Semper Paratus Mark Lodge 852 held their regular meeting at 6:00 pm on Tuesday 11th February, at Audenshaw Mason Hall, though as it turned out it wasn’t quite as regular as was anticipated.
The Lodge opened in due form at 6:00 pm and was honoured with the presence of the Deputy Provincial Grand Master V.W Bro John Hartley Smith PGJO. There were none of the usual formalities associated with a visit of such a high-ranking chain bearer, in fact, the Deputy Provincial Grand Master quickly and quietly settled into the role of being just another guest of the Lodge.
The business of the evening was conducted quietly and efficiently and eventually it came to the part of the evening for notice of motions and proposition, at which point in the evening the regular meeting became quite the opposite.
The Deputy Provincial Grand Master took the opportunity to ask the Lodge Secretary W Bro Peter Lambert PProvGInspWks and the Treasurer W Bro Andrew Hickson ProvGSD to present themselves before him.
The Deputy Provincial Grand Master explained to the Brethren present that his attendance that evening was two-fold. Firstly, on a personal level, it was to thank W Bro Peter Lambert and W Bro Andrew Hickson for the level of commitment and support given to him personally through their involvement as a Festival Ambassador and as Secretary to the Festival Banquet Committee. Secondly, as the Deputy Provincial Grand Master pointed out, not only were they both committed to giving their own time to support the Festival, but they had both recently achieved Grand Patron status of the Mark Benevolent Fund and he was honoured to be able to present them both with their Grand Patron Collarette in recognition of their support for the Festival and the MBF generally. The presentation and kind words of the Deputy Provincial Grand Master were well received by those Brethren in attendance in recognition of the fine work both Peter and Andrew undertake.
On behalf of the Lodge – which itself is a Grand Patron of the Mark Benevolent Fund – the acting Worshipful Master, W Bro Leslie Baker PProvGJW, presented the Deputy Provincial Grand Master with a further donation of £200 toward the Festival and a further commitment of a similar donation at its Installation meeting in May.
Semper Paratus – always ready!