The Province of West Lancashire membership team along with the Corinthian Club (Chorley and Leyland’s light blue Masons club) hosted another friendly and informative event for new and young Freemasons, this time at Wyrebank, Garstang. Over 50 guests enjoyed the day’s talks, food and company.
Although the event is aimed at new and young Masons, the talks presented would certainly have interested even the most experienced Masons. The event was opened up by the Provincial Membership Officer Neil Ward, who gave a run through of what the day had to offer before inviting Deputy Grand Superintendent Chris Butterfield to speak to the guests about Royal Arch Masonry. With the Royal Arch being the next step in Masonry after becoming a master Mason, the Province is keen for master Masons to join a Royal Arch chapter when they are ready to.
Following Chris was Dr Robert Lomas, who during COVID has compiled a series of literature that helps a Freemason through each of the different stages of his development. Robert believes that the mysteries and teachings of Freemasonry are not being learnt or taught like they once had been, and important parts of rituals were being left out. He believes that part of this is the fact that many teachings are now accessible through websites and the need to pass on knowledge is left for people to find themselves. By experimenting his theory within his own lodges, his literature allows eager new and young Freemasons to become familiar with these teachings and he encourages them to share with their own lodge members, especially new members joining the lodge.
Robert welcomed Angela Seed, Provincial Grand Master of The Honourable Fraternity of Ancient Freemasons, and said that both male and female Masonry should support each other more, working closer together. Robert’s talk was finished by the Provincial Grand Mentor Stewart Cranage, commenting that each of the content they both produce compliments each other and that both mediums offer insights differently for each person.
Following a final Q&A with Robert Lomas, which guests found his answers either controversial or enlightening, a fantastic hot buffet lunch was served followed by a range of tasty desserts. The break allowed guests to discuss, connect and grab a drink at the bar and enjoy their lunch.
After lunch, guests were given an unscripted Q&A interview with a new master Mason from Barrow, Liam Carson, a member of Barrow Lodge No 3928. The talk was led by Nigel Monks who asked Liam questions about his journey in Freemasonry and what he liked and didn’t like about it. Liam is an active member of his lodge and within his group and joined Freemasonry for the great charitable work it does. Since joining he has built great friendships and has found that Freemasonry has given him much more than what he expected.
Angela Seed was the final special guest speaker and she was joined with a handful of other brothers from the Honourable Fraternity of Antient Freemasons, or Freemasonry for Women as it was shared, they would prefer to use. Angela thanked the organisers for the opportunity to talk at the event and spoke about the long history of their organisation. Including a history of how it was formed and how is has developed and grown over the years. Following her informative talk, Angela answered questions from guests and dispelled a few myths that are often asked about the differences between male and female Masonry.
The day was closed by Neil Ward welcoming Peter Lockett, an Assistant Provincial Grand Master of West Lancashire Province. Peter thanked everyone for attending and spoke about the strong bonds built in Freemasonry and how new and young Masons are encouraged to get involved in lodge business as it is their own lodge too.
At £5 per ticket, the event was well worth attending and everyone left learning something new and meeting other Freemasons from other parts of the province.
The next West Lancashire Light Blue Masons Forum is booked for 24 February 2024 at Southport Masonic Hall. The principal guest speaker will be the Provincial Grand Master Mark Matthews. At the meeting Mark will be doing a draw for 50 members of the LBCs to attend the Provincial Grand Lodge meeting and festive board in May 2024, paid for by the Province. Other guest speakers will be; Paul Shirley (Charity), Louis Spencer (Members Journey) and Shaun Butler (UGLE Director of Marketing and Communications). More details will be shared later this year but please reach out to make your interest known.