Statement from the Grand Master
March 26, 2016
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Dear Brethren, The recent actions taken by the Grand Lodges of Georgia and Tennessee to exclude men based on sexual preference have created concern among the members of many jurisdictions, including Connecticut.
Since its inception in 1789 and for more than 226 years, the Grand Lodge of Connecticut has accepted men into the ranks of our Fraternity who are well recommended, under no restraint of liberty, and of lawful age. Further, we acknowledge the sovereignty of the many Grand Lodge jurisdictions throughout the world with which we currently exercise mutual recognition. Each jurisdiction establishes its own rules and regulations that govern its membership.
The Grand Lodge of Connecticut continues to encourage good men to petition its lodges provided they meet the following basic requirements:
1. An adult male of good character and at least 18 years of age.
2. A man who expresses a belief in a Supreme Deity. (We do not accept atheists or agnostics, but beyond that we are not concerned with specific religious beliefs or theological distinctions. )
3. Men who have not been coerced into joining, but do so of their own free will and accord because they have a favorable impression ofthe Fraternity.
As Connecticut Masons, we do not inquire about, nor concern ourselves with, the sexual orientation of any man. As long as an individual meets the criteria stated above, we welcome him to join our lodges and become part of the oldest fraternity in the world.
The Statement of Principles adopted by the Grand Lodge of Connecticut in 1939 concludes as follows: "It (Freemasonry) believes that the attainment of these objectives is best accomplished by laying a broad basis of principle upon which men of every race, country, sect and opinion may unite rather than by setting up a restricted platform upon which only those of certain races, creeds and opinions can assemble. I therefore concur with the Grand Master of the Grand Lodge of Massachusetts that "any action that runs contrary to the common purpose of Freemasonry and feeling of friendship which exists in our lodge rooms runs afoul of the basic tenets of Freemasonry: brotherly love, relief and truth."
All Connecticut Masons are hereby directed to take due notice and govern themselves accordingly.
Charles W. Yohe
Most Worshipful Grand Master