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Isis Masonic Lodge opens for heritage festival

Isis Masonic Lodge
Current Master of Isis Masonic Lodge Ben Goding sits with incoming Master Wayne Thompson as they share the 125 history of the association.

Isis Masonic Lodge is a grand, two-storey building with a rich and long-standing history in the Childers community.

The temple is home to the Freemasons who opened their doors to the community during the Childers Heritage Weekend on Saturday.

Wayne Thompson and Greg Goding are both part of five generations of Isis Masonic Lodge families.

They are proud of not only their family heritage but also the community spirit that has helped shape the fraternal organisation over the past 125 years.

“Opening up to the community has helped us take away the ‘secret society' saying,” Wayne said.

“We are a society and we have secrets, but we are not a ‘secret society’.

Isis Masonic Lodge freemasons childers
The Isis Masonic Lodge was listed on the Queensland Heritage Register on 28 April 2000.

“We have foundation members since 1895, my great-grandfather was a foundation member, then my grandfather, my father, myself, and my son.

“So for five generations or 125 years the Thompsons have been unbroken in the Isis Masonic Lodge.

“The same as Goding family, Greg and I joined in consecutive years in 1981 and 1982.”

Greg’s nephew, Ben Goding, is the current Master of the Lodge and oversees the monthly ritual meetings before a change over in the mid-year will see Wayne resume the chair.

“It takes six or seven years to fulfil every chair to then sit in the master’s chair,” Wayne said.

“There is the senior and junior warden, senior and junior deacon, inner guard and tyler chairs.

“The tyler sits at the door like a guard and makes sure no strangers come to the door and peer through the hole, then there is the inner guard who provides acceptance into the lodge if you know the particular passwords and knocks, and he examines people and makes sure no one is an intruder.”

Wayne said dedication and commitment from Isis Masonic Lodge members was a must, as there were no open books during the ceremonies and every passage was to be memorised.

He said the Isis Masonic Lodge was known as one of the top ritualists among the fraternities throughout Queensland due to its strong ties to the past.

“Meaning the family connections who have come up through the ranks strive for perfection,” he said.

Ben agreed and said Isis Masonic Lodge members were proud of their dedication to the fraternity.

He said Isis Masonic Lodge was one of the longest-serving organisations in Queensland, since 1895.

“It’s been unbroken since then and there are not too many clubs in Queensland that can say that,” Ben said.

Isis Masonic Lodge
Community members were welcome to take a look inside Isis Masonic Lodge during the Childers Heritage Weekend.

“I am fifth generation in my family, it started on my mum’s side of the family and then jumped to dad’s side, so for us (Goding family) the historical side of it is pretty cool.

Ben said there were plenty of traditions and some rules to stick by when joining the Isis Masonic Lodge

“You have to be older than 18 to join,” he said

“There are three things we never talk about within our lodge and that is politics, religion and race.

“You can come from anywhere as there are Freemason lodges all over the world.

“That’s one thing that unites us, we are universal.”

Isis Masonic Lodge is a heritage-listed masonic temple at 18 Macrossan Street, Childers.

It was designed by F H Faircloth and built from 1897 to 1909.

It is also known as Corinthian Lodge.

Childers Freemasons
Members Ted, Greg and Ben Goding with Wayne Thompson were happy to show the community through the temple on the heritage weekend.

The Isis Masonic Lodge was listed on the Queensland Heritage Register on 28 April 2000.

It was constructed during a period of unprecedented growth in the Isis region, when Childers emerged as the centre of a substantial sugar-growing district and major social, cultural and religious institutions were established in the town.

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