Sunday, June 17, 2007
In the 17th century it was calculated that according to the Bible, the Creation of the world has happened exactly 4.000 years before Christ. That was taken as a zero year for the masonic calendar. Today it’s 6007 A.L., or Anno Lucis – The Year of The Light.
Still – different masonic bodies have different time measurements.
Scottish Rite Masons count the time using the Jewish calendar. In order to get the proper year, add 3.760 to the current year. Also, a curiosity is that the year starts in September.
Royal Arch Masons – count the time from the time when the second Temple was started by Zerubbabel. They call it The Year of The Discovery – Anno Inventionis (A.I.). Add 530 to the current year.
Knights Templar's era starts with the formation of their order in 1.118, and it’s called Anno Ordinis (A.O.) - The Year of The Order. According to their calendar, today is year 889.
Aruba is one of the world famous places for vacations. Apparently it’s not only a place for rest, but also a place for work. Masonic work that is. In the small island in the Dutch Antilles, there are three working lodges. The first one was El Sol Naciente #113.
Masonry in Aruba started in the beginning of the 20th century with the arrival of the English Engineers who supervised the gold mining on the island. There wasn’t a lodge, but there was a Masonic Club. Arubans also joined the club, being members of the Lodge Igualdad #653 in Curacao. It took many years before they managed to receive a charter for their own lodge. The Lodge El Sol Naciente (that was the name of the Masonic Club too), received light on November 15, 1920 from the Grand Lodge of Netherlands. In its long years of existence this lodge was working in Spanish, English and Dutch. Has seen its membership rise to 167, and drop to just 8 active members, changed the meeting location several times and survived the hard times for the Dutch Masonry during the WWII.
Today, it is active and vibrant, and carries the Masonic message and values in this small piece of Caribbean Heaven.
They can be contacted by e-mail:
by regular mail:
Lodge El Sol Naciente# 113 East of Aruba
Chartered under the Grand East of the Netherlands
Cumana 26, Oranjestad, Aruba, Dutch Caribbean
P.O. Box 187
Or check their web-site:
El Sol Naciente #113
One of the youngest Grand Lodges in the world is the one in Macedonia.
It’s hard to trace the history of Masonry in Macedonia, because the country was under foreign rule for a very long time and changed its rulers couple of times before it got partial independence after the WWII and full independence in 1991. What is known for sure is that there were lodges working in 19th century, created by the europen diplomats and businessmen who lived in the country. The “Young-Turks” revolution, that changed the Ottoman Empire and initiated the modern day Turkey, started in the lodges that were situated there, and one of the most respected lodges today in Istanbul has the name “Macedonia”.
Evidences of masonic influence are present in some old buildings and churches, with the square and compasses or the All Seeing Eye present in paint or carved in stone.
The official start of masonry in this small, but historicaly important country, that has a biblical “certificate”, was in 1995, when a group of 8 honorable men became masons in the lodges in Yugoslavia (today – Serbia). Soon after that, their number rose to 21. The attempt to create a lodge in Macedonia was interrupted by the change of situation and the relationship between the Grand Lodge of Yugoslavia and the rest of the masonic world, so bringing light in the country was delayed in order to avoid irregularities.
Masons who were already initiated, started contacts with the UGLE and in 1997 were accepted as members of lodges in England. Soon after, the first Macedonian Lodge was formed – Lodge Skopje (the name of the capital city). Two other lodges were also formed under UGLE – Unity and White Dawn. The road for opening an independent Grand Lodge was paved.
In October 2005, high representatives and officers from the United Grand Lodge of England came in Skopje and brought light into the Grand Lodge of Macedonia. It was an extraordinary rear moment - the second time in 100 years that UGLE has done that.
Since then, a number of mutual recognitions and contacts started with lodges all over the world. One more lodge was opened – Morning Star. The total number of masons in the country is currently almost 100 (on a total population of 2 milion). An interesting fact is that the first Macedonian Lodge that was opened – Skopje, still works in English, in honor of its Mother Lodge – UGLE.
You can contact them:
web: www.glm.org.mk (the web-site is with an excellent design, but the English version is still under construction)
R.Macedonia, Skopje 1000