Companions, I welcome you all on this happy occasion. I have already welcomed all our distinguished guests. I do thank most sincerely our M E Third Grand Principal allowing time within his very busy schedule, for coming to Devonshire today. It has been our pleasure to welcome you. Thank you, Sir.
Also to each and every one of our friends, on behalf of all the Companions of Devonshire, your Companionship is much treasured. We thank you all for travelling many miles to be with us. I ask the Companions of Devonshire, to once again show our appreciation of their support.
This is a day for congratulations and thanks. I firstly thank all of you Companions, not only for attending this Convocation, but for your very kind support over the last 7 years. Without your support, I cannot undertake my role as MEGS, and I hope that I can continue to receive your support for a little while longer. I most sincerely thank each and every one of you. You are wonderful Companions.
To those who have just been appointed and promoted to their Provincial Ranks, it has been a pleasure to invest you with your new offices. All the Companions in our Province will be looking to you to set high standards in all you do. Many Congratulations to you all.
A huge thank you has to go to all those active officers who have just completed their term of office. I congratulate them on the happy and wonderful manner in which they have performed their duties. Like all active officers over the years, they have been everywhere around the Province. I know that they have gained much from their term of office, and have made many new friendships. Companions don’t let it stop here.
This year has been another momentous year for the Royal Arch in Devonshire, with the consecration of the Louis Marchesi Chapter in June. Over 170 Companions attended, for what was another wonderful Masonic occasion, which was enjoyed by all. We wish Louis Marchesi Chapter well.
This year, at the April and November SGC convocations, it was a pleasure to see Excellent Companions John Bate, Colin Gale, Roger Guest and my Scribe Ezra, Tony Parker, all being appointed to PGStB in Supreme Grand Chapter, and also E. Comps Gerald Watson and David Jones both being promoted to Past Assistant Grand Sojourner. Our congratulations to them all. I thank my Deputy Grand Superintendent, E. Comp Chris Roach, and E. Comp John Sevieri for their loyal support, hard work, friendship and Companionship, and I look forward to another wonderful year with them. I am also looking forward to the Companionship of my new Third Provincial Grand Principal, E. Comp Kevin Hurley, who I welcome to the Sanhedrin.
Grateful thanks go to my Scribe E, E. Comp Tony Parker for all his hard work conducted during the year, and more especially in the organisation of today where with the assistance of my Assistant Scribe E, E. Comp Richard Spencer, the Provincial Grand Scribes have now completed another superb day. My sincere thanks you both. Also, thanks go to my Director of Ceremonies E. Comp Paul Hughes, and his team for all their hard work to ensure the ceremonial has run well today. To my Janitor, E. Comp Roger Smith and his band of helpers for all their hard work, to my Treasurer, E. Comp Conrad Donaldson, who has worked so hard to achieve what has been achieved this year. And finally, to all the Stewards who will be breaking down the Chapter with the Janitor. Please. However, my greatest thanks must go to one very special Companion. E. Comp Gerald Watson has done so much for this Province, over so many years. As I have already said, it has been a pleasure to have had Gerald at my right-hand side, providing help and support at all times, with words of wisdom when required. Mere words cannot express my sincere grateful thanks Gerald for your friendship and Companionship, knowing your support will continue in the future. I look forward to many further years of Gerald’s involvement in the future of the HRA in Devonshire. I thank you from the heart, and I am sure that the Companions would now like to also show their appreciation.
This next 12 months will be busy, not with consecrations, but with the re-launch of the Chapter Representative initiative, with those representatives now being called Chapter Liaison officers, and with the full support of our PGM. This exercise is currently underway, under the management of E. Comp Jeff Bailey, and this re-launch will take effect as soon as all Lodges have replied. There will be comprehensive guidance through Jeff and his team. I also ask, that if a Lodge has not yet appointed such an officer as per recent communication from no less a person as the Provincial Grand Secretary, then I ask that Companions please put themselves forward for this most important position in Pure Ancient Masonry.
Also, Under the management of E. Comps John Sevieri and Gerald Watson, demonstration teams for “Talking Heads”, a demonstration to be conducted in Craft Lodges, and “In Camera” demonstrations to be delivered in Chapters, will be launched, with my blessing. These demonstrations will provide further education and knowledge of the HRA. These demonstrations will help to answer the question why all Brethren should be Companions. I would make it known now that the first demonstration of “In Camera” will conducted by a team of the Metropolitan Grand Chapter in February 2018, at the regular meeting of the Devonian First Principals Chapter. Full notification will be received by all Scribes E, and please, keep your eyes on the situation, as I would wish at least one companion from each Chapter to attend this meeting. It has my full support. Enough said.
And finally, it is well known that I am always very mindful of the importance of being a Brother and Companion in Pure Ancient Masonry and our Role as Companions. We must be mindful at all times, that our Chapters are very special. They are centres for the teaching of moral truth, virtue and true friendship. Never let these terms and phrases become throw away comments. Never has the world needed centres for the promotion of moral truth, virtue and Companionship more than this present day.
I stand before you not just as the Grand Superintendent, but as your Companion, and say that if you understand my thoughts and words, then you will understand when I say, Live at all times as a Companion, Act at all times as a Companion. BE A COMPANION.
Be proud that you are freemasons, be proud that you are Royal Arch Companions, trust in your faith, and enjoy your Royal Arch Masonry. And always remember, freemasonry is meant to be enjoyed not endured.
Companionship is a Great Thing. You are all very special.
YOU ARE COMPANIONS.
May peace be with you all.