Welcome to the ninth of our fortnightly communications, aimed at both keeping touch and also encouraging consideration of making the study of the Royal Arch part of our daily masonic learning.
It is strange that at a time when we are usually preparing for the summer recess, many of us are starting to consider the opportunities to return to our masonic meetings sooner rather than later. Recent communications from both the Government and UGLE suggest that after 17th May limited opportunities to meet in numbers of 6 (or more) can take place. This will probably have no impact on us as we have previously stated that we will refrain until we are comfortable meeting in greater numbers and able to enjoy the ceremonies of exaltation or installation followed by a celebratory festive board, which we will hopefully be able to do post the 21st June.
This last week in normal times we would have enjoyed the investiture meeting of Supreme Grand Chapter and to that end I congratulate those members of the Province who assume their new appointments from Thursday 29th April. These were first appointments of PGStB for E. Comps Graham S Boyd, Third Provincial Grand Principal and C.Robert Lee, Provincial Grand Treasurer and promotions for E. Comp A.Steven Varley to PDepGSwdB and John M Beard to PAGSoj, the latter being courtesy of Yorkshire, West Riding.
In recent weeks I have become aware of the gallant efforts of some Companions to raise money for the Craft Festival 2025 in the name of their Royal Arch Chapters. As you may recall it was planned to arrange a sponsored event which was delayed due to lockdown; however some have taken up the virtual challenge of walking from Lands End to John O’Groats and raising money in this manner. One such Companion I have been following is E Comp Chris Bolton, PAGSoj of Devonshire Chapter No 625 and has already completed over 800 miles and can now smell the whisky and haggis!. As an octogenarian Chris puts many of us to shame by his efforts and if you have not already sponsored a member of your own Chapter in this effort you may wish to support Chris via his JustGiving page at https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/ChrisBoltonsPage
By now I am sure many of our Companions have received their 2nd vaccinations and I encourage all to ensure they take up their opportunity when it is made available to them.
Today I present two presentations which you may find of interest and appropriate at this time.
As stated earlier, this last week should have been the Annual Investiture of Supreme Grand Chapter. This paper studies the history of the development of the Holy Royal Arch through the 18th century and the creation of the Supreme Grand Chapter.
As we contemplate a return to our convocations and consider the readiness of our regalia, where did it come from? This is another paper looking at the history and symbolism of our beautiful regalia.
Well Companions that is all for this issue, and hopefully by the next time I write we will have a clearer picture of the roadmap to our return. In the meantime best wishes to you and your family.
Sincerely & Fraternally