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Grand Master's Newsletter - Freemasons NSW & ACT

Published 25 November 2020

Click here to download a print version of this newsletter

Derek Robson AM Grand Master

How Good is This

Congratulations to all our Craft lodges and our masonic building owners for the magnificent efforts they have put in over the past few weeks and months.

We have over 80 substantial buildings in which we conduct masonic business. Many of these have joined with the Board of Management in taking this opportunity to make improvements to their premises and generally improving upon the infrastructure available to us all. Our State government has spoken often about investment in infrastructure being the best way to improve our economy and create jobs in our regions and local community. Craft Freemasonry can be very proud of the part it has played in that process.

Similarly, we have 241 lodges. It is correct that 191 of these have so far completed their Stage 1, Stage 2, and Stage 3 protocols so that they are free to conduct any meeting they reasonably think is necessary. Many lodges have already held meetings for purpose, and these have included Installations and degree work, all conducted with minimal attendance and good COVID-19 cleaning practices. Again, Craft Freemasonry can be particularly pleased and proud of its commitment, and its achievements.

There is no doubt that there would also be opportunity for meetings of other orders to be likewise conducted under strict protocols, and we should stand ready to assist where necessary.

In continuing to have minimal meetings, and by using social and outdoor activities to conduct any discussions we might need to have, we can progress. Let's continue to meet in someone's garage to run over ceremonial work, take the ritual book when you are out walking around the lake or village, use the telephone to plan and manage Masonicare business which might offer strength to our struggling community, and always be aware of the welfare of our membership.

Acting as one, Craft Freemasonry can be very proud.

Please take care of your community, your lodge, and yourself.

Derek Robson AM
Grand Master

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Welcome Bro Nakamura

St George Open Day a Success - St George Brass Band at the St George MC, Bexley

Bro Nakamura with the Secretary of the lodge, RW Bro Patrick W Medway AM

Bro Christopher Nakamura moved from Queensland recently and promptly joined Lodge St George and St Andrew No 7 meeting at Bexley. He is working as a solicitor in the area and was keen to maintain his fellowship with Freemasonry when he moved to Sydney.

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$6,000 donation for Central Coast kids

$6,000 donation for Central Coast kids - Victoria talks about the hardships and how CCKIN helped her family

Victoria talks about the hardships and how CCKIN helped her family

Generally, at this kind of event, recipient organisations give 'thank you' speeches on receiving a donation and there is little, if any, personal contact with the final beneficiaries.

At Wamberal Surf Club, that format was 'turned on its head' somewhat with Freemasons on the Central Coast (FotCC) asking recipient organisations to bring along one of their beneficiaries to receive the donation on their behalf. This provided a wonderful opportunity for all present to hear first-hand accounts - and gain a real understanding - of the impact and outcomes of their fundraising.

FotCC, along with the six associated masonic lodges of District 21, were donating to two organisations who receive little or no government funding. Central Coast Kids In Need (CCKIN) and Save Our Kids from Suicide (SOKS), a project of the Rotary Club of Gosford North, both received a donation of $3,000. This takes the total donated by FotCC to approximately $30,300 for CCKIN, and $52,300 for SOKS.

Central Coast Kids in Need (CCKIN)

Lorraine Churchill explained that CCKIN commenced some 27 years ago serving families whose children were in need of medical assistance - high cost prescriptions, specialised formulae, equipment, etc. - travel expenses and accommodation.

$6,000 donation for Central Coast kids - Lorraine Churchill with Hudson

Lorraine Churchill with Hudson

Victoria, a beneficiary of CCKIN, spoke of financial hardship when their first child (Ella) was born with Down Syndrome.

Ella was transferred to Sydney for three months until her medical conditions had stabilised. On returning home, specialised equipment needed to be hired. The cost of three months accommodation, travel and sustenance was astronomical for a young family. The heart-wrenching time with endless decisions to be made was both financially and emotionally draining.

Their second child (Hudson) was born prematurely and yet again CCKIN stepped in with much needed support. Victoria stated that she and her husband 'will be forever grateful' for all the assistance given by CCKIN. Talking to someone just seemed to lessen the stress.

$6,000 donation for Central Coast kids - Victoria and Hudson (6 months)

Victoria and Hudson (6 months)

Save Our Kids from Suicide (SOKS)

Lester Pearson, from the Rotary Club of Gosford North, is the coordinator of the SOKS project. From its beginning, Freemasons on the Central Coast have supported the Applied Suicide Intervention Skills Training (ASIST) programme. ASIST trains people in identifying and approaching a person who is contemplating suicide, especially in a crisis situation. Training for the participants in this program, which has mainly included teachers and school support staff, is provided by Lifeline. 'Mind Your Sports Mates' is a similar programme that trains people in identifying the symptoms of depression, anxiety and suicidal ideation.

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Upcoming events

"MM Taylors Ritual" continuation
Masonic Education Network
Wed, 25 November 7pm
Register Now
Every Wednesday a guest lodge takes the centre stage and conducts the presentation on a topic of their choosing


"NSW & ACT Ritual - Opening and Closing"
Saturday Zoom Room
Masonic Education Network
Sat, 28 November 3pm
Register Now
Saturday afternoon meetings run every week with a different topic of discussion.


"The Rite Beyond the Craft"
by RW Bro Dominic De Candia
Masonic Education Network
Wed, 2 December 7pm
Register Now
Every Wednesday a guest lodge takes the centre stage and conducts the presentation on a topic of their choosing


The Masonic Education Network events will stop Saturday 12 December and will return on Wednesday 20 January with a special event featuring an International Guest Speaker.

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STAGE 1 - PREPARE THE BUILDING

All Masonic Centres are required to register as a COVID Safe business and prepare the building in accordance with steps that will be provided to them by the Grand Secretary.

NOTE: Once all buildings have been prepared we can then move on to Stage 2.

STAGE 2 - PREPARE YOUR LODGE

Once all Masonic Centres have completed Stage 1 it will then be necessary for each lodge to prepare their meeting place (lodge room) in accordance with further steps provided to them by the Grand Secretary.

NOTE: When lodges have completed Stage 2 and following further directions from the Government Health Authorities we can then move on to Stage 3.

STAGE 3 - RETURN TO LODGE

Once lodges have completed Stage 2 requirements and after ensuring we comply with all regulations directed by the authorities, the Grand Secretary will advise those lodges that they may consider their return.

NOTE: The Grand Secretary will provide further advice on any meeting restrictions that may apply as a result of further directions from the Government Health Authorities.

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Extension of Deadline

Freemason Fotos - See the light through the craft

The Freemason magazine is all about being fair. The COVID-19 situation has affected the postal service and a large proportion of magazines were received later than usual. This resulted in a short time frame to submit Stage 1 entries of their photo competition.

The deadline for Stage 1 will be the same as for Stage 2: 15 January 2021. This will give everyone a little more time to be creative.

The deadline for Stage 3 remains 15 April 2021.

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Are your contact details up to date?

Freemasons NSW & ACT website profile page

To continue to receive the Freemason magazine, emails and invitations to online meetings it is important your contact details are up to date.

Please update your details on the Grand Lodge website or with your lodge secretary and urge your fellow brethren to do the same.

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How is your lodge staying connected?

Send Your Story

Write a paragraph or two, add a good large photograph and send it to news@masons.org.au.

Your story will be considered for this newsletter, the next Freemason magazine and might even feature in our official facebook page. Just make sure you have permission from all mentioned and depicted for their image to be publicly published.

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The Grand Master's Newsletter
An official publication of the Freemasons NSW & ACT

Please submit your articles and photographs to news@masons.org.au and make sure you have permission from all mentioned and depicted for their image to be publically published.

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T 02 9284 2800 • F 02 9284 2828

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