Society in the 21st century is very conscious of the benefits of recycling but the Lodge of Truth No.137 has been ahead of the game for some time.
The Installation of their Worshipful Master for the forthcoming year was held at Greenhead Masonic Hall on Thursday, 16th November when Worshipful Brother Richard Brooke accepted the honour for the third time. An examination of the Summons confirms that this is not unusual at Truth, Worshipful Brothers Tom Jenkins and Julian Gunson are members of the Third time around club and the twice through the revolving door brigade is headed by Worshipful Brother George Foster together with Worshipful Brothers John Bramley and Edwin Swannick. All of these Brethren are Provincial Grand Lodge Officers and all have the Rank of Past Provincial Grand Warden; a Lodge truly packed with committed, enthusiastic and talented Senior Brethren.
The Worshipful Master, Worshipful Brother Phillip Dunn having opened the Lodge, the stage was set and upon a report, the Assistant Provincial Grand Master, Worshipful Brother Trevor Bolton was admitted together with Worshipful Brother Chris Oldfield, Elected Member of the Charity Committee and an Escort of Grand Lodge Officers, all under the considered control of Worshipful Brother Craig Bannister, Assistant Provincial Grand Director of Ceremonies.
The Ceremony, the short version, cognisant that W.Bro.Richard was already a Past Master, was conducted with sincerity and dignity including the Presentation and explanation of the Keystone Collaret, competently despatched by Brother Arthur Wainwright. The addresses were delivered in similar fashion, that to the W.M. by Worshipful Brother Walter Pell, to the Wardens by Worshipful Brother John Bramley, who also acted as D.C.with only a weeks notice, and to the surprise of many, that to the Overseers by W.Bro.Richard himself; all completed by that to the Brethren by the Asst.Prov.G.M.,W.Bro.Trevor Bolton.
Officers all appointed and invested and W.Bro.Philip presented with his Past Masters Jewel by W.Bro.Walter, they have been good friends for many years, there was a break from the Agenda. W.Bro.Trevor, Asst.Prov.G.M, called the W.M. to the floor and presented the Lodge with a Grand Patron Collaret, Gold Award next, which W.Bro.Richard was delighted to receive. However in a most generous, but appropriate, gesture, he then placed it around the neck of W.Bro.Philip, also the Charity Steward, where he felt it should, more properly, reside.
The Festive Board, very welcome and appetising was then taken and attention moved to the Toasts. That to the Province was delivered by the Almoner, W.Bro. George who had given one of the most comprehensive Almoners report I have ever heard, well done, It gave the confirmation that he had contacted all Brethren, relatives and dependants since the last meeting and when I spoke to him afterwards he confirmed that was the case. As a Provincial officer himself he pointed out that they regularly take office in the Lodge, are always there to step in the breach and always available to mentor Junior Brethren. This was acknowledged by W.Bro.Trevor in his response who congratulated W.Bro.Richard upon his appointment and, whilst the Lodge has had problems with numbers, was pleased that there was a strong determination and commitment to prevail. Notices for your diary, Christmas Fayre at Greenhead, Sunday 26th Nov., 24 stalls and many of them non-Masonic, very much worth a visit; not forgetting the Christmas Carol Service, Sunday 10th December, Brighouse Central Methodist Church.
Replying to the Toast to the Charities, ably delivered by W.Bro.Philip, W.Bro.Chris emphasised that the Cleeves and Whitehead Trust continued to have sufficient funds to meet its obligations, primarily the Almoners Luncheons and Annual Holiday, to Lytham St Anne’s in 2018. He stressed, a message regularly uttered, that the Trustees are concerned that deserving cases may be slipping under the radar; in this instance we are all Almoners and must be vigilant. He also noted that the M.B.F. receives the vast bulk of its funding from the Annual Festivals. This enables it to support the major expenditures such as, ‘Hope for tomorrow’, mobile chemotherapy units for rural areas, award £2.6m and the replacement of 52 support vehicles for St John Ambulance, award £3m, Mark Masonry can be truly proud of this tangible display of our Charitable principles.
All left confident that the Lodge was well, placed to have a very successful and rewarding year.
Smile; be happy, you are a Mark Master mason.
Worshipful Brother Duncan Smith P.G.S.D.