East Kent Provincial 2013 News

Universities Scheme Visit to Canterbury

december 2013 AGM  PGM visit WLThe Master and Members of St Augustine Lodge with their Distinguished Guests

The St. Augustine Lodge No. 972 was honoured with the presence of two Distinguished Guests at the December meeting in Canterbury. The Assistant Grand Master, RW Bro David Williamson and the Provincial Grand Master, RW Bro Geoffrey Dearing were present to witness the newly installed Master, WBro Gordon Holter in the first ceremony of his year in the chair. Forty years after WBro Holter was first installed as Master of 972 in 1973, he dusted off the metaphoric cobwebs to deliver a fine Second Degree ceremony, passing Bro Steven Flower. A brief interlude allowed WBro Jim Flower, Steven’s father, the privilege of carrying out part of the ceremony on behalf of the Worshipful Master.

The occasion marked a celebration of the Lodge’s participation of the Universities Scheme. Since becoming the 13th Member Lodge of the Scheme in 2008, the St Augustine has been busy with numerous multiple ceremonies, introducing students from many parts of the globe, including Iraq, Mauritius, Serbia, Romania, China and even Dover!

Members and visitors were treated to a presentation of Grand Lodge Certificate to a student member from Cyprus, Bro Chrysses Antoniades by the Assistant Grand Master, who was able to illustrate the differences between the freshly presented certificate and that of his, his Father’s and his Grandfather’s.

The brethren were also introduced to two members of the University Scheme Committee, Bro Dan Large, the Secretary of the Scheme and W Bro David Roberts-Jones, area co-ordinator for the South-East region.

Hot on the heels of the inspiring Universities Scheme Conference that took place in Nottingham in November, Bro Dan Large took the opportunity to inform the brethren of the new initiatives and ideas that are being rolled out across the country.

To thank RW Bro Williamson for his stewardship of the Universities Scheme, the Lodge presented him with a celebratory Sesquicentenary Booklet marking the Lodge’s 150th Anniversary. Quoting from the Booklet, RW Bro Williamson remarked that 'It is without doubt that the introduction of the Universities Scheme heralds a new era for the Lodge. A selfless participation of the scheme, prioritising the nurture of young students to become masons across the world, is a commitment that many Lodges would have rejected. However, the diversity and energy that the scheme, and its students, have brought to the Lodge, has created a dynamic and forward looking Lodge ready for the next 150 years.'

With the recent engagement at the Universities Scheme conference still fresh in the minds of the members, and mindful of the history that stands behind them, it is certain that the St Augustine Lodge will continue to build on their success for years to come.

The St Augustine Lodge meets every 3rd Wednesday from September to May. Visitors wishing to come and witness the multiple ceremonies and student engagement are more than welcome to attend. Please contact the Secretary, WBro Howard Griffin, to arrange a visit.