9.1 A Subordinate Lodge within the Jurisdiction of Grand Lodge is defined as an organized body of Ancient Free and Accepted Masons, authorised by virtue of a Warrant issued by Grand Lodge to make and admit Masons performing such acts as may be authorised therein and performing their approved Ritual in Maltese, English or other authorised language.
9.2 Should any Subordinate Lodge from a recognised Constitution within this Jurisdiction decide to join Grand Lodge, it may choose to retain its original Workings and Ritual.
9.3. A Subordinate Lodge shall not be assembled without a Warrant or authority from Grand Lodge, nor shall any individual be acknowledged or received as a Freemason who has not been initiated in a regular Lodge. Such Warrant shall be evident at every Communication of the Lodge whether stated or emergency. The Warrant always remains the property of The Grand Master.
9.4 Every application for a Warrant to hold a new Lodge shall be by petition to The Grand Master, and shall be signed by not less than seven Master Masons. At least four sevenths of the signatories shall be regularly registered under the Constitution of Grand Lodge. No Brother not so registered shall sign any petition unless he be regularly registered under the Constitution of a Grand Lodge recognised by the Grand Lodge, and shall at the same time make written declaration of adherence to the Constitution of the Sovereign Grand Lodge of Malta and swear due obedience to The Grand Master and the Laws of Grand Lodge. The petition shall be accompanied by a copy of the proposed By-laws of the new Lodge Application and shall specify every Lodge to which each petitioner belongs, and every Lodge to which he has at any time belonged, and a Clearance Certificate from every such Lodge in accordance with the terms of Law 9.60. To every such petition shall be added a recommendation from two regular Subordinate Lodges of Grand Lodge, signed in open Lodge by the Master and Wardens and declaring that it meets with the approval of a majority of the Brethren then present. Notice that the petition is to be submitted for approval shall have been given on the summons convening the meeting at which it is to be considered. Upon receipt by The Grand Master of a petition, presented in accordance with this Law via the Office of the Grand Secretary, The Grand Master may grant a Provisional Warrant for the Formation of the new Lodge pending the issue of a regular Warrant of Constitution.
9.5 The following is the form of petition for a Warrant to hold a new Lodge:
To the Most Worshipful The Grand Master of the Sovereign Grand Lodge of Malta of Antient Free and Accepted Masons:
We, the undersigned, being regularly registered Master Masons of the Lodges mentioned against our respective names, having the prosperity of the Craft at heart, are anxious to exert our best endeavours to promote and diffuse the genuine principles of the Art; and for the convenience of our respective dwellings and other good reasons, we are desirous of forming a new Lodge, to be named __________.In consequence of this desire, we pray for a Warrant of Constitution, empowering us to meet as a regular Lodge, at __________ on the __________, and there to discharge the duties of Masonry, in a constitutional manner, according to the forms of the Order and the Laws of Grand Lodge; and we have nominated and do recommend Brother __________, who has served the office of Warden in a regular Lodge to be the first Master, Brother __________ to be the first Senior Warden and Brother __________ to be the first Junior Warden of the said Lodge. Should the prayer of this petition be granted, we promise strict obedience to the commands of The Grand Master and the Laws and regulations of Grand Lodge.
9.6. Every new Lodge shall be solemnly constituted according to ancient usage by The Grand Master or by other Grand Officer or Master or Past Master of a Lodge appointed to act for him. No Brother shall be installed as Master or invested as a Warden except the Brother named in the Warrant for such Office unless by sanction of The Grand Master. No Lodge shall be acknowledged nor its Officers admitted as such into Grand Lodge nor any of its members as such entitled to enjoy any Masonic privilege unless such Lodge has been regularly constituted and registered.
9.6.1 If, for whatever reason, a Subordinate Lodge be dissolved, then the Warrant and all books and papers relating to Lodge affairs immediately become the property of the Grand Master. Other Lodge assets may be disposed of according to the resolutions of the Lodge prior to its dissolution. If, prior to dissolution, no such resolutions were made or carried out, then the disposal of said Lodge assets will be directed by the Grand Master.
9.7 When a petition for a Warrant for a new Lodge shall have been received by the Grand Secretary’s Office notice of the receipt of such petition shall, prior to its being submitted to the Board, be sent to the Secretaries of all Subordinate Lodges.
9.8 The cost of each Warrant for a Subordinate Lodge shall be in accordance with the Schedule of Fees. This sum shall defray all charges for the registration of the Warrant and of the three Principal Officers of the new Subordinate Lodge and for a copy of the Book of Constitution. The Grand Secretary’s Office will forward the new Subordinate Lodge Warrant upon receipt of all due fees.
9.10 A Subordinate Lodge Warrant purchased, procured, or by any means obtained without the regular permission of Grand Lodge shall have no validity and any and all acts done under such Warrant shall be regarded irregular and void.
9.11 If any Subordinate Lodge be suspended or have its Warrant cancelled by order of Grand Lodge then each subscribing member of such Subordinate Lodge at the time of its having incurred such penalty, except such member or members as shall be specially excepted by name in such order, shall be considered as under suspension and shall not be allowed to visit or join any other Subordinate Lodge, at labour or refreshment, until his suspension shall have been removed by order of Grand Lodge obtained on the petition of the member so suspended.
9.12 On satisfactory evidence that a Warrant has been lost or destroyed or otherwise rendered unusable then Grand Lodge may grant a duplicate on payment of a fee in
accordance with the Schedule of Fees. A Warrant surrendered by order of Grand Lodge shall forthwith be forwarded to the Office of the Grand Secretary for formal cancellation.
9.13 In the absence of a Traveling Warrant a Subordinate Lodge shall not assemble in any house of public entertainment or other place without Grand Lodge approval and the Master of any house of entertainment or premises at which a Subordinate Lodge may be approved to meet shall not hold any Office in such Lodge without permission from The Grand Master.
9.14 A Subordinate Lodge shall not be removed from its Warranted place of meeting until a month’s notice of the proposition for such removal shall have been given in open Lodge. This proposition requires the approval of a majority of the members present at a Special Communication which shall be summoned by the Secretary for that purpose at least one week before such removed Communication is to be held. Such removal shall require the approval of The Grand Master
9.15 No Subordinate Lodge shall meet or continue at labour on any day appointed for a Communication of Grand Lodge or during the time Grand Lodge shall be sitting; nor shall any Subordinate Lodge meet for refreshment on any day of which an evening Communication of Grand Lodge is appointed to be held.
9.16 No Subordinate Lodge under the Jurisdiction of Grand Lodge shall meet anywhere on a Sunday or Maltese Public Holiday. In case the specified day for a the regular meeting of a Lodge shall fall on a Public Holiday, then the meeting shall be held on such alternative day ( being not more than seven days before nor more than seven days after the specified day) as the Master shall direct.
9.17 With the exception of the provisions covered in Law 9.16, no Subordinate Lodge shall hold a Lodge of emergency, emergency meeting or make change to a Regular Meeting laid down in the Subordinate Lodge By Laws without a Dispensation from The Grand Master to so do. Application for such Dispensation, for which a fee in accordance with the Schedule of Fees submitted with the application, shall be made jointly by the Worshipful Master and Secretary of the Subordinate Lodge stating the subject-reason for the Application and that this shall be the sole business transacted at the meeting as is to be confirmed by the Dispensation and the Summons.
9.18 Annually on the day stated in the Subordinate Lodge By-laws each Subordinate Lodge shall proceed to elect, from amongst its members who have served for one Masonic year in the Office of Worshipful Master or Senior or Junior Warden in a Subordinate or other recognised Lodge, a Worshipful Master to be known as the ‘Master Elect’. Election shall be by ballot and the Member receiving the largest number of votes shall be the ‘Master Elect’ to be Installed according to ancient custom at the next regular meeting of the Subordinate Lodge.
9.19 Grand Lodge Certification of the duration and satisfactory completion of tenure of the Office of Worshipful Master of a specified Subordinate Lodge of the Sovereign Grand Lodge of Malta may be formally requested by that Subordinate Lodge. Grand Lodge Certification of subsequent further tenure as Worshipful Master of the same or of another Subordinate Lodge of SGLOM may be likewise requested. Such Certificate issue will be subject to a fee payable by the Lodge in accordance with the Schedule of Fees.
9.20 Prior to his being placed in the Chair of King Solomon a ‘Master Elect’ shall solemnly pledge himself to preserve the Landmarks of the Order and to observe the ancient usages and established customs and to strictly enforce them within his Lodge.
9.21 A copy of this Constitution and the Lodge By-laws shall be handed to the Worshipful Master on his installation and his acceptance thereof shall be deemed to be a solemn pledge on his part that he will observe and enforce them.
9.22 The Officers of a Subordinate Lodge are, in order of precedence for investiture and otherwise as follows:- The Worshipful Master, Senior and Junior Wardens, Treasurer, Secretary, Director of Ceremonies, Steward of Charities, Almoner, Chaplain, Senior and Junior Deacons and Inner Guard who shall be subscribing members of the Lodge. A Subordinate Lodge may also have an Assistant Treasurer, an Assistant Secretary, an Assistant Director of Ceremonies, Stewards and an Organist or Organists, but these Brethren shall not be deemed Officers of the Lodge. A Brother shall not hold the position of Secretary whilst serving as Master or Warden in the same Subordinate Lodge, but the Offices of Treasurer and Secretary may be filled by the same Brother. There shall also be a Tyler who is not necessarily a member or officer of the subordinate Lodge.
9.23 For a Brother to be eligible to hold Office in a Subordinate Lodge it shall be obligatory for him to have obtained the Third Degree.
9.24 To be eligible for election to the Office of Master of a Subordinate Lodge a Brother shall have previously served the Office of Warden or Master in a Lodge under the Jurisdiction of a recognised Grand Lodge and he may be re-elected for a second, consecutive year in the same Subordinate Lodge but may not simultaneously hold Principal Office, i.e. Master or Warden in any other Subordinate Lodge
9.25. A Subordinate Lodge having completed the annual appointment or election and installation of Officers in accordance with its By-laws, shall make the Return of the installation to the Office of the Grand Secretary within thirty calendar days of installation and which Return shall, to ensure acceptance, include settlement of any and all fees then outstanding to Grand Lodge.
9.26 The Master and Wardens of Subordinate Lodges which fail to comply with Law 9.25 and who consequently are not registered in the books of Grand Lodge will be refused the right to attend Grand Lodge Communication unless and until their names shall appear in such register.
9.27 Grand Lodge officers visiting a Subordinate Lodge will wear their appropriate Grand Lodge collar and Grand Lodge jewel. They will not wear their gauntlets. No Masonic jewels other than the appropriate Grand Lodge Jewels shall be worn by Grand Lodge Officers when visiting Subordinate Lodges.
Those Grand Lodge officers who are also Officers in a Subordinate Lodge shall wear the collar particular to their Lodge Office rather than their Grand Lodge collar, in their Subordinate Lodge. Grand Lodge officers will always wear their appropriate Grand Lodge apron when visiting, or attending a Subordinate Lodge as members.
9.28 The Master of a Subordinate Lodge shall cause all communications to and from the Grand Lodge to be read in open Lodge and attached to the Minutes and forming a part thereof.
9.29 No Communication of a Subordinate Lodge shall be regular unless the Master or a Past Master is present. In the absence of the Master or Past Master of the Subordinate Lodge then a Master or Past Master of any Subordinate Lodge shall occupy the Chair.
9.30 In case the Master of any Subordinate Lodge shall during his term of Office die or be removed, or become incapable of discharging the duties of his Office, then the immediate Past Master, or in case of his absence or incapacity the Senior Past Master, such immediate or senior Past Master being a subscribing member of the Lodge, shall rule the Lodge until the next election of Officers, and the installation of the newly elected Master.
9.31 If a vacancy shall occur in a regular Office other than that of Master, such Office shall be filled for the remainder of the year by the election or appointment (according to the normal method of filling the Office) of a member of the Lodge at the time the vacancy occurs. If an election be required due notice thereof shall appear on the summons.
9.32 Initiating Candidates into Freemasonry is a Subordinate Lodge responsibility. For good reason, all Initiations Candidates shall accord fully with these Laws and procedures, and any failings shall hazard the offending Subordinate Lodge Warrant to Suspension, even Cancellation, or such lesser disciplinary action as the Board may recommend.
9.32.1 No Candidate shall be eligible for consideration if he has been refused approval by a Subordinate Lodge or by the Membership Committee within the immediately preceding twelve months.
9.32.2 No Candidate of less than twenty-one years of age shall be initiated unless a special Dispensation has been issued by The Grand Master.
9.32.3 A Candidate shall be expected to have a minimum of six-month continuous residency within the Jurisdiction of Grand Lodge although Maltese citizens residing abroad shall be regarded as resident within the Jurisdiction for the purposes of this Law.
9.32.4 A Joining Member domiciled without the Jurisdiction of Grand Lodge shall be subject to formal documentation from the Grand Lodge of the Masonic Jurisdiction of his normal domicile. Formal proposals or balloting for Joining Members may only be made after the satisfactory results of referred enquiries are received from the Grand Secretary.
9.32.5 If a Candidate is of a nationality other than that of the Republic of Malta and one whose Jurisdiction is also present in Malta, then the Candidate shall, as matter of courtesy, be informed of this.
9.32.6 Full personal details of a Candidate shall be submitted by completing the official application form available from the Lodge Secretary. Such details shall in no other way be promulgated or displayed.
9.32.7 Formal proposals for balloting for Candidates may only be made after the satisfactory results of referred enquiries have been previously announced in open Lodge.
9.32.8 Standard procedure provides that balloting for a Candidate for Initiation shall follow at the next Lodge meeting following that in which he is proposed and seconded. Where unusual circumstances warrant, the Master is empowered with the discretion to progress Initiation at the same meeting at which the successful balloting was achieved.
9.33 A Subordinate Lodge may elect a subscribing member to the dignity of Emeritus Member in recognition of signal service(s) rendered to his Lodge or as such special circumstance may so justify. An Emeritus Member shall retain full rights and privileges as normally appertain, including those of proposing motions and voting on any question before the Lodge. He shall be eligible to pay an annual Lodge membership subscription limited to the annual per capita fee that the Subordinate Lodge is obliged to pay to Grand Lodge. Unlike an Honorary Member who is not a subscribing member of another Lodge, an Emeritus Member is not debarred from membership of other Branches of the Order.
9.35 It is obligatory that formal balloting shall precede a person being initiated in, or joining or re-joining a subordinate Lodge and this, always providing that the procedures outlined in Laws 9.32 have been fully observed. Where a Brother is seeking to become a Joining Member it is required that prior to balloting the following documents shall be provided to, or obtained by the subordinate Lodge and acted upon as noted:
- Grand Lodge Certificate from Candidates of another Constitution.
- Clearance Certificate from current and previous Lodges stating satisfactory conduct and no financial indebtedness.
9.36 A Subordinate Lodge knowingly affiliating a Brother who is in arrears of subscriptions in another subordinate Lodge shall be liable for payment of such arrears.
9.37 Immediately following the Initiation of a Candidate, the Lodge Secretary shall submit to the Grand Secretary, the completed Original Application Form (retaining a copy for Lodge files) with the appropriate fee for due registration in the books of Grand Lodge. When the Candidate is raised to the Third Degree, the Lodge Secretary shall submit a request to the Grand Secretary for the issue of the Grand Lodge Certificate.
9.37.1 Immediately following the election of a Joining or re-Joining member from a SGLOM. Subordinate Lodge, the Lodge Secretary shall so endorse and submit to the Grand Secretary the original Application form.
9.37.2 Immediately following the election of a Joining member from a Lodge without the SGLOM Jurisdiction the Lodge secretary shall so endorse and submit the original Application form together with appropriate fee to the Grand Secretary, requesting the issue of a Grand Lodge Certificate.
9.38 A subordinate Lodge may elect as Honorary Members Brethren of eminence or distinction in the Craft, or who may have rendered special service to the subordinate Lodge or for other meritorious circumstances. Such Brethren may be of this or any other Jurisdiction in amity with the Sovereign Grand Lodge of Malta. Honorary members shall not be eligible to hold Office or vote on any question before the Subordinate Lodge. No Annual Fee shall be payable to Grand Lodge in respect of such Honorary Members, such membership shall be limited to a maximum of two per Subordinate Lodge.
9.39 No person shall be made a Mason in or admitted a member of a Subordinate Lodge if, on the ballot, three black balls appear against him; but the By-laws of a Subordinate Lodge may enact that two black balls or one black ball shall exclude a Candidate. Every subscribing member who has obtained the Third Degree, if present, shall vote. Only Master Masons may vote in any election or on any other matter held in a subordinate Lodge.
9.40 Subject that all attaching correspondence shall be copied to the Office of the Grand Secretary, a Subordinate Lodge may, as courtesy Work, confer any Degree upon a Candidate if so formally requested to do so by the Master and Secretary of the Subordinate Lodge of which the Candidate is an elected Member. Such request shall bear the signatures of the Master and Secretary duly attested with their Lodge Seal, accompanied by a certification that the request is in conformity with all the applicable provisions of the Constitution. Such request shall be subject of written confirmation of the Subordinate Lodge willingness to do the courtesy Work.
9.41 A Subordinate Lodge may, as courtesy Work and without any attaching fees, Pass or Raise a Candidate from another regular and recognised Masonic Jurisdiction; providing always that formal request for such Work is addressed in the first instance to the Office of the Grand Secretary and confirms the Candidate’s Lodge membership status together with the approving signature of the Grand Secretary, or other appropriate Grand Officer, and Seal of the Jurisdiction to which the applicant Lodge owes its allegiance. The Grand Secretary will in turn pass the request to the Subordinate Lodge that is to confer the Degree(s). On completion of the Work the Subordinate Lodge shall report accordingly to the Grand Secretary who will in due course advise the Candidate’s member Lodge and the Grand Lodge of the Masonic Jurisdiction that in turn shall formally issue the Certificate of the Degree(s) conferred.
9.42 Every Brother seeking to join a Subordinate Lodge from a Lodge of a regular and recognised Jurisdiction may be required by the Worshipful Master of the Subordinate Lodge, in consultation with the Grand Secretary of the Sovereign Grand Lodge of Malta, to provide a letter of no objection produced on their behalf by the Grand Secretary of that Jurisdiction, this in addition to the documents to be provided for in Law 9.33.
9.43 Upon admission as a member of a Subordinate Lodge, every Brother shall be furnished with a personal printed current edition of the Constitution and Laws of the Sovereign Grand Lodge of Malta and the By-laws of the Subordinate Lodge, that together he shall pledge to observe and uphold, and this will be recorded in the Minutes. Likewise a Brother seeking to join a Subordinate Lodge from a Lodge of a regular and recognised Jurisdiction shall, upon admission as a member of a Subordinate Lodge, be similarly furnished and pledged in open Lodge with his providing a Declaration as follows:
‘I …………………….. Initiated in Lodge ……………. No. …….. on the Register of the Grand Lodge of ……………………….. do solemnly declare that in being admitted a member of this Lodge I will adhere to the Constitution of the Sovereign Grand Lodge of Malta and promise due obedience to all the Laws and Regulations thereof and to The Grand Master of this Grand Lodge’.
9.44 White gloves are to be worn by all ranks in Subordinate Lodge, except in the case of a Candidate undergoing one of the three degree ceremonies, if applicable.
9.45 A Subordinate Lodge shall on no pretence whatsoever confer more than one Degree on the same Candidate on the same day; with the First Degree conferred normally on only one Candidate at a time. The Second Degree shall be conferred on no more than three Candidates at a time; and The Third Degree shall be conferred, and in its entirety, on only one Candidate at a time.
9.46 A minimum of eight weeks shall intervene between the conferring of Degrees on the same Candidate subject only that the Subordinate Lodge Master and Secretary, having jointly presented good and sufficiently reasoned application for a lesser period, have received formal Dispensation from The Grand Master.
9.47 No visiting Brother subject to the Sovereign Grand Lodge of Malta shall be admitted into a Subordinate Lodge unless he be personally known to, and vouched for, by one of the Brethren present, or unless he shall be well vouched for after due examination.
9.47.1 No visiting Brother who is not subject to the Sovereign Grand Lodge of Malta shall be admitted unless his Certificate is granted by a Grand Lodge recognised by the Sovereign Grand Lodge of Malta and he is able to produce proof of his good standing in his Lodge or Lodges. It is incumbent on the Master of any Lodge to which a visitor from another jurisdiction seeks admission to satisfy himself by adequate enquiries, if need be, from the Grand Secretary, that such jurisdiction is recognised by the Grand Lodge.
9.48 A Brother who has not received the Degree of Master Mason shall need to be vouched for when visiting another Subordinate Lodge and shall not claim to have been examined. Brethren of the rank of Entered Apprentice or Fellow Craft may, if thus vouched for, be present whilst a Subordinate Lodge is at Labour on the Degrees which they have received.
9.49 A visitor to a Subordinate Lodge claiming to be a Freemason and not being vouched for shall, before being admitted, be Examined by the Master or a Past Master to their satisfaction that the Lodge to which the visitor claims to be a Member is Warranted by a Grand Lodge which is in amity with and recognised by Grand Lodge.
9.50 A Subordinate Lodge shall hazard Suspension or Cancellation of its Warrant, and/or offending members’ punishment at the discretion of the Board, if a person not initiated in a regular Lodge, or who is disqualified by Suspension or Expulsion, or subverts the Landmarks of Freemasonry, is knowingly present at its Communication(s).
9.51 A Brother knowingly or willfully present at, or assisting at any Irregular Meeting of a Subordinate Lodge shall be disciplined as deemed appropriate by the Board.
9.52 The Master of a Subordinate Lodge shall admonish a Brother who disturbs the Harmony of the Lodge and, should the Brother persist in his irregular conduct, the Master shall discipline the Brother by censure or exclusion from the remainder of the meeting according to the opinion of the majority of Brethren present, else in accordance with the Lodge By-laws.
9.53 A Subordinate Lodge shall at year-end prepare an Annual Return to be signed by the Master and Lodge Secretary for submission to the Grand Secretary on or before the last day of February of the year following. The Return shall list all members of the Lodge, distinguishing between those initiated, joining or re-joining with the respective dates of such, since the last Annual Return. Full payment of all monies properly due to Grand Lodge at year end shall be submitted on or before the 31st of March next.
9.54 A Subordinate Lodge shall make payment to Grand Lodge in respect of its Subscribing membership in accordance with the Schedule of Fees.
9.55 A Subordinate Lodge having less than three Subscribing members or that has not opened for Labour during one calendar year shall have its Warrant Suspended and the Master, Secretary, or Brother having possession of the Warrant shall be called upon to deliver it to the Grand Secretary. A Brother withholding such delivery of the Lodge Warrant shall be liable to disciplinary action or Suspension as may be considered appropriate by the Board.
9.56 Joining members to a Subordinate Lodge shall be registered as such in the books of Grand Lodge, and every Brother joining from a Lodge not on the Register of Grand Lodge shall, after satisfying the conditions of Law 9.42, be provided with a Grand Lodge Certificate together with a current edition of the Constitution and Laws and Regulations of the Sovereign Grand Lodge of Malta and a copy of the Subordinate Lodge By-laws.
9.57 Every Brother shall be entitled to a Grand Lodge Certificate immediately upon his being registered as a Master Mason in the books of Grand Lodge and his Lodge shall forthwith procure and issue such Certificate accordingly.
9.58 Duplicate Grand Lodge Certificates may be issued subject to the applicant’s Lodge recommendation and satisfactory explanation of the loss or destruction of the original, together with the appropriate Schedule of Fees payment.
9.59 A Grand Lodge Certificate shall be validated when duly signed by the Brother to whom it is granted, and preferably so signed in open Lodge upon receipt. A Certificate shall not be recognised unless bearing the signature of the Brother to whom it is granted.
9.60 A Subordinate Lodge shall grant a Clearance Certificate free of charge to a Brother whenever required by him and such Certificate shall bear the Lodge Seal and be dated and signed by the Lodge Master and Secretary, subject always to the following:
9.60.1 That when the Brother is a member of the Lodge the Certificate shall carry confirmation of this and, if such be the case, that he is under suspension or disciplinary proceedings and, if such be the case, that he is free of indebtedness to the Lodge, and
9.60.2 When the Brother has been, but is no longer a member of the Lodge, the Certificate shall confirm whether he ceased to be a member by his resignation under Law 9.61, or by exclusion, and shall state the date and circumstance thereof and whether and at what time such outstanding indebtedness was discharged by him.
9.60.3 Clearance Certificates so issued shall bear the Seal of the Lodge and be signed and dated by the Lodge Master and Secretary. Ideally Clearance Certificates should be handed personally to the Brother but failing which should be despatched by registered post to the Brother’s registered or last known address and the envelope clearly endorsed as ‘Private and Confidential’.
9.60.4 Except as provided by this Law no Lodge shall grant a Clearance Certificate of any kind to a Brother, particularly a Brother who has been expelled from the Craft or who has resigned from the Craft under Law 6.25.
9.61 A member of a Subordinate Lodge may at any time resign his membership, either immediately or as from some later date specified by him at the time, by written notice of his action to the Secretary or orally to the Lodge at a regular meeting. If the resignation be so notified to the Secretary he shall, unless he be in receipt of written notice to the contrary, communicate this to the Lodge at the next regular meeting thereof.
9.61.1 The resignation, if notified to the Secretary and reported to the Lodge, takes effect from the time such written notification was received by the Secretary or, if communicated orally to the Lodge, takes effect forthwith or, as from such later date if any as has been so specified as above-mentioned. No acceptance of the resignation is necessary and, subject to the foregoing provisions and after notification or communication to the Lodge, is irrevocable.
9.61.2 The resignation of a Brother, notified or communicated to a Lodge after a notice has been served upon him in accordance with Law 9.62 that he be struck off its Roll of Members, cannot be withdrawn and such resignation does not prevent the Lodge considering and voting upon such resolution.
9.62 A Lodge is empowered to strike a member from its Roll should he be more than nine months in arrears; provided that within one month prior to such action the Lodge Secretary shall have written, by registered or recorded delivery to the member’s last known address, requesting and requiring payment of the arrears and advising that non-payment would oblige his name being removed from the Lodge Roll of members and such removal reported to the Office of the Grand Secretary.
9.63 A Subordinate Lodge member whose membership subscription remains unpaid for two full years shall at the expiration of that period automatically cease to be a member of the Lodge. Such circumstance shall be reported to the Lodge at its next regular meeting, duly recorded in the minutes, and formally notified to the office of the Grand Secretary. Where so provided for in its By-laws, a Subordinate Lodge may proceed against a defaulting member under Law 9.62 in respect of payments due for a shorter period than two years. A Brother may be reinstated as a member only by regular proposition and balloting in accordance with Law 9.35 and by his payment of the identified arrears precedent to his election. The Subordinate Lodge may elect to forego all or part of such arrears after having resolved so to do by a simple majority vote. Such circumstance shall similarly be formally notified to the office of the Grand Secretary.
9.64 A Brother removed by his Subordinate Lodge from membership for non-payment of subscriptions shall not join, nor shall he continue a member of any other Subordinate Lodge, nor be permitted to visit any Subordinate Lodge at Labour or refreshment, nor be permitted to become a member of Grand Lodge, until it shall have been ascertained by Grand Lodge from the Subordinate Lodge from which the Brother was removed that such arrears have been discharged. Any Subordinate Lodge knowingly violating this Law shall be held liable for such arrears and shall pay same to the Subordinate Lodge of which the Brother was formerly a member and shall be subject to such disciplinary action as the Board may see fit to impose.
9.65 A subordinate Lodge shall have power to exclude or suspend from membership any Brother whose continuance as a member may be considered objectionable or injurious to the Lodge, provided that a simple majority of the entitled members present at a Communication specially called to consider the matter shall so decide. The decision of the subordinate Lodge shall be reached by secret ballot. Each entitled member present at the ballot may cast his vote. If the resolution is carried, the exclusion or suspension shall be effective forthwith and the name of the Brother excluded or suspended shall be sent to the Grand Secretary. The decision reached may be referred to the Board of General Purposes by the Brother so excluded according to Laws 6.10 and 6.25. The Master is empowered to order a second ballot if he has reason to believe that a mistake has been made in the first and shall report the circumstances justifying his action to the Board of General Purposes.
9.66 A Subordinate Lodge shall for its better governance frame its own By-laws provided always that the same be in accordance with the Ancient Landmarks and with the Laws and Regulations of Grand Lodge and two copies of proposed By-laws and any subsequent amendments thereto shall be submitted for approval by the Board. Lodge By-laws shall be valid and effective from the date of approval. Two copies of printed Subordinate Lodge By-laws shall be deposited by the Lodge Secretary with the Office of the Grand Secretary who shall in due course return one copy duly attested as approved for retention by the Subordinate Lodge.
9.66.1 The by-laws shall specify the regular days and place of meeting of the Lodge, also the regular meeting for the election of Master, Treasurer and Tyler, (if they are to be elected) and the regular meeting for the installation of Master, which shall be the regular meeting next following that specified for his election. There is no power to cancel any regular meeting, nor may any meeting of the Lodge be held other than at the specified place and on the specified day, except as otherwise provided in these Laws.
9.66.2 Subordinate Lodge By-Laws shall be amended only in the following manner:
By Notice of Motion that at the next regular meeting, or emergency meeting as may be called for that purpose, that proposal will be made to amend Lodge By-Laws stating the exact details of the proposed amendment, full details of which shall be given on the summons convening the meeting at which the proposal is to be formally presented, and following presentation, proposal, seconding discussion, the Master of the Lodge shall direct the Brethren present to vote in the usual manner, and a simple majority, or such other as prescribed in Lodge By-Laws, voting in favour shall adopt the amendment for submission for Grand Lodge approval.
9.67 Each Subordinate Lodge shall have its own unique Seal with which to verify Lodge transactions and the device design, which shall be subject of Board approval, shall show the full name of the Subordinate Lodge.
9.68 It is the duty of any Brother who is convicted of any criminal offence (whether it be in the Republic of Malta or elsewhere) to report the fact within 7 days to the Master of his Lodge, or (if he be unattached) to the Grand Secretary. The Master shall with immediate effect a report of any conviction on any member of his Lodge to the Grand Secretary. A Brother, who comes under a duty to report his conviction as aforesaid, whether or not he has complied therewith, shall not, pending the determination of his case by Masonic authority, attend any Lodge. It is also the duty of the Master similarly to report promptly all such or other cases which are likely to bring Freemasonry into disrepute.
9.69 Grand Lodge strictly prohibits any of its subordinate Lodges and members from Masonically engaging in any civil or religious events, including, but not limited to, marriages (or affirmations of marriage), christenings, baptisms, funerals and remembrance ceremonies. Any such participation will be considered a grave Masonic offence and will result in formal charges being brought against said subordinate Lodge and member(s).
9.70 Should any Mason possess any knowledge which would render unsuitable a potential candidate for initiation into a Subordinate Lodge he is duty bound and under an obligation to approach the Worshipful Master/Secretary of the relevant Subordinate Lodge to express his concern, giving his reasons why such a Candidate is not suitable for initiation into the Craft. The ultimate decision rests with the Subordinate Lodge and its Master.