Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte declared November 15 to 20 and every year thereafter as the "Free and Accepted Masons Week" in the city.
Duterte recognized that freemasonry in the city "has not only grown in its membership and involvement in community affairs and activities' maturity, but has also become an active partner of the City Government".
Through Proclamation 10, the city mayor said Masons have greatly contributed in making the city what it is today "considering that many of its founding fathers were public officials and leaders of the city in their own right."
"The contributions of the Masons in the city continue until today as they have been conducting medical and dental missions benefiting many residents in the city as well as adopting schools and implementing socio-economic programs in the various communities of the city," Duterte said.
The Sarangani Lodge No. 50, a group of Masons was founded in the city November 11, 1918, under the jurisdiction of the Grand Lodge of Free and Accepted Masons of the Philippines. The body will celebrate its 92nd Charter Day on Saturday.
Other Lodges: the Davao Masonic Lodge No. 149, the Datu Bago Lodge No. 197, Toril Lodge No. 208, Beacon Lodge No. 213, and the Pdomo Lodge No. 294 which are all based in the city have the same ideals and aspirations as that of their mother Lodge, the Sarangani Lodge No. 50 which have contributed to the growth and development of the city, Duterte said.
"The City Government recognizes the sacrifices and efforts of the masons who are very supportive to all the city's programs, projects, and activities. It is but proper and fitting to recognize and extend the City Government's acknowledgement and appreciation of all the Masons in the city," Duterte said.
(Jade C. Zaldivar)
Published in the Sun.Star Davao newspaper on November 19, 2010.