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Business Mirror: Continue shaping Phillipines history, Lim challenges Freemasons

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Business Mirror - Phillipines

Continue shaping PHL history, Lim challenges Freemasons

Published on Wednesday, 19 December 2012

Written by Jonathan L. Mayuga / Reporter

Ambassador Antonio L. Cabangon Chua, freemasons, freemasonry

In Photo: Ambassador Antonio L. Cabangon Chua (center), chairman emeritus of ALC Group of Companies, receives commemorative mementos as a distinguished member of the Grand Lodge of Free and Accepted Masons in the Philippines during the Grand Lodge’s Centennial Celebration at the Manila Hotel on Tuesday night. Handing the mementos is Santiago T. Gabionza Jr. (right), Centennial Grand Master, as former Chief Justice Reynato S. Puno, chairman of the Centennial Celebration, watches. (Roy Domingo)
MANILA City Mayor Alfredo Lim challenged the Grand Lodge of Free and Accepted Masons in the Philippines (Philippine Masonry) to continue its tradition of shaping the country’s history in the next 100 years.

Lim, guest of honor and speaker during the Grand Master’s Welcome Dinner highlighting the Grand Lodge’s Centennial Celebration at the Manila Hotel on Tuesday night, said that voting into office political leaders who are clean, dignified, truthful and industrious in serving the country is one way of ensuring the country’s survival.

“Consider it your sacred duty to make sure that Filipinos elect political leaders who will strengthen democracy for our country to survive another 100 years, for you to celebrate the second centennial,” he added.

“Ipagpatuloy ninyo ang paninindigan at pakikipaglaban sa isang malinis, marangal, matatag, matapat at masipag sa paglilingkod sa bayan [Continue your resolve and struggle for a clean, honorable, firm, honest and earnest service to the nation],” the mayor said.

During his speech, Lim lauded Filipino Freemasons, among them Jose P. Rizal, Marcelo H. del Pilar and other Filipino heroes, who possessed the right virtues and fought and died for freedom and independence that helped shape Philippine society.

During the event, former Chief Justice Reynato Puno, Grand Master of the Philippine Masonry, presented mementos to some of the Grand Lodge’s distinguished members, including foreign dignitaries of Freemasonry.

Leading the centennial honorees were former Philippine Ambassador to Laos and ALC Group of Publications Chairman Emeritus Antonio Cabangon L. Chua, Court of Appeals Presiding Justice Jesus M. Elbinias (posthumous) and Associate Justice Magdangal M. de Leon and Damaso C. Tria, the oldest living Most Worshipful Grand Master of Philippine Masonry at 101 years old.

Tria held the highest position of the Philippine Masonry in 1971.

The mementos presented include the Philippine Masonry centennial stamp and bills issued by the Philippine Postal Service and the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas, respectively, this year; copies of a coffee-table book entitled One Hundred Years of Craftsmanship and Grand Orations (1912-2012), the Philippine Masonry’s centennial medallion and commemorative coin, all bearing the zeal of the Freemasons.

Interviewed by the BusinessMirror, Teodoro Kalaw IV, Senior Grand Lecturer of the Philippine Masonry, said the presentation of the mementos is their way of recognizing distinguished brothers considered as model Freemasons.

“Our fraternity promotes ethical philosophy that seeks to make good men better. Our models are men like our honorees,” he added.

The Philippine Masonry, Kalaw said, promotes an ethical philosophy of mentorship where good men make their fellow good men better, promote charity and pursue truth and transparency.

With the theme, “Building on our past, Excelling in the present, Providing for a future, more masonry for all,” the centennial celebration aims to highlight the relevance of today’s mason in shaping Philippine society.

“We are using our centennial heritage to highlight why we are relevant in society. Many people don’t know that the foundation of our nation is anchored on the liberal ideas that are pushed by Filipino masons, like tolerance, transparency, charity and humility. We would like to use those values to make it more relevant,” Kalaw said.

At present, the group has 21,000 members from all over the country. Filipino Freemasons have been called as the brotherhood of distinguished gentlemen.

Further Reading:

Freemasonry in the Philippines