Hafnia, my motherlodge

HafniaA little bit about my motherlodge, St. John’s lodge Hafnia, of Orient Copenhagen, Denmark.

Hafnia (the Latin name for Copenhagen, meaning simply harbour) sprang from Zorobabel & Frederik til det Kronede Håb (Zerubbabel and Frederick to the Crowned Hope), Denmark’s oldest lodge (dating from 1745) in 1949. This was a period of great growth in the Danish Order of Freemasons, and the Grand Master at the time thought it would be better to have more and smaller lodges. There is not the same tradition for starting new lodges as in Anglo-Saxon countries, so this was a rare step, but one that proved right.

John FlarupToday Hafnia has something like 265 members, meeting every Wednesday in Freemasons Hall in Copenhagen, from September to April. Every meeting is a degree, no stated meetings, approximately 10 First degrees, 2 Second, 10 Third; with or without a candidate (and these years there always is one). The motto of Hafnia is Unitas, unity, and its seal is the crest of Copenhagen surmounted on a cross. It is #522, but numbers are rarely used in our constitution (5 is for St. John’s lodge, 22 makes it the 22nd founded in Denmark).

Here follows the list of Masters of the Chair (similar to Worshipful Masters) since the founding of the lodge. You will notice that they have held the office for quite a few years – the Swedish Rite doesn’t have a progressive officer’s line. This would be a gruelling task for one man, and so he is supported by two or three (as is the case in Hafnia) Deputies, who can also hold the Chair.

  • 1949 – 1960 Jens Marius Holger Helvard
  • 1960 – 1962 A. C. M. Hansen
  • 1962 – 1963 Albert Jørgensen (temporary)
  • 1963 – 1977 Erik Michael Cæsius
  • 1977 – 1987 Flemming Bach-Mortensen
  • 1987 – 1992 Jon Albert Magnusson
  • 1992 – 1998 Frank Møller
  • 1998 – 1999 Flemming Bach-Mortensen (temporary)
  • 1999 – 2004 Erling Georg Kaaber
  • 2004 – 2007 Ole Pries
  • 2007 – now Svend Heltoft

Hafnia offers education for its new members once a month, usually centred on the first degree; this is in addition to the obligatory lectures in lodge. It has a publication, Unitas, which goes out four times a year, but this is supplemented by email bulletins as neceassary. Finally, there’s an info meeting for potential candidates in September and January.

Overall it is a healthy and growing lodge, very welcoming to visitors.

If you have any further questions let me know, and I’ll see if I can address them.

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