Berenger Sauniere and Emma Calve – How did they meet and were they members of a Secret Society?
“The Masonic collar of Abbe Berenger Sauniere, found among his possessions” – that`s the antique green collar. The blue collars are modern collars of Memphis-Mizraim, the single one is a Grand Master collar like his. The room is the Lodge of Memphis-Mizraim at Versallies.
Rennes-le-Chateau researcher Gerard de Sede wrote that “No one will ever know exactly how the Abbe Berenger Sauniere and opera diva Emma Calve met one another.” De Sede had interviewed those related to the mystery who had known the original RLC players in person. La Diva was the queen of the occult in her time, were she and Sauniere involved with the same secret society? Author Patrice Chaplin has written much about the relationship between these two at Sauniere`s retreat in Girona, northern Spain along with information regarding the Girona Rosicrucian-based “private society” and their activities throughout the history of the region which goes back to the Templars. Her findings will enlighten us on this subject.
The diary of Rodrigo de Saenz de Castillon describes the meeting of the priest and the opera singer in Paris during the year of 1893 (de Sede thought that they had met in 1891):
18 May “After the departure of her guests and also JB her manager and eminence grise and ? – who had urgent business in Paris (Another and younger mistress Leconte whispered to me gleefully as he too left for the railway station in Millau.) La Diva declared herself to be in need of a little holiday and put it to me that as I was obviously in no hurry to return to Paris or anywhere else that I accompany her on a tour of the South with a visit to a most interesting priest with whom she had become acquainted in 1893 in Paris. They met in the Church of St. Sulpice where she often goes to hear Mass. He introduced himself saying that he was a devotee of the opera. He also gave evidence that he is an initiate of the Craft. Delighted she invited him to one of her soirees and they have kept up some sort of correspondence since. This priest Sauniere holds the benefice of some backwoods place called Rennes le Chateau deep in the Languedoc. All that part of the Languedoc is, according to La Diva steeped in history, mystery, supernatural happenings, a cradle of kings, a refuge for Cathars and Templars with hoards of hidden treasure waiting to be discovered in undiscovered caves and grottoes and powerful occult secrets too waiting to empower those who can uncover and interpret them, to those who can decipher certain clues hidden in nature and man-made structures and monuments also. She told me all this as we took our ease that warm drowsy spring afternoon on the lawn at the foot of the castle walls. It would appear that this curé is a man with a special gift for divining such things something akin perhaps to a dowser or water diviner and that he is also a man with a SECRET. I emphasize this because La Diva put plenty of emphasis on it as she told it to me. She would not explain further as to what this SECRET might be no, not even to me a fellow Martinist and Traveller in the Path. Does she know what it is?”
Here Don Rodrigo reveals that he and Emma were Martinists. This was no mere fad for Don Rodrigo, his great uncle was one of the founders of Martinism and was with Martinez de Pasqually in the Carribean with the other members of Elus Cohen who formulated the doctrine of the sect. Could this connection explain the Masonic regalia discovered with the possessions of Abbe Sauniere?
The research of Patrice Chaplin in northern Spain outlines the basic tenets of the esoteric group who practiced undercover for generations. It contains Kabbalistic elements which include Egyptian names and references. Kabbalists of the Jewish tradition use no Egyptian references because their ancestors were held prisoner as slaves in Egypt. Also, the Kabbalah diagrams drawn by the Rosicrucians utilize only the Hebrew names on the Tree of the Sephiroth, there are no Egyptian terms used. From whence does this combined tradition of the Hebrew and Egyptian originate? Is it a branch of Freemasonry?
The Martinist Lodge still exists. Using the information from the Castillon diary, we know that Emma and Rodrigo were Martinists. Sauniere`s name has been found on a sign-in sheet of a 19th c. Martinist meeting in Lyon. Emma also makes mention of the priest belonging to this sect.
Modern day Martinists are a branch of the Memphis-Mizraim Lodge of Freemasonry, these are both Egyptian names. “Memphis” is of course a famous city in Egypt and “Mizraim” is the family from which the Egyptians descend in the “Table of Nations” from Genesis 10 in the Bible. Examination of present-day Martinist masonic collars reveals the insignias of the structured Masonic offices. The collar owned by Sauniere is that of the Grand Master!
It is rumored that Sauniere was a high-ranking Freemason and this proves it. He was Grand Master of the local Lodge of Memphis-Mizraim Freemasonry and a Martinist.
Does this mean that the private society in Girona and their journey of initiation is Martinist in origin? They are very secretive due to the opposition of the Roman church over the centuries. At least we have discovered the group to which Emma and Berenger belonged thanks to the diary of Don Rodrigo.