ISSUE 17, April 2006
Historic: The Brother who designed the Spitfire
Travel: The charm of Kerala
Grand Lodge: Pro Grand Master's speech and Quarterly Communication
Public Relations: Hottest spot in town
International: Emulation in Bulgaria and Mauritius takes a leap forward and Hungary's Royal Arch library
Library & Museum: Recent acquisitions
Masonic Bibles: Lodges and their Bibles
    Royal Masonic Girls' School: My thanks to the Freemasons
Holocaust: The Count of Auschwitz
Education: International conference on the history of Freemasonry and Events
Specialist Lodges: Masonry universal - via radio
Masonic Charities: Grand Charity continues to help those in need and New Masonic Samaritan Fund and Royal Masonic Benevolent Institution and Royal Masonic Trust for Girls and Boys
Grand Charity: The Tsunami - one year on and Important Gift Aid information
Letters, Book Reviews, and Gardening

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Dangers of reading ritual
The reading of prayers at our meetings, which is ordered or recommended by some Provinces, has always seemed to me wrong, and Comp. Salisbury’s suggestion (MQ, Issue No. 15) that this practice should be extended to Obligations is very disturbing.
    The problems with any Brother reading the ritual is that he will rarely, if ever, even look at it beforehand. He comes to the meeting knowing that he can read it, and then proceeds to get the sense all wrong, stumble over difficult words or obscure names and the real meaning is lost.
    It is only by learning the ritual that we learn its real meaning and gain the ability to say it in a similarly meaningful way. I therefore disagree strongly with his assertion that this would give a seamless and accurate delivery of the ritual.
    Keith Tallon Blackheath, London

Muslim Masons
I wish to enquire if there are any Muslim Masons in the Cheshire area interested in founding a multi-faith Lodge. I have a number of Christian and Jewish brethren interested.
    I have made contact with Masons in Russia and visited Lodges in Turkey, so some of them may have settled in the UK.
    Any brother interested should contact me at: 1 The Old Court House, off Old Market Place, Knutsford, Cheshire wa16 6hx. t: 01565 631 721.
    J Malcolm Clerc Knutsford, Cheshire

    Remembering Mason VCs
Last year a trip to the Somme and Ypres battlefields was organised during which we visited the graves of Brothers 2nd Lieutenant Rupert Price Hallowes and Brigadier-General Frederick William Lumsden, who were both awarded the Victoria Cross.
    The trip was a great success, with Masonic charity benefiting. Due to demand it is intended to organise a similar trip for five days and four nights from 28 July to 1 August this year, with profits again going to charity.
    For further details, please contact Alex Bulloch on 0121 459 9008 or myself on 0121 777 9374.
    David Paterson Hall Green, Birmingham

Headstone of Brigadier-General Frederick William Lumsden VC

Helpful cabbie
With reference to Letters (MQ, Issue No. 16) in which a group of Masons wrote to thank a cabbie for giving them a lift to Freemasons’ Hall in London when they were lost – I am that cab driver.
    I was only too pleased to help five lost and distressed brethren. The only correction to that letter is that I am 74, not 76 – although I might look it!
    Len Heron National Westminster Lodge No. 3647

2007 Scouting Jamboree
I feel sure that many of your members will at one time or another have belonged to the Scout Association, either as, Cubs, Scouts, Senior Scout, Rovers or as Scout Leaders.
    In 2007, as part of the Centenary of Scouting, we plan to hold a reunion of all those people who attended the last World Jamboree hosted by the United Kingdom, which was held in Sutton Coldfield in 1957.
    If any readers attended the Jamboree at Sutton Coldfield and would like to attend the reunion more details can be obtained from me: The Den, Nursery Lane, South Wootton, King’s Lynn, Norfolk, pe30 3nb. t: 01553 672903.
    David Andrews King’s Lynn, Norfolk

Lord Swansea OSM
In your admirable obituary for Lord Swansea (MQ, Issue No. 15), you mention all the other Degrees in which he held high office, but with one notable exception: you omitted the Ancient and Accepted Rite (commonly known as the “Rose Croix”) in which he was for 18 years a valued member of the Supreme Council Thirty-third Degree.
    Unlike every other Masonic Order, this Rite had no office equivalent to “Grand Master” but is governed by a Supreme Council of nine members. Membership of this Council is by no means a sinecure: there is a monthly business meeting which takes up a whole morning and often spreads into the afternoon.
    There is a monthly meeting to confer certain higher Degrees; the Supreme Council carries out all consecrations of new Chapters, installs all new Inspector- Generals, presents centenary Warrants and carries out numerous other duties.
    Lord Swansea took all these duties very seriously and seldom missed a meeting. Sometimes he might be late, for he always tended to arrive at the last moment. Indeed, on one memorable occasion he missed the train that was taking us to an important meeting in the north of England.
    We shall particularly miss his delightfully dry sense of humour. We were in the West Country for a consecration. It was warm weather, so we travelled in casual wear and changed into formal attire on arrival at our hotel.
    To my horror, I discovered that although I had packed a suit and a black shirt, I had forgotten to pack a clerical collar. What was to be done? ‘Well,’ said Brother Lord Swansea, ‘I have a spare starched collar – perhaps you could wear it back to front.’
    We tried it, and amazingly enough, it worked! ‘Of course,’ murmured Lord Swansea, “you can always say ‘The Lord will provide’.”
    The Rev. Canon Richard Tydeman Felixstowe, Suffolk

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