Re: COMPLIANCE WITH THE BY-LAWS—Candidate Petitions
Worshipful Master and Brethren of all Missouri Lodges:
While I know that this is a redundant letter, that I sent it to you last October and that my term has almost come to an end, I am again sending it to you to emphasize the importance of the investigation of candidates.
Your attention is directed to Section 13.020 of the Grand Lodge By-Laws, which states:
Except as provided in Section 21.100 (Waiver of Jurisdiction From Another State), a petitioner for the degrees must have had a permanent settled domicile or fixed abode in Missouri continuously for the six months immediately preceding and presentation of his petition. Residence is neither lost nor gained by the mere fact of location while employed in the service, either civil or military, of Missouri or of the United States.
All brothers recommending a candidate and signing a petition already should be aware, but if not should be immediately made aware, of this By-Law. The Investigation Committee, the Lodge Secretary, and the Master each share the duty to insure that this and all other By-Laws are carefully and punctually observed.
When investigating a prospective candidate due diligence must be used to confirm the petitioner’s address prior to presenting his petition for a final vote. Our By-Laws require that a candidate must be a Missouri resident for six months. A Post Office Box does not qualify as a permanent Missouri address. Falsely stating a residence or its duration on a petition is a Masonic Offense. Petitions from non-residents of Missouri may be received only after the required jurisdictional consents have been obtained. Should you have any questions, contact your District Deputy Grand Master.
I have included a brochure from the Grand Lodge entitled Manual for the Committee of Investigation to assist the members of your investigation committees in carrying out their duties. Additional copies are available upon request from the Grand Secretary.
David W. Haywood, Grand Master
September 15, 2015