Expert Answer Forum

Freemasonry QUESTION from Kimberly Huffman April 18, 1999 I have read the current, official Church statements on the incompatibility of Freemasonry and Catholicism. Even before reading these, I was convinced that Freemasonry is a cult, if not occultic. Have you any insight or commentary on Freemasonry that one could use in waging this spiritual battle? Sadly to say, there are members of our parish who are Masons, Rainbows, DeMolays, etc. We live in the town where the world's largest Masonic temple is located. Pray for us.
Thank you.
ANSWER by John-Paul Ignatius on April 21, 1999 Dear Miss Huffman:
Please excuse the delay in answering your question. Also, interestingly, this is my second attempt to answer your question. The first attempt disappeared. ummm. Perhaps someone doesn't like the answer :-) ... this sort of thing happens often when dealing with Spiritual Warfare.
Anyway, as you might already know, in addition to the NUMEROUS Church documents that proclaim the utter incompatibility of Freemasonry with Catholicism, the Church has also barred Catholics from being members of the Masons (this includes the Shriners, and all other Mason organizations).
The 1917 Code of Canon Law specifically prohibited membership in the Masons. The 1983 Code of Canon Law does not make that same specification, but does prohibit Catholic from membership from any organization what plots againt the Church (c. 1374).
Because it was thought by some that modern day Masons no longer plot against the Church, or at least not all branches of Masonry do so, that it would not be appropriate to place a specific prohibition in the Canon Law.
But even if the Masons are no longer plotting against the Church, which I would maintain that they are indeed still doing so in general, and are actively anti-Catholic, they are neertheless an organization that no self-respecting Christian could belong who even remotely understands his own faith as a Catholic.
The Sacred Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith has thus published a ruling in 1984 indicating that Catholics joining the Masons are involved in serious sin (grave and potentially mortal sin) and are to be barred from the Eucharist.
Thus members of Mason groups are not allowed to receive Eucharist. This is a serious penalty and one that should make clear to anyone the seriousness of association with this, I would say, evil group.
There are many books that deal with the Masons and will tell all. I have not read it, but there is a book called, Behind the Lodge Door that might be useful.
The following link is for an article in the 1917 Catholic Encyclopedia. It gives a history and a summary of the Church's condemnation of Freemasonry.
www.knight.org/advent/cathen/09771a.htm
Later in the year, I hope to have a whole page on our Website devoted to exposing this cult.
As to how to deal with this with loved ones and friends. PRAY, PRAY, PRAY. If they are open to it, show them the Church teaching on Masons, share your faith, and if they are Catholic, inform them that the Church says they are in serious sin if they belong and are barred from the Eucharist.
When I get the page up on our Website I hope to have more information and advice on how to handle this issue.
God Bless. We are praying for you.
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