ISSUE 23, October 2007

Editorial
Quarterly Communication: Speech of the Pro Grand Master : Quarterly Communication
Grand Secretary: Exciting times ahead
Historic: Telford - Mason extraordinary
Travel: Cruising round Sicily
Samaritan: Helping the distressed
Younger Masons: The common bond
Jersey: Local Masons guard the Duke
   Classic car run: Down memory lane
International: Joseph Brant - a Masonic legend
Universities Scheme: The way ahead
Grand Chancellor: The importance of external relations
Education: Events : Understanding the symbols of the craft
Specialist Lodges: Australia link
Royal Arch: Why join the Royal Arch?
Lbrary & Museum: Major award for Library & Museum
MQ Signs off
Masonic Charities: Grand Charity : NMSF : RMBI : RMTGB
Letters, Book reviews, Gardening

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Ladies groups
In Staffordshire we have a ladies group known as The Wednesday Club as we meet on that day, and is open to ladies with any Masonic male relative, and can also invite non-Masonic friends.
     We have more than 55 members, mostly from the Stoke-on-Trent area, and some travel from Wolverhampton, Cheshire and Shropshire. Since our formation in 2000, we have donated more than £8,700 for Hanley Masonic hall as well as many local, non-Masonic charities.
     In order to be recognised by Masons we wear the Broken Column brooch, adopted as an identifying emblem to the ladies of Masons during the American civil war.
     Although most of the ladies are widows, we wear the brooch to reflect the meaning behind it: to assist in building relationships where you will find friends who will assist you in times of need and join with you in times of gladness.
    
     Pat Joughin
     Stoke-on-Trent, Staffordshire


Not so bad sheriff
I had a wry smile as I read in MQ, Issue No. 22, and from the insert from The Freemasons’ Grand Charity about the Nottinghamshire Provincial Festival, where the wicked sheriff of Nottingham tried to abscond with the cheque, and the Provincial Grand Master needed the help of Robin Hood and his merry men to foil him once again.
     It was humorous because, when I joined Freemasonry, I was aware that both my great-grandfather and great-great uncle were Masons, but I did not have any further details.
     When I looked at the superb Grand Lodge web site I read with interest the available genealogical research that can be undertaken by the Library & Museum.
     From this it turned out that both these relations had been Masters of their Lodge and my great-great uncle Frank Newton Hobson had been Provincial Grand Treasurer. This may not have been as amusing as the fact that he was also a Sheriff of Nottingham.
     So, in times past, Nottinghamshire Province obviously knew that the Sheriff of Nottingham had a more charitable character!
    
     Barton upon Humber

Meeting times
I recently visited Lodge of Harmony in Sydney, Australia and their meetings start at 7pm with a finish by 10pm. If they can conduct their ceremonies, festive board etc. starting at this later time, why can’t we?
    
     Roger Jauncey
     Redditch, Worcestershire


Helping Air Ambulance
I read with interest the article about how much has been donated to the Air Ambulance (MQ, Issue No. 22). For my recent 70th birthday, my wife held an ‘open house’ for many of my friends.
     We made it clear that I did not want any presents, but I would be pleased to receive donations for the Air Ambulance. As a motorcyclist and golfer, I took the view that I may have more need of their services, than I would for 40 bottles of whisky!
     In the event, I sent a cheque for £350 and signed a ‘deed of gift’ so that they could get the tax back, making the total around £450. I commend the idea to anyone who is lucky enough to reach ‘three score years and ten’.
    
     David Basford,
     Market Drayton, Shropshire


Masonry in Turkey
Masonry appears to be thriving in Turkey with new Lodges being formed each year, and if Bodrum Lodge is anything to go by, the membership includes numerous brethren under 40.
     The Lodge, named after the town of Bodrum, has recently produced a daughter Lodge, Herodot Lodge, named after Herodotus, the Roman historian, who was born in Bodrum.
     They have just built an absolutely magnificent temple on the outskirts of the town with an equally grand dining room.
     Ceremonies are conducted in Turkish, using a variant of the Scottish Rite.
     Kemal Ataturk, the founder of modern Turkey, directed that there be no state religion in Turkey, so Lodges have three volumes of the sacred law on display, the Christian Bible, the Jewish Bible and the Koran.
     There are several British Masons semiretired in Bodrum who are frequent visitors and many Turkish Masons speak good English, so they are thinking of setting up an English-speaking Lodge under the Turkish constitution – there are already three of these in other towns in Turkey.
     The DC of Bodrum Lodge, Zafer Kustu, says that they welcome any visiting brother with a certificate of good standing from his own Lodge. He can be contacted on, suotel@superonline.com. They meet every Thursday, October to June, and every 2nd and 4th Thursday the rest of the year. Dark suits, black ties and white shirts are de rigeur, but they will provide aprons and gloves.
    
     Gael Lewis
     Longfield, Kent


Need to speak out
I would like to congratulate those younger and newer Brethren who are passionate about our fraternity and have written letters to MQ. It is very frustrating when brethren moan and grumble and do nothing to put across their ideas.
     It is interesting to note that the letters do not contain an overall consensus of opinion on the methods to increase quality membership and it is clear none of the contributors wish to change our values system.
     At last, with this momentum of thought, ideas and opinions of newer members, the future of Freemasonry might gather momentum. Hopefully, the Rulers will establish in each Province a committee of younger brethren to offer new ideas to the Local Rulers, as suggested by Bro Clapp (MQ, Issue No. 22).
     The Provincial Stewards Lodge (and Stewards Chapter) could be the starting point to set up a younger persons committee. A selection of younger brethren from each area within the Province would work alongside Stewards to harness thoughts and ideas for communication to the Provincial executive.
     The suggested grouping could also act as a nucleus to form further and stronger local links with youth groups. Such a grouping could have a stronger appeal if the membership also consisted of youth group members. If we all keep writing and speaking out, good ideas will provoke thought and the right actions. It is not what we do, but the way we do it.
    
     John Hoeffler
     Hutton, Essex


Help needed
Help! Our Lodge has moved to a new Masonic temple without much furniture and we need two Wardens columns. If you have a spare set of terrestrial and celestial columns, we would provide them with a good home for a suitable donation to charity. Please contact the secretary, David Balding, on e-mail, bprogressive@aol.com
    
     David Balding
     Weybridge, Surrey


Internet Lodge Call Papers
Internet Lodge No. 9659 EC is inviting Brethren to submit short, educational papers suitable for reading in open Lodge.
     The closing date is 31st December 2007.
     Selected papers will be added to an online library and made freely available for use by Lodges around the world. This initiative is being sponsored by the Pro Grand Master, Lord Northampton. He will present a prize in March 2008 to the author of the paper judged best of the year by an independent panel of judges. For more details see http://internet.lodge.org.uk/shortpaperscompetition/
    
     Mark Griffin
     Internet Lodge No. 9659


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