“Willkommen Bruder” is the standard greeting a Brother may hear as they step through the doors of Hermann - Humboldt Lodge No. 125 in Warminster, Pennsylvania, home to the oldest German-speaking lodge in the United States.

Since 1810, all degrees have been done in German in addition to English, and members wouldn’t want it any other way.

Newly inducted Erwürdiger Meister (Worshipful Master) Scott Wolfertz, 32°, has been a member of Hermann Humboldt Lodge for the last nine years, and a Scottish Rite Mason since 2010. Brother Wolfertz decided to join Hermann Humboldt Lodge after attending one of their stated meetings shortly after being raised. Having served in the military, he appreciated the way the lodge recognized Brother veterans at that initial November stated meeting.

“I was asked to sit in on a meeting where they had World War II vets and they had each of them stand up and they were acknowledged, and I thought that was such a neat tribute for them,” he said.

At Brother Wolfertz’s initial visit to Hermann Humboldt lodge, he said his ability to speak and understand the German language at that point was fair. He spoke German during his time in the U.S. Army, but was a bit out of practice since then.

“My love for German started in the third grade, when we had a really lovely German exchange student,” Brother Wolfertz confessed.

Now, with over a decade reciting ritual and conversing in German regularly, Wolfertz could walk up to his third-grade crush and confess his admiration to her in her native language (though he’d better not – Wolfertz is now a happily married man!).

The love for the German language is what motivates many of its lodge members to travel from all regions of Pennsylvania to take part in the conversations and comradery. The lodge comprises about 130 members, comparable to what it was at the end of 1859, when waves of German-speaking immigrants arrived to the area.

Hermann - Humboldt Lodge No. 125

In 2002, Hermann Lodge No. 125 merged with Humboldt Lodge No. 359, to form what is now Hermann -Humboldt Lodge, as a result of dwindling membership in the 1990s.

Herman - Humboldt Lodge, located at 850 N. Norristown Road in Warminster, has a vibrant mix of both older and younger Brothers, Wolfertz said.

“All members are very helpful teaching ritual to the younger guys,” Wolfertz said. "I am especially grateful for the hundreds of hours Brother Siegfried Koschewitz, PM, invested in mentoring me," he added.

Masonic Brothers studying German ritual
Brother Seigfried Koschewitz, 32° (sitting), helps Brother Scott Wolfertz, 32°, study German ritual.

Lodge activities include Oktoberfest and bowling nights, as well as participating in the popular Von Steuben Day Parade in Philadelphia, an event dedicated to celebrating German-American heritage and pride. To learn more about Herman Humboldt Lodge, visit their website at https://www.hermann-humboldt-lodge-125.com/ or reach out to Brother Scott Wolfertz at (267) 784-5960.

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