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RW DGM’s speech at DGL Annual Investiture meet on 9th February 2013

Brethren,

Good evening and welcome to Chennai and the warm hospitality of the Archibald Campbell Lodge. Our host Lodge is one of the youngest in our District and continues to be an extremely vibrant Institution. It also happens to be the Mother Lodge of my predecessor, R.W.Bro. K.R.N. Menon who, I am told, has been the moving force behind the organization of this week end of Masonic celebration.

Brethren, I have very great pleasure in welcoming our distinguished visitors this evening all of whom have travelled considerable distances to be with us and whose presence is not only an honour, but is of great support to our District and its activities. We have with us this evening R.W. Bro. Krishnaswamy Ramadurai, Past Junior Grand Warden, Past Deputy Regional Grand Master and Assistant Regional Grand Master of the Regional Grand Lodge of Southern India and his team of officers who are here representing R.W. Bro. Sushilraj, Regional Grand Master who has been unable to join us.

We also have R.W.Bro. Dr. Yeoh Poh Hong, District Grand Master of the District Grand Lodge of Eastern Archipelago, R.W.Bro. David Fok, District Grand Master of the District Grand Lodge of Hong Kong and the Far East and R.W.Bro. V. Nagarajan District Grand Master of the District Grand Lodge of Northern India and their officers. Brethren, we thank you all for having spared the time and made the effort to accept our invitation to join us this week end and I sincerely hope that you, and your good ladies, have been well taken care of by our District and more specifically the team from Archibald Campbell Lodge. Your presence amongst us is most appreciated and, with travel being so much easier today, we look forward to future visits from you and to the pleasure to visiting you ourselves.

I would like to invite all of you to please join us at the banquet after the meeting.

Grand Lodge Affairs

Brethren, During the quarterly communication of the Grand Lodge in September last year the Board of General Purposes considered it appropriate to draw attention to Rule 125B of the Book of Constitutions which covers visitors to Lodges from other Constitutions. The Board emphasizes the need for private Lodges to be extremely careful in admitting members of other Constitutions to prevent the inadvertent admission of members from unrecognized Constitutions.

Similarly the Board has drawn the attention of all Brethren to the dangers of visiting Lodges overseas in case such Lodges are not recognized by our Constitution.

To avoid this danger and embarrassment to hosts, Brethren should not attempt to make contact with Masonic bodies without first checking, in writing, with the Grand Secretary’s Office in London. Brethren, I would like to particularly emphasize the Board’s recommendation that the terms of this warning be repeated verbally in Open Lodge whenever a Grand Lodge Certificate is presented and in print once a year in every Lodge’s summons. I request all ruling Masters and Secretaries to please make a note of this and ensure that these recommendations are followed.

Brethren who wish to visit Masonic Bodies while travelling overseas must also remember that they should not attempt to communicate directly with the Grand Secretary but should consult the District Grand Secretary who will, in turn, communicate with the Grand Secretary.

Brethren, please also note that apart from the Masonic Bodies overseas, there are unrecognized Masonic Bodies operating even within our own District and you are all requested to exercise extreme caution in admitting visitors to your private Lodges.

Following the withdrawal of the recognition of the GLNF there have been rumors circulating that the UGLE is considering recognition of some other Masonic Body in France. Brethren, the Board of General Purposes has made it clear that this is not true and that recognition of any other Masonic Body in France is not under consideration and that the Grand Lodge respects all Sovereign territory of even unrecognized Grand Lodges.

The Board has appointed W.Bro. P.R. Calderwood, PSGD as the Prestonian Lecturer for the year 2013 and the title of his lecture will be, "As we were seen – The press and Freemasonry".

Affairs of the District

Brethren, coming to the affairs of the District, we had the pleasure of organizing an informal dinner for the R.W. Assistant Grand Maser R.W. Bro. David Kenneth Williamson and V.W.Bro. Derek Ralph Dinsmore, Grand Chancellor, who visited Chennai in November last year. The dinner was at Freemasons Hall and it was attended by about 40 Masons and their wives.

Brethren, the affairs of the District continue to be conducted efficiently, and the finances are in good shape. I must, however, stress the urgent need of major repairs to the main building at Freemasons Hall. Many of you would have noticed that the building has developed several cracks in the walls. During the course of the year we requested a very senior structural engineer and his team to study the condition of the building and give us their recommendations on what is required to restore it to its former splendor. Following their inspection they have now made their recommendations and estimated the cost of the work that is to be carried out which is a major undertaking involving expensive repairs such as underpinning the foundations. Brethren, this is going to cost a substantial sum and while R.W.Bro. Sushilraj has assured me that the Regional Grand Lodge will certainly contribute towards the repairs, it still remains our responsibility to gather the necessary funds to ensure the safety of our building. It is my appeal to all of you Brethren to please make substantial contributions towards the repairs to the building, more particularly the Madras Lodges who use the building the most.

Brethren, I continue to meet with the administrative team of our District from time to time and together with our Deputy District Grand Master, our Assistant District Grand Master, the Presidents of our Board of General Purposes and District Grand Charities and the Administrative team of District Grand Lodge, assure the smooth functioning of the administration.

The affairs of the District Grand Charities are in the Report of the Executive Council which has been printed and circulated amongst you and will give you a clear account of our charity work.

The Reserve Bank of India has approved our request for permission to subscribe to the Freemasonry Cares programme by making an annual contribution of UK£ 2,000/- to Freemasonry Cares. The first remittance of this amount has been made last month and I am sure it will be appreciated by Freemasonry Cares and the Grand Lodge.

Brethren the lease, to Bangalore International Airport Limited, of the Cornwallis Masonic Home building, expires next week and the Bangalore International Airport Limited have confirmed that they will be vacating the premises. Discussions are currently being held with other potential occupants, including Helpage India, and we sincerely hope that the building will not remain vacant for too long.

Mentoring

Our District Grand Mentor W.Bro. M.S. Duleep and our District Grand Orator W.Bro. T.V. Srinivasan continue to give of their best for the Brethren of our District and, keeping with the recommendations of the Grand Lodge the Office of Lodge Mentor has been created in all our Lodges and I sincerely hope that this will give a boost to our mentoring programme.

I would like to offer my personal congratulations to the Brethren who have been invested this evening and would like to remind them that these ranks are not given as a reward for past service to the Masonry but are meant to serve as encouragement for further efforts in the future. I am sure Brethren I can look forward to their utmost co-operation and support during the year.

Brethren my thanks are due to W.Bro. Ponnaiya, Wor. Bro. Achaiah, W. Bro. Sukesh Menon, W. Bro. P.B. Shankar and his team for their untiring efforts in making sure that our District is well administered. 

Installation Meetings

Since we last met Brethren I had the pleasure in attending the installation meetings of:

Lodge St. George No.2532

28th September, 2012

John Miller Lodge No.1906

26th November, 2012

Lodge Cochin No.4359

19th January, 2013

The inspection of the records of these Lodges was carried out by W.Bro. Sukesh Menon. The following Brethren, very kindly represented me at other installation meetings:

V.W.Bro.S.Sampath 
Deputy DGM

Lodge Southern Brotherhood No.3311 6th November 2012
St. John’s Lodge No.434 27th December 2012
Golconda Lodge No.3249 1st February 2013

R.W.Bro.K.R.N.Menon, PDGM

Archibald Campbell Lodge No.4998 31st October 2012
Lodge of Universal Charity No.273 21st December 2012
Pitt Macdonald Lodge No.1198 8th January 2013
Lodge of Perfect Unanimity No.150 11th January 2013

W.Bro.D.Rajasekaran

Lodge of Rock No.260 5th January 2013

W.Bro.A.I.Kurian Kerala Lodge No.2188 5th January 2013

W.Bro.Abdul Jifri, ADGM

Lodge Quilon No.5839 12th January 2013
Lodge Ampthill No.3682 19th January 2013

The inspection of the records was done by

W.Bro. Sukesh Menon

Archibald Campbell Lodge No.4998
Pitt Macdonald Lodge No.1198
Lodge of Perfect Unanimity No.150

W.Bro.S.Ponnaiya

Lodge of Universal Charity No.273

Obituary

Brethren, it is with sadness that I have to report that the following Brethren have been called to the Grand Lodge above, since we last met:

W.Bro.Dr.Ninan Kuruvilla, Past District Grand Deputy Director of Ceremonies of Lodge Quilon No; 5839 on July 17, 2012. 

W.Bro.M.Shankar Narayan, Past District Grand Organist of St.John’s Lodge No: 434 on September 2, 2012.

W.Bro.S.Ramesh Kumar, PDG Org, John Miller Lodge :1906 on November 16, 2012

W.Bro.G.Swaminathan, Past Asst District Grand Master of Lodge CauveryNo:3848 on December 9, 2012

W.Bro.P.K.Shivdas, Past District Junior Grand Warden of Lodge Anchor of Hope No.1093 on January 3, .2013

W.Bro. J.T. Mooken, Past Assistant Grand Director of Ceremonies of Lodge Cochin on January 28, 2013.

Brethren, may I request you to please rise and observe a minute’s silence in their memory.

Brethren, I would like to once again thank our visitors for having given us their time and company over this week end and I sincerely hope that they will enjoy the festive board after this meeting.

I must also thank the Worshipful Master and the Brethren of the Archibald Campbell Lodge for the wonderful arrangements in organizing this meeting.

Brethren, farewell till August when we meet in the beautiful Nilgiris. 

 

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