From WBro Damien of Devoiton
Benedykt (GM 2014-16), like his predecessor MWPGM Bob Jones, has been the guest of honour at
several Special Shabbat
Services at Temple Beth Israel in St Kilda.
MWBro Benedykt is our second Jewish Grand Master, the first being the late MWBro. Henry Nathan (1982-1984). Nearly 250 Freemasons and their partners, together with the regular congregants, filled the synagogue to capacity for a special Shabbat Service at Temple Beth Israel on Saturday 4 July 2015.
I’ve had several Brothers proudly point out with pride that our Grand Master is Jewish. The pride comes in a practical display that Freemasonry values a man’s character and not his bank balance, political leanings, social position and does not judge a person by faith they belong to. At Devotion we have 3 VSLs open during our meeting; a symbol of the unity Freemasonry creates amongst diverse men.
When I think of famous illustrious Australian Freemasons, the giant Sir Isaac Alfred Isaacs (1855–1948) comes to mind. He was Governor-General, Attorney-General, High Court Judge and politician. Elected to the first Federal Parliament of Australia, he was initiated in Antrim No 349 Irish Const and was a member of Australia Felix #1 and first Grand Register(1889-1890) of UGLV. Sir Isaacs also a member of the Jewish faith like many other notable Australians like General Sir John Monash (who was not a Freemason).
If you want to poke around and learn something of Australian Hebrew Freemasons, Brother Rabbi Dr Raymond Apple AO has a great blog which consistently appears on google results when researching this topic. Check out http://www.oztorah.com/index.php?s=Freemason You quickly learn of the rich association between Freemasonry, Judaism and Australian history. That research shows there is nothing new in having a leader of our Craft from that faith, even though Victoria has only has two Jewish Grand Masters.
Here are some historical snippets from various sources;