During this Masonic season there have been a series of presentations of an enhanced exaltation ceremony, delivered by the Assistants to the Provincial Grand Principals supported by companions in their respective groups, across the Province
Paul Renton, Assistant to the Provincial Grand Principals is responsible for the Chorley, Leyland, Ormskirk and Southport Groups completed their fourth and last demonstration in the Leyland Group.
Cuerden with Withy Chapter No 7733 hosted the demonstration which took place after the chapter was opened by the three principals Bill Briggs, David Coulson and Stephen Lunt. Bill welcomed Deputy Grand Superintendent, Danny Jones to the meeting after offering Danny the sceptre which he swiftly returned it saying he wanted to enjoy the meeting- not take part in it!
Bill then introduced Paul and asked him to occupy his chair. Paul introduced his team: Stewart Crannage who took to role of principle sojourner, Gordon MacLellan as first assistant sojourner, Ian Brown second assistant sojourner. The readings came from Barry Hewitt who also operated all of the lights that set the ambience perfectly at key times through the display. and Michael Dutton who acted as the candidate.
There was a packed chapter room with the Leyland Group Chairman Stewart Seddon along with many visitors. Paul opened the evening’s proceedings by reminding the companions that the ceremony of exaltation is one of the most colourful and emphatic ceremonies within Freemasonry. Following on from what takes place within the Craft degrees, it has potential, if well executed to inspire the candidate along with those who are watching.
The team then treated the companions to a fascinating display the visual enhancements and physical movement of the companions round the chapter that supplemented and added meaning to the words traditionally spoken. They also served to provide an opportunity to further share the work of the ceremony amongst the participants.
The general feeling of the companions after the meeting was that it was interesting to see what can be achieved by fine tuning the ceremony with a little drama and some clever lighting effects.
Following the demonstration Paul and the team answered questions and took critique from the audience of companions who all enjoyed the evening and welcomed the ideas that the team had brought along. Paul explained that once all of the demonstration meetings have taken place a finalized version of the new ‘enhanced’ version of the exaltation ceremony will be published for 2015-16 season for any chapters wishing to use this exciting new version of Royal Arch Ritual.
Bill closed the meeting and the companions retired to the dining room where they enjoyed a three course buffet and camaraderie.