Marikina Lodge No. 119
This lodge was named after the town of Marikina in Rizal province where it was originally situated. How the town of Marikina got its name is rooted in legend. According to a story attributed to Trinidad H. Pardo de Tavera the town was named after Captain Berenguer de Marquina who was a chief executive of the town before it was declared a pueblo in 1787. A second source asserts it was named after a priest who baptized the natives following the establishment of the Jesuit mission. A third source claims that the Jesuits named the town after their hometown in Spain, a town along the Charmaga River called Mariquina. Still another source traces the name to a rich, beautiful and kind woman named Maria Quina. Then there is the story of a worker who told the priest that the church that was being built at the center of the town was "Marikit-na " (beautiful now).
The name "mariquina" lasted for decades until Pardo de Tavera, then a member of the Philippine Commission, suggested that it be changed to Marikina.
There were Freemasons in Marikina even during the Spanish era. The prominent Masons during that time were Arturo Dancel, who became the fourth governor of the Province of Rizal; Don Jose Guevarra, Isabelo Victorino, Julian Crisostomo, an esteemed vernacular dramatist, and Calixto Bianchi Santos, a French-Filipino mestizo reputed to be a man of great intellect. These brethren bequeathed a good reputation and lasting favorable impressions in the community.
During the early days of the American occupation, many other residents of good standing in Marikina became Masons, but they joined out-of-town lodges as no lodge as yet existed in the town. Among them were Leodegario Victorino, an ex-superintendent of Schools; Catalino S. Cruz, President of Marikina for two terms, Board Member and Acting Governor of Rizal; Roman L. Santos, ex-Superintendent of Schools; Manuel Alberto, ex-District School Supervisor, Ceferino Legaspi, ex-Municipal President and Felino Guevarra, ex-Justice of the Peace.
It was not until the end of the Second World War that a plan to establish a Masonic lodge in Marikina was initiated. On April 10, 1947, WB Catalino Cruz of Silanganan Lodge No. 18 called for a meeting at the office of the Grand Secretary of the Grand Lodge at the Plaridel Temple which was attended by 18 other Masons. Upon their request, Grand Master Emilio P. Virata issued a dispensation on May 15, 1947 authorizing them to organize a lodge in Marikina, Rizal to go by the name Marikina Lodge.
In January 1948, after the lodge had complied with requirements, it was issued a charted by the Grand Lodge. In the evening of 13 March 1948, Marikina Lodge No. 119 was duly constituted and its officers installed in public ceremonies held at the hall of the Roosevelt Memorial High School in Marikina. Grand Master Albert S. Brazee, Jr., assisted by other Grand Lodge officers, presided over the ceremonies. Brethren from foreign jurisdictions attended the affair. Several officials of the Province of Rizal were also there. During the early years of its existence, Marikina Lodge held its meetings in various places, in the lodge halls of other lodges, in school buildings at Marikina and in buildings and residences of some brethren.
Marikina Lodge has engaged in various charitable undertakings in the community. During the time of WB Minas L. Santos, the lodge made valuable donations to the public school and public library. It also sponsored adult education classes and provided scholarships to less fortunate, but deserving students, in the Marikina School of Arts and Trade.
Like other lodges, Marikina Lodge has gone through difficult times when its roster was depleted and it experienced difficulty in mustering the required quorum. This became the immediate concern of the Masonic District in 1986 during the terms of VW Emilio A. Andrion, Jr., as DDGM, and of VW Rogelio Talastas as President of the Past Masters Guild. Through their campaign several brethren from Rafael Palma Lodge No. 147 and Laong Laan Lodge No. 185, as well as from other lodges, took out dual membership in Marikina Lodge. With its present leaders like Alfredo M. Andres, Feliciano G. Romero, Jr., Paul Fernandez, Cirio Ernani T. Cruz, Gregorio C. Mendoza and Alfredo B. Espino, the lodge is now on a steady course. Presently, the lodge holds its stated meetings at the Capitol Masonic Temple in Quezon City.
Location: Quezon City