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Orlando Lodge Update

Apr 22, 2011 03:52 PM
by MKR

Update on Orlando Lodge

Finally, after a long silence, there was a statement about the Orlando Lodge
in the April 2011 issue of the Messenger, the official membersâ supplement
to Quest Magazine.

For those who are not following the Orlando lodge issue, here is a summary.

Orlando Lodge is a long time, successful, 75 year old lodge. The charter was
withdrawn by the American Section. Since the lodge owns valuable real
estate, TSA chose to file a lawsuit to take over the assets. Without assets,
the lodge would be a non issue.

Following on the decision of TSA, the lodge appealed to the International
President as provided by the International rules of TS and the International
President decided to attach the lodge directly to Adyar, in exercise of her

Everyone knows about the unique setup of TS. Each section is totally
autonomous so long as they do not violate the International rules of TS.
Lodges are fully autonomous so long as they do not violate the national and
International rules. This provides a very wide latitude in the operation of
the Sections and the Lodges.

Mo Michel, the Eastern District Director of TSA, states in the April 2011
issue of the Messenger:

âThere has been a long history of difficulty with the operation of the
Orlando lodge.â

This is too vague an allegation. Members should be told in simple terms if
the lodge has violated any of the three Objects of TS or has there been any
misappropriation or misuse of funds.

Considering the wide latitude provided by the setup of TS, the allegations
should be quite specific to convince the membership of the correctness of
the assessment by the Board of Directors.

At a time of declining membership, and downsizing of lodges (long time
Atlanta lodge has become a study center, which is a pitiful state in such a
large city,) shutting down a long time lodge is a very serious issue and
should be easily explainable to dues-paying members.

In Spring 2011 issue of the Messenger, it was mentioned that the Florida
Federation officers complained about the lodge and this was cited as one of
the reasons for the withdrawal of charter. This was quite strange since
Federations cannot interfere in the operation of lodges and one wonders what
political factors are in operation.

Compounding all of the above, was the fact that none of the officers of TSA
or the National President visited the lodge to learn about the problems and
find a solution and fix the problem. This is how organizational problems are
solved and members need to know why this was not attempted

While the leaders of the American Section may not be happy about the
decision of the International President, no one has questioned legality of
the decision as it is the due process provided by the rules of TS.

After all the happenings that took place at the time of the International
Election and the subsequent ill fated ultra secret attempt to disenfranchise
all members in the election of the International President (the move was led
by the TSA National President), the credibility of the leadership in the
American Section is quite low. Only way to convince the membership and
restore confidence in the judgment of the leadership of American Section is
by full transparency.

If the case against Orlando lodge was so well documented as alleged by Mo
Michel, putting all the facts on the table is the right and only way to
substantiate TSAâs case against the Orlando lodge.

I am copying this to Mo Michel, and I hope TSA will do it soon. Silence is
not an option since the issue is not going to go away any time soon without
documented facts that all of us can see.

M K Ramadoss
Member, TSA, San Antonio, TX

[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]

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