ISSUE 10, July 2004
John Pine: A sociable craftsman
Jumping for Joy: Skydiving for charity
Quarterly Communication: Speeches of: the Grand Master, the Pro Grand Master and, Report of the Board of General Purposes
Supreme Grand Chapter: Address of the First Grand Principal and Report of the Committee of General Purposes
Royal Arch: Cheshire gives a lead
  Walking with the greats: Bath Masonic Hall
Motoring in style: Classic Vehicle Club
Masonic education: A daily advancement and Events for your diary
Travel: Portugal
Library & Museum of Freemasonry
International: A warm welcome in Malta
Masonic ritual: Spoilt for choice
Public relations: Sheffield; Dorset; Chelsea Flower Show; Freemasons' Hall
Letters, Book reviews, Gardening

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Worcestershire PGM
Richard Goddard has
driven the programme

   An example is the training and education programme of the Masonic Province of Worcestershire, which has one prime aim – to help Masons understand, enjoy and be confident in their masonry, and by this to retain them in the Craft.
     Over the last ten years the Province has developed a programme with an emphasis on helping brethren understand, perform and be comfortable in the various offices and roles in which they will find themselves in their progression towards the chair.
     Many brethren find ritual and the associated learning difficult and they can often be the most dedicated and committed Masons. But someone who is nervous, uncomfortable and unsure is not going to enjoy his Masonry and is certainly not going to convey any enjoyment to others.
     Thus seminars have been introduced entitled “Towards the Master’s Chair, “The Role and Work of the Junior Officers”, “The Director of Ceremonies” as well as training sessions for treasurers, secretaries and almoners. These programmes are well attended and very popular.
     A history of the Craft and the Provincial Grand Lodge of Worcestershire, entitled Freemasonry - Fact not Fiction written by Joe Grainger, is presented to every initiate, and provides the basis for an ongoing programme of training and education throughout the Province.
     Worcestershire is encouraging the establishment of Provincial Lodge of Instruction Festivals to be held annually, where Entered Apprentices, Fellowcrafts and Master Masons and elders in the Craft work together to present an interesting and stimulating evening of Masonic interest.
     The Guild of Worcestershire Preceptors has been formed consisting of all the Preceptors, present and past of all the Lodges in the Province, as a forum for the members to discuss and disseminate information on good practice within those Lodges.
     By its nature it focuses on the practicalities of the ceremonies, but is also charged with stimulating a culture of learning and to advance the knowledge of the history, meaning and purpose of Freemasonry.
     Last year saw the launch of the publication A Daily Advancement in Masonic Knowledge – Fifty Short Talks on the Craft – see The response and sales are now worldwide.
     As the possessor of an historian in Richard Goddard as Provincial Grand Master, the implementation of these objectives is driven from the highest level. With what is said to be the finest Masonic museum outside of Grand Lodge, the Province regularly arranges guided tours of the museum. The many precious artefacts, jewels and books, are always on show. Visitors are always welcome.
     Worcestershire Provincial Grand Stewards Lodge No. 9142 is actively engaged with a series of presentations that are intended to stimulate discussion about the content of our ritual, and a deeper and more fully understood appreciation of Freemasonry.
     Worcestershire Installed Masters Lodge No. 6889 is extremely active and provides another forum for a programme of continuing Masonic education, being host over the years to a glittering array of speakers and demonstrations.
     A recent initiative in many Lodges in the Province is to charge a senior member of the Lodge to be what is called a Master of Novices, or the Mentor. His role is to accompany junior brethren when they have to leave the Lodge room for some ceremonies or parts of ceremonies.
     They talk to them and prepare them for their next ceremony and help them understand the background and meaning of Masonry. A Seminar is being prepared to deal with the role and duties of such important responsibilities.
     It is planned to produce a set of three booklets so that every Lodge can introduce a properly structured programme of informative training to run in parallel with the traditional LOI activities.
     This will provide a guide in the form of a series of informative notes about each of the three degrees. This publication will be expanded later to include a guide for every office in the Craft, thus providing the basis for an ongoing programme of training and education.
     In such ways Worcestershire is trying to balance both education and training. In the narrowest sense, training is the preparation for the duties brethren hold or will hold in the Lodge.
     Education is the broadening of the mind, the stimulation to a deeper understanding of the foundations of the temple Masonry strives to build in all men’s hearts.

Ray Hollins has been a Freemason for 50 years, and was formerly both Senior Lecturer at the University of Central England and Principal Examiner in Management subjects for the Chartered Institute of Building