Published 4 June 2020

Click here to download a print version of this newsletter

Upcoming Changes

Brethren, another week and more changes in the right direction by the NSW & ACT governments.

The NSW Minister for Health is now providing some structural advice that will eventually lead us to a return to our masonic duties.

This move is a step in the right direction as we all want to resume our standard lodge meetings, but it does not mean we are good to go yet.

In my recent online presentation to Lodge Wahroonga, I gave some directions that we will need to follow in order to ensure the safety of our brethren and their families. This presentation can be accessed on the UGL website on this link.

Before we return to lodge, clear directions will be published outlining the Safety Checklist and Safety Plan approved by the chief Medical Officer but for now, please continue to focus on your online meetings and I look forward to seeing us all back at lodge as soon as possible.

So mote it be

From your Board of Management

RW Bro Bruce Arnol at the Freemasons Park in Cessnock.

It is great to see so many masons out there using the shut-down time to give their local Masonic Centres some much needed TLC and I am pleased to see that Kensington, Belmont, Glen Innes and many others are all getting a "Spruce Up" while things are quiet. I had the good fortune last week to travel and meet up with members of the Grand Master's Task Team in the Hunter Valley to represent our Grand Master at Lodge Cessnock's "Sod Turning" ceremony celebrating the beginning of their Masonic Centre Renovations.

Lodge Cessnock has worked really hard over a number of years saving money, accessing local heritage government grants, re-naming a local park to "Freemasons Park" and securing a loan in order to repair and renovate their building so that they can finally commercialise the premises. Post COVID-19, Cessnock Masonic Centre will maintain its importance as a heritage listed icon overlooking the City of Cessnock keeping Freemasonry visible and active within their local community.

As recently reported we have also had several requests for LED Square and Compasses, Freemasons Flags and Pull-Up Banners and I was able to provide those much needed items to their beneficiaries as I travelled up the coast. These items provide aura and confidence as Freemasonry's "light" shines bright within each local community during these challenging times. It is great to see forward thinking masons using the down time wisely as they prepare for an exciting restart to masonic duties when the restrictions finally allow.

On my way home I also stopped off at Macksville Masonic Centre. This wonderful old building is also getting some much needed repair work and it will be great to see the results as the Macksville landmark takes a prominent place in what has really become a vibrant little country town. The Pacific Highway now by-passes the town and this has seen Macksville take on a whole new identity with a brand new hospital just completed to service the growing community - well done Lodge Nambucca and well done Macksville!

We have all had our personal and masonic challenges over the past few months but, during this time, your Board of Management has provided support wherever and whenever possible. Yes, it has been a long and difficult shut-down but we are making the most of it and when we do return to masonic duties I feel confident that we will return wiser and better off for the experience.

Masons don't give in!

RW Bro Les Hicks
Chairman Board of Management

"The test of our progress is not whether we add more to the abundance of those who have much, it is whether we provide enough for those who have little"

Benjamin Franklin
Quote from Lodge Gowrie's Zoom Meeting on the 03/06/2020

Can We Research Anything?

The Linford Lodge of Research will be hosting an online meeting next Wednesday to discuss research topics. A link to the meeting is at the Upcoming Event on this newsletter.

Freemasonry bans the discussion of religion and politics in lodge. This is made obvious to the newly initiated brother via the Charge after Initiation: 'by abstaining from discussion upon any religious or political topic therein;'. This closely echoes the charge recommended by the Lodge of Reconciliation in 1819: 'by abstaining from every topic of religious or political discussion'.

Preston's Illustrations of Masonry [1847 edition] uses the phrase 'neither are you to enter into any dispute about religion or politics'.

'The presentation, endorsement and/or promotion of such subjects in any Lodge holding under the UGL of NSW and ACT whether the Lodge be open, adjourned, at refreshment or closed or at any connected or associated lodge function should be deemed irregular and is strictly forbidden.' - Grand Master's Edict of 13 June 2012.

International Connection!

Lodge Galileo has hosted several Zoom meetings in Italian under the umbrella of the Australian Masonic Italian Alliance - AMIA. This alliance consists of Lodge Galileo, Garibaldi Lodge (Vic), Leonardo da Vinci Lodge (SA) and Lodge Italia (WA).

Invitations to these meetings were extended to Freemasons in Italy and they have attended in great numbers. Thus far, two presentations have been presented, one from an Italian Brother and the other from a Brother from 'Downunder.'

Sixty-three (63) Brethren from all over Italy and Australia attended the last meeting and enjoyed each other's company and have expressed their enthusiasm to continue this unique bond.

The Brethren took the opportunity to share a glass of vino and toast to AMIA Freemasonry without Borders.

Hosting a zoom meeting?

If you are hosting an online meeting and want to invite other brethren, send the meeting link to news@masons.org.au and we will publish it in the next GM's Newsletter.

Upcoming events

Fellowcraft Freemasons Q&A
Masonic Education Network
Thu, 4 June 7pm
Register Now
Q&A run every Thursday alternating between EAFs and FCFs.


"Observing Masonry"
Masonic Education Network
Sat, 6 June 3pm
Register Now
Saturday afternoon meetings run every week with a different topic of discussion.


"North@Night"
Live Stream to MEN Facebook Page with W Bro Jerry Madulid
Masonic Education Network
Mon, 8 June 9:30pm
Register Now


"Masonry in Scotland"
Masonic Education Network
guest speaker: Bro Bob Potter - Scottish Constitution
Wed, 10 June 7pm
Register Now
Every Wednesday a guest lodge takes the centre stage and conducts the presentation on a topic of their choosing


"Can we research anything?"
The Linford Lodge of Research
Wed, 10 June 7pm
Meeting Link
Saturday afternoon meetings run every week with a different topic of discussion.


Entered Apprentice Freemasons Q&A
Masonic Education Network
Thu, 11 June 7pm
Register Now
Q&A run every Thursday alternating between EAFs and FCFs.

Are your contact details up to date?

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.

How is your lodge staying connected?

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.

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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United Grand Lodge of NSW & ACT
www.masons.org.auwww.facebook.com/Freemasonsnswact
279 Castlereagh Street Sydney • PO Box A259 Sydney South NSW 1235
T 02 9284 2800 • F 02 9284 2828

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