Frederic Desmons (1832 - 1910)

ADVERTISEMENT BY ANCESTRY.COM

Summary

Frederic Desmons’s biography is built and maintained by people like you. Create an online profile of Frédéric so that his life is remembered forever. If any factual information is incorrect, please edit Frédéric’s biography.

[external link]édéric_Desmons
[external link]


[external link]

Frédéric Desmons et "la liberté absolue de conscience" au GODF
24 JUIN 2015 PAR PHILIPPE FLEUTOT BLOG : LE BLOG DE PHILIPPE FLEUTOT

Frédéric Desmons (1832 - 1910) : « La franc-maçonnerie, la liberté absolue de conscience et la solidarité humaine »

Frédéric Desmons est né en 1832 à Brignon, petite commune du département du Gard, entre Nîmes et Alès. Il fait ses études au collège d’Alès, puis à la pension Lavondès à Nîmes.

Il suit ensuite les cours de la Faculté de théologie de Genève, fief du protestantisme calviniste, où il se prépare à embrasser le ministère pastoral. Il est reçu docteur en théologie en 1855.

De retour en France, Frédéric Desmons devient successivement pasteur de l’Église Réformée de 1856 à 1881, à Ners dans le Gard, puis à Vals-les-Bains en Ardèche, et enfin à Saint Géniès de Malgoirès dans le Gard, à quelques kilomètres à peine de Brignon.

Le Franc-maçon

Frédéric Desmons est initié le 18 janvier 1863 à la franc-maçonnerie au sein de la loge L'Echo du Grand Orient de France fondée à Nîmes quelques années plus tôt en 1857 par un certain Firmin Fatalot, cadre aux chemins de fer. Il y obtient tout à fait régulièrement les trois degrés symboliques.

En 1867, Frédéric Desmons quitte sa loge-mère pour fonder, à Saint-Géniès de Malgoirès, un autre atelier sous le nom distinctif de Le Progrès.

Dès 1873, il entre au Conseil de l'Ordre du GODF. Il reste vigilant à tous les vœux des loges concernant la suppression des références à l’existence de Dieu et à l'immortalité de l'âme et s'oppose de nombreuses reprises aux « conservateurs » de l'obédience. Lors du convent de 1877, Frédéric Desmons est nommé rapporteur du vœu n°IX émanant de la loge La Fraternité progressive de Villefranche-sur-Saône visant la révision de l'article 1er de la constitution du Grand Orient de France. À cette occasion, devant les représentants des Loges, Desmons prononce un discours au sujet de la formule de l’article premier de la constitution de 1849, qui va passer à la postérité et emporter l'adhésion enthousiaste d'une majorité de vénérables :

« (…) Nous demandons la suppression du second paragraphe de l’article premier de notre Constitution parce qu’il nous paraît contradictoire avec le paragraphe suivant du même article.

Nous demandons cette suppression parce que cette formule nous paraît devoir créer bien souvent des embarras à bien des Vénérables et à bien des Loges qui, dans certaines circonstances sont contraints, ou bien d’éluder la loi, ou bien de la violer.

Or, la Maçonnerie ne doit-elle pas donner toujours l’exemple de l’observation et du respect de la loi ?

Nous demandons la suppression de cette formule parce que, embarrassante pour les Vénérables et les Loges, elle ne l’est pas moins pour bien des profanes qui, animés du sincère désir de faire partie de notre grande et belle institution qu’on leur a dépeinte, à bon droit, comme une Institution large et progressive, se voient tout à coup arrêtés par cette barrière dogmatique que leur conscience ne leur permet pas de franchir.

Nous demandons la suppression de cette formule parce qu’elle nous paraît tout à fait inutile et étrangère au but de la Maçonnerie. – Quand une société de savants se réunit pour étudier une question scientifique, se sent-elle obligée de mettre à la base de ses statuts une formule théologique quelconque ? – Non n’est-ce pas ? – Ils étudient la science indépendamment de toute idée dogmatique ou religieuse. – Ne doit-il pas en être de même de la Maçonnerie ? Son champ n’est-il pas assez vaste, son domaine assez étendu, pour qu’il ne lui soit point nécessaire de mettre le pied sur un terrain qui n’est point le sien ?

Non. Laissons aux théologiens le soin de discuter les dogmes. Laissons aux Églises autoritaires le soin de formuler leur syllabus. – Mais que la Maçonnerie reste ce qu’elle doit être, c’est-à-dire une institution ouverte à tous les progrès, à toutes les idées morales et élevées, à toutes les aspirations larges et libérales. Qu’elle ne descende jamais dans l’arène brûlante des discussions théologiques qui n’ont jamais amené – croyez-en celui qui vous parle – que des troubles ou des persécutions. – Qu’elle se garde de vouloir être une Église, un Concile, un Synode, car toutes les Églises, tous les Conciles, tous les Synodes ont été violents et persécuteurs – et cela pour avoir toujours pris pour base le dogme – qui, de sa nature est essentiellement inquisiteur et intolérant. Que la Maçonnerie plane donc majestueusement au-dessus de toutes ces questions d’Églises ou de sectes, qu’elle domine de toute sa hauteur toutes leurs discussions, qu’elle reste le vaste abri toujours ouvert à tous les esprits généreux et vaillants, à tous les chercheurs consciencieux et désintéressés de la vérité, à toutes les victimes enfin du despotisme et de l’intolérance.

Telle est, mes Frères, la conclusion à laquelle est arrivée votre Commission, et, si quand il s’est agi de la question d’opportunité, nous avons été 8 contre 1, j’ai la joie de vous dire que, pour toutes les raisons que je viens de vous rappeler, nous avons été unanimes à adopter la résolution suivante que nous avons la faveur de vous proposer :

1° L’Assemblée, considérant que la Franc-Maçonnerie n’est pas une religion ; qu’elle n’a point par conséquent à affirmer dans sa Constitution des doctrines ou des dogmes. « Adopte le vœu n° IX ».

2° L’Assemblée décide que le second paragraphe de l’article 1er de la Constitution aura la teneur suivante : « La Franc-Maçonnerie a pour principes la liberté absolue de conscience et la solidarité humaine ».

3° L’Assemblée supprime, comme formant double emploi avec le second paragraphe modifié, le paragraphe 3 ainsi conçu : « La Franc-Maçonnerie regarde la liberté de conscience comme un droit propre à chaque homme et n’exclut personne pour ses croyances ».

4° L’Assemblée décide enfin que l’art. 1er de la Constitution aura désormais la teneur suivante : « La Franc-Maçonnerie, institution essentiellement philanthropique, philosophique et progressive a pour objet la recherche de la vérité, l’étude de la morale universelle, des sciences et des arts et l’exercice de la bienfaisance. Elle a pour principes la liberté absolue de conscience et la solidarité humaine. Elle a pour devise : Liberté. Égalité. Fraternité ».

Si ces propositions sont adoptées par l’Assemblée, votre Commission vous propose d’inviter le Conseil de l’Ordre à étudier la question relative à la révision des rituels actuellement en usage (…) ».

En 1877, le Grand Orient de France rejoint donc les Grands Orients de Belgique et d'Italie, la Grande Loge de Buenos-Aires et la Grande Loge de Hongrie qui avaient adopté la même résolution quelques années auparavant. Depuis, le Grand Orient de France fait l'objet d'une mesure d'ostracisme de la part de la maçonnerie anglo-saxonne.

Devenu un personnage de premier plan, Frédéric Desmons est élu président du Conseil de l’Ordre du Grand Orient de France à cinq reprises : de 1889 à 1891, de 1896 à 1898, de 1900 à 1902, de 1905 à 1907, et en 1909... jusqu'à son décès en 1910.

Biographie

Les extraits de l’intervention de Frédéric Desmons au Convent de 1877 sont tirés de la biographie de Daniel Ligou : « Frédéric Desmons et la Franc-Maçonnerie sous la IIIe République » , ouvrage réédité en 2012 par Théolib, collection Sources Laïques, 310 pages, 28€ + frais de port. commande directe à Pierre-Yves Ruff, Écrivain-Editeur : Théolib • Maison d’édition associative - La Saulnerie de Bas – 50750 Saint-Martin de Bonfossé – [contact link] – 02 33 55 07 10 • 06 89 96 79 87 - [external link]

Frederic Desmons Biography & Family History

This genealogy profile is dedicated to the life and ancestry of Frederic Desmons and his immediate Desmons family. Add to Frederic Desmons's genealogy page to share your memories & historical research with his family and other genealogy hobbyists.

Birth

at Bringon, France,

Death

Cause of death

There is no cause of death listed for Frédéric.

Burial / Funeral

Cimetière Saint Géniès de Malgoirès,
3 Route de Mauressargues, Saint Géniès de Malgoirès, Departement du Gard County, Languedoc-Roussillon France

Obituary

Last Known Residence

Did Frédéric move a lot? Did he emigrate from another country? Add Frédéric's last known location.

Average Age

Family

Father: Frederic Sr. Desmons
Mother: Françoise Emilie Bernis

Education

He studied in Nîmes and then went on to study theology in Geneva, the stronghold of Calvinism

Professions

Organizations

Add organizations, groups and memberships.

Military Service

It is unknown if Frederic Desmons is a military veteran.

Middle name

Unknown. Add middle name

Surnames

Ethnicity

Unknown. Add Frédéric's ethnicity.

Nationality

Unknown. Add Frédéric's nationality.

Religion

Unknown. Was Frédéric a religious man? Add Frédéric’s religion

Gender

Male

Family Photos

Pictures really do say a thousand words. Add photos of Frédéric during various points of his life.

Timeline

1832 - In the year that Frederic Desmons was born, by February 12th, a cholera epidemic in London claimed at least 3,000 lives - it eventually killed 6,536. The epidemic spread to France and North America later in the year. Cholera is spread through contaminated food and water but at the time, it was thought to be spread by a "miasma” - a bad smell - in the air.

1844 - Frédéric was merely 12 years old when on July 3rd, the last known pair of great auk were killed in Iceland. A flightless bird, the average auk was about 33 inches tall and weighed about 11 pounds with a black back and white belly. They were most often found along the coast of Greenland, Iceland, Norway, Canada Great Britain, Ireland - and sometimes as far south as Spain.

1864 - When he was 32 years old, on October 5th, a cyclone killed 70,000 people in Calcutta, India. Calcutta is in a "very high damage risk" cyclone zone, although this was an especially powerful one.

1892 - He was 60 years old when on October 12th, the "Pledge of Allegiance" was first recited in unison by students in U.S. public schools. Composed the previous August by Francis Bellamy, it was to be recited in 15 seconds and originally read: "I pledge allegiance to my Flag and the Republic for which it stands, one nation, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all." "Under God" was added in the 1950's.

1910 - In the year of Frederic Desmons's passing, Halley's comet, which returns past the earth every 75 - 76 years was observed photographically for the first time. Two fortuitous events occurred - photography had been invented since the last time the comet had passed and the comet was relatively close. There was panic because one astronomer claimed that the gas from its tail "would impregnate the atmosphere and possibly snuff out all life on the planet." People bought gas masks, "anti-comet pills" and "anti-comet umbrellas".

Frederic Desmons Family Tree

Who was Frédéric’s parents? Did he get married and did they have children? Share Frédéric’s family tree to share his legacy and genealogy pedigree.

You can add or remove people from Frédéric's family tree by clicking here.

Obituary

This obit of Frederic Desmons is updated by the community. Edit this biography to contribute to his obituary. Include details such as cemetery, burial, newspaper obituary and grave or marker inscription if available.

Youth

Frédéric Desmons was born in 1832 in Brignon , a small town in the Gard department, between Nîmes and Alès . He studied at Alès College and then at the Lavondès Pension in Nîmes. He then attended the Protestant Faculty of Protestant Theology in Geneva , a stronghold of Calvinist Protestantism , where he prepared to embrace pastoral ministry. He received a doctorate in theology in 1855 1 .

Back in France, Frédéric Desmons successively became pastor of the Reformed Church from 1856 to 1881, in Ners in Gard , then in Vals-les-Bains in Ardèche , and finally in Saint Géniès de Malgoirès in the Gard, a few kilometers hardly of Brignon 1 .


Frédéric Desmons was initiated March 8, 1861 in Freemasonry in the box The Echo of the Grand Orient . In 1867 , he left his lodge mother to found, in Saint-Geniès-de-Malgoires , another workshop, under the distinctive name of Le Progrès which he became venerable in 1870 1 .

FREEMASON

From 1873 , he joined the council of the Grand Orient of France (GODF). He remains vigilant to all the wishes of the lodges concerning the suppression of references to the existence of God and the immortality of the soul and opposes, on many occasions, the "conservatives" of the obedience. During the convent of 1877 , Frédéric Desmons was appointed rapporteur of the vow n ° IX emanating from the box The Progressive Brotherhood of Villefranche-sur-Saone , aiming at the revision of the article 1 of the constitution of the Grand Orient of France. On this occasion, before the representatives of the lodges, he made a speech about the formula of the first article of the constitution of 1849, which will pass to the posterity and carry away the enthusiastic adhesion of a majority of delegate of the convent :
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
"(...) We ask the suppression of this formula because, embarrassing for the venerable ones and the lodges, it is not less for many laymen who, animated with the sincere desire to be part of our great and beautiful Institution that they have rightly been portrayed as a broad and progressive institution, are suddenly arrested by this dogmatic barrier which their conscience does not allow them to cross.

We demand the suppression of this formula because it seems to us quite useless and foreign to the goal of Masonry. [...] No. Let theologians discuss dogmas. Let the authoritarian churches take care to formulate their syllabus. - But that Masonry remains what it should be, that is to say, an institution open to all progress, to all moral and elevated ideas, to all broad and liberal aspirations (...) 2] »
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

This proposition along with his speech ends in the end of the obligation of belief in the existence of God for the members of the GODF. Historians agree that Desmons never supported the idea of ​​a mandatory atheism in liberal masonry, having himself remained deeply deistic 1 . Having become a prominent figure, Frédéric Desmons was elected chairman of the GODF Order on five occasions: from 1889 to 1891, from 1896 to 1898, from 1900 to 1902, from 1905 to 1907, and in 1909 until his death in 1910.

In 2017, a box of the Grand Orient of France bears the name of "Frédéric Desmons Laïcité"

Political career

Marked by his encounters with exiles during his stay in Switzerland and by his "Protestant culture" , Frédéric Desmons began a political career under the colors of the Republicans from 1877, when he was elected general councilor of the canton of Vézénobres ( Gard ) , after the death of Étienne Ducamp . However, this campaign, which opposes two Republican lists, is very hard. Desmons is under attack from conservatives as well as from his own political camp on the apparent contradiction between his pastoral office and state secularization projects. Aware of the long-term problem, he chose to resign, regretfully, from his pastoral ministry in 1881.

He makes his decision public, in his profession of faith of candidate for the deputation, which testifies just as much of the roughness of the political fight at that time, including within the same camp Republican, as of the attachment of Desmons to its function minister of religion. It also helps to understand that his political commitment predates the fall of the Second Empire .

From 1881 to 1894, Frederic Desmons is a member of the Gard.

From 1894 to 1909, he was Senator Radical of Gard. Desmons enters the republican fight with passion and determination alongside Léon Bourgeois and Emile Combes , notably for the defense of the secularism of institutions and the separation of Church and State, the laws on associations. He is vice-president of the Senate from 1902 to 1905. In this capacity of vice-president, he represents France, in the company of Ferdinand de Lesseps at the inauguration of the Statue of Liberty in New York in 1886. The Masons and the Grand Orient of France actively participated in the financing of this statue representing freedom and the republican ideal. Opposed to the accumulation of the mandates, he was never mayor of Brignon.

Desmons Award - The Brignon Roller

Every year, on December 9th, the anniversary of the 1905 law on the separation of churches and the state , the Maison Frédéric Desmons association (AMFD), in partnership with the Ligue de l'enseignement , honors a personality who worked for freedom of conscience and secularism 3 . The prize given to this personality, entitled "The Pebble of Brignon" , is the work and the creation of the sculptor Henri Aram Hairabedian 4 .

For its 2015 edition, this prize has been awarded to the general rapporteur of the Observatory of Laïcité , the Gardois Nicolas Cadène


[external link]édéric_Desmons

Memories

What do you remember about Frederic Desmons? Share your memories of special moments and stories you have heard about him. Or just leave a comment to show the world that Frédéric is remembered.

Write a comment

Other Records of Frederic Desmons

ADVERTISEMENT BY ANCESTRY.COM

Sources

Success Stories from Biographies like Frederic Desmons

I have to tell you a VERY special story about how AncientFaces helped to reunite our family. For 13 years, I have been searching for my grandmother's missing sister. She just disappeared from the family in the 1930s without a trace. No one ever knew where or when she died or where she was buried. My years of searching have just run into dead ends, so I had given up. Today, out-of-the-blue, a young lady called me and said that she had seen a photograph on AncientFaces and one of the women in the photo was her grandmother! Little did I know that she had left a small child behind when she died so young of TB. You can imagine our shock and excitement at finding each other and a whole new family that we never knew existed. We only live one state away from each other and very soon plan to have all family members meet to share our sides of "the story" and of course, many, many more picturesl AncientFaces...... without you, this family may never have been complete and Aunt Grace would have been lost to us forever. I hope you realize what a valuable service you provide and how grateful we are to have found you. Thank you!!!! -Lynda B.
I never knew my biological family. My family is my mother and father who raised me. But, as I got older I got curious about my heritage. It took me years of investigation to finally discover my parents’ names. Well, I get goosebumps just writing this, I have found my biological family because of AncientFaces. Yes!! I did a search for my [parents' names] and was shocked to find a photo of them on AncientFaces! I cannot tell you the feeling that came over me when I saw this photo - to see the faces of my biological parents…JUST LIKE THAT. I left a comment on the photo and you won’t believe this - the owner of the photo is MY SISTER!!! Yes, I have a LITTLE sister! It turns out my parents were too young when they had me and had to give me up. My little sister knew I existed and wanted to find me but had no way of doing it. Thanks to you I am meeting my little sister for the first time next month. GOD BLESS YOU ANCIENTFACES. -Anonymous
We have found our missing relative entirely thanks to AncientFaces. We have received a much clearer photo of Captain Grant from his Son. The picture we on AncientFaces is an old yellowed newspaper photo. I am attaching the new photo and ask that you take the old one out and put the new clear picture in its place. With our Canadian Remembrance Day here in 2 days - the timing could not be better. Thank You, AncientFaces. My long lost Aunt is now 86 years old and her Son and I are talking by phone and e-mails. Captain Grant was his Father and died in France in 1944 and is buried there. By posting pictures of the visit to his gravesite - we connected through one of his brothers. Amazing that our prayers have been answered. Thank you -Beth B.
I came home for lunch yesterday and decided to look at my email before going back to work. The weekly newsletter that I subscribe to from the Logan Family History Center had this message in it about AncientFaces. I clicked on the link and the first search I did was for Woodruff, and Mamie was the first picture that came up. I could hardly stand it. I was late getting back to work. I had to add comments and write to you. Thank you for noticing her in the store and for the website. I can't help but wonder how many other family pictures may have ended up in that store and why. I also can't help but feel that it was meant to be and that there is a purpose that this picture is coming home as you say. What are the chances of this all just happening? It's amazing that you even picked it up at the store and then went to all the extra effort to post it. It makes me feel as though you have been my friend forever. It certainly has given me a connection to you, and I have a love for what you do. I just can't tell you how excited I am. I can't even hold it in. -Cathy K., Utah
I have previously submitted several pictures of my grandfather August Zemidat. I have tried for many years to find anyone with that name, and I have searched many genealogy web sites to no avail. Recently I was contacted by someone who saw my pictures on AncientFaces who may well be a cousin. She also provided me with information that seems to indicate her grandparents were my grandfather’s siblings. Considering the many years I have been searching for the name Zemidat, I find this is absolutely amazing that I have finally found a family member. Thank you AncientFaces -Ron D.
I love AncientFaces, a while back I saw that you had labeled Garcia surname pictures. At the time I didn’t have all my family facts for my research. Anyway, I wandered into your site just to check it out AND NOW 1 YEAR LATER I received a picture from an 87 year old aunt and guess what you had this very same picture on your site!! (They were my great aunts and my great-grandmother!). Thank you… -Angela M.
I have loved AncientFaces since I first found it, it's the first thing I check when I turn on the computer. There was a time when even in the most modest households there were three cherished possessions, a family Bible. a family album and a fancy lamp. It was usual for the family to gather in the parlour, generally on Sunday and talk, tell stories of family and friends with the photos in the albums as illustration. Sadly in our modern electronic age we have fallen away from the oral tradition and interest in history has waned. I was quite shocked on the anniversary of the sinking of the Titanic to see so many comments from younger people who were surprised to learn that the Titanic wasn't just a movie. This is why AncientFaces is so important, to me it's the electronic age version of the oral tradition on a global scale and the sheer volume of people who follow, comment and contribute seems to prove the point. We are all grateful to you all for providing us with this wonderful site. - Arba M.