It is very heartening to report that the whole evening last Thursday was most enjoyable, and why not, Freemasonry is our Hobby! When the main Players prepare themselves so well the result, including the work from the floor and an excellent Candidate was a delight to witness. A truism comes to mind Work hard, and Enjoyment follows (well done Ken too).
Our Provincial Liaison Officer, Ex Comp Adrian Halliwell, has requested a report to accompany the photos sent for the Chapter Provincial web site. Companions all in Yeovil it’s so good to say the Ceremony was what we had come to expect in the past from 329 a leading Chapter in our Province. I heard the word – ‘Brotherly Love, good working again – No books, Congratulations…..!
We had a very good number of visitors two John’s from Benevolence Chapter, Sherborne Dorset, the Candidate’s father who spoke warmly of his experience that evening was E Comp Derrick Lyons, PPGReg, Chantry Bodina 9121, and Brother- in-law, E Comp Paul Kitt also of 9121.
Royal Sussex Chapter No 53 holds its Convocation at Bath Masonic Hall and last year celebrated the 200th Anniversary of its consecrations. Life after such a momentous year will inevitably be a little flat but despite this the Chapter bravely organised a visit from the Royal Arch Presentation Team. This team is led by E Comp Ray Beckingham 2nd Provincial Grand Principal who acted as the narrator with E Comp Chris Fear performing the role of the Past Principal and E Comp Andy Clapp being the hapless newly Exalted Companion.
After opening the Chapter E Comp Ray Beckingham 2nd Provincial Grand Principal accompanied by E Comp D John Bennett, Past Most Excellent Grand Superintendent with E comp Geoff Lester acting as Director of Ceremonies was welcomed into the Chapter by the Principals after which E Comp Ray Beckingham introduced the play-let, ‘The Royal Arch In Camera’. This proved to be an excellent presentation and was well received by the Companions present with the question and answer session afterwards proving to be a very instructive time for all present.
Despite issuing invitations to Companions from the two other Chapters meeting at Bath, Royal Cumberland and St Luke’s there were no visiting Companions from either Chapter. In fact there were only 12 Companions present in total and although small in number it was certainly a very enjoyable evening.
These presentations take a great deal of work to put together, not only for the team but also for the hosting Chapter. They should not be seen as simply filling convocation when the Chapter does not have a Candidate but as an instructive evening, something different and a very entertaining occasion.
Royal Sussex Chapter is one of the smallest Chapters within Somerset but it is one Chapter where you are guaranteed a warm welcome, so please if you have a free evening consider a visit to Royal Sussex. The best way to learn about anything is to involve yourself in it and by visiting Royal Sussex you will probably be invited to be part of the Chapter by being allocated one of the Offices for the evening.
The next Convocation is to be held on Monday 18th March 2019, so go on Email the Scribe Ezra, E Comp John Nicholson firstname.lastname@example.org and book yourself in.
Well here I am back for my second attempt at writing our Chapter’s report, that’s me in the picture there in all my Royal Arch refinery. I have had a little trouble negotiating this website but we are getting there. I must send a huge thank you to E Companion David Parslow for all his help in getting me to this point, for if it were not for his help I would not be writing this now It was also great catching up with David at Tyntesfield Chapter 4494 meeting last week. Alas I am a rough ole country boy so tiz how I speak so bare with me as I often break into a broad West Country accent when I write or speak.
We had a wonderful meeting and as I was taking my new position as ADC, as well as my role as the Calderley Liaison Officer, it was a big nervous night for me too. The ceremony was first class and I slipped into my role quite well, I think, although I was guided by my good friend E Companion Richard Reeves who is our DC. Our three Principals did a brilliant job from open to close and guided us mere mortals most excellently (hope you like the pun) in the ceremony and at the festive board.
E. Companion Ray Beckingham, 2nd Provincial Grand Principal, gave us a presentation all about the history up to present day of Royal Arch Freemasonry. I must say I personally really enjoyed the presentation, as did all of our companions, I know I took away a better understanding of what it is we do at Royal Arch. I must send a massive thank you to E. Companion Ray Beckingham for this presentation from myself, our Principals and the rest of the Tyntesfield 4494 Companions. Please come back again soon and give us another presentation, I did not call it a lecture or anything else either (chuckle) as Ray told me all about Solomon and that we must now call it a Presentation not a lecture or anything else. I urge you all to check Solomon out, there is a great article all about it in Freemasonry Today Magazine, look inside the magazine that comes through your door or click on this link for the latest edition https://www.freemasonrytoday.com/magazine , or contact your Province for a direct link, etc.
The Festive Board, what can I say, it was such a jolly affair with Companions from all over coming to visit. I know we say it at every Lodge or Chapter in the visitors toast, but visiting other Chapters really is the life blood of Freemasonry. For me I learn so much see so many different ceremonies performed with little tweaks of their own with each Chapter and always learn something new that I did not know. I met up with so many old friends and made so many new ones. the festive board for me is such a huge delight and fills my heart with such joy.
One such visitor to our Royal Arch Chapter this time was E. Companion D. John Bennett, Past Grand Superintendent, a man I have truly learned to look up too, for he has inspired me to try harder and learn more about Freemasonry in general but to educate myself well in The Royal Arch. He is such an inspiration and a truly a great guy, I personally wish to thank him for all he has done for Royal Arch Masonry and thank him for inspiring me as well as many others to do better, I hope I can call on you and your experience in the future, as there are a thousand and one questions I still have.
Another visitor was my guest that I invited, E Companion Barry Jones and fellow Calderley Liaison officer for his Chapter, we had such a wonderful catch up with old friends on our table and new ones. I am not sure which table was the most jolly in our Chapter this evening, I am sure our’s was right up there when it came to the toasts/singing and Christmas Carols.
I would whole hardheartedly urge all Craft Master Masons out there to seriously consider Royal Arch Freemasonry (Chapter) before joining any other degrees, thus complete the proper journey fill the fourth part of your circle, you can thank me later and if you’re not sure how to join drop your Craft Lodges Royal Arch representative a line or your secretary will know who that is, or drop me a line and I will do my very best to point you in the right direction.
All that’s left to say is to lock up our secrets and wish you all a Very Merry Christmas and a Happy, Healthy and Prosperous New Year.
From The Principals, Officers and Companions of the awesome Tyntesfield 4494 Royal Arch Chapter meeting in the Temple here in Somersetshire.
Complete the journey.
Master Masons contact me directly if you have trouble finding out how to join Royal Arch Freemasonry.
Our Installation meeting on 20th November 2018 was a very enjoyable occasion and we were honoured by the presence of Deputy Grand Superintendent E Comp Clive Lambert together with Provincial Standard Bearer E Comp David Smith. The evening went extremely well and our new Principals are looking forward to a busy and productive year ahead.
On Monday 22nd October, King Alfred Chapter held its 120th meeting, the installation of E Comp Sandy Glen as First Principal.
Due to illness of our DC, E Comp Ian White and also unavailability of our ADC E Comp Terry Clarke, the Chapter was especially pleased that it would be in the safe hands of at short notice, E Comp Provincial Grand Director of Ceremonies, and also E Comp Geoff Lester, Past Prov ADC.
The meeting began by welcoming E Comp Barry Woodside, Most Excellent Grand Superintendent in and over the Province of Somerset on the occasion of his first Chapter visit after being invested at the Webbington the previous week. He was accompanied by E Comp Ray Conneely, Prov Deputy Grand DC, E Comp Robert Nicholls Prov Grand Standard Bearer and E Comp Keith Smith Prov Grand Steward.
The first business was the election of two Honorary members, both Past First Principals of King Alfred Chapter, E Comp Bill Jefford and E Comp Arthur Rowe. Both were unanimously agreed in recognition of their contributions to the Chapter over many years.
The main business of the evening was the installation of the Principals for the ensuing year. The 3 Principals elect had already been past First Principals of King Alfred Chapter so only inductions were needed before E Comp Sandy Glen became Z, E. Comp Simon Sparkes became H and E. Comp Jeremy Thomas became J. The address to the Principals was then presented by the MEGS.
A full list of the officers for 2018/19 is on the 3169 King Alfred Chapter page.
After the Risings the Chapter was closed in peace and harmony and the companions adjourned for the Festive Board of Tomato Soup, Steak and Ale pie followed by Apple pie and custard.
A very pleasant evening was had by all.
The next convocation will be an exaltation on 25th March 2019
Our May meeting was yet another busy one! Early on in the agenda we welcomed the First Principals of our fellow Founding Chapters of the Province, and shortly after we welcomed the Provincial Team, headed, of course, by the MEGS John Bennett. The Provincial Officers were invited to take up their officers in the Chapter and the MEGS proceeded to dedicate the new Chapter Honours Board. Part of the Dedication Ceremony included an excellent oration given by the Third Provincial Grand Principal, E Comp David Parslow.
The Third Provincial Grand Principal has a busy evening because shortly after his oration he presented a Grand Chapter Certificate to Companion Mick Wright. However, his work was not yet over as he then proceeded to host a light-hearted quiz entitled ‘An Advancement in Masonic Knowledge’, which was somehow won by the MEGS.
With the formal proceedings completed, we then retired to the bar/festive board, where an excellent meal was had by all.
As you know, E Comp D John Bennett, Most Excellent Grand Superintendent in and over the Province of Somerset, will officially retire on 17th October next, and the Most Excellent the First Grand Principal has been pleased to appoint E Comp Barry Keith Woodside, PGSwdB, to the office of Grand Superintendent in and over the Province of Somerset with effect from 18th October next.
King Alfred Chapter met on Monday 14th May 2018 with E. Comp Jeremy Thomas as Z, E. Comp Arthur Rowe standing in as H (for E. Comp Sandy Glen who was unwell at short notice), and E. Comp Tony Wilsher-Day as J.
The main business of this meeting centred on advancement in Chapter knowledge.
Firstly the Historical Lecture was delivered under the direction of J, and some of the newer Companions took part as follows:
Part 1 Comp. Justin Percy
Part 2 Comp. Graham Caulfield
Part 3 Comp. Lindsay Edmonds and E. Comp Simon Sparkes
Secondly E. Comp Sandy Glen had obtained a quiz for the Companions to test their knowledge. Unfortunately as E. Comp Sandy Glen was not able to be present, E. Comp Simon Sparkes acted as question master. The questions covered a wide variety of areas such as the history of King Alfred Chapter, the arrangement of the Chapter and its ornaments, historical parts of the ritual (including some from the Historical Lecture we had just heard that often proved illusive!) and definitions for example where does vellum come from.
The answer sheets had been arranged numbering 1 to 25 in a grid with the numbers arranged randomly for each Companion, so the winner was to be the first Companion with 5 correct answers in a row, in a manner similar to bingo. Some early calls did not have fully correct answers, and finally joint winners were announced with E.Comp Arthur Rowe and E.Comp Tony Helliker. As these are among the most experienced Companions in our Chapter, the question master was prompted to announce that “age and experience beat youth and enthusiasm!”
Here we see the question master flanked by the winners.
The evening concluded with an excellent festive board and we look forward to the next meeting on 11th June.
At the recent Annual Convocation of Provincial Grand Chapter I with other members of Wrington Vale looked on in great pride and pleasure as our very own Scribe E (and very hard working), E Comp Neil Hurcum, was Appointed, Obligated, Invested and Installed by the Most Excellent Grand Superintendent as The Third Grand Principal. Very well deserved Neil well done. It’s not the first time the Chapter has been so Honoured as E Comp Ray Beckingham has held this office as have others before my time (I can tell you my history book arrives). It is a great Honour for the Chapter to have Neil hold this High Office as it is a mark of how successful we as a Chapter have been.
Neil on behalf of the entire Chapter I offer you congratulations, again well deserved and have a great time as Third Grand Principal of The Provincial Grand Chapter of Somerset. An achievement to be very proud of, as the Chapter is.