Two missives taped to doors at the Jacksonville Masonic Lodge and Central Christian Church are a part of an ongoing multi-state investigation into possible harassment and threats of domestic terrorism.
The missives contain anti-masonic information claiming that the Masons worship Satan. According to the Secretary of the Grand Lodge of Illinois and member of the Jacksonville Harmony Masonic Lodge Frank Cline this has been going on all around the state and in 3 others: “What is being taped to the doors of lodges and churches is anti-masonic information. It all came back from the book Morals & Dogma which was written back at about the time of the Civil War. The way things worked back then are not the way they work today. They are trying to take those antiquated items and say that this is what your masons today are doing. They are trying to scare people out of belonging to the Masonic Lodge, and they are trying to get the churches to scare their members to get out of the Masonic Lodges. We don’t know the point of why they are doing this.”
Cline says there hasn’t been any threats of physical violence yet to the local lodge. He says some property damage has occurred at other lodges out of the area. Cline says membership have faced anti-masonic movements for centuries. People have long questioned Masonic symbolism and ritual being tied to the occult and Satanic worship. Cline says its all been misinformation spread by removed members from the the fraternal organization or disgruntled members of the public: “The main Masonic ritual is also based on the Old Testament of the Bible. There is nothing Satanic. There is nothing witchcraft about it. Men of all religions belong to the Masonic fraternity. All you have to do to belong is believe in a Supreme Being or in a god. I mean, we have had Hindus and Buddhists kneel at the same alter to take the Obligation of Masonry, so it is nothing that is restrictive on our side.”
Cline says all local lodges have been instructed to send any communications or packages to the Adams County Sheriff’s Department in Illinois to Deputy Gunnar Caster who is investigating if any criminal activity can be charged. Churches in the area who receive any of these letters or packages are also instructed to send any security videos and letters on to Caster at firstname.lastname@example.org. Cline says that they have also discovered that the FBI’s Anti-Terrorism Task Force is also investigating the case since it crosses into similar incidents being reported in Missouri, Indiana, and Wisconsin.