ISSUE 2, July 2002
Editorial
Brothers in endurance: Sir Ernest Shackleton
Travel: Florida
Jack the Ripper: Exploring the Masonic link
Quarterly Communication: Annual Investiture address by the Grand Master and Report of the Board of General Purposes and Report of the Library and Museum Trust
Masonic News: Order of Service to Masonry; Grand Lodge deficit; Alvin Coburn pioneer photographer; Royal Masonic Variety Show
   Royal Arch News: Concern over falling exaltations
Charity News: Masonic relief grants launched; New RMBI video; Help is at hand through the NMSF; RMBI challenges and change; Update on RMBI projects; RMBI resident Jessie is Britain's oldest person; Grand Charity grant to National Asthma Campaign; TalentAid
Masonic Homes: Proud and independent
Library and Museum news: Recent library acquisitions
Letters
Gardening
Book reviews


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Winning ways

First, thank you for the deluge of letters congratulating MQ on its launch. They were very heartening, and some of the comments and suggestions are most helpful. A selection of your letters begins on page 44.
    The 94-year-old Hertfordshire Mason who rang Grand Lodge, particularly touched me. As he has been housebound for some years because of osteoporosis, he feels cut off although receiving his Lodge summons and Provincial newsletter. He rang to thank us for sending him MQ and bringing him back into the fold again.
    We have included some changes to our second issue not least addressing the point from a large number of readers about poor eyesight and type sizes. Point taken! We hope this issue is easier to read.
    As to the photograph at Freemasons' Hall of the Warden's pedestal with the vacuum cleaner nearby referred to by a number of readers - no, it is nothing to do with a peculiar form of ritual - it was left in deliberately to see if you were paying attention. From the post bag, you most certainly were.
    We had some adverse comments, but that is only to be expected with such a radical departure in promoting our public image. Even so, the criticism was largely constructive. With 320,000 readers we cannot please everyone all the time.
    As this second issue of MQ arrives on your doormats, Freemasonry in the Community Week will have come to an end. In the next issue we will highlight some of the major events around the country. Old relationships with communities have been strengthened and new alliances formed. It has been a monumental effort by all concerned, and shows Freemasons at their very best.
    We have much of which to be proud in our communities, but we must not just be selfcongratulatory and lock ourselves inside our Lodge rooms. we must ensure that our renewed involvement in these communities is ongoing. Perhaps many of the initiatives in Freemasonry in the Community Week can now become annual events?
    The need to promote the positive side of Freemasonry is not a seven-day wonder, but a continuous drip-feed of communication with individuals and organisations not least the media. While there must remain the private side of Freemasonry, we have still only scratched the surface of what we can achieve in the public arena.
    And, as has been shown with our week of community action, there is an enormous fund of goodwill out there for Freemasonry in the big, wide world. Freemasons have, in the past, been too defensive. Now we can follow on from the week of action and be more pro-active.

John Jackson


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