From The Secretary/Recorder’s Desk

John Fletcher Jr.Dear Companions and Sir Knights,
October is the month that I will be sending you “Notices of Renewal” for the year 2012 and I would greatly appreciate you responding by paying your dues as soon as possible.
Fraternally & Courteously,

John B. Fletcher, Jr. KYGCH

Visit of D.D.G.H.P. of Amazonas, Brazil

On our last Chapter and Council meetings of September 8, we had the pleasure and honor to receive an important international visitor, Right Excelent Armando Correa Jr., District Deputy Grand High Priest for the State of Amazonas, Brazil.

He was pleased to visit us and see our rituals and commented about the differences of the Brazilian rituals. He also brought a presentation for our Excellent Hight Priest Ricardo Parente: a Honorary Member Certificate for the Capitulo Luz Sobre Trevas No. 8 (Brazilian Chapter) in Manaus, Amazonas, which reads:

Honorary Member Certificate, presented to M.E. Companion Ricardo Parente in unanimous recognition of his merit, achievements and distinguished services on behalf of the Grand Chapter of Royal Arch Masons of Brazil in general and of this Chapter in particular. In testimony whereof we do grant this Certificate under the hand and seal of this Grand Chapter on this 20th day of May, A.D. 2011, 2541 A.I.


DDGHP Amazonas 2

Templars, Masons and Pirates

The history of the Knights Templar has been mentioned in several books and is aware of most of the Masons. It covers the world of pirates and the Templars and is so engaging that has served for filmmakers in their artistic productions.
The Knights Templar had a great power, a huge reputation, has accumulated a wealth of knowledge and techniques, especially related to navigation, and an untold fortune. They possessed before their disappearance, one of the most powerful naval fleets of the Middle Ages, but after the end of the order no boat belonging to the Knights Templar was confiscated.
When they were exterminated in 1307, their huge fleet based at La Rochelle disappeared. One question, however, across the seas: what happened to the ships and the famous Templar treasure?
A good part of it had fled to the deep fjords of Scotland and referred to the charge of the family St. Clair (Sinclair) of Rosslyn – the forerunners of a new Masonic Order.
A story that uses the first historical beginnings of navigation and comes to the U.S. War of Independence, a bold historical theory that links the Order of the Temple with Christopher Columbus, with the piracy of the sixteenth, seventeenth and the beginning of Freemasonry on the American continent.
And what part of the fleet became the first pirate ships to fly flags with a picture of skull and crossbones, looting in the Mediterranean and later attacking the Vatican ships coming from the rich ports of the Americas.

“The Knights Templar Order was born, developed, reached its zenith, decayed and disappeared after a period of two hundred years (1118-1312).”
“King Philip, who had been diverting his looks and his greed for the huge Templar heritage and vast fortune on French soil, had the perfect conditions to pursue his ideas and execute his ambitious plan: The extinction of the order of the Templars with the support of the Pope.“
“On the night of October 13, 1307, Philip launched a powerful surprise attack on all French Templar facilities, capturing 15,000 men, besides its Grand Master Jacques de Molay and his guard of 60 men. However, despite the efforts, not all the Templars were arrested, 24 men have managed to escape and the entire templar naval fleet exited the French ports.“

So what happened with that fleet that sailed to unknown places? Many historians agree they incorporated the Portuguese fleets (perhaps because of the affinity between Portugal and Britain) and the Scottish fleet.
Baigent and Leigt in “The Temple and the Lodge” state:

“… The Templar fleet escaped en masse of the various ports of the Mediterranean and northern Europe and left for a mysterious destination where they could find safety and asylum. This fate would be Scotland, via Portugal, where a part of it would be built. “
“… Coincidence or not, European piracy began at that time and their pattern suggests that many pirates were not mere buccaneers who attacked anyone, but ‘very curious pirates’ that limited their attention to the ships of the Vatican and others loyal to Catholicism (Spanish , French, Italian, etc.). “
“… When the Spanish Inquisition was established in the New World after 1492, the ‘Templar pirates’ extended their attacks to the Caribbean and even to the Pacific ports of Peru and Mexico, all in the name of a naval war that was fought for over 200 years. “

David Hatcher ChildressDavid Hatcher Childress, in his more than twenty years of research into lost cities, ancient mysteries and clues about the origins of mankind, came up with a series of eight titles, called “Lost Cities” offering  a new vision of the discoverer of America, and his connection with the missing Templar fleet that fought for centuries over the interests of the Vatican.
Precisely in “The Secret of Christopher Columbus,” offers a lively game of clues about the true identity of Columbus and controversy about how to convince the Catholic monarchs to finance his expedition and how he got the nautical knowledge required for this trip.
What about Christopher Columbus? Was he really a Jew of Spanish origin that already had Templar maps of the New World even before he started navigating? Or was he a pirate?

by Daniel Lucio Batista Maciel
Loja Maçônica Obreiros do Irajá,
Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

From the Secretary’s Desk – September 2011

John Fletcher, Jr.Dear Companions and Sir Knights,
Companions and Sir Knights I cannot say this too often – CHECK YOUR DUES CARDS AND IF IT DOES NOT SAY 2011 – PAY YOUR DUES! We depend on your dues to pay the expenses of our York Rite Bodies.

October is the month of Dues Notices therefore I will be preparing notices and dues cards for the coming year. This is a busy time for the Secretary/Recorder so bear with me.

Fraternally & Courteously,
John B. Fletcher, Jr. KYGCH

Was Freemasonry Born of the Knights Templar?

No, and that is all Ramsay’s Fault

RamseyFrance Chevalier Andrew Michael Ramsay was a Scottish nobleman, exiled in France with the Stuarts. He became, for a short period, tutor to Prince Charles Edward Stuart. The Lodge “Horn” of Westminster had
initiated Ramsay into Freemasonry in 1730, at the same time of the introduction of the Degree of Master Mason.

By around 1737 in France, collaborating with the development of Freemasonry, Ramsay was asked to make a speech to a group started when a great initiation.

That speech, known as “Ramsay’s Prayer” seems to have been edited by Ramsay and distributed to those present when such initiation. He had probably had the intention to publish it, which could have prompted the publication in 1741.

Here some interesting excerpts from the speech:

Our ancestors, the Crusaders, gathered from all parts of Christendom in the Holy Land, wanted to meet, in a single Brotherhood, individuals of all nations… … …. Our founders were not just workers in neither stone,
nor curious geniuses. They were not only qualified architects, engaged in temple building materials, but also religious and warrior princes who planned, built and protected the temples of the Most High.
King Solomon wrote in hieroglyphics our statutes, our highs and our mysteries, and this old book is the original code of our Order. … … After the first destruction of the Temple, Zerubbabel was appointed as Grand Master of the Lodge of Jerusalem and instructed to lay the foundations of the Second Temple, where the mysterious book of Solomon was deposited. … … This book has been lost … … until the time of the Crusades, when a part of it was rediscovered after the surrender of Jerusalem.
Kings, princes and lords returned from Palestine to their own land and established several lodges there
… … Our degrees, our Lodges and our rites were neglected in most places. … … However, its beauty
has been preserved among the Highlanders, whom the kings of France confided during many centuries
the safeguarding of its royal family.

At no time, Ramsay mentions the Temple, but his speech was called the initial idea that Freemasonry was the direct successor of the Templars.

Craft Masonry and the Knights Templar actually coexisted and were related. After all, the Temple required operative masons to build castles, forts, chapels, as well as the Catholic Church, the nobility, bourgeoisie, and any institution or person who needed that something might be built.

However, any relationship beyond this is legend, without a shadow of a trace.The theory that Ramsay was the creator of the Rite of Perfection (or Heredom), which served as the embryo to the Scottish Rite, although advocated by many authors, has no reasonable evidence. Inspiration is different from creation.
Connect the fact Ramsay have written three different levels with the emergence of the first “High Degrees” of France.

However, it seems, the three degrees written by Ramsay were a proposal of Symbolic Degrees inspired by the Medieval Knights degrees to replace the then practiced as a way to “reinforce” the theory of “Templar origins.” There is evidence that he has authorship of the degrees implemented by Karl Gathen in Germany, where they became known as Rite of Strict Observance. It was precisely the fact that this rite did not have a stated authority, and having a high content Templar that buried it.

For one thing, “Ramsay’s Prayer” was used: today there are Templar like degrees in virtually every Masonic rite practiced.

by Kennyo Ismail, Masonic Group – Brazil