Silverdale Lodge No 6926 invited Matt Preston, a founder member of the Three Columns Club and member of the lodge, to give a presentation entitled ‘The Three Columns Club – What it’s All About’ at a regular meeting of the lodge.
Matt began by giving members and visitors to the lodge a background of how the club came into being from a conversation with PAPrGM Philip Gardner to its current successful operation. He stressed that the club was launched to support newer members to Freemasonry in a relaxed and enjoyable atmosphere through attending members’ progression ceremonies and holding varied social events from informal pub get-togethers to go-karting and clay pigeon shooting.
In the comparatively short duration since its inception it had also proved to be a very effective means of introducing friends to Freemasonry and was proving to be a great aid in the initiatives of recruitment and retention. Matt touched upon the experience of Peter Tooze Froggatt who was the first candidate to come into Freemasonry via the Three Columns Club and how special his initiation ceremony had been.
“Clubs such as the Three Columns Club are now being introduced throughout the country but it was extremely gratifying that we in the Lancaster Group had been very much ‘ahead of the curve’ to implement this important initiative”, said Matt.
He was pleased to introduce Spencer Sutcliffe and Michael Cole, two other members of the club, and asked them to outline to the brethren what the Three Columns Club meant to them.
Spencer spoke quite passionately about how the club had helped him through some personal difficulties and how, if it had not been for the support of the club members, he would probably no longer be a Freemason saying that he believed the club captured the ‘very essence of Freemasonry’.
Michael Cole encouraged the brethren to support the newer members of lodges and to encourage them to join the Three Columns Club.
It was clear that a number of misconceptions about the aims and operation of the club had been gained by some brethren and Matt, Spencer and Michael were delighted to host a very lively question and answer session which dispelled any doubts about the club’s objectives and value.
The Three Columns Club has no joining fee and presents no running costs to the group or individual lodges. There is no age limit and everyone is welcome to join until they take the chair of a lodge. The club is certainly not in ‘competition’ with lodges but is there to support lodge members and to help to keep brethren interested and part of Freemasonry. The club members actively support each other – even to the point of helping each other to learn the ritual!
If you would like to know more about the Three Columns Club or enquire about joining please contact Matt at: firstname.lastname@example.org