Lodge of Remembrance
I drove down to Santa Cruz this morning and spent the afternoon with Hiram Lodge #11, which is the co-masonic lodge that mentioned previously. They rent space with a local masonic body there so we were able to use the hall.
As it turns out, the event was their annual “Lodge of Remembrance.” This is a semi-open event where the lodge does a brief ritual to acknowledge and remember the work of the founders of their order and to remember those who have died during the last year. They do it following the Fall Equinox.
The ritual work, such as I saw since guests were not present for opening and closing, was very much in line with normal masonic practice. I did note that all lodge members dress entirely in white for the ritual work, with men being in suits and women in robes. Over this, they wear their regalia, such as aprons and badges of office. There were a little over 20 lodge members present with about 30% of them being men (the rest, obviously, being women). The membership’s age range seemed to be fairly diverse, with quite a few being younger people in their thirties or forties. (This qualifies as “younger” if you’ve ever visited a mainstream Free and Accepted Masons lodge.)
I also noted from conversation that the co-masons work a full system of degrees (Scottish Rite derived, I believe) as part of the same overall organization as their Blue Lodge. Strangely enough, I also ran into a fellow member of the OTO there, at least a couple of Wiccans, and a member of a BOTA spin-off organization is a member but she was not there so I would say the esoterically inclined are present.
All in all, it was an interesting event and I am glad that I took the time to drive down to attend.