The Philalethes Society is an international Masonic research society.
This chart shows information about officers and awards of the Philalethes Society from 1928 through the present.
For information about Fellows of the Philalethes Society, and a chronological list of those who have held this status, go to (click on the following): http://bessel.org/fpschron.htm
For an alphabetical list of the Fellows of the Philalethes Society, go to (click on the following): http://bessel.org/fpsalpha.htm
To see the report of the Philalethes Society Bylaws Committee that was appointed in 2005 and reported in 2006, including the current Bylaws and recommended changes, go to (click on the following) http://bessel.org/psocbyl.pdf
Bylaws of the Philalethes Society
[ as originally recommended by the Philalethes Bylaws Committee
on January 10, 2006, and amended and adopted at the Annual Meeting March 06, 2010]
The Philalethes Society was founded on October 1, 1928, by a group of Masonic students, for Freemasons desirous of seeking and spreading Masonic light. In 1946, the Philalethes magazine was established, to publish articles by its members.
The sole purpose of this Research Society is to promote Masonic knowledge. It exchanges ideas, studies the history and symbolism of Freemasonry, publishes research on historical, interpretative, and contemporary topics confronting Freemasonry, and passes its information along to the Masonic world; without advocating any policy or action in the name of the Society. Its membership consists of Members and Fellows who are Master Masons in good standing in a regular Masonic Lodge anywhere in the world, with exact membership policies determined by its Executive Board.
Chapters of the Society are encouraged to be formed and remain active. These are composed of Members and Fellows of the Society, to assure fellowship among like-minded Freemasons. The papers presented during Chapter meetings should be sent to the Editorof the Philalethes for possible publication in the magazine.
Fellows are chosen from Members of the Society who have shown a dedication to the knowledge of Freemasonry. The number is limited to 40 at any one time.
The Society is governed by an Executive Board, which meets at the call of the President.
The Annual Business Meeting of Members and Fellows of the Society is held, at a time and place determined by the Executive Board.
The name of the Society is pronounced fill-a-LAY-thayss
(NOT "theez"). It can also be said:
Article 1. Name
The name of this organization shall be The Philalethes Society.
Article 2. Purposes and Policies
A. To provide a bond for Freemasons who desire to pursue the study of Freemasonry.
B. To provide a means of exchanging ideas and to mutually assist each other.
C. To encourage those Freemasons who have Masonic light to spread and those who desire to receive it.
D. The Philalethes Society is dedicated to Masonic research. It should never adopt any position on any issue that is not clearly related to Masonic research, nor shall the Society involve itself in the legislative or ritualistic deliberations of any Masonic body.
E. The Philalethes Society will never be, or allow itself to be perceived to be, an organization run by one person or a small number of people. It should be, and be seen by everyone, as a Masonic research society that is run by its Members in a broadly democratic, representative manner. Those who are elected or appointed to leadership positions in the Society are encouraged not to continue in office for too many years, but instead to honorably end their Officer service after a few years in order to allow other Members to take leadership positions and make their contributions to the work of the Society.
Article 3. Membership
A. Members. The membership shall consist of Freemasons who are members in good standing in a regular Masonic Lodge that meets the policies for membership that are adopted by the Society’s Executive Board and published in the Society’s magazine.
B. Fellows. Members, not to exceed 40 at any one time, may be chosen as Fellows, for particular service to the Society, its constituent chapters, or its projects only on the basis of their current and past Masonic research and writing. The existing Fellows shall nominate and by vote select new Fellows. A new Fellow shall, within one year of his selection, be or become a Life Member of the Society. It is also recommended that each new Fellow write a Masonic research paper judged to be of a quality sufficient to be published in the Philalethes magazine.
C. Honorary Fellows. On very rare occasions, for extraordinary reasons, a member may be named as an Honorary Fellow by vote of the other Fellows and the Executive Board.
D. Subscriber. Non-Masons Anyone may become a "subscriber" to receive the Philalethes magazine.
E. Suspension. Members will be automatically suspended within six months if their dues are not current. Members will be automatically suspended if suspended by their Lodge or Grand Lodge.
Article 4. Dues and Fees
A. Annual Dues. The annual dues, payable on January 1, shall be $50 in the United States and Canada and all others $60.
B. Life Memberships. Life memberships may be obtained for a fee of $800.
Article 5. Officers
A. Officer Positions. The Officers of the Society shall be: President, First Vice President, Second Vice President, Executive Secretary, Executive Board Member At Large, Treasurer, Editor, and the Business Manager (if one is selected by the Executive Board).
B. Elected Officers. The following five voting members of the Executive Board shall be elected biannually at the Annual Meeting upon recommendation of the Nominations Committee and vote of the Members and Fellows present – the three progressive line officers which are the President, First Vice President, and Second Vice President, along with the Executive Secretary, and Executive Board Member at Large.
C. Other Officers. The Board will appoint three other officers upon recommendation of the Nominations Committee who serve at the pleasure of the Board. They are the Treasurer, Editor, and Librarian. In addition, the Executive Board may appoint one other officer – the Business Manager. As these officers receive annual stipend for their services to the Society they have voice but not vote on the Executive Board.
C. Business Manager. The Executive Board may, but is not required to, by majority vote, upon recommendation of the Nominations Committee, select and install a Business Manager, who shall serve at the pleasure of the Executive Board until replaced by majority vote. The Business Manager shall be a member of the Executive Board with voice but without vote.
D. Librarian. The Librarian of The Philalethes Society shall be recommended by the Nominations Committee and selected by the Executive Board and serve until replaced by majority vote of the Executive Board. He shall serve on the Executive Board with voice but without vote.
E. Editor. The Editor of The Philalethes shall be selected by recommendation of the Nominations Committee in conjunction with the Publications Committee upon majority vote of the Executive Board and serve until replaced by majority vote of the Executive Board. He shall serve on the Executive Board with voice but without vote.
F. Membership. No officers of the Executive Board need be Fellows of the Society.
F. Removal of Officer. An elected Officer may be removed from office for cause by three affirmative votes of the Executive Board.
G. Reports. Each elected and appointed Officer of the Society shall write a detailed annual report of his actions and activities, which shall be presented at the Annual Meeting and made available to Members on the Society’s website and email group.
H. No More than One Position. No person shall simultaneously hold more than one elective or appointed office in the Society.
I. Election Procedures
1. At least six months prior to the date of the annual meeting the President shall appoint a Nominations Committee of three members, none of whom shall be a current elected or appointed Officer. He shall request that this committee bring back a recommendation for nomination of any elected offices to be filled at the upcoming Annual Meeting.
2. Any Member of the Society, if qualified for an office, is entitled to be placed on the ballot if the Nominating Committee places his name in nomination or if he is recommended to the Nominating Committee for a specific office in writing or by email of at least 10 Members. This nomination must be received by September 1st to be printed in the Fall Issue of the Philalethes magazine.
3. The Nominating Committee shall present its nominations prior to the date of the election, and this report shall be printed on the Society’s email group and website, and in the upcoming issue of the Philalethes magazine prior to the Annual Meeting.
4. The report of the Nominations Committee shall be made at the Annual Meeting. No other nominations may come from the floor at this meeting. The election of officers shall be all the Members and Fellows present by majority vote. Installation of officers shall take place at the Annual Meeting or Feast.
Article 6. Management of Society.
The administrative affairs of the Society shall be managed by the Executive Board.
1.. The Executive Board shall consist of the President, First Vice President, and Second Vice President, Executive Secretary, and Executive Member at Large as voting members. The Treasurer, Librarian, and the Editor of the Philalethes magazine, and the Business Manager (if one is selected by the Executive Board), and all Past Presidents and all Past Executive Secretaries of the Society shall be ex-officio members of the Executive Board, without a vote but with the right to attend and speak when they feel that is necessary.
Article 7. Duties of Officers and Committees
A. President. The President shall be the presiding officer of the Society and the Executive Board. He shall appoint Standing Committees which shall include Audit, Nominations, Publications, Fellows, Chapter Development, and Public Relations consisting of three or more Members who are not current Officers of the Society, and any other the committees he deems advisable.
B. First Vice President. The First Vice President shall assume the duties of the President in his absence or disability; he shall perform such other duties as may be assigned by the President.
C. Second Vice President. The Second Vice President shall assume the duties of the First Vice President in case of his disability, and those of the President in case of the disability of both; he shall perform such other duties as may be assigned by the President.
D. Executive Secretary. The Executive Secretary shall perform such duties as may be assigned by the President. He shall not receive a stipend or honorarium when a Business Manager is appointed. Should a Business Manager not be appointed the Executive Secretary shall receive a stipend or honorarium as determined by the Executive Board. He shall no longer have vote on the Executive Board and his voting position may be filled by one additional Executive Board Member at Large.
E. Business Manager. If the Executive Board chooses to select a Business Manager, he shall attend to all correspondence of the Society; keep the records; receive all moneys due the Society and deposit them promptly in a bank designated by the Executive Board; keep the financial records; pay all bills when approved verbally or in writing by authorized officers; arrange to have his books audited after January 1 each year; and perform such other duties as are required by the Executive Secretary and/or the Executive Board. He shall submit an annual report to the Executive Board. He shall receive a stipend or honorarium, as shall be determined by the Executive Board.
F. Treasurer. The Treasurer shall collect the annual dues and pay them over to the Business Manager, if one is selected or else to the Executive Secretary, or deposit them in the designated bank immediately, sending the deposit receipt to the Business Manager, if one is selected or else to the Executive Secretary, and perform such other duties as may be assigned by the President.
G. Librarian. The Librarian shall collect and distribute back issues of the Philalethes; provide photocopies of articles requested; and perform such other duties as may from time to time be considered appropriate. He is authorized to determine payments and charges to cover expenses for the services he renders.
H. Editor. The Editor of the Philalethes magazine shall be responsible for its publication; he shall have the power to determine the contents of the magazine, while complying with the editorial guidelines recommended by the Publications Committee and adopted by the Executive Board. He shall consult with and receive advice from the Publications committee prior to the printing of each issue of the magazine. He shall administer the Philalethes home-page and its sub-sites on the World Wide Web, and shall perform such other duties as may be assigned by the President. He shall receive a stipend or honorarium, as shall be determined by the Executive Board.
I. Webmaster and Email Group Moderator. A Webmaster and/or Email Group Moderator may be appointed by the Executive Board to administer the Philalethes e-mail group whether run as a List-Server or in any other manner, and the Philalethes website home-page and its sub-sites on the World Wide Web.
J. Operations. The day to day operation of The Philalehtes Society shall be the responsibility of the Executive Secretary and/or Business Manager (if one is selected by the Executive Board), and the Editor.
K. Finances. An internal or external audit of the Society’s finances shall be made annually. An annual report about the Society’s finances which shall be made available to Members at the Annual Meeting and on the Society’s website and email group.
L. Publications Committee. The Publications Committee shall establish guidelines to be followed by all those involved with production of the Philalethes magazine and any other Society publications.
Article 8. Publications
A. Magazine. The Society shall publish the Philalethes magazine on a basis to be determined by the Executive Board in consultation with the Publications Committee. The Editor shall have the full responsibility of in determining what to publish in the magazine. The magazine shall be mailed to every Member and Fellow of the Society.
B. Other Publications. Other publications may be approved by the Executive Board at its pleasure in consultation with the Publications Committee.
Article 9. Annual Meeting
A. Annual Meeting. The Society shall meet annually at a time and place to be selected by the Executive Board and/or President. This meeting shall be open to all Members and Fellows of the Society with vote and they shall be encouraged to attend and participate.
B. Other Meetings. Other meetings may be held whenever and wherever the President and/or the Executive Board approve.
Article 10. Chapters
A. Dispensation to Form a Chapter. A dispensation to form a Chapter of the Philalethes may be obtained from the President, provided that: the formation of a Chapter does not conflict with the laws of the Grand Lodge in which the Chapter will reside. A dispensation will be considered provided that:
1. Letter of Intent. A letter of intent is signed by five Master Masons, one of whom must be a Member or Fellow of the Society, and returned to the Executive Secretary, or President, with a fee of $10.
2. Chapter Name and Officers. The letter of intent must include the proposed name of the Chapter, the area of its jurisdiction, and the names of those who will serve as President, Vice President, Secretary/Treasurer.
3. Membership. All members of the proposed Chapter must become members of The Philalethes Society, if they are not at the time of signing. This may be accomplished by including an application from the Society along with the proper fees, and included with the request for a dispensation.
B. Charter. To obtain a charter, the Chapter must return the dispensation, along with a fee of $50, a copy of its bylaws which have previously been approved by the Executive Board, and the transactions of its meetings, all of which must be received by the Executive Secretary by January 1. Charters will be presented at the annual meeting.
C. Annual Reports. Each Chapter shall make an annual report by January 1 to the Executive Secretary. Failure to do so for two consecutive years shall result in the forfeiture of the charter, and all property of the suspended Chapter shall become the property of The Philalethes Society.
Article 11. Amendments
A. Vote for Adoption. These Bylaws may be amended by a two-thirds vote of the of the entire membership present at an Annual Meeting. All voting members must be dues current at the time of the Annual Meeting. Amendments may be proposed by the Executive Board or by at least five Members, one of whom must be a Fellow, if submitted to the Executive Secretary. The proposed amendments must be published in the Philalethes magazine prior to the Annual Meeting. The amendments must be received by September 1st to be printed in the Fall Issue of the Philalethes magazine. The Officers, collectively or individually, may present their opinions and suggestions regarding each proposed amendment when it is published in the Society’s magazine.
Article 12. Dissolution
Should the Philalethes Society ever cease to exist it will happen only upon 4/5 vote of the Executive Board and upon recommendation to the next Annual Meeting passed by 2/3 vote of the membership present. Notice of this recommendation must be published in each issue of the magazine for six months prior to the Annual Meeting.
Upon dissolution all assets of the Philalethes Society shall be turned over to The Masonic Service Association of North America, 8120 Fenton St., Silver Spring, Maryland 20910-4785 to continue the work of Masonic education and enlightenment.
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