition. The Commission maintains a website where the latest report and other pertinent information is posted. The address of the website is: recognitioncommission.org.
- The Grand Lodge Nationale Francaise announced plans to consecrate a Grand Lodge of Mauritius on March 10-12, 2005, composed of seven previously consecrated lodges by the GLNF.
- The Grand Lodge Nationale Francaise announced plans to consecrate a Grand Lodge of Ukrane on May 7, 2005, composed of four District lodges of the GLNF and one lodge under the Grand Lodge of Austria.
- The United Grand of England announced its intention to consecrate a new Grand Lodge of Macedonia on October 1, 2005. This Grand Lodge will be composed of lodges previously chartered by the UGLE.
- The United Grand Lodge of England informed the Commission of a breakaway group from the UGLE that calls itself the Regular Grand Lodge of England. This group is irregular and has no legitimate standing in English Masonry.
- In order to better accommodate delegations wishing to present information to the Commission, a time will be set aside on Sunday afternoon at the next Conference of Grand Masters of North America to receive those delegations. This will permit the Commission to evaluate the data presented prior to the Commission meeting on Monday morning.