Wednesday 25th October was the Chapter’s Installation ceremony, when the new team of Principals was installed. The Chapter was honoured by the presence of the Most Excellent Grand Superintendent, E. Comp. D John Bennett and members of the Provincial team. A number of visitors attended including Companions from Dorset and Cornwall, as well as from other Somerset Chapters.
During the ceremony E. Comp. Graham Watts was installed as 1st Principal, E. Comp. Tim Adams as 2nd Principal and E. Comp. Eric Thornborough as 3rd Principal.
During the Risings MEGS explained that an Order of Merit has been instituted for companions who have performed exemplary work within the Province. This is known as the Grand Superintendent’s Award. The recipients will be entitled to insert “GSA” after their names in any Holy Royal Arch correspondence, and on honour boards. Names of proposed recipients and reasons for the proposal will be forwarded to the MEGS and he, with the DepGS, will discuss these and decide on who will receive them.
After giving this introduction MEGS presented the award to E. Comp N. D. J. Smith, who has been Provincial Almoner for many years, pointing out that no fewer than five Companions had made the recommendation.
After the ceremony the members of Royal Cyrus Chapter and their guests enjoyed a further time of good fellowship during the meal.
It is not very often that E Comp Bob Moore, PGSwdB, and Past Deputy Grand Superintendent, is speechless but such was the case on Wednesday evening 28th May 2017.
E Comp Bob had recently been honoured by the Chapter with Honorary Membership and this was the first time since being awarded this honour that he had been able to attend and to thank the Companions and the Chapter personally.
E Comp Bob was completely lost for words although he did recover and said how delighted he was to accept the honour but at the same time he felt very humbled by it.
The January convocation of Royal Cyrus Chapter was honoured by the presence of Excellent Companion Maldwyn Davies, 2nd Provincial Grand Principal, accompanied by Prov. Deputy Grand Director of Ceremonies John Sillett. Unfortunately the candidate who was to be exalted into the Holy Royal Arch was recovering from a short-notice medical procedure and was unable to attend. Nonetheless a demonstration of the Ceremony of Exaltation was performed with Comp Stuart Talbot acting as the candidate.
Excellent Companion Peter Bradshaw acted as Principal Sojourner and demonstrated that he had not lost any of his former skill in the office.
Following the ceremony the 2nd Provincial Grand Principal presented a Grand Chapter Certificate to Companion Stuart Talbot, and Provincial Grand Steward’s lapel badges to Excellent Companions David Elliot and Brian Wilson.
The Chapter was honoured by the attendance of Deputy Grand Superintendent E Comp Barry K Woodside, who was admitted in due ceremony with an escort of Provincial Officers.
MEZ, Doug Stembridge, proposed that Honorary Membership should be granted to E Comp Richard Evans. In particular he mentioned Richard’s long history and service to Masonry abroad, especially in the Far East. Comp. Tim Adams who had been introduced to Richard’s Lodge in Kuala Lumpur seconded the proposal, which was then carried unanimously by the members.
There followed the ceremony of installation, during which E. Comp Grahame Baker, E. Comp Graham Watts and E. Comp Timothy Adams were installed as Z, H and J respectively.
The officers for the forthcoming year were then appointed by MEZ Grahame.
Deputy Grand Superintendent, E Comp Barry K Woodside, presented E Comp Martin Honor with the collaret of the Chapter’s Calderley Liaison Officer with an explanation of the duties of this new position.
A team from Parrett and Axe Chapter, No 814, comprising Companions – G Morgan, D Wakley, S Albon and I Pamplin presented to MEZ Grahame the Somerset Travelling Sceptre with genuine words promoting visiting and friendship between Chapters in the Province, adding that it is to be transferred to Royal Cumberland Chapter, No 41, at the Masonic Hall in Bath on 15th November 2016.
At the Chapter’s January meeting the esteemed Director of Ceremonies E Comp Paul Davis, accompanied by E Comp Martin Honour, gave a talk on the origins and meaning of the words and phrases used in the Royal Arch Ceremonies. Those attending were all totally enthralled, and learnt so much about the ceremonies we have used for so long without really understanding the full meaning of the “words” etc., used. If any of the Chapters in Somerset are short of a Ceremony or would like to do something different, invite E Comp Paul & E Comp Martin to come and give this talk [lecture], they won’t regret it.
The opportunity was taken of capturing pictures of both the Principals (this picture also appears on the Chapter page) and the Chapter Officers.