Zapote Lodge No. 29
Zapote Lodge is named after a river near Bacoor, Cavite, which was the scene of many bloody engagements during the wars from 1896 to 1901. The Zapote or Chico is a fruit tree imported from Mexico, the name being derived from the old Mexican Tzapotl.
This lodge was organized in Rosario, Cavite on April 13, 1913 as a Triangulo under the Gran Oriente Español by Santiago M. Salazar, Eulalio Raymund and Delfin Encarnacion. It was initially named Lakas ng Katwiran, Tagalog for "strength of reason," and was admitted into the Federation of the Gran Oriente Espanol under that name on July 9,1913. However, when the Gran Oriente Espanol converted it into a lodge on March 7, 1915, the members secured permission to rename their lodge as Zapote Lodge.
The first years of Zapote Lodge were quiet but prosperous. In February 1917, it transferred allegiance from the Gran Oriente Espanol to the Grand Lodge of the Philippine Islands along with other Filipino lodges. Then in 1920, Mr. Andres Giongco, a non-mason, donated a 1,500 sq. meter lot to the lodge. The members were able to construct a two-story lodge building thereon the following year, but on March 8, 1924, the building mysteriously burned to the ground. For the next fifteen years, the lodge held its meetings in rented houses.
In 1941, Zapote Lodge decided to transfer to the Plaridel Masonic Temple in Manila. It.was impractical, to stay in Rosario because only one active member, Cenon Araw, was residing there. All the others were residents of Manila and nearby towns. In November 1941, with WB Marcelino Constantino presiding, a resolution was passed that the next meeting of the lodge would be held in Manila. As fate would have it, the Second World War commenced on December 7, 1941. The lodge had to close and it was not until April 1945 that the members were able to hold their "next" meeting. In accordance with the resolution, the meeting was held in the temporary home of the Grand Lodge on Gunao St., in Quiapo, Manila.
Many prominent Filipinos have graced the rolls of Lipote,Lodge. One of them is Alejo Santos, a Past Master of the lodge, who was a fatuous guerilla leader during the Japanese regime. He became Secretary of National Defense and, during Martial Law days, run for President against President Ferdinand Marcos and lost. Another is Senator Mamintal Tamano, a worthy brother from the South, who affiliated with the lodge. A history of the lodge publishecl in the December 1978 issue of the Cabletow also claims that Provincial Governors and other officials of the province of Cavite as well as professionals and businessmen who- excelled in their respective callings were members of the lodge.
These days the affairs of the lodge are managed by Mario Catalino Angeles, Luisito R. Navoa, Rizal Antonio D. Meru, Francisco delos Santos, Jr , Andres. L. Rebuelta, Ignacio Angeles III and others.
Location: Plaridel Masonic Temple, Manila