Darkness visible, the continuance of Craft Masonry

There were 31 members and visitors, including three Grand Lodge officers and an entered apprentice in attendance for the regular meeting of Princes Park Lodge No 4769 at Woolton Golf Club.

Pictured from left to right, are: Kevin Poynton, Vic Albin and Sam Robinson

Pictured from left to right, are: Kevin Poynton, Vic Albin and Sam Robinson

After the worshipful master and his wardens had taken their seats the lodge was opened in the first degree. The gavel was offered to Assistant Provincial Grand Master Kevin Poynton who readily accepted it as his right but quickly returned it so the evening could progress.

The WM Vic Albin, who is the retiring Vice Chairman of Woolton Group, informed the brethren of the sad passing of Ted Gillbanks saying that Ted had been a stalwart of the lodge and had over the years done a great deal for the lodge. The assembled brethren were requested to stand to order in respect of departed merit.

The next item on the agenda was to confirm the minutes and much to everyone’s surprise the WM informed the brethren that for the first time in 43 years the minutes had been circulated and now only needed approval which was quickly agreed.

The main part of the meeting concerned the Royal Arch. Vic welcomed Sam Robinson and his two narrators namely Mike Cunliffe and Stephen Riley. A projector had been set up in the temple and Sam introduced his two helpers and went on to explained the purpose of the presentation which had been adapted from the work developed by the Metropolitan Grand Chapter of London with the intention of raising awareness of the Royal Arch to members of the Craft who had not yet taken the step and also to improve companions knowledge. The presentation took the form of a short playlet where two brothers play the part of a Royal Arch Mason and a Craft Mason. Mike Cunliffe took on the part of the Craft Mason whilst Stephen Riley that of the Royal Arch Mason.

Pictured from left to right, are: Sam Robinson, Mike Cunliffe and Stephen Riley.

Pictured from left to right, are: Sam Robinson, Mike Cunliffe and Stephen Riley.

Mike opened the play by commenting on how much he had learned since he had been in the Craft but said that there were still things that intrigued him. He asked Stephen about the significance of the Royal Arch tie and jewel he was wearing, Stephen was happy to explain the significance to him. For sake of clarity, Stephen showed an entered apprentice present, who by this time had been collected by Kevin and placed in a position close by so further explanations could be given to him.

Sam backed up the play by showing slides of the relevant articles being mentioned. The play was very informative and Sam brought it to a close by thanking the lodge members for letting him use the time at their meeting to help them make advancement in their Masonic knowledge, also paying special thanks to Mike and Stephen. Sam then said that he would be happy to answer any questions if brethren had any – and there were some.

At the first rising the Chairman of Woolton Group Andy Whittle rose and thanked Vic Albin for all the work he had done for the group not only as vice chairman but as group secretary before that. Vic said that he had thoroughly enjoyed his time.

With due ceremony the lodge was closed and the WM, his wardens, Grand Lodge officers and the brethren retired to partake in refreshment. After the meeting the entered apprentice Oliver Leach, who had only recently joined Old Lerpoolian Lodge No 9270, was asked if the presentation had been enlightening. Oliver affirmed that he had enjoyed the playlet and said that it had clarified details that had already been given to him.

At the allotted time, the brethren adjourned to the dining room in Woolton Golf Club to enjoy a wonderful meal in harmonious company.

Pictured from left to right, are: Kevin Poynton, Oliver Leach and Sam Robinson.

Pictured from left to right, are: Kevin Poynton, Oliver Leach and Sam Robinson.

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