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A brief history of the Lodge

    In 1945, soon after World War II, a few Master Masons of Silanganan Lodge No. 19, discussed in a meeting, the idea of organizing a Masonic Lodge in Marikina.  In the early part of 1947, that casual meeting bore fruit.

    On the 10th day of April, 1947, through the initiative of WB Catalino S. Cruz of Silanganan Lodge No. 19, nineteen active Master Masons met at the Office of the Grand Secretary at the Plaridel Masonic Temple, Manila, to pave the way for the formation of a Lodge in Marikina.

    After the usual preliminaries, a petition for dispensation to form a new Lodge, signed by MW Emilio P. Virata, Grand Master of Masons, and MW Antonio Gonzales, PGM, Grand Secretary, was issued on May 15, 1945 and the following were appointed officers:

Catalino S. Cruz Worshipful Master
Florencio A.R. Ilagan, Sr Senior Warden
Candido Perez Junior Warden
Mauro Baradi Treasurer
Jose M. Santos Secretary

    The Lodge's first set of officers were of Jose Artiaga - Chaplain; Sesenio Rivera - Marshall; Patricio del Rosario - Senior Deacon; Petronilo I. Vallejo - Junior Deacon; Esteban Munarriz - Auditor; Vicente Quijano - Senior Steward; Jose L. Domingo and Vicente Bahia - Tyler.

    The first stated meeting of the Marikina Lodge U.D. was held on May 17, 1945, at the penthouse of the residence of WB Catalino S. Cruz. The next few meetings were likewise in the same penthouse, but because of its inadequate size, degree works had to be held at the Grand Lodge Temple, then temporarily in an old building at the corner of Arlegui and Gunao Streets in Quiapo, Manila. Later meetings were held at the home of WB Isaac Estaquio, one of the first initiates  of the Lodge. During the period of dispensation, the Lodge raised eight (8)  Master Masons.

    A Charter was issued by the Grand Lodge on March 13, 1948 in the evening of the same day at the hall of the Roosevelt Memorial High School at Marikina, Rizal. The Marikina Lodge No. 119, F.&A.M., was duly constituted in a public ceremony presided over by the Most Worshipful Albert Brazee, Jr., Grand Master of Masons, assisted by the installation of officers. The ceremony was likewise opened to the public. Over a hundred Master Masons were present. Noteworthy were the presence of some brethren from foreign jurisdiction, namely: Bro Ant Williams of Palms Lodge No. 512 and Bro. David Perkins of Searchlight Lodge No. 567, both of the Grand Lodge of California; Bro, Chas L. Kendall of Uechay Lodge No. 5375 England, and Bro. Howitt of St. Andrews Lodge No. 418 of England Constitution.

    Government officials from the province of Rizal and a number of municipal officials of Marikina were also present during the event, in addition to a sizeable number of prominent citizens from Marikina and neigboring towns.

    Most Worshipful Brazee, in his Annual Report (1949 Proceeding of Grand Lodge) had this to say, in part: "...Although the brethren wanted to have open ceremony, there were some doubts as to the reactions of our detractors there and the citizenry, it being our first Masonic Lodge in that section. I am pleased to report that open ceremonies were held in the big hall of the school building with so large an attendance that all of them could not be accommodated. The reaction was exceptionally favorable and this new Lodge has not only strengthen its membership, but it is one that we can be proud of."

    The following officers were installed and officiated during the Lodge's first year as a regular:

Catalino S. Cruz Worshipful Master
Florencio A.R. Ilagan, Sr Senior Warden
Candido Perez, Jr Junior Warden
Mauro Barandi Treasurer
Jose M. Santos Secretary
Alejandro Oliveros Chaplain
Jacinto T. Gavino Marshall
Isaac Estaquio Senior Deacon
Maka-araw Cruz Junior Deacon
Ceferino Fuentes Auditor
Tomas L. Santos Senior Steward
Candido Soriente Junior Steward
Julio Q. Gregorio Tyler

    The Marikina Lodge No. 119, following its constitution, held meetings in varied venues since it still has no building of its own. Among those places were in one of the building of the Marikina Elementary School, the Kalaw Masonic Temple, the Marikina School of Arts and Trade, the Silanganan Lodge Hall, the building owned by WB Rodolfo Concepcion in Marikina, then again went back to the Silanganan Lodge Hall. Presently it holds its meetings at the Capitol Masonic Temple at Kalayaan Avenue, corner Makatarungan Streets in Diliman, Quezon City.

    After more than fifty (50) years, the Marikina Lodge has made itself felt favorably in the community. It has unceasingly undertaken works in charity, valuable donations to public schools, libraries and sponsoring adult education classes in many barrios in Marikina. For years, it has maintained a scholarship program for deserving students at the Marikina School of Arts and Trade, many of whom are now successful in their respective fields of endeavor.

    Even the Grand Lodge took notice of the Marikina Lodge's charitable activities that it was officially noted in the 1996 Annual Sunshine Committee Report of the Grand Master.

    Today, the Maikina Lodge have seventy (70) regular members and nineteen (19) honorary members. Guided by the principal tenets of Brotherly Love, Relief and Truth and inspired by the cardinal virtues of Temperance, Fortitude, Prudence and Justice, the Marikina Lodge still remains one of the most active Lodge in the District.

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