A report from Ill. Bro. Michael B Squires on a visit to Johannesburg.
From the 19th - 25th November of this year I was in South Africa in my capacity as Grand Treasurer for the Operatives: 4 days in Cape Town and 3 days in Johannesburg. Whilst there, I was invited to attend a Rose Croix meeting at Freemason’s Hall, Park Lane, Johannesburg which turned out to be even more interesting than I had anticipated.
I had originally expected it to be an “ordinary” Rose Croix meeting but, in the event, it turned out to be a meeting of the North West District of the South African Branch Council at which 7 Candidates received their 30°. Clearly, it is not realistic for local Brethren eligible for their 30° to travel to Duke Street in London to receive their degree, so the local District have authority from Supreme Council in the UK to carry out these ceremonies on their behalf.
I was in awe at the distance some of these Brethren had travelled to receive their degree. One candidate came from Concordia Chapter No 758 which meets in Swaziland - a distance of some 5 hours by car! The ceremony was of a very high standard and just as you would expect to see it in Duke Street.
I was greeted warmly as an honoured guest by the Inspector General, V. Ill. Bro. C van Gaalen, 33°, who in his greeting explained to the Brethren that I was a member of one of the oldest Chapters in the World: Vernon Chapter No. 5, and got a laugh at my expense by saying he did not think I was a Founder Member! An excellent meeting was concluded with a very enjoyable Festive Board.
Michael Squires, 32°
Vernon Chapter No. 5
More than 140 brethren and their families were at our annual service on Sunday 10th - a very pleasing turn out given the number of alternative masonic events that same day.
Peter Round and his team delivered another excellent lunch at Alderson House, where fifty attendees fortified themselves ahead of the service.
A short drive afterwards to Sherbourne brought All Saints Parish Church into view. Having held the luncheon slightly earlier than in previous years there was time for all to appreciate the architectural beauty of this Early English, marble decorated gift from the Smith - Ryland family.
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The Sovereign Grand Inspector General, District of Warwickshire, V.\Ill.\Bro. Alan J. Wellan 33°, would be delighted if you and your family and friends would join him and his wife Joy at the Annual Rose Croix Church Service at 3pm on Sunday 10th September 2017.
Held at All Saints Church, Sherbourne, CV35 8AP the service will this year be conducted and the address given by the Rev. Dr. Vaughan S. Roberts, Team Vicar of St. Mary's Collegiate Church and Team Rector of Warwick. W. Bro. Michael Irving will again be directing the Provincial Choir with E. & P. Bro. Peter Summers accompanying on the Organ and giving a recital before the start of the service. Regalia will not be worn. A pre-service Luncheon has been arranged at Alderson House, Warwick: reception at 12:15pm for lunch at 12:45pm. The price is £22.00 per person excluding wine. Tea or coffee and cake will be served (if pre-booked and paid for) in the Sherbourne Village Hall after the service at a cost of £6.00 per person. Vouchers will be issued at the luncheon to those who have ordered and paid for tea and cake. Vouchers for tea and cake will be sent by post to those not attending the lunch.
Smoked Haddock and Salmon fish cakes, Chicken breast with apricot and tarragon sauce, new potatoes and seasonal vegetables, Creme Brulée with red fruits, Tea or Coffee.
Pearls of melon with mango and ginger, Spinach and Ricotta cheese pasta, new potatoes and seasonal vegetables, Creme Brulée with red fruits, Tea or Coffee.
Thursday 22nd June will see two Candidates being Perfected simultaneously, thanks to the good offices of Himalaya Chapter No 80 who have loaned their ladder and so forth. The Chapter has been very fortunate in attracting new members in recent years but the timing for the latest brethren was such that a ten-month wait was inevitable for one of them if a "double" was not to be held.
Ceremonies like this are rarely performed and the brethren of St Benedict Chapter are grateful for the understanding and assistance they have received from our Inspector General and the District Recorder in making the necessary preparations.