East Kent Provincial 2012 News

Canterbury Cathedral Evensong

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The Province is most fortunate in having Canterbury Cathedral within its boundaries and thanks to the magnificent efforts of Roger Odd and David Kershaw we were privileged to be invited by the Dean and Chapter for the second recent biannual occasion to partake in this celebration of Evensong.

 

 

 

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 The introduction and welcome in the Order of Service set the tone of the afternoon.

'Welcome to this service of Choral Evensong in the Cathedral, whether you are a regular visitor or worshipping with us for the first time'.

'The Cathedral is privileged to host many groups and organisations that are woven into the tapestry of our community’s life in Kent. Today we welcome to Choral Evensong the Freemasons of the Province of East Kent who are generous benefactors of the Cathedral. Our prayer is that God will bless you, so that you may be a blessing to others'.

 

 

 

Cathedral 3With the congregation, honoured guests and members of the Executive in place, the Dean, Very Revd Dr Robert Willis greeted the Lord Mayor of Canterbury, Councillor Robert Waters who is also Charity Steward of the Christopher Marlow Lodge No. 8014, the Lady Mayoress Mrs Sally Pickersgill, The Provincial Grand Master, Right Worshipful Brother Geoffrey Dearing and Mrs Liz Dearing and escorted them to their seats around the Compass Rose in the Nave. The Cathedral Choir processed in and took their places on the steps in front of the Choir Screen accompanied by their Director, Dr. David Flood. Other honoured guests were R W Bro Russell Race, the Metropolitan Grand Master; R W Jonathan Winpenny, the Provincial Grand Master of West Kent; R W John Bonomy, the Past Provincial Grand Master of East Kent, accompanied by his wife Mrs Marion Bonomy; W Bro Mark Estaugh, an Assistant Provincial Grand Master of West Kent accompanied by his partner Ms Laura Creaney; and R W Bro Roger Croucher, the Provincial Grand Master of Mark Master Masons accompanied by his wife Mrs Ann Croucher.

The Dean, having welcomed the assembly, began the service by introducing the first hymn ‘Blessed city, heavenly Salem’ sung by the congregation and with the Choir. Then followed the Preces and Psalm 84 sung by the Choir. The service continued with the Provincial Grand Master reading the Old Testament Lesson from Ezekiel 47. 1-12, after which the Choir sang the Magnificat. The New Testament Lesson from Luke 2. 41-52 was read by the Dean and the Versicles, Responses and Collects sung by the Precentor, Revd David Mackenzie Mills and the Choir. Then the Choir treated us to the Anthem ‘My soul, there is a country’. The Precentor returned to lead the prayers before the next hymn ‘Lead, kindly light’.

The Dean delivered an inspiring Sermon referring to the masonic connections in the Old and New Testaments and how blessed we are to be able to give, a prime example being the support provided by the Freemasons’ Grand Charity for the work of the masons engaged in the refurbishment of the cathedral fabric. Particular mention was made of the Canterbury Stones, individual masonry blocks from the cathedral fabric which are shipped to all quarters of the Anglican Community as a material contribution to the refurbishment or founding of church buildings worldwide.

The retiring hymn ‘Now thank we all our God’ was sung, during which a collection was made to be shared equally between the Canterbury Cathedral Trust and the Freemasons’ Grand Charity. The service closed with the Dean delivering the Blessing.

A procession headed by the Dean then left the Nave by the South Porch where he and the Provincial Grand Master greeted the departing congregation.

 

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