Article By Brother John Pickard

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Brother John Pickard speaks about
his recent visit to English Masonic Lodges
 

Bro. John Pickard         

02/06/2007  

I have always wanted to know and find out for myself if the World Wide Fellowship among the Fraternity was really as good as we have been told that it is. So when I knew I was going to be in the UK from 13 Oct. 06 to 20 Dec. 06 on Business I decided to give it a go as the British would say.

 
   

Preparation: 

    I decided that I should seek the council of my Good Brothers in both St Matthew 906 & Willie Stewart 224 concerning the proper steps of protocol. I was advised that I should arrange for a proper Letter Of Introduction from the Grand Lodge of Kentucky. So I contacted Bro. Joe at the Grand Lodge and he fixed me up with said document in short order. 

    Next the Brothers decided that I should take an Apron and White Gloves. This proved to be vital as no Aprons or Gloves are provided and are required. 

    Upon arriving in England I sought out the location of the Masonic Temple in Cambridge which happens to be located at: Freemasons' Hall, Bateman Street, Cambridge, CB2 INA. General Manager: Bro. D. Stanton. Phone # is: 01223 361386.    

    I called and made an appointment with the General Manager Bro. D. Stanton. My employer drove me into Cambridge for this meeting. The meeting went well and the good Brother showed us around and even took us up into the Temple itself. I was assigned a sponsor and invited to attended the next meeting of the Guild of St Mary No. 7288 Cambridge, WM. J. H. Smith, which I did. 

    On my arrival at the appointed time I introduced myself around until I was pointed in the right direction. I showed my Letter of Introduction to my Sponsor and the Master and some of his Officers. The Bro Jr. Warden, Mr. R. J. Brown didn't have a chance to read the Letter of Introduction before he found me and escorted me into the empty Banquet Hall and announced that he was going to examine me on the Grips and Passwords of all three Degrees. This went well and he was satisfied. 

Outline format; 

1. The layout of the Lodge Hall. 

2. How Lodge was conducted. (Very Formal), Seating of Officers & W.M. 

3. Organ was used. 

4. Opening and closing song sung by all present. 

5. Open on E. A. When anyone addressed the Body of the Lodge, The sign was held until finished. 

6. Use of a painted Tracing Board for each Degree.

7. Junior Deacon called Brother Inner Guard.

8.  Different type of Rap or Knock for each Degree on the Door of the Lodge.

9.  Tiler was a Scotsman named Bro. Gates. He stands with a drawn Claymore Sword.

10.  Visited three different Lodges and have been given the "High Honor of being designated a PIG. Permanently Invited Guest. I was offered the opportunity to apply for membership in the Guild Of St Mary Lodge 7288 Cambridge, WM. J. H. Smith. I advised that I would give that positive consideration if I was going to be in the U. K. enough. What an Honor.

11. General description and comments on the Festive Ball.

12. Final Comments & Questions.

Opening Ode

Hail Eternal By whose aid
All created things were made;
Heav'n and earth Thy vast design:
Hear us, Architect Divine!

May our work, begun in Thee,
Ever blest with order be;
And may we, when labours cease,
Part in harmony and peace

By thy glorious majesty,
By the trust we place in thee
By the badge and mystic sign,
Hear us, Architect Divine

Closing Ode

Now the evening shadows closing
Warn from toil to peaceful rest:
Mystic arts and rites reposing
Sacred in each faithful breast.

God of light, whose love unceasing
Doth to all thy works extend,
Crown our order with thy blessing;
Build, sustain us to the end.

Humbly now we bow before Thee,
Grateful for Thine aid divine;
Everlasting power and glory,
Mighty Architect, be Thine.

 
               
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