Lodges desiring to consolidate shall take the following preliminary steps toward effecting a consolidation. (This regulation amended, effective 1/1/2006)
1. A resolution shall be presented at a stated communication proposing and agreeing to a consolidation with the other lodge or lodges named therein. This resolution shall lay over not less than twenty-seven days to a subsequent stated communication of the lodge. [Official Form 14].
2. Immediately after the first presentation of the resolution the Master of the lodge shall announce the date of the subsequent stated communication at which the resolution will be presented for action.
3. The Secretary of each lodge at interest shall within five days notify each member of his lodge of the proposition and the time and place when action will be taken thereon. The notice shall be in writing and forwarded by fully paid first-class United States mail to the last known mail address of the member. [Official Form 15].
4. The Secretary of each lodge shall make the following proof of service, which shall be noted on the minutes of his lodge, and when it is so made it shall be conclusive of the fact: "I hereby certify that I notified each member of _____________ Lodge No. ____, A. F. & A. M., to attend the stated communication of said lodge to be held on __________, 19____ at _____M. at _________________ N.C., by forwarding such notice, together with a notice of the resolution proposing and agreeing to consolidate this lodge with ___________ Lodge No. ____, A. F. & A. M. (and if more than one lodge, the names and numbers of each) by fully prepaid first-class United States mail to his last known address for mail.
5. At the stated communication designated and at which the members are notified to attend, a quorum being present, the Master shall submit this question: "Shall this lodge consolidate with __________ Lodge No. ____ A. F. & A. M. (giving the name and number of each lodge joining in the consolidation)?"
7. If the majority of the ballots are affirmative and if there are less than twenty negative votes, the lodge shall be recorded as in favor of such consolidation. Otherwise the lodge shall be recorded as rejecting such consolidation.
9. A certified copy of such resolution, with a certificate of mailing the notice therein provided for, and a statement of the vote cast for and against such resolution, signed by the Master and the Secretary and under seal of each lodge, shall be sent to the Grand Master and to the Secretary of each lodge interested in the consolidation immediately after the adoption or rejection of such resolution. [Official Form 16].
10. If the Grand Master approves the action, he shall attach his approval thereto and transmit all of the documents to the Grand Secretary for the permanent records of the Grand Lodge, and immediately notify the Master of each interested lodge of his approval of such consolidation, and the consolidation shall be effective from the date of his approval. [48-3.1].
11. The Master of a lodge ceasing to exist by consolidation shall immediately transmit to the Grand Secretary the charter and the seal of his lodge, and such Master shall rank as a Past Master from the date the charter and seal are transmitted to the Grand Secretary, without regard to the term for which such Master was elected. [56-3; Chapter 53].
If after due notice as herein provided for and at a communication held in pursuance thereof, a quorum is not present, then the Grand Master shall fix a subsequent stated communication of the lodge for the consideration of the resolution, and the Grand Secretary shall issue a notice to all members of the lodge as hereinbefore provided, therein requiring their presence. At the time fixed by the Grand Master, he or his authorized representative with the members of the lodge then in attendance, but not less than seven such members, shall open the lodge and transact the business thereof and vote on the resolution proposing consolidation. If a majority of the members of the lodge vote Yes, then the lodge shall be recorded as in favor thereof. If at least twenty members vote No, then the lodge shall be recorded as rejecting such consolidation.
The name and number of the consolidated lodge shall be that of the oldest lodge consolidated considering the date of charter, and no new charter shall be necessary, nor shall it be necessary to constitute the lodge again.
2. The Grand Master may order an election of officers of the consolidated lodge for the unexpired term, such election to be held at a stated communication thereof to be designated by him, and he may name the brethren who shall act as Master and Wardens at such election. The provisions of Chapters 54 and 55 shall be observed as far as they can be made to apply to such election and installation. [57-4].
3. The by-laws of the consolidated lodge shall be those of the senior lodge which were in effect at the time of the consolidation, and the stated communication of the consolidated lodge, until properly changed, shall be at the time fixed in those by-laws.
4. The territorial jurisdiction of a consolidated lodge shall be as provided in Chapter 42.
5. All members and unfinished material of a lodge or lodges ceasing to exist by the consolidation shall become members and unfinished material of the consolidated lodge. Unfinished material may be advanced in the same manner as if he were elected and initiated in the consolidated lodge.
6. All books, records, funds, and property of every kind or nature, except charters and seals, of the lodge or lodges ceasing to exist, together with all accounts receivable, including unpaid dues and endowed memberships, shall become the property of the consolidated lodge, and the consolidated lodge shall assume and be responsible for all debts and obligations of the lodges so consolidated or merged.
7. Any life member or honorary member of a lodge ceasing to exist shall retain his same status in the consolidated lodge. [48-1.11].
When the consolidation has been completed, the Secretary of the consolidated lodge shall notify the Grand Secretary of the first stated or emergent communication held after the consolidation becomes effective.