Top Left: António Reis Grandmaster of Grand Orient Lusitano (Portugal), top right: Yvette Nicolas Great Teacher of Women’s Grand Lodge of France, bottom left: José Manuel Barroso President of the European Commission, bottom right: Jean-Michel Quillardet, Grand Master of the Grand Orient of France.
The French Federation of Le Droit Humain represented by its president, Michel Payen, met on April 8, 2008 with the president of the European Commission, José-Manuel Barroso, […] This meeting constitutes a major event regarding the place of Freemasonry in the construction of Europe; this place was underscored not only by the interest and attentiveness that President Barroso showed to the delegation and the time he accorded them, but also by the commitments he made to the values espoused by liberal and adogmatic Freemasonry, its positions and its opinions on subjects of concern. It was the first time that Freemasonry, as such, was able to express itself to such a high level European institution.
The delegation received assurances from President Barroso of his attachment to the spirit of “laïcité” and to the principle of separation of religion from the State. The delegation stressed the importance of the Enlightenment in the history of Europe, a dimension to be taken into account at least equally with its religious roots, and certainly more closely tied to the roots of antiquity.
Finally, a principle of communication between the liberal and adogmatic Masonic Orders and the services of the European Commission, to be used whenever needed, was decided upon. Thus the French Federation of Le Droit Humain will propose, in the near future, a recommendation concerning the principle of emancipation that ought to form the basis of all European education systems, in direct relation to a recognition of the contribution of the Enlightenment to the common culture of the peoples that compose Europe, and in accordance with the principles of the Charter of Fundamental Rights.
Ed Comment: Because of curiosity I traced the original document/press release from Droit-Humain (found here, pdf), and translated it using Google Translate.
I found it interesting that the above article excluded the information about what organizations had put together the meeting… namely “Women’s Grand Lodge of France”, “the Grand Orient of Portugal” (Grande Oriente Lusitano) and “the Grand Orient of France”. See below for full text.
The French Federation of Human Rights represented by its President, Mr Michel Payen, was received on April 8, 2008 by the President of the European Commission, Mr Jose-Manuel Barroso, in a delegation composed of the Women’s Grand Lodge of France, the Grand Orient of Portugal and Grand Orient of France who had taken the initiative of this rendezvous in agreement with other obédiences adogmatiques at the meeting of the Grand Masters and Presidents of January 2008.
This meeting is a major event about the role of Masonry in construction
of Europe, this place has been highlighted not only by the interest and listening real as President Barroso has shown the delegation and the time he spent but also by the commitments made in terms of attention to the values defended by Freemasonry liberal and adogmatique, its position and his opinion on major issues that concern them. That is the first time that Freemasonry has been able to speak es quality at such a high-level forums European.
The delegation was assured of the commitment of President Barroso to freedom of conscience, the spirit of secularism and the principle of separation of religion from the state. The delegation pointed out the importance of the Enlightenment in Europe’s history, size to be has at least as far as the religious roots and certainly more in line with its roots antiques.
Finally, the principle was incorporated in a communication of orders and Obediences liberal and Masonic adogmatiques with the Commission as necessary. Also, the French Federation of Human Rights will Does in the near future a proposal recommendation on the principle of emancipation which should underlie all education systems in Europe, directly related to the recognition of the contribution of Enlightenment in the common culture of the people who compose it and in accordance with the principles of the Charter Fundamental Rights.
Accordingly, the Freemasons of the French Federation of Human Rights are invited to discuss widely on issues concerning Europe and to raise their opinions for a original expression, strong and nourished can we characterize in the European debate.