Symbolic Stone Re-Laid and Blessed
Warwickshire Freemasons participated in an unusual and symbolic service, which was given full coverage by the local press, marking seven decades for healthcare in Coventry.
This was when the Foundation Stone laid in the Coventry and Warwickshire Hospital in 1937 was re-sited in the Faith Centre garden at the new University Hospital. It had originally been laid with full Masonic ceremony by the then Provincial Grand Master, former Coventry Mayor and JP, Col Sir William Fitzthomas Wyley. When the old hospital was knocked down, it was recovered through the efforts of Mr Haydn Burgwyn of the University Hospital, the late W Bro Rodney Pitham, and more recently VW Bro Victor Keene.
The Provincial Charity Steward, W Bro John Hayward reports:
In a specially written service, entitled “A Symbolic Re-Laying of the Foundation Stone of the old Coventry and Warwickshire Hospital”, the Stone was symbolically re-laid by the present Provincial Grand Master, RW Bro David Macey, accompanied by a procession of the members of the Provincial Management Team dressed in their regalia, together with prominent members of the Hospital and Province. All present witnessed the application of a silver trowel to the stone during an address by the PGM, and a blessing by the Provincial Grand Chaplain, W Bro John Cowan.
The service commenced with a welcome from the Hospital’s lead Chaplain, Rev Simon Betteridge, and included a reading by the Deputy Provincial Grand Master, W Bro Michael Morris, together with a blessing by the Chaplain of the Faith Centre, Mr Mahashi Shrimani, accompanied throughout by music from the Provincial Grand Organist, W Bro Peter Summers. Present were many Acting Provincial Officers, associates of the Hospital, and Masters of Lodges in the Coventry area.
At the conclusion of the ceremony, the PGM presented a cheque for £1,000 to Rev Betteridge, to be used for the Faith Centre and garden. In closing, the PGM expressed his thanks to all concerned, particularly W Bro John Cowan and especially to the Provincial Grand Secretary, W Bro Chris Rogers for his work in preparing the service but who was unable to be present.
Chief Strategy Officer at UHCW NHS Trust David Moon said: “It is an honour for this stone, with its illustrious history, to be laid here at University Hospital.
“This stone shows how this remarkable relationship between the Masons, the hospitals and the people of Coventry and Warwickshire has remained, even with the introduction and changes to the NHS”.
(l-r) David Macey, John Cowan and David Moon standing over the Foundation Stone
David Macey with ceremonial silver trowel.
Taking a Stroll
At the next regular meeting of the Warwickshire Installed Masters' Lodge 4538 a presentation of sections from the Craft Lectures and the Walking Charge will be given. This will be held at The Clarendon Suites, Stirling Road, Edgbaston B16 9SB on Thursday 28th March at 6.00pm and all Master Masons are welcome to attend.
Full details can be seen here
Temple Support for Local Charities
Temple Lodge 4929, which meets at The Clarendon Suites, Edgbaston, has a long tradition of supporting Local Charities.
Following a successful Ladies Festival in July 2012, at the request of the Worshipful Master’s wife Steph McCloskey, the lodge donated £657 to the Acorn Children’s Hospice Trust, bringing its total raised for the Trust to just over £2,000. When thanking the lodge for its generosity Acorns Community Fundraising Administrator Lisa Kenway-Smith outlined the hospice’s endeavours to ensure that each day the children’s lives at Acorns are filled with fun and laughter, leaving everlasting memories. Those lives will sadly be shorter than most and Acorns is there, not just to provide end of life care, but also to provide support for the whole family for as long as they need it.
In November 2012, at the suggestion of the Worshipful Master Harrison Riley, the Divisional Commander of the Birmingham Branch of the Salvation Army, Major Samuel Edgar, was invited to the lodge’s Christmas celebration dinner where he received a donation of £400 to help towards the cost of the annual Christmas Day Dinner that the Salvation Army provide for those less fortunate in life. The Salvation Army has a long history of working with people who are vulnerable and marginalised, in every community.
In August 2013, at the request of the Worshipful Master’s lady Jo Aston, the Fundraising Officer of Birmingham Mind, Sanjay Jagatia was invited to the lodge’s Summer Lunch where he received a donation of £600, the proceeds of the Ladies Festival held in July 2013. Birmingham Mind has been offering high quality recovery based services to adults and older adults since 1962 and during the last year supported over 1700 individuals experiencing mental distress. In thanking the Lodge for their donation Sanjay advised that Birmingham Mind passionately believe that everyone has the right to live lives that are meaningful and which enable them to reach their full potential as individuals.
This was followed when at the lodge’s Installation meeting a further donation of £400 was presented to Assistant Provincial Grand Master Richard Barker towards the Warwickshire Masonic Benevolent Fund to assist the WMBF in providing relief to needy Freemasons of the Province, their widows or partners, their children and any spinster sisters.
(l-r) Jo Aston, Harrison Riley, Sanjay Jagatia
Tracing the Boards
Charterhouse Lodge 5690 are having a demonstration of the First and Second Degree Tracing Boards at their regular meeting on Monday 11th March 2013 at the Coventry Masonic Hall, 165 Warwick Road, Coventry CV3 6AU, starting at 6.00pm.
Any ‘new’ EA or FC (accompanied by a more senior mason or not) wishing to see it would be more than welcome to attend. Dining (inc wine) is £20.
Two Parallel Organisations?
All freemasons are invited to attend the Prestonian Lecture for 2012, Scouting and Freemasonry: two parallel organisations? which will be delivered at the Griffin Lodge of Installed Masters 9737, meeting at 7.00pm on Wednesday 30th January 2013 at the Masonic Hall, Church Walk, Rugby CV21 3AT.
The 2012 Prestonian Lecturer, W Bro Antony Harvey, who is the Provincial Grand Mentor for Derbyshire and a National Volunteer with the Scout Association, gives a fascinating and thought provoking illustrated talk in which he compares the many similarities and some differences between Scouts and Freemasons, as well as looking at senior members of both organisations over the years.