Some facts about Haas Yes he was expelled. I have the edict in front of me. He was not afforded a Masonic trial again. Our Grand Master cites a section (27.01c) that does in fact say that the EA and the FC should not be re-conferred. Doesn’t say that they can’t just says they shouldn’t. This is a lame excuse to take this action. If in fact this is this Grand Masters position they he should, he must, and is now bound to expel any Ohio Master Mason that has ever been a pro-tem candidate at their Lodge Inspection or any other time a pro-tem is used. There is no difference.
Lets be very clear about this WV is AF&AM and Ohio is F&AM. They are not the same degrees. So if I want to belong to AF&AM lodge then I must surely have to conform to their ritual and the same would also be true.
Frank was never given a masonic trial in WV and was never charged with a Masonic offense.; Even the Supreme Court of WV ruled that what they did did not follow their own rules. The only offense Frank was guilty of was trying to bring WV into the 21 Century.
It is well documented that WV Grand Lodge has taken their cause to other states to try to convince them to cut ties with Ohio over this issue. Our grand Master has chosen to take the easy way and has bowed to outside pressures. He has also basically slapped the 3 previous Grand Masters in the face by these actions. I will be sending a letter of protest to our Grand Master, maybe he can expel me in return.
It has been stated that the Grand Lodge of West Virginia has reestablished relations with the Grand Lodge of Ohio. It has also been said that PGM Frank Haas who was granted admittance into the Grand Lodge of Ohio has now been expelled. A Brother from the Masons of Texas Forum says that he talked to an Ohio Grand Lodge member who confirmed these developments.
If this is true, and I would like to see some more verification, then it is a travesty of justice. Some things that a Grand Lodge does cannot be revoked or reinstated as the case may be when Grand Masters change in a Grand Lodge. You cannot play with people’s lives in this manner.
Once the Grand Lodge of Ohio granted PGM Frank Haas asylum it should be permanent and not able to be reversed. What happens to the credibility of the Grand Lodge of Ohio should the next Grand Master re-reverse the decision and reinstate Frank Haas?
The question that needs to be answered is did Frank Haas receive a Masonic Trial from his Lodge in Ohio or was he just summarily expelled? On what basis was he expelled? What was the reason?
Let’s say that in the civil world the District Attorney of Ohio should grant immunity from prosecution to an individual in return for testimony he needs to convict someone else. The individual takes the deal but when a new Attorney General is elected he reverses the deal and throws the individual in jail.
Or let’s say that in the Masonic world that a Grand Master of a certain Grand Lodge decides to heal and admit all the members of a clandestine Grand Lodge. The next year a new Grand Master reverses the decision and throws all the former clandestine members out, expels them without a Masonic trial.
You just cannot do business this way. Your word is no good if you can’t keep it and maintain some constant policies.
If this story is true, then it demonstrates once again that some American Grand Masters have too much power and are using that power arbitrarily with no regard for their Constitutions or Masonic law. Such is the sad state of American Mainstream Freemasonry that is slowly dying an agonizing death. One only needs to look at the Grand Lodge of Arkansas where a despotic, tyrannical regime riddled with KKK has reduced that Grand Lodge by attrition to 4000 members. Meanwhile the Grand Lodge of Florida is expelling all who are not members of an Abrahamic faith (mostly non-Christians).
How long are the good Grand Lodges in this nation going to allow Freemasonry to be practiced in this manner?
A big factor in this whole Arkansas Shrine affair has been overlooked by many. Potentate Buffington who was expelled from the Grand Lodge of Arkansas was not also expelled from the Shrine BECAUSE HE WAS STILL A MASON. He had dual membership also being a member of the Grand Lodge of Iowa. AND THE GRAND LODGE OF IOWA REFUSED TO EXPEL HIM.
So what do all you legalists have to say now? If Buffington’s own Lodge found that he did nothing wrong, if the Shrine found that he did nothing wrong and if the Grand Master of Iowa found that he had done nothing wrong and refused to expel him, could it be that the Grand Lodge of Arkansas is wrong and out for a vendetta?
Such action or non action by the Grand Lodge of Iowa is setting a precedent. It follows the Grand Lodge of Ohio giving Past Grand Master Frank Haas sanctuary after being expelled from West Virginia. It looks as if Grand Lodges may not always rubber stamp support decisions by other Grand Lodges. The good old boys network is showing some cracks.
More light is shed by a letter from Theodore Corsones, General Counsel Emeritus of Shriners International and Shriners Hospitals for Children and also a Past Grand Master.
“The fault lies with the Grand Lodge of Arkansas not with Shriners International. The Grand Master of Arkansas has adopted a “scorched earth” policy against the Shrine in his Grand jurisdiction because Shriners International will not allow him to decide who should be a Shriner in Arkansas. A summary of the facts are as follows.”
“Potentate Buffington was asked to run for a second term as potentate of Scimitar Shriners – which is lawful under Shrine law. The Grand Master did not want him to do so because he wanted another Noble to have the office.”
“Potentate Buffington left it to the members of the temple to decide and the temple members elected him for a second term.”
“Social Event. Buffington had a Christmas party at a country club. Other parties were occurring at the same time. One of the other parties had a DJ who was playing extremely amplified music. The DJ was asked to lower the volume. He complied. A member of the other party went to Buffington’s party and complained that they had no right to interfere with the other party. Words were exchanged. The country club looked into the matter and found no wrong doing by Buffington. (This was not pleasing to the Grand Master)”
“Masonic Lodge. A complaint was filed in Buffington’s Masonic lodge in Arkansas alleging that Buffington conducted himself improperly at the Christmas party. The lodge investigated the matter and dismissed the complaint alleging no wrong doing by Buffington. (This was not pleasing to the Grand Master).”
“Scimitar Shriners. Buffington’s temple was asked to look into the matter. The temple did, and found no wrong doing by Buffington. (This was not pleasing to the Grand Master.) “
“Grand Lodge of Arkansas. The Grand Master then, without a trial, summarily suspended Buffington from Masonry in Arkansas and told Buffington he could appeal if he wanted to. Buffington did appeal. The Grand Master then selected the three persons who were to decide whether he was right or wrong in suspending Buffington. Needless to say, his three appointees carried out the execution of Buffington as they were expected to do by their appointment. They found Buffington guilty.”
“Shriners International. Shriners International held a hearing at the 2012 annual session at Charlotte, NC as to whether or not Buffington should be expelled from the Shrine because of being expelled from Masonry in South Carolina. A hearing was held and it was determined that Buffington was a member in good standing in Masonry in the Grand Lodge of Iowa and, therefore, he was eligible to remain a Shriner. (This was not pleasing to the Grand Master of Arkansas.)”
“Grand Lodge of Iowa.The Grand Master then asked the Grand Lodge of Iowa to expel Buffington from Masonry because he, the Grand Master of Arkansas, had done so. The Grand Master of Iowa stated that he would investigate the matter. He did conduct an investigation. He then informed the Grand Master of Arkansas that Buffington had done nothing wrong so he would not suspend or expel Buffington from Masonry.”
“As a result of all of the foregoing the Grand Master adopted his “scorched earth” policy against Shriners in Arkansas by issuing an edict that anyone who remained a Shriner in Arkansas had to self-expel himself from Masonry by December 15, 2012 or he, without any trial, would expel them from Masonry. Further he would not allow any Masonic lodge to issue a demit from Masonry to any Shriner (rightly fearing that such Masons would join Masonic lodges in other states). This is Masonry as it is presently practiced in the Grand Lodge of Arkansas.”
“Now, you have the basic facts.”
“I am proud to inform you that Shriners International is blessed to have Alan W. Madsen as its Imperial Potentate during this unprecedented time. He is standing tall for what is right and proper. He will not allow Shriners International nor Shriners Hospitals for Children to be destroyed by the unconscionable acts of those that have lost all common sense and no longer practice fraternal love and amity.”
“If you have any questions, do not hesitate to communicate with me.”
General Counsel Emeritus of Shriners International and Shriners Hospitals for Children.