Tennessee Masons Consider Removing Rules That Ban Gay Members


NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- The Tennessee Grand Lodge of Masons is considering ending its ban on gay members.

The Masons could vote on the change Thursday.

Matthew Johnson is among the mason who hope the change is made.

"Freemasonry as a whole in the vast majority of cases does not discriminate against homosexuals but we do in Tennessee and in my opinion that's not in line with Freemasonry," said Johnson.

The issue of gay members came to the forefront last year when the Masons suspended Mark Henderson and Dennis Clark.

Henderson says his lodge knew they were a same sex couple but no one questioned it.

That changed when the couple got married.

"We're upset about it because there's a lot we put into it to begin with as far as our time our talents and even our funds," said Henderson.

Henderson says he's not sure if he'll come back to the Masons if the organization repeals its ban.

Chase Geiser is among those pushing for the change.

Geiser demitted from Tennessee's Lodge in protest of the rule.

"I think it has the potential to change lives for the better and therefore society for the better but I can't. It's unconscionable for me to be a member of an organization that discriminates on the basis of sexuality," said Geiser.

Fox 17 reached out to the Masons Grand Master for comment but that call was not returned.

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