The Grand Lodge of the French Masonic Alliance (GL-AMF)
The new and emerging history of the Grand Lodge of the Masonic French Alliance was substantively immersed with that of the older French National Grand Lodge (GLNF) until 2012.
History of the French National Grand Lodge
The French National Grand Lodge is itself a relatively recent Grand Lodge. It was born into light in the early twentieth-century from the desire of a group of Masons of the Grand Orient of France to restore and thence forward practice the Rectified Scottish Rite in France.
In 1910, Camille Savoire and Edouard de Ribaucourt brought the Rectified Scottish Rite to life with the support of the Grand Priory of Helvetia, a Swiss Masonic Body managing the higher grades of the Rectified Scottish Rite. They strengthened the “The Center of Friends Lodge,1 “, the name of a now defunct lodge which had been working the Rectified Scottish Rite until 1838.
On the 15th of March, 1911, the Grand Orient of France and the Grand Priory of Helvetia signed an agreement with the “The Center of Friends Lodge” permitting it to work the Rectified Scottish Rite under the auspices of the Grand Orient of France.
However, in 1913, the Grand Orient of France opposed any reference to the Great Architect of the Universe in the ritual work. The Brothers of the “Center of Friends Lodge” left their Grand Lodge to erect a “Regular and Independent Grand Lodge for France and the Colonies.2 “.The Grand Master was Edward de Ribaucourt. The day after its recognition.
In 1939, the Independent and Regular Grand Lodge for France and the Colonies had 34 lodges, among them one Lodge of research. 21 of its lodges were composed of Englishmen, 3 were “mixed” (Englishmen and Frenchmen), and 10 had a majority of Frenchmen.
The Regular and Independent Grand Lodge for France and its Colonies changed its name in 1948 to become the French National Grand Lodge.
It passed through its first crisis in 1958, when part of the Grand Lodge (Thirty Grand Officers and many lodges among them the founder Lodge – The Center of Friends – conducted by De Ribaucourt separated to form the French National Grand Lodge – Opera.3 .
In 1965 it absorbed part of the brothers of the Grand Lodge of France, who came to seek “recognition” from the French National Grand Lodge. These Brothers have allowed the Lodges of the French National Grand Lodge to develop and use the craft Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite. They create a “Supreme Council for France,” to administer the higher degrees of the Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite.
For political reasons, the Grand Priory of the Gauls, which regulated the Rectified Scottish Rite at the GLNF, left GLNF in May 2000 and with subsequent additional movement grew to more than 50 lodges. The Grand Priory of Gauls then became an independent masonic body, creating its own blue lodges.
After numerous affairs (financial, business, political, internal…), the “regular” Grand Lodges in Europe (Belgium, Germany, Switzerland, Austria and Luxemburg) uspended then withdrew their recognition. They were followed by other British Grand Lodges and some US ones, and among them the prestigious United Grand Lodge of England which withdrew its recognition the 12th of September 2012. The Brothers of GLNF with dual membership of these grand lodges were asked to choose.
Since then, many members of the French National Grand Lodge left this masonic body to join others (Mainly the Grand Lodge of France and the Traditional and Symbolical Grand Lodge Opera) or to create some others. The Grand Lodge of the Masonic French Alliance was born from a combination of many lodges from GLNF, anxious to resume the regular course and quality of Masonic work.
History of the Grand Lodge of the Masonic French Alliance
April 28, 2012 in Tours, Lodges and Brethren of all French provinces met to create the Grand Lodge of the Masonic French Alliance. It now has a little under 12,000 Brothers.
Building upon the rich experience of their past Grand Lodge, the Brothers of the GL-AMF defined three pillars:
- Sovereignty of the Lodges
- Protection of Rites in their Authenticity
- Accompaniment of Brothers in their quest for spirituality
To promote the spiritual Brotherhood, the GL-AMF has created “Houses of Rites” for each of them. Each house is a repository of rites. Houses depend on the authority of the Grand Master.
Rites in use within the GL-MFA are:
- The Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite
- The Rectified Scottish Rite
- The Emulation Rite
- The French Rite
- The Standard Scottish Rite
- The York Rite (American)
Declaration of Principles
The Grand Lodge of the Masonic French Alliance is an independent and sovereign Masonic Body, exclusively male which exercises its authority on the first three grades or degrees of the symbolical Freemasonry.
The traditional Freemasonry practiced in the Grand Lodge of the Masonic French Alliance, is an initiatic fraternity based on a belief in a Supreme Being, beyond religious dimensions, as the Grand Architect of the Universe. By meeting and working to his glory, the Freemasons are part of a long initiatic and spiritual chain of initiation involving the search of the divine part in each of us. This path leads the sincere Freemason to know himself better and to work by example and action for the moral improvement of humanity. It brings together around this common ideal, free men responsible only to their conscience, respectful of others’s freedom of thought and of their own ideal of spiritual search, strictly prohibiting any political, religious or societal talks during their meetings.
Freemasons together pursue their ideals of peace, love and brotherhood founded not on a misunderstood profane feeling, but on the common consciousness that all its members and humanity, beyond the diversity of its appearences is One and each man is coming from the same source. Practicing Virtue, they undertake to respect the laws and legitimate authorities and, continuing the tradition of builders to which they symbolically refer, they glorify the work in all its forms.
The Freemasons of the Grand Lodge of the Masonic French Alliance have to, in their practice of the Royal Art, maintain respect for tradition and keep inviolable all secrets which are communicated during initiation ceremonies. They join together to form autonomous communities, fashion the name of their Lodges, the only place for the initiatic transmission to occur, and to set in motion the research work that Freemasons continue. They work with zeal and assiduity, to the Glory of the Great Architect of the Universe, in the presence of the Three Great Lights and respect for Ancient Landmarks, customs and usages of the universal Masonic Order.
Secrets related thereto must be understood, firstly as the necessary protection against the turmoil of the secular world, a very personal and internal research, and secondly as the inability to describe this relationship built through the symbolism with the Divine Principle. This totally intimate commitment is the cause of the prohibition for each brother to reveal the masonic membership of another.
The lodge work is based on the Rites that Masons consider as the only vehicles of their initiatic progression. They therefore undertake to preserve the identity and customs while ensuring the equal dignity of each rite. This is why the Grand Lodge of the Masonic French Alliance was organized to protect the uniqueness of Rites. Rites unfold, depending on degrees that are attached to them, through rituals, and they should be considered as a coherent whole. The Grand Lodge of the Masonic French Alliance has authority over the first three symbolic degrees or grades. However, it maintains collaborative relationships with fraternal ordinal courts and other Masonic bodies.
This young Grand Lodge has taken an active part in the concert of French Freemasonry. Recognition treaties are currently in negotiations with other Grand Lodges. With a little less than 12,000 Brothers, today it is a grand lodge that can not be ignored.
Grand Lodge of the Masonic French Alliance
49 rue de Chabrol
- or Le Centre des Amis Loge [↩]
- The Lodge in effect would transform itself into a Grand Lodge as had occurred before in the long history of Freemasonry. The formal date of withdrawal and move to independence was the 5th of October 1913. On the 29th of October, in the same year 1913, “L’Anglaise Loge 204” announced its intention to join this new Grand Lodge. The 3rd of December 1913, the nascent Grand Lodge was formally recognized by the UGLE. Their followed due announcement in the Grand Lodge quarterly communication. The 4th of December 1913, “L’Anglaise Lodge 204” formally joined the nascent Grand Lodge. [↩]
- Today the French National Grand Lodge Opera is called the Traditional and Symbolical Grand Lodge Opera in order not to be confused with the French National Grand Lodge. [↩]