Are any of your family members freemasons?


#1

Do you have any family members who are freemasons? If yes, how do you deal with it? Would you invite a freemason to anything church related? (like a baptism or first Communion)

Unfortunately, my dad is involved in this. I was shocked when he told me a couple of years ago. In a way, I'm not surprised because he loves things that are elite and not for 'common people.' He was an atheist when he was younger but several years ago professed some kind of general theism. Nowdays he's into esoteric spirituality and has embraced many Christian heresies. I'm absolutely disgusted by his membership in this group and don't want to include him in anything church related when it comes to my family. I didn't invite him to my son's baptism for example. I want to keep this filth as far away from my child as possible.

Am I overreacting or being sensible? Can his membership in the lodge hurt my family in any way? (I don't want to be superstitious but the whole thing seriously freaks me out).
I can't have an adult conversation with my dad because he just laughs at everything and tells me that he is enlightened and knows the truth, while I'm indoctrinated by a belief system that controls uneducated people.


#2

[quote="Contra_Mundum, post:1, topic:225344"]
I can't have an adult conversation with my dad because he just laughs at everything and tells me that he is enlightened and knows the truth, while I'm indoctrinated by a belief system that controls uneducated people.

[/quote]

My father was a Mason and I had no problem including him in Church and family events (baptisms, marriages, etc). However, my father did not insult Catholicism or my family or me. What you have described is a fault that lies within the man himself and not necessarily one shared by the masons in general. Don't misunderstand. I oppose Freemasonry but though my father passed away many years ago, I continue to love and miss him.

Pray for him. Include him in these important events if he can control himself. You may be the only source of real truth and love in his life and if you close him out, what chance does he have to ever find God.


#3

Tietjen, note the OP's location. Masons in other parts of the world are much more anti-Catholic than we would be used to in the US. In the US, the masons present themselves and most of them think of themselves as mainly a charitable fraternity. Not the case elsewhere. Not that I would support masons in the US, just that we need to recognize that Contra Mundum's problem may be more difficult than here. As such it is hard to give good advice from our perspective.

I would say that you should demand more respect from your father as an than someone who was "indoctrinated by a belief system that controls uneducated people"


#4

Yes, several of them are. In the US, they basically drive little scooters and raise money for burned kids. They don’t care that I’m Catholic, and I don’t care that they are masons.

They are a dying and fading group. The average age of them is probably over 50, and soon they’ll be no more. Sad really, they do alot of good.


#5

Rascalking,
sure, they do some good. But they are also an obscure organisation that has historically been in conflict with the Catholic Church. Official church documents speak openly about this organisation and make it clear that a Catholic cannot be a member. I believe that when something is good the Church does not oppose it, and vice versa.

I'm not interested in discussing the merits of freemasons so please let's not ruin my thread by taking that direction.

For those of you who feel the way I do about this question, what do you advise me to do in relation to my dad the freemason?

thanks.


#6

[quote="Contra_Mundum, post:5, topic:225344"]
I'm not interested in discussing the merits of freemasons so please let's not ruin my thread by taking that direction.

For those of you who feel the way I do about this question, what do you advise me to do in relation to my dad the freemason?

thanks.

[/quote]

Relax. You asked a question in your post, and I answered it.

If your dad is Catholic, I'd suggest to you that you 1) Never, ever disrespect your father (No, I'm not saying your doing that). No matter what he is, he still deserves respect as your pops.

2) Explain to him you will not be interested in doing any activity that the Masons do, regardless of what it is, because it conflicts with your religion. Your dad should probably understand that. If he shows an interest in why the Church is against Freemasons, than tell him the basics of it. If you go on a tirade about how Freemasonry is demonic the first time he brings it up (Again, not saying you'll do it) he will likely dismiss you as a fanatic. Son or not! :D


#7

[quote="Rascalking, post:6, topic:225344"]
If you go on a tirade about how Freemasonry is demonic the first time he brings it up (Again, not saying you'll do it) he will likely dismiss you as a fanatic. Son or not! :D

[/quote]

Daughter ;)


#8

Whoops! Sorry! :o


#9

I grew up in Scotland as a catholic and now date a girl in the USA whose father is a mason, and, unfortunately they are radically different in the US than back home. I can understand where Contra Mundum is coming from, in Scotland there is an obvious dislike for both parties concerned, my girlfriend’s father (a baptist) is deeply rooted in his faith and is a good christian man.
I pray that one day your father will see the light and make things right, it is indeed hard for a child to be diconnected from a granparent but for the sake of the child’s spiritual growth, may have to reamin that way until things change.


#10

My grandfather on my mothers side was a Shriner (they guys on the Harley’s that raise the money for children) and my father was a 32nd (second highest you can get) degree Mason.

I grew up Baptist… in the 70s and our Church was pretty anti-Catholic at the time. Both my father and I fell into this until (he had been a History teacher before becoming a Psychologist) some of the “proofs” against the Church didn’t make sense. Later, while still living at home, I left the Baptist Church and became Presbyterian and also worked on a Catholic Youth Retreat. A few years later my parents joined the Christian church (Disciples of Christ, also Reformed theology).

I say that because while he wasn’t anti-Catholic very long (a few years) and I believe after my journey home he would be Catholic today if he were alive, his feelings on the Masons didn’t change through out the years… actually his anti-Masonic feelings.

Shortly after going through the 32nd Degree Rite my father dropped out of the lodge never to return. In his view, one could not be a good Christian and a Mason. This was NOT the feeling he had before going through that rite. Some consider it to be the highest rank for those who will never seek office.

I’m not sure what he learned or experienced but something during that rite caused him to leave something he loved and worked very hard to achieve for many years. Knowing my father it wasn’t something he took or could take lightly or explain away.

I know that most Masons, in the South especially, are big time Protestant Christians… especially in small towns. These people are usually Evangelical or Fundamentalist believing that only their way is correct, everyone else is wrong and this seems to fit into the Masonic teachings or at least as far as they can understand the teachings. These groups are often quite anti-Catholic as well.

When going through my 3rd Degree as a Knight of Columbus I couldn’t help but think of my father and how proud I believe he would be to be a Knight.

Joe


#11

My dad is. He is also a Calvinist and he lives with us, so we have lots of fun here:rolleyes:

DH takes care of dad's checkbook and bills for him, as he just couldn't keep up with it anymore. He had to pay dad's Mason membership dues the other day!

My dad is anti-Catholic!

For the most part, we just don't talk about it. But we have had a couple of times that I had to call him out on what he was saying, because it was not correct and I won't let him tell untruths about the Church in my home, in front of my children!
He told me that he has always "tolerated" Catholic beliefs even if he didn't agree with them. That was suppose to make me happy, I think.:rolleyes:


#12

[quote="jwashu, post:10, topic:225344"]
Shortly after going through the 32nd Degree Rite my father dropped out of the lodge never to return. In his view, one could not be a good Christian and a Mason. This was NOT the feeling he had before going through that rite. I'm not sure what he learned or experienced but something during that rite caused him to leave something he loved and worked very hard to achieve for many years. Knowing my father it wasn't something he took or could take lightly or explain away.
Joe

[/quote]

How interesting. It is such a blessing that he dropped out eventually.

The problem is that my dad is only nominally a Christian. He was baptised as a child and it went no further. His parents were rabid atheists so I'm surprised he was baptised at all. His younger sister wasn't. Anyway, there is no grounds for me to argue about freemasonry from the Catholic perspective. For him it is nonsence, just an expresion of spirituality for people who are not capable of anything higher. His views are so elitist and condescending that sometimes I just want to scream with frustration. He will most surely say all sort of rubbish in front of my children and try to undermine my authority as a parent, no doubt about it. I remeber his comments at my grandmother's funeral (Catholic funeral), how it was all so stupid and what nonsence the Bible is. He said that in front of my grieving mother. It made me sick. This is the kind of person I'm dealing with. No respect for others. This is why i wonder if I should include him in anything church-family related. His beliefs are poisenous and children are so easily influenced.


#13

Wow, I am really surprised at the view people have of Masons today. In my area of the U.S. They are simply a group of men who get together and do things for the good of the community. I would draw a comparison to the Lions club. You can network through there as well, for your career. There are womens versions of the group too. My dh’s great grandfather and grandfather were masons and my Dh would have liked to be one too. He was really surprised to say the least, when I told him it was forbidden by the church. Historically Im sure the masons did weird things but now it really is just a club and most if the people in it are Christian.

Edited to add, I have no doubt that the rites ceremonies they do are really strange at least based on books etc. But I know some masons and they are good people. However I was glad to tell my Dh that it’s forbidden; i dont want him to do it because it shuts out spouses and is too secretive for my taste. I’m too much of a nosy wife!


#14

[quote="Gingersnaps4, post:13, topic:225344"]
Wow, I am really surprised at the view people have of Masons today. In my area of the U.S. They are simply a group of men who get together and do things for the good of the community. I would draw a comparison to the Lions club. You can network through there as well, for your career. (...) But I know some masons and they are good people.

[/quote]

I understand that many people see it as a gentlemen's club, a network, an opportunity to do good, etc. I'm sure there are 'good people' there. However, what does that mean, a 'good person'? By whose standards?
I believe the church has a very good reason for her attitude toward this group. I bet she knows more than you and me. They have a religious belief but they are not Christian and are very anti-Catholic specifically. They've picked up on many Christian heresies, gnosticism being one of them. I find the whole thing very creepy. It is definitely no Lions club.


#15

[quote="Gingersnaps4, post:13, topic:225344"]
Wow, I am really surprised at the view people have of Masons today. In my area of the U.S. They are simply a group of men who get together and do things for the good of the community. I would draw a comparison to the Lions club. You can network through there as well, for your career. There are womens versions of the group too. My dh's great grandfather and grandfather were masons and my Dh would have liked to be one too. He was really surprised to say the least, when I told him it was forbidden by the church. Historically Im sure the masons did weird things but now it really is just a club and most if the people in it are Christian.

Edited to add, I have no doubt that the rites ceremonies they do are really strange at least based on books etc. But I know some masons and they are good people. However I was glad to tell my Dh that it's forbidden; i dont want him to do it because it shuts out spouses and is too secretive for my taste. I'm too much of a nosy wife!

[/quote]

Well, it has been said a couple of times before, but bears repeating. The masons in Europe, UK, and Latin America are much different in their outlook than those in the US. But they all have a common philisophical base, and that base remains today very anti-Catholic. Its just that members in the US typically don't focus on, and most don't even know what this philosophy consists of. Overseas, that is not the case. One should not be a member of an organization which is fundamentally anti-Catholic, even if most other members don't realize it (as in the US).


#16

My dh’s relatives who were masons were Christian. Orthodox Anglican. Or at least conservative Anglican as there were no such thing as liberal ones then. But I can see what you mean even if it is mostly fun and games in the U.S. The secrecy is what bothers me most. I wouldnt judge a U.S. Mason but I wouldn’t want my own Dh going somewhere where I am not welcome, and where he isn’t supposed to discuss what went on. Just on basic principals I wouldn’t want him to be a part if it. I’ve asked him before why the secrecy if it’s just a charity type thing.


#17

[quote="Gingersnaps4, post:16, topic:225344"]
My dh's relatives who were masons were Christian. Orthodox Anglican. Or at least conservative Anglican as there were no such thing as liberal ones then. But I can see what you mean even if it is mostly fun and games in the U.S. The secrecy is what bothers me most. I wouldnt judge a U.S. Mason but I wouldn't want my own Dh going somewhere where I am not welcome, and where he isn't supposed to discuss what went on. Just on basic principals I wouldn't want him to be a part if it. I've asked him before why the secrecy if it's just a charity type thing.

[/quote]

Exactly. One of the reasons one can't be a Christian and a freemason at the same time is that they worship a god, but not in the way we do. One can't at the same time be a Christian and a pagan, what is essentially what they are.

In my hometown (not in Scotland) one of the buildings in the old city centre has a staue of an angel carrying a torch. I never thought much of it until a friend told me that an angel who is a torchbearer is Lucifer. Apparently freemasons were powerful there once and did a lot of building and he is one of their symbols. Nice, huh?

I hope your husband doesn't get involved with this stuff. I hope my dad will get bored of them and find another secret society to join. :rolleyes:


#18

I believe my father and grandfather did a lot of great things for the community through the Masons, that's not the point. A person can do good works and still not find salvation correct?

To the OP, it's interesting what you said about how he acted at the funeral because it sounds more like a character issue/flaw that something to do with the Masons except that they may be encouraging it.

Most of the US Founding Fathers were Masons, this was a good thing at the time (from a US perspective) because it gave them a chance to discuss ideas and philosophies without fear of reprisal. The same thing went on originally in Europe, especially the UK, for many years because certain discussions were forbidden at the time. In a secret society one could talk openly about anything.

The Masons also much acknowledge that there is a supreme being or god. Who or what that god is or is not fails to be important as the society is suppose to be open to every group and open to discussing ideals.

In the US I doubt that is what goes on anymore, it's probably more community service then having a few beers with your buddies. However the founding principles should still be there...

Thus I would ask, when derogatory comments are made, if he didn't feel that was inappropriate? If he looks puzzled point out that your understanding of the Mason is that they are a group of men who are suppose to be open to ideals, who talk about a positive future but don't condemn. You could say you thought the order was for intellectual discussion of ideas yet since joining he seems to be less open and more ridged and that you would think someone who has mastered a higher intellectual position wouldn't need to build themselves up by tearing down the belief systems of others...

See what he says to something like that... put him on the spot. The Mason's speak of those high ideals, if he wants to be one and is so enlightened now... he needs to prove it.

Joe


#19

[quote=jwashu;7455917 To the OP, it's interesting what you said about how he acted at the funeral because it sounds more like a character issue/flaw that something to do with the Masons except that they may be encouraging it.
]

Thanks for the suggestion. I will put him on the spot a bit. But as you have pointed out regarding the funeral incident, he does have a character flaw and conversation is generally difficult. Not much empathy or understanding. I think membership in the lodge is feeding his ego among other things and he feels free to openly rubbish people.
I'm used to all this really but worried about my kids having a very bad example. I think that's what it comes down to in the end.
[/quote]


#20

What exactly are freemasons? :blush:


DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit www.catholic.com.