PEI-HE LODGE (CHINA)
Location: Tientsin, China
Chartered By: Baalis Sanford
Charter Date: 09/14/1904 1904-104
Precedence Date: 08/08/1903
Current Status: Charter revoked; see Grand Master's Address, 1905 for details.
- Lyle G. Emery, 1903-1905
REFERENCES IN GRAND LODGE PROCEEDINGS
- 1905 (Notes on suspension of charter, 1905-195; see below)
NOTES ON SUSPENSION, 1905
From Proceedings, Page 1905-195:
SUSPENSION OF THE CHARTER OF PEIHE LODGE, OF TIENTSIN, CHINA.
On Sept. 14, 1904, in accordance with a vote of the Grand Lodge at the Quarterly Communication, I issued a Charter to certain petitioners for a Lodge to be established in Tientsin, China, to be called Peihe Lodge, which had been working under a Dispensation for the previous year.
The Lodge was instituted in February, 1905, but the officers were not installed at that time for the reason that death and removals had reduced the corps to one person, namely, the Worshipful Master, Lyle G. Emery. The Senior Warden had been called on business to a distant part of the country. The Junior Warden was killed by two of the natives. The Treasurer had died and the Secretary had moved to the Philippine Islands. The Worshipful Master then consulted with R. W. John R. Hykes, the District Deputy Grand Master of the China Masonic District, in regard to the matter, who informed him that it would be necessary to have a Dispensation from the Grand Lodge in order to legally install any other persons than those mentioned in the Charter.
Notwithstanding this information, the Worshipful Master assumed the responsibility of calling a meeting of his Lodge in March following, when an election of officers took place, the said Emery being elected Worshipful Master; the usual appointments were made, and they were severally installed into their respective stations by W. Brothers Knox and Pringle, of Union Lodge, Tientsin. This coming to the notice of R. W. Brother Hykes he immediately wrote to the Master of Peihe Lodge, declaring the election illegal and the installation null and void, upon which the Master questioned the authority of the District Deputy to interfere with the election of officers in a Lodge, claiming that matter rested entirely with him as the Master of the Lodge. Then followed a long correspondence between R.W. Brother Hykes and the Master of Peihe Lodge, resulting in Brother Hykes demanding the return of their Charter, Records and By-laws, and declaring the Lodge suspended. These were refused for a time, but upon repeating the demand that the order be complied with at once, he finally obtained the desired documents and they are now in his possession.
The correspondence shows that Brother Emery is absolutely incorrigible, and guilty of inexcusable and deliberate contumacy of the Grand Lodge and the Grand Master, and of willful disobedience to the District Deputy Grand Master, and should be dealt with promptly and severely. I have confirmed the action of R.W. John R. Hykes in suspending the Charter of Peihe Lodge.
Accompanying the correspondence from R.W. Brother Hykes was the following petition from fifteen or more of the Brethren of the suspended Lodge, who^were not at all in sympathy with the rulings of the Master of Peihe Lodge:
WHEREAS, it has seemed wise and fitting to the Right Worshipful Grand Master of the Grand Lodge of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts to suspend, through you, the Charter of the Peihe Lodge, Tientsin, and
WHEREAS, the Grand Constitutions (Art. III., Sect. 3) state that, "If at any time the Warrant or Charter of any Lodge under this jurisdiction shall be suspended or cancelled, for irregular or unmasonic conduct, the members of said Lodge, at the time of its having incurred such penalty, shall be disqualified to visit or join any other Lodge without special permission of the Grand Lodge obtained on memorial", and,
WHEREAS, the suspension of said Charter thus places all members of Peihe Lodge alike in bad Masonic standing, and punishes those who have at no time been wilfully disloyal to the Grand Lodge, its Officers, Laws, or Constitutions, therefore,
WE, the undersigned members of Peihe Lodge, do hereby disavow the ruling and attitude of the Worshipful Master of Peihe Lodge in all such matters as have led to the suspension of said Charter, and do assert and pledge our loyalty and fidelity to the Most Worshipful Grand Lodge of Massachusetts, its Constitutions, Laws, Regulations, Decisions, and duly authorized representatives, and humbly petition you, the District Deputy Grand Master for the China Masonic District and lawful representative of the Grand Lodge, to forward and recommend this, our Memorial, that we be healed and restored to true Masonic standing, and that the Charter of Peihe Lodge be returned and placed in our keeping, together with the necessary Dispensation authorizing us to hold an immediate election of officers from among our number upon receipt of said Charter, such election to take the place of that which would ordinarily be held on the second Wednesday in December, 1905, in accordance with the By-Laws in force up to the time of the suspension of said Charter.
Every member of the Lodge will of course be given an opportunity of signing this, which met with the approval of the fifteen members present last evening, and Brother Cameron has sent it to the Acting Secretary for him to circulate.
In referring to this petition, R. W. Brother Hykes writes that if the Brethren take the action as outlined therein, he will have much pleasure in recommending the restoration of the Charter upon such conditions as the Grand Lodge may decide. The above episode but confirms my doubts as to the expediency of establishing Masonic Lodges in foreign countries.