Father Mitchell Pacwa on Freemasonry – the Practical Masons

“The second topic is probably something that is more to the point for a lot of people, because this is something that is quite vibrant. and is of a different nature than scientology and that is the Masonic Lodge or Freemasonry.

Freemasonry claims its roots in those masons, stonemasons, who form guilds as builders of the great cathedrals of Europe and other monuments. You know, when you build a cathedral, the old cathedrals were not built by big corporations. The old cathedrals were built by the folks in the parishes. That’s why they sometimes took hundreds of years. People would go to the quarries and cut stone to be brought and then bring them themselves. Then they would also form the stone and cut it on the site. But, the people who were working on these cathedrals, were butchers and bakers and candlestick makers. They were the people who did all the other jobs in the city and so stonemasons would be part of a mobile guild, a guild was a group of professionals who had various norms for membership. You would start off usually as an apprentice, then a journeyman, and then you’d be a member of the guild and a full member. And that wasn’t just for the guild of masons. This was the guild for cloth makers, tailors and many other skilled works, that they would have these guilds. And the guilds, especially the guild of Masons, was known because they had a lot of secret signs. You might have somebody who says ‘Oh yeah, I’m a mason’ and this was risky because the masons had to travel around to the different building sites.
They didn’t have job in one town like the other guilds did. The cloth maker guild knew everybody in the city. So, if you were an apprentice, everybody knew it. If you were a journeyman, everybody knew it because you lived and worked with those people. But masons had to travel from one place to another.

And so, they would develop secret symbols, secret handshakes, in order to let other master masons know who was an apprentice, who was a journeyman, who was a full-fledged member as a Master Mason. And that was part of their quality and their itinerant work. Now, this is something that the Popes have brought out as a great irony – is that the guild that built the great cathedrals of Europe which are still some of the most wonderful buildings you can go to see. How many of you have been to Europe? How many of you made sure that all of your trips to Europe include sightseeing of factories? How about bank buildings? Cathedrals? Right, exactly! I mean, these cathedrals of Europe are still wonders. It’s like lace made out of stone. And so many of these especially the French cathedrals but the English and Germans are also just phenomenal.

And it’s ironic that those masons who built those beautiful cathedrals and works of faith, have been usurped by an organization that is anti-catholic.”

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