The declaration from the five European Grand Lodges who withdraw their Recognition of the GLNF with regret comes as no surprise.
As we had already announced a few days ago, others will follow.
The date chosen for the declaration shows they no longer believe in an internal solution, no matter what the result of an eventual vote on June 23rd, or some time later.
In fact, our Swiss, Belgian, Austrian, German and Luxemburger Brethren consider that after the irremediable collapse of what was for so long the Regular Obedience in France and the loss of face that resulted for Traditional Freemasonry, it is time to work on the re-composition of French Freemasonry. Today that has become an absolute necessity.
In total agreement with this view, for some time now the Alliance has established contacts with all concerned parties, in France and elsewhere in the world.
It is exchanging points of view with them and is working on the fixing of a framework for the future. What’s more, the fifth paragraph of their declaration expresses the support and understanding of our European Brothers for those who have already done so, or those who are going to leave the GLNF to join the Grande Loge de l’Alliance Maçonnique Française.
The role the Alliance will have to play is based upon its specificities which place it at the heart of this most necessary restructuring of French Freemasonry.
In fact, it is not structured around a single Rite which would make it particularly dependent upon its Higher Degrees system.
That is one of the reasons for its Rite House system, the guarantor of this obligatory independence, necessary for Regularity and for obtaining Recognition, offering a welcome to those diverse spiritualities and their relation with the Great Architect of the Universe.
It is this specificity that differentiates us from the other French Obediences which are based upon lay conceptions or the spirituality of a single Rite.
At the same time, the discretion and the lack of implication of certain of our French Brothers justifies our discussions with them. In our opinion they are closer to us than the sycophantic Brethren of the GLNF who have betrayed their fundamental values.
The European Grand Lodges, to which Poland must be added since it also has just withdrawn its Recognition, tell us clearly in their own way that it is time to look elsewhere and otherwise, without the risk of their being accused of manipulating or interfering.
Failure to recognize this fact would be an historic mistake and we thank our European Brethren for having understood it and for having expressed it so well.
Nonetheless we must remain prudent. This re-composition of the masonic scene will not be instantaneous.
In the same way, if it is true that the criteria for Recognition must remain sacrosanct, it is also true that the current implosion of the Obedience which benefited from Recognition clearly shows that we must conceive appropriate barriers to avoid such a situation in the future.
This is precisely what the GL-AMF attempted to put in place in its statutes to protect the associative and masonic life of the Brethren who are joining the Grand Lodge today in such massive numbers and will be joined by even more in the future.
As such, since its creation, the GL-AMF has become a major participant in this debate.
It must be clear to all Brethren that this declaration by the European Grand Lodges marks the end of the GLNF era.
It opens the doors to the future for French Freemasonry, to build this future with all the Regular Grand Lodges of the world, where the Grande Loge de l’Alliance Maçonnique Française will have its rightful place, and why not with other Obediences, and it will be able to meet the demands required of it by Universal Freemasonry.