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Al Hambra

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posted on Jul, 2 2004 @ 10:12 PM
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Is anyone familiar with the Catholic Order called "Al Hambra" ? It's apparently similar to the Masonic "Shriners" (even to the point of wearing fezzes) Many fraternal societies had "befezzed" groups back when the Masonic "Shriners" became popular...the Odd Felows has the Ancient Mystic Order of Samaritans, the Knights of Pythias had the "Knights of Khorassan" etc. Apparently the Knights of Columbus came up with Al Hambra to compete with these groups. At one time a member was required to be a 3rd or 4th Degree Knight of Columbus (like a Shriner had to be a 32nd Degree Mason or a Masonic Knight Templar) but now a member only has to be a Catholic. Any other info would be appreciated.

-Senrak (ritual collector, Mason and Shriner...)




posted on Jul, 2 2004 @ 11:09 PM
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Last time I checked the map, Al Hambra was just outside of Los Angeles...



posted on Jul, 3 2004 @ 12:16 AM
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The whole Fez-fashion has its roots in the uniforms of Light Infantry Auxillaries, called Zouaves, attached to French imperial regiments in Algiers. The French were the main rivals to British military might in the 19th century, and so were wideley copied by developing nations, from Russia to the United States.

The French were seen as experts in close-order combat, and so every aspect of their military was copied, right down to the uniforms. The American armies had Zuave regiments until the Civil War. My 6-times great Grandfather, Aholiab Strangecraft, fought in one of the first battles of the civil war, wearing baggy red 'jams,' a fez, a sky-blue waistcoat and a yellow cumberbund, and carrying a lance! You have to pity those poor suckers.

Anyway, Fezzes in 1840's & 50's were the height of fashion and dashing. THATS the real reason for their inclusion in fraternal orders.



posted on Jul, 3 2004 @ 02:56 PM
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Fezzes have been around for thousands of years. They were worn by royalty and as a national headress of the people of several lands. Even worn into battle. They are still worn by those not in secret orders as a part of heritage. I still wear mine from time to time. You can see them still worn in Southern Italy, to Nigeria, and here in the United States. The fez is such an important symbol that many take for granted. When we wear ours we were always taught to carry ourselves in high regard. It is a heritage from our ancestors. I guess that is why masons always approached me and tried to greet me with a grip or acknowledged me as a "brother". Funny thing is that they know if I was a Shriner, I would have letters on my Fez as a designation. I have never seen Shriners without them. The inclusion of fezzes into secret societies, honors the history, power, symbolism, and antiquity of those who wore this "Corona del Sol" or crown. This is why those who wear it and understand it's importance despise the term "hat" to reference a Fez. It is somewhat of an insult.

[edit on 7/3/2004 by MOOR45]



posted on Jul, 4 2004 @ 04:07 PM
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I went to a Catholic school (1-8 grade) in Phoenix, Az, and the name of the school district there was Al Hambra.



posted on Jul, 4 2004 @ 04:11 PM
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Al Hambra is not only a small city near Los Angeles (the gateway to the San Gabriel Valley) it is also an Islamic style palace in Granada, Spain.



posted on Jul, 4 2004 @ 09:54 PM
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Originally posted by MOOR45
Fezzes have been around for thousands of years. They were worn by royalty and as a national headress of the people of several lands. Even worn into battle. They are still worn by those not in secret orders as a part of heritage. I still wear mine from time to time. You can see them still worn in Southern Italy, to Nigeria, and here in the United States. The fez is such an important symbol that many take for granted. When we wear ours we were always taught to carry ourselves in high regard. It is a heritage from our ancestors. I guess that is why masons always approached me and tried to greet me with a grip or acknowledged me as a "brother". Funny thing is that they know if I was a Shriner, I would have letters on my Fez as a designation. I have never seen Shriners without them. The inclusion of fezzes into secret societies, honors the history, power, symbolism, and antiquity of those who wore this "Corona del Sol" or crown. This is why those who wear it and understand it's importance despise the term "hat" to reference a Fez. It is somewhat of an insult.

[edit on 7/3/2004 by MOOR45]


MOOR45,

Excellent and informative post!


I have a friend in NYC who wears a fez most of the time. I had to chuckle when you mentioned Masons thinking you were a Shriner. I agree that they should know better because the name of the Shrine Temple and the Shrine emblem isn't on yours...besides, unless it's a parade or there's a Shrine Convention in town, Shriners typically don't wear their fezzes around in public! ...at least *I* dont...



posted on Jul, 6 2004 @ 04:52 PM
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Senrak, is your friend a Shriner or other? I think alot of Masons out of a sense of shared science greet non-masons that wear fezzes or similar symbols because they feel we are brothers who are just not fremasons but study similiar science. They're also different colors of fezzes which represent different things. Have you ever been to the George Washington Masonic Memorial or 33 degree Scottish Rite Hall in Va and DC respectively? It will blow your mind. In the GROTTO room (Mystic Order of Veiled Enchanted Prophets enchanted Realm) there is a wall that list ancient Moorish names such as Bey, Ali, Dey, etc. It clearly shows a relationship between Masons and Moors. Those who wore green fezzes choose to worship christianity. Very interesting. The other difference between your fez and ours that I noticed is that your tassel is bound. I was taught this represents your oath as a Mason. Our tassel is free as we are not bound by oath to discus certain topics unless we take a pledge not to do so.



posted on Jul, 7 2004 @ 09:09 PM
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Originally posted by MOOR45
Senrak, is your friend a Shriner or other? I think alot of Masons out of a sense of shared science greet non-masons that wear fezzes or similar symbols because they feel we are brothers who are just not fremasons but study similiar science. They're also different colors of fezzes which represent different things. Have you ever been to the George Washington Masonic Memorial or 33 degree Scottish Rite Hall in Va and DC respectively? It will blow your mind. In the GROTTO room (Mystic Order of Veiled Enchanted Prophets enchanted Realm) there is a wall that list ancient Moorish names such as Bey, Ali, Dey, etc. It clearly shows a relationship between Masons and Moors. Those who wore green fezzes choose to worship christianity. Very interesting. The other difference between your fez and ours that I noticed is that your tassel is bound. I was taught this represents your oath as a Mason. Our tassel is free as we are not bound by oath to discus certain topics unless we take a pledge not to do so.


Hi,

My friend is a Mason, but not a Shriner. (His last name is Bey..by the way...) You're right about the Geo. Washington Memorial and the House of the Temple. I go to a Masonic meeting in D.C. every year in February and always go to the House of the Temple (HQ of the Scottish Rite-Southern Jurisdiction) A good friend of mine works there. I've only been to the Memorial one time...I spend most of my time in meetings at the Hotel Washington and when I have free time I usually visit the National Cathedral (the Cathedral of St Peter & St Paul)...the same place former Pres. Reagan's funeral was held. It's sort of a "Mecca" (so to speak) for Episcopalians.

-John



posted on Jul, 8 2004 @ 09:20 AM
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My title is Bey as well. Is he have Moorish heritage that you know of? Well we all do but the name especially up in NYC usually denotes someone who studied Moorish Science. I know alot of Masons who have done both because of the similarities in study.



posted on Jul, 9 2004 @ 09:49 PM
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Originally posted by MOOR45
My title is Bey as well. Is he have Moorish heritage that you know of? Well we all do but the name especially up in NYC usually denotes someone who studied Moorish Science. I know alot of Masons who have done both because of the similarities in study.


I'm not sure of that. I know that as a young man he was going to become a Baptist minister, but began to study Islam and converted. He's one of the finest individuals I've ever had the pleasure of knowing and he and his bride had a terrible time after 9/11....thanks to the ignorance of many who don't understand Islam and want to group them into the same group with fundamentalists. I'll ask him via e-mail about his actual heritage....that might be an interesting thread in itself.

My best,

-John



posted on Jul, 10 2004 @ 03:25 PM
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Ok. Thanks alot Senrak. You seem to me to be one of the most personable Masons I've talked to on here so far. I appreciate that! Trust me!



posted on Jul, 10 2004 @ 07:38 PM
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Originally posted by MOOR45
Ok. Thanks alot Senrak. You seem to me to be one of the most personable Masons I've talked to on here so far. I appreciate that! Trust me!


MOOR45,

Thank you! As a human I, of course, fail from time to time. But as a Mason I do truly try to be a good person and a "brother" to all. Besides, Masonry isn't the only organization that teaches this. So do ALL the worlds great and true religions...at least to those who are paying attention.


Regards,

-John



posted on Jul, 12 2004 @ 11:37 AM
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Originally posted by senrak

Originally posted by MOOR45
Ok. Thanks alot Senrak. You seem to me to be one of the most personable Masons I've talked to on here so far. I appreciate that! Trust me!


MOOR45,

Thank you! As a human I, of course, fail from time to time. But as a Mason I do truly try to be a good person and a "brother" to all. Besides, Masonry isn't the only organization that teaches this. So do ALL the worlds great and true religions...at least to those who are paying attention.


Regards,

-John

Amen! It also provides for a smooth exchange of ideas and knowledge. Thanks for the comraderie!



posted on Nov, 1 2006 @ 10:16 AM
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The International Order of Alhambra (not Al Hambra) was founded in 1904 in Brooklyn, NY by William Harper Bennett (who authored of the KC 4th Degree in 1901). It was originally intended to be the 5th and 6th Degrees of the Knights of Columbus, but the KCs never officially recognized it as such.

At one time you had to be a 4th (or 3rd?) Degree member of the KCs to join, that has since been done-away with. Membership is open, by invitation, to practical Catholic men at least 18 years of age of high moral character, and are a credit to their church and community. It is not a well-known organization, even among Catholics, but it is a prestigious group, and it is an honor to be invited into its ranks. I am hands-down the youngest member in my caravan, but know of some others younger than me in neighboring caravans. Many members are at least middle-aged (many older), and thus the overall number of members is dwindling.

There are two ranks - Novice and "Sir Noble". Depending on when you are inducted, one can skip the rank of Novice. Each rank has its own colored tassel, as do other officers:
Brown - Novice
Red - Sir Noble
Black - religious brothers (non-ordained, professed monks)
Royal Blue - deacons
Purple - priests, bishops/archbishops/cardinals
White - local "caravan" (grand divan) officers
Turquoise/Silver - Standing Committee Members/Regional Directors
Gold - supreme (Supreme Divan) officers

In addition to the tassels, there are other pins/jewelry that can be placed on the fez to denote certain participation in the Order. There are protocols as to who can wear these, and where they are placed on the fez.

The aims of the Order are:
1) Identifies, marks, preserves, and commemorates Catholic historical places, events and persons of international or regional importance
2) to promote fraternalism and sociability amongst its members and families
3) provides assistance, education and residences for persons who are developmentally disabled.

The Moorish character of the Order and names of local caravans is derived from the events, persons, and places of the Spanish Reconquista, where Moorish invaders were driven from Spain after several hundred years of occupation. The successful triumph of the Cross over the Crescent is celebrated (and thus which allowed Columbus to begin his journey of discovery), but the Moors are not mocked. Members are encouraged to follow the Moorish example of love and reverence of and for sacred, holy places, and to remember the Moorish advances in mathematics, architecture, and agriculture.

The name of the Order comes from the name of the Moorish palace, Al-Hambra, in Granada, in sight of which the Moors officially surrendered to Ferdinand and Isabella, and of which Columbus was supposedly a witness to the event.

There are current active "caravans" in the US and Canada. There were once caravans in Mexico, but have died-out. There is an attempt to revive the Mexican caravans, and found caravans in other countries (like the Carribbean).

The Alhambra could be likened as Catholic Shriners, as some may liken the Knights of Columbus as Catholic Masons.



posted on Jan, 3 2007 @ 03:51 PM
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I'm a Knight of Columbus from Mexico, I hope this Order will be soon estableshed here.



posted on Jan, 4 2007 @ 08:39 AM
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Originally posted by pacotj
I'm a Knight of Columbus from Mexico, I hope this Order will be soon estableshed here.


Paco,

There were caravans in Mexico at one time, they were:

Merida #103 in Matamoros (Tamaulipas) founded in 1956
Abil Hassan #136 in Monterrey (Nuevo Leon) founded in 1959

also in Panama:

Aben Hud #23 in US Canal Zone founded in 1910

All of these caravans are now defunct, I don't know the date when this happened, but its probably been a long while. They probably went under because of unsustainably low members, or failure to meet the per capita requirements.

There is currently a push to form new caravans again in Mexico, and maybe even Puerto Rico.

I don't know what the status is of this push back into Mexico, so if you'd like to see if there is a caravan to join, or would like to help form a new caravan, contact Supreme HQ at: www.orderalhambra.org



posted on Jan, 7 2007 @ 10:36 PM
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I looked at the website, there is no "Caravan" near where I live, otherwise I'd probably join them.

CC



posted on Jan, 8 2007 @ 08:19 AM
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Originally posted by chief_counsellor
I looked at the website, there is no "Caravan" near where I live, otherwise I'd probably join them.

CC


Chief Counsellor,

There is a provision for "unaffiliated members" -- members in good standing who's caravan has officially disbanded, or members who moved to an area where there is not a caravan, or just don't live near one to begin with. I know of one gentleman in Wisconsin who recently joined as an unaffiliated member.

There are caravans in Quebec and Ontario - the Quebec caravans are especially strong. I'm guessing you're in the Maritime Provinces, or out West. Depending on where exactly you live, you might be able to start a caravan. I'm vaguely aware of a push by Supreme to expand further into Canada, but there may be restrictions on exactly where to establish a caravan.

In the past, the sites of caravans have not been well-chosen. Just as there are fewer 4th Degree KCs vs. 3rd Degree KCs, there are fewer Alhambrans compared to the 4th Degree, and where a 4th Degree assembly may cover several (or many) 3rd Degree councils, a caravan typically covers a large metropolitan area.

For example, there are the following active caravans in the DC area:

Alcala #16 in Baltimore
Osma #110 in College Park
Cadiz #140 in Owings Mills and
Porto #104 in Northern Virginia (Arlington)

A recent caravan in D.C., Fatima #265 did not last long - there were plenty of caravans in close proximity to D.C., and thus could not sustain membership. Similar problems of "oversaturation" have taken place in New Jersey, Connecticut, and Massachusetts where caravans were founded close to each other in every little suburb not too far from each other.

There may be restrictions on new caravans, like they might not be eligible unless they are x-distance from an existing caravan, and the city must have a certain minimum population.

If you are still interested, inquire with Supreme via the means offered at the Alhambra website.



posted on Jan, 14 2007 @ 05:45 PM
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I've emailed Supreme or whatever, as well as Ontario Western Region as to is if there is plans to start a Caravan in my city. We'll see what the response is. How much are dues by the way?



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