The legal tug of war between Miss Monique and Ephesse continues, the GLNF cash reserves continue down the gurgler and the legal eagles of both parties have all bought a 2nd wheelbarrow for carting the cash to the bank.
In her capacity as legal administrator of the embattled obedience, Miss Monique called another general meeting of the GLNF association on June 23rd, the main item on the agenda being the ratification of the Ephesse as Grand Master, following his jerrymander victory in the Grand Master candidate election within the SGC of March 30th. Part of the jerrymander consisted in the election involving a single ballot (court decision brought down just 24 hours prior to the SGC meeting) whereas Miss Monique had reached an agreement with the lawyers of all parties that there would be a two round ballot.
Ephesse cries victory (with a minority voting for him) and immediately instigates court proceedings to give Miss Monique the chop. We are tempted to applaud his altruism seeking to save undue expense for the GLNF. But he would appear to have come out of the blocks too quickly. All his argument is based upon the claim that the legal administrator’s role ceases with the designation of a new Grand Master. On March 30th Ephesse was appointed “Grand Master candidate”, not Grand Master. That requires the ratification by the Lodge delegates at a general assembly of the GLNF association, a civil decision. Despite the thinning of the ranks by exclusion of Lodges and those who have left the GLNF, Ephesse is far from sure of winning the ratification vote. An essential part of his strategy is to put the vote off as long as possible (as we suggested to you a couple of months ago). Court decision on this one on June 19th, just 4 days before the scheduled general meeting.
At the same time Miss Monique has the single round ballot stuck in her craw. So she has wheeled out her legal mouthpiece, Maître Dumaine-Martin to issue a counter-writ against Ephesse calling for a new election at SGC level respecting the two round ballot agreement. Decision on June 21st, a mere 48 hours prior to the scheduled meeting.
In the run up to the general meeting a large number of Lodges have dug deep into their pockets to find the 2 years of fees in arrears in order to have the right to vote. Henry the Beancounter and Miss Monique have decreed that not only the delegates must be up to date with their dues, but the entire Lodge as well. After all, the GLNF casts heaps to run and no doubt part of Miss Monique’s remuneration is based upon the GLNF turnover. So the cash flows in and numerous Worshipful Masters believe they will get to express their democratic opinion on June 23rd.
BIG MISTAKE !!!
Never forget Ephesse is first and foremost a very experienced business lawyer who knows and exploits every trick and twist and turn that the laws of the land allow. And a certain number that are in complete contradiction with those same laws. So you won’t be surprised to read that he has written to every member of the SGC informing them that the Grand Master’s ratification will not occur on June 23rd but at the meeting of Grand Lodge on the first Saturday in December. link
Does he have the right to make this announcement ? NO !!! Miss Monique is legal administrator of the civil acivities of the GLNF, i.e. the association, including the organization and chairing of its general meetings. While she is still legal administrator she is the only person who can determine the meeting agenda. And to add weight to that, the ratification of the Grand Master is a decision taken at the association annual general meeting. It is a civil decision, not a masonic one. So, the wording of Ephesse’s letter to the SGC members is erroneous. The Grand Lodge meeting in December has absolutely nothing to do with the ratification of the Grand Master. He is installed in his function at a meeting of Grand Lodge but only once he has been ratified by a general assembly of the Lodge delegates.
Why does Ephesse want to delay the ratification decision ?
Because today he’s by no means certain to get a majority decision
Because putting the decision off to December means the Lodges will have to pay yet another year’s dues to be eligible to vote (fees are due as on September 1st in the GLNF). And the delay will discourage a certain number of Lodges, thereby consolidating his position.
Because that puts his 6 months closer to the GLNF centenary in 2013.
Because there are still a number of skeletons in the cupboards which might just disappear over the next 6 months.
The latest manoeuvre by Ephesse is yet another example (the list is very long) of his deliberately interpreting the GLNF Constitutions, Statutes and By-laws, and the laws and decrees of the French Republic.
It is a well-known fact that Ephesse doesn’t speak a word of English. So perhaps he can be excused for not knowing the expressions “fair play” and “a level playing field”. But if he has even a single masonic fibre in his body he certainly knows their spirit !!!
Brethren, if you or your Lodge still think you will see some semblance of democracy on June 23rd, I feel you are in for a big shock. Save your money, save tour trip to Paris, urge the members of your Lodge to vote to join the GL-AMF. You can’t imagine the peace and calm you’ll find after 30 months of GLNF bedlam.