Freemason NSW & ACT December 2016

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Chinese New Year! WWW.MASONS.ORG.AU

v48 n4 – DECEMBER 2016




A new lodge


Masonic studies course


The origins of Australia Day


An experience of Prostate Cancer


Messages from the Grand Chaplains


Happy Year of the Rooster


Famous mason


A Start in Life


Travelling lodges


Conference in Taipei


A relevant bard


The Official Journal of The United Grand Lodge of New South Wales and Australian Capital Territory



Examining the mystery card


This issue of the Freemason is produced under the direction of: Chairman: RW Bro Ted Simmons OAM Committee: RW Bro Graham Maltby (Secretary), Dr Yvonne McIntyre, VW Bro Andre Fettermann, RW Bro Craig Pearce, RW Bro Richard Dawes, W Bro Stephen Dally, W Bro Steve Lourey, Bro Simon Pierce Design and Layout: Bro Simon Pierce, Megan Baumann and Pam Gill, APM Graphics Management

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FREEMASON is the official journal of The United Grand Lodge of New South Wales and Australian Capital Territory of Ancient, Free and Accepted Masons.




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Where did it go?

What? It’s December already! What happened to the rest of the year? I haven’t even completed my list of Christmas promises from last year!


inter and spring seem to have come and gone pretty quickly this year. Maybe it’s because things have been more hectic than usual, maybe it’s my age, but time didn’t seem to pass so quickly a few years back. Anyway, welcome to December and Christmas, here’s to some lovely weather and happy days ahead for all of us. Have you completed your spring cleaning and given any thought to what promises you plan to work on in the New Year? Such as reduced time in front of the television, less chatter on your mobile, more time for family and friends.

It’s time to clear away all the ‘fake’ symbols of life and living we see each day in the fantasy world of TV and get acquainted again with the real world, the problems, the help we can give and the pleasure we get from family and true friends. When we start to compare our lives, bodies and homes to others, all we do is to diminish everything that we are and this usually strips the joy away from the present time. If you really want to work on something to do, how about some of these suggestions for your 2017 Bucket List. Phone a friend! Who have you been meaning to call but keep forgetting, and suddenly days turned into weeks and months? Have a good, long talk and renew memories. I’m sure you will be glad you did. Read a book! Remember those old fashioned paper items you had that educated and entertained you? There’re whole new worlds waiting to be discovered. Go to a class and learn something new! Have you ever thought about pottery, art, yoga or exercise? So many opportunities are available to brighten your world and introduce you to something new. Take the plunge and book one today. Write down a no-holds bucket list and begin working on it. We only have one life to live and it’s up to us to make the most of it. Every hour is an investment, so invest wisely which could pay off by filling your life with truly beautiful people and wonderful times. Your lodge could be a start to meeting friends once again and for a moment of peace, try your local church. You may be surprised by the result. It’s time to start living again, so have a happy and healthy Christmas, enjoy the festive spirit and look well to the future!

to one and all

Have a safe and healthy New Year

and enjoy 2017!





Welcome to a newcomer On 20 August 2016 The Prince Charles Edward Stuart Lodge No 1745 was consecrated by the Grand Master MW Bro James Melville and the Grand Lodge Ceremonial Team. With trowel and level, plumb and square, Each stone is set exactly where The plan provides, the drawing shows And day-by-day, the Temple grows: The porch is finished, pillars placed The strands of net-work, interlaced The chambers furnished, pavement laid, The sacred vessels all displayed: The walls are standing, straight and true The roof is on, the labour through:


– From The Work by Montford C Holley

s with Montford Holley’s temple (above), with this consecration our foundational labours are through. It is fitting then to reflect on how this new lodge came into being and some of its distinctive characteristics. Having a love of Scottish culture and history I have naturally been drawn to some of the more Scottish characteristics of

Freemasonry and, for some years, have nurtured the desire to form a lodge with a uniquely Scottish flair. Later, when I joined the Prince Charles Edward Stuart Sovereign Council of the Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite for Australia, I was inspired by its fraternal and convivial atmosphere and the decorum of its meetings. Many of its usages and customs are anchored in Scottish history and culture. I was so impressed by its meetings that I resolved to see something like it emulated in Craft Masonry. Happily I found common cause in this desire with my friend RW Bro Dominic De Candia (PJGW) and together we sought to bring the idea to fruition. Our initial vision for this new lodge quickly captured the imagination of a range of brethren and it was not long before we had assembled a diverse and talented foundation team. Our foundation The regalia of The Prince Charles Edward Stuart Lodge



Members of the new lodge

membership includes Masons from different cultural and Masonic backgrounds, from different parts of NSW and Victoria, and with differing degrees of experience in the Craft. Given this diversity and the distances some of our members will travel, our lodge has decided to meet on the second Friday, five times per year, at the Sydney Masonic Centre. Another unique aspect is that we will be the first lodge to hold daylight meetings in the Centre. This arrangement means involvement in our lodge is unlikely to conflict with family engagements or other masonic commitments of members. This format, together with the diversity of our team, provides a healthy framework and foundation through which we can build a strong and enduring lodge with active members. The Prince Charles Edward Stuart Lodge offers a number of points of difference. We will use Scottish Craft rituals for our openings and closings; incorporating Scottish titles for our officers, and many aspects of the lodge work and at the festive-board will reflect the practices and customs of Scottish Masonry. Lodge members will be clothed in Scottish regalia, with aprons trimmed in the Black Stuart tartan to reflect the cultural ethos of the lodge and bring colour and difference to the meetings. These features will provide an avenue for members and visitors to experience Masonry familiar to them and decidedly different to emphasise quality of workmanship, conviviality, decorum and above all fraternity. The Festive Board or ‘Harmony’, as it’s called in Scottish Lodges, will have its own flavour, all toasts will be sung and there will be very few, if any, responses. So it is brethren that we give you ‘The Prince Charles Edward Stuart Lodge No 1745’. May she prosper, grow strong and return to Masonry a bounty of good works and fraternal love.



Studies course

a big success! More than 70 participants attended the successful certificate one day course in Masonic Studies provided by the College of Masonic Studies at Petersham.


he College Governor, RW Bro Andrew Brown PDGM, was plea­ s­ed with the response from master masons at all levels including Grand Lodge Officers and the call for similar events in Canberra and elsewhere. Seven members travelled from Canberra for the meeting. The section on masonic history was presented by RW Bro Grahame Cumming OAM PDGM CMH, former Grand Libra­ rian. His extensive and well researched chronology must have given every participant a better knowledge of the development of Freemasonry over the ages and of the establishment of the Craft in Australia in particular. W Bro Dr Philip Quadrio PhD PM spoke about masonic symbolism and his talk helped all to have a structured app­ roach to symbolism and its use in speculative Masonry. The venue of the Egyptian Room, which has a beautifully illuminated frieze of ancient Egyptian symbols and

It also showed how much teaching and research could be accomplished in a single intensive day. hieroglyphics, a colourful mural on the south wall and magnificent carved furnishings, provided a great backdrop. The attendees were welcomed by host Most Excellent Companion Rob Peattie, the First Grand Principal and Grand Master of the Supreme Grand Chapter of Mark & Royal Arch Masons of NSW & ACT. RW Bro Andrew Brown PDGM covered the Governance structures of Grand

Lodge and private lodges. He introduced Masonic Jurisprudence as published in 1936 but still current, and brought his experience as a lawyer and former Registrar to bear in what he presented. He also explained the importance of the ‘large corporation’ features of Grand Lodge and the simpler organisation of the lodges. The financial issues surrounding income tax, especially regarding Masonicare, became a third important strand to good governance. To sum up, the students became im­­ proved scholars of Freemasonry and the faculty learnt much to guide the future in this jurisdiction. It also showed how much teaching and research could be accomplished in a single intensive day. Many members are lost by a lack of knowledge of masonry and it is believed that retention of members is encouraged by such education to help understand the Craft.

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Young Street, decorated and cleared on the morning of the procession

A step back

in time

Australia in 1901, when it became one nation, was a huge empty land populated by three million people – more than that total now live in NSW and Victoria alone! Nearly all of them were of British stock. The majority lived in cities that were isolated by long distances and poor roads.


ictorian buildings, not particularly tall but massive in their proportions, dominated the centres of the cities, though Sydney and Hobart retained many of the gracious survivals of the Georgian era. The cities were compact places as most of their residents lived in closely packed terraces or semi-detached houses. Horse trams, steam trams, cable trams and electric trams clanked through city streets and trains pulled by steam engines carried people and goods from town to town. Cars were expensive and few men could dream of owning one. The majority were lucky if their wages, earned over long hours, would pay for more than a bare subsistence. Women also toiled all day for there were few labour-saving devices in the home. Much of the food they bought was adulterated, hygiene was poor and the threat of illness hung over every family. But there was a brighter side to life. Theatres flourished, presenting plays,



...the face of Australia, whatever shape or colour, must also reflect the traditions of freedom, fairness and tolerance... vaudeville, musical comedy and opera. Moving picture shows were becoming popular and talking machines were bringing European and American voices into Australian homes. There were circuses and shows, football and cricket matches, races and picnics. This was Australia when the Common­ wealth was born. The place chosen for the proclamation of the Commonwealth was Centennial

Park in Sydney’s eastern suburbs. A vast procession was to leave the Domain and make its way through city streets to the park. Privately owned grandstands were erected along the way with seats priced from five shillings to 25 shillings, according to their situation, safety and comfort. The amenities of some, such as the Martin Place Elite Grandstand opposite the Post Office, included carpets, refreshments and bands to entertain the watchers. The procession moved off at 10:30am through streets decorated with triumphal arches, Venetian poles, Japanese lanterns, flags, crowns, banners, plaster statues and oil paintings. The procession was headed by representatives of 22 trade unions, then came the fire brigades with shining engines and well groomed horses, followed by floats, troops and cars crammed with mayors, aldermen, judges and State premiers. Australia’s first Prime Minister Edmund Barton and the Governor General, John Louis Hope, Earl of Hopetoun. More than 150,000 people had gathered at Centennial Park and as the boom of the one o’clock gun died away, Lord Hopetoun entered the white swearing-in pavilion. The Queen’s Proclamation was read, Hopetoun took the oath of allegiance, a 21-gun salute was fired, 10,000 children burst into the Federal Anthem and the Commonwealth of Australia officially came into existence. So we finally had a Commonwealth but we also needed a flag and an anthem. The Union Jack had taken pride of place at the celebrations and the Commonwealth joined the search for a new flag with total prize money of 200 pounds for the winner. A total of 32,823 designs were submitted. The judges selected five that were almost identical and split the prize money between them. It is today’s flag. But some of the rejected designs were more picturesque than practical. One depicted a monstrous kangaroo with six tails to represent the States, another with six boomerangs in full flight, another a circle of hands with six fingers pointing reproachfully at a scantily dressed Britannia, and another a fat kangaroo aiming a gun at the Southern Cross. God Save the Queen remained the anthem until the 1970s when another search was made. There were again many submissions – Sons of Britannia, Awake, Awake Australia, Battle Hymn, Song of


Australia. One song had the lines ‘Koalas bark and the platypus quack, jackasses laugh their loud Ha Ha, should I depart I must soon come back, Yirra Yirra ka la ka la.’ Apart from Waltzing Matilda, the only other song to receive some acceptance was Advance Australia Fair. It was first performed at a St Andrews Day ceremony in Sydney in 1878 and was written by Scot Peter Dods McCormick. In 1943, the Minister for Information, Arthur Calwell, persuaded theatre proprietors to play the song as well as the British and United States national anthems. He also succeeded in introducing Advance Australia Fair into the ABC, which played it before the news. In 1973, it had won such public acceptance that the NSW Council of the RSL endorsed it as an unofficial anthem. So now we’ve looked at the origin of Australia Day, the day Australia became known as one nation. Since that day, millions of people from dozens of countries have settled in Australia, bringing with them historical and cultural memories as well as their eating and drinking habits. In 1897, Dr Phillip Muskett, a distinguished Sydney physician and dietitian summed up our eating habits as: ‘We eat meat and drink tea. Meat eating in Australia is almost a religion.’ But a great revolution has taken place at the table through the arrival of new settlers and the greater travelling abroad by Australians to visit different countries and try their food. But we did make two contributions to the noble art of

Lord Hopetoun addresses the first Australian Parliament

cooking. They were the pavlova, named after the Russian dancer Anna Pavlova in 1935, and the lamington, named after Baron Lamington, Governor of Queensland in 1895. We’ve changed our drinking habits from the glass of beer, the glass of plonk and the six o’clock swill. And I need say little about Australian wines, no longer known as the ‘four penny dark’ but are famous worldwide. Our television and radio programs provide talk back, music, sport and films. Yesterday we had Dad and Dave, the Air Adventures of Biggles, Yes What, Blue Hills, When a Girl Marries and Portia Faces Life.

In January we will once more celebrate Australia Day and look again at today’s Australia. We live in a privileged country and whatever difficulties we have, we still enjoy a degree of freedom, tolerance and security as well as a lifestyle few people would want to change. We have every right to be proud of the way we have gradually accepted and incorporated the changes to our living standards and lifestyle. We may be thoroughly modern and multicultural but the face of Australia, whatever shape or colour, must also reflect the traditions of freedom, fairness and tolerance, by which we call ourselves Aust­ralians and on which this country was built.

The procession to Centennial Park heading down Macquarie Street





Prostate cancer

a patient’s viewpoint Men’s health issues are vital to Freemasonry. Unnecessary loss of members through neglect of personal health is a tragedy which can be avoided. Staying healthy is integral to the objective of retaining our members!


he article by Associate Professor Manish Patel in the September 2016 issue of the NSW Freemason was a timely reminder of that grim reaper – prostate cancer. Just over five years ago the reaper knocked on my door and I became a patient of Dr Patel. I have survived and am honoured to give a patient’s viewpoint on prostate cancer diagnosis and treatment. For years I have been having annual check-ups with my GP, including testing for prostate disorders. My prostate cancer emerged in the time between two annual check-ups. Without an annual check-up I could have died in about five years. Testing for prostate cancer can be done two ways – by blood test to give a PSA reading or by digital probe through the rectum. The latter is not dignified but, in my case, proved vital because my PSA blood test showed no cause for concern. I am eternally grateful that my GP is from an old school which does both tests. The instant reaction of my GP was that ‘something does not feel right’ and I was referred for consultation with Dr Patel, who confirmed my GP’s opinion. A biopsy was immediately arranged. A biopsy for prostate cancer involves having an instrument inserted into the rectum to enable needles to be fired into the prostate and samples withdrawn from around that organ. The samples are sent for analysis. The process is moderately painful, with some residual discomfort over one or two days. The biopsy result became the basis for pivotal discussion. Firstly, Dr Patel laid out



the facts – I had prostate cancer which had an aggression rating of seven on a scale of ten. My wife’s expression of incredulity at this news was met politely but firmly with the words: ‘These things don’t lie’. This was followed by discussion of treatment options with likely success rates based on age, state of health and the like. I chose open radical prostatectomy, based on consideration of all the data.

I shall be forever grateful to have been in the hands of skilful and dedicated health professionals.

Wheels started to turn rapidly. I was sent for a full body scan; skeletal and soft tissue. This determines whether there has been spread of the cancer. My report was good – the first real ray of light on the horizon. The radical prostatectomy operation takes about four hours and is followed by a hospital stay of three to four days. One is returned home with a catheter inserted through the urethra into the bladder, which is drained to a bag. Management of this apparatus is a little tricky but nursing

staff will give good advice. The catheter is withdrawn about one week ‘post op’ in a procedure which was quite painful. The pathology report following my operation was also a good one and became the basis for an emerging confidence that this ‘thing’ really can be beaten. Meanwhile, there is about six weeks of physiotherapy to undergo. The main purpose is to restore bladder control. It’s a case of being re-taught something which has been second nature since early childhood. You learn how to use and strengthen muscles which, in normal life, you wouldn’t even know exist. Eventually, with all signs looking good, I was put onto an annual watch with Dr Patel for a five year period. My last anticipated consultation will be in November 2016, after which Dr Patel will ‘hand me back’ to my GP. Prostate cancer is challenging: firstly, because men do not like to be reminded of frailty and, secondly, because disease of the prostate can result in loss or deterioration of that core male thing – potency. Elements of the diagnosis and cure procedures are not dignified but, brethren, get over it; it’s little different to what our wives go through in childbirth and far less painful. For those who go down the private healthcare route the probable ‘gap’ cost of the whole procedure will be about $10,000. But what price do you put on life? For my part, I shall be forever grateful to have been in the hands of skilful and dedicated health professionals. I am, moreover, able to continue as a lodge member. I have been retained.



Christmas Greetings ‘A very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year’ is the time honoured expression of goodwill at Christmas time.


erry’ is widely interpreted as a joyous occasion for families and friends to spend more time together and reach out to those less fortunate. This does not entail being indifferent to the deep religious significance of the occasion. A ‘Happy New Year’ is of our own making.

To the rich, the powerful and the poor, the degree of happiness is much nearer than is commonly imagined. If greatness flatters our vanity, it multiplies our dangers. If opulence increases our gratifications in the same proportions it increases our demands. Let us make home the centre of our enjoyments. The fulfilment of those little

duties which are at every moment presenting their claims, may be thought by many as a strange receipt for contentment, yet it is a very sure one. The mind is its own place. The degrees of happiness vary according to the degree of virtue. The life which is most virtuous is most happy.


A time for singing As I write this message, I am filled with joy and wonder as I remember the beautiful music I have listened to just a day or two ago.


he setting was a large vineyard at Pokolbin where thousands of people had gathered to listen to a concert performed by an orchestra and four soloists. We had enjoyed this experience together for many years. This year, in a new location, on a cool spring evening, we listened to the orchestra, solo singing and vocal ensembles. An enthusiastic audience applauded the glorious music. We look forward to next year’s production. Christmas is a time for singing. The gospel tells of shepherds in a field suddenly amazed by the appearance and sound of angels! ‘Glory to God in the highest’. The

shepherds told their story to others as they wondered about its meaning. In this Christmas season there will be a great variety of musical presentation: from great works like Handel’s Messiah to carols sung by children; as well as modern songs to suit the less religious. If you have never listened to Handel’s Messiah, I encourage you to listen to a performance or a broadcast to catch the wonder of this beautiful work including the famous Hallelujah Chorus.

For those who are not of the Christian religion, I trust that you will find spiritual help in your own religious beliefs, but don’t feel excluded from sharing with others in the joy of this season. Remember that Freemasonry acknowledges the importance of our individual belief systems without attempting to prescribe what they must be. Look back with thankfulness on the year that has passed; look forward with optimism to the year which lies before us.

...look forward with optimism to the year which lies before us.






Chinese New Year!

Chinese New Year in Chinatown, Sydney. Photo by Kenya Chan

It’s the time for the Rooster to crow! 28 January will be the start of the Chinese New Year, when celebrations are held in many parts of the world in this ancient ceremony.


hinese New Year is a long and rich history connected to a profound system of values. Products of this system include the five cardinal virtues of ‘benevolence, righteousness, propriety, wisdom and faithfulness’ as well as the concepts of ‘man and nature must be in balance’ and ‘respect the heavens to know one’s destiny’. The New Year celebrations are part of the traditional Chinese way of life although the foundations of traditional culture have changed greatly over the last century because of various happenings at people and political level. Now if you meet with Chinese friends or visit a Chinese store in January you may be greeted with the phrase ‘Gung Hay Fat Choy’ or even ‘Hoh shah kai mah’ meaning ‘Is the whole world good’. It’s like two Australians meeting and giving a friendly greeting.

Rat 10



This special holiday, similar to Christmas in Australia, is one of the few times of the year where Chinese families unite to enjoy food, fireworks and a get-together. The most popular New Year myth says an ancient beast named Nian terrorised the country every New Year’s Eve trying to feed on crops, livestock and even villagers. But it was also said the beast was scared of the colour red, flames and noise. The legend continued that people would decorate their front doors with red sheets, light torches and set off fireworks throughout the entire night. In the morning they would congratulate each other for having scared away the beast. Another myth involved the monster Shui which crept into homes at night and caressed the children’s foreheads, giving them a headache. This prompted parents to hold a bedside vigil to protect their


children, using red paper and coins until they fell asleep. They awoke when Shui appeared and the monster grabbed the red envelope and fled, leaving parents in the future placing red envelopes with coins on the pillows of their children. During the Han Dynasty coins were engraved on one side with the words ‘To keep calamities at bay and dispel bad things’ or ‘Long life, wealth and luck’. Family, ancestors and the divine all play an important role in the Chinese New Year celebrations. It has been customary for younger generations to respectfully and politely call, greet and wish the older generation a Happy New Year and paying tribute to deities and honouring ancestors. They also have prominent displays of dragons and lions as they are considered powerful animals who can drive away demons and bad spirits.

Rabbit Dragon



Traditionally, each year is dedicated to a specific animal from the 12 which are part of the tradition. The animals are the Dragon, Horse, Monkey, Rat, Pig, Rabbit, Dog, Rooster, Ox, Tiger, Snake and Sheep. Each of these animals are believed to give some of their characteristics to the people born in their year. Of all the animals, the Dragon is considered to be the highest-ranking and has often been associated with the Chinese Emperor. These mythical creatures, symbolic of power and majesty, have often been depicted in the headdress of a King or Emperor and drawings of Chinese dragons can be found in pottery of Neolithic times as well as on Bronze Age ritual vessels. A question often asked is – ‘how did the years get their names?’ Legend says a long time ago, the Jade Emperor announced to all animals in the forest there would be a race with special prizes but for only 12 winners. He said the race would be across the river and the first 12 to reach the other bank would have a year named after them. When the race began, all the animals ran towards the river but suddenly found problems. The Cat and the Rat hesitated, realising the crossing looked dangerous until the Ox arrived when the Rat quickly asked the Ox would he mind carrying them across the river. The Ox was a kind animal and agreed so the two jumped on his head for the journey. However, just as they reached the other bank, the Rat jumped off to snatch first place with the Ox second. An exhausted Tiger followed after a difficult swim and had the third year named after him. Surprisingly the Rabbit was next to finish although it was known he couldn’t swim. He told the Emperor he crossed the river by jumping on stones and sailing on a log which impressed the Emperor into awarding him fourth place. The animals were showing plenty of courage and innovation in crossing the



New year celebrations in Melbourne Photo by Chris Phutully

So don’t forget when January comes, take time off to make friends, renew friendships, speak to the family, smile and say ‘Thank you’

river but the Emperor was puzzled by the absence of the Dragon which could both fly and swim and should have won until it suddenly swooped in and landed. The Dragon explained he had seen the Rabbit trying to cross on the log and helped by creating some wind. He was promptly given fifth place. Before long, the Horse came into view swimming furiously but just as he was about to step up on the bank, the Snake came from under his hooves, causing the Horse to rear up in shock, allowing the Snake to get sixth and the Horse seventh. With five prizes remaining, the next sight to greet the animals which had finished was a raft carrying the Rooster, Monkey and the Goat. The Rooster had found the raft and the other two had helped

Monkey Rooster

navigate and clear away the reeds and this teamwork so pleased the Emperor he granted the Goat the eighth year, the Monkey the ninth and the Rooster the tenth. Year 11 went to the Dog who explained his delay in finishing was because the water was so clean he couldn’t resist bathing in it. And finally, the Pig appeared on the bank to earn the 12th place with all the animals being congratulated by the Emperor on their amazing efforts. By the way, if you are wondering what happened to the Cat, who crossed with the Ox? Well, it seems the Rat pushed him into the river and swept him across to the starting bank. That is why since then Rats and Cats have become fierce enemies. Mankind invented calendars to keep track of time and the Chinese Lunar New Year is the longest chronological record in history, dating from 2600BC when the Emperor Huang Ti introduced the first cycle of the zodiac. The months are set according to the cycles of the moon and the years are set according to the solar year. In order to match the months to the seasons, a leap month was created. There are many fascinating areas of ancient Chinese history which relate to today’s world and their various celebrations. So don’t forget when January comes, take time off to make friends, renew friendships, speak to the family, smile and say ‘Thank you’ as the New Year succeeds the Christmas festivities.






Tom Kirk –

THE AXEMAN Behind the outline of a simple and ordinary life may lie extraordinary achievements, but these rarely come into public light.


ne such man, Septimus Boyd Wilson Kirk – known as Tom – was buried in his isolated mountain village. The difference between his given names and that by which he was known is perhaps an indication of the gap between the two parts of his life. Kirk was born on Mount Wilson (in the Blue Mountains) in a snowstorm, in 1914, which prevented his mother reaching hospital. He was the seventh (hence Septimus) and youngest child of a family who were descendants of one of the original settlers of the mountain. He was educated in a one-teacher mountain school while his father and his older brothers operated the family timber mill. Three of his brothers fought in the First World War, with all of them returning to resume work in the mill.

Kirk had an intimate knowledge of the trees, birds and wildlife of the bush and will live on in the record books Before World War II he was working as the leading benchman, responsible for milling logs for a timber mill in Lithgow. In 1942, although working in a protected industry, Kirk enlisted in the RAAF,

initially as a fitter before being promoted to Aircraftsman, and then Leading Aircrafts­ man, and served throughout Australia. His interest in how things worked and his powers of observation were honed during this time. He returned home and set up his own mill in 1946. The timber from this mill was used almost exclusively in the coal mines in Lithgow. He could strip down, mend or start any cranky engine, from pump to helicopter. Kirk combined his expertise with timber and his magnificent physique and great agility to develop outstanding success as an axeman. He was a little under 183cm, had a fighting weight of 102kg and a 135cm chest. The Kirk brothers brought cut timber to the railhead by bullock wagon




Although a large man Kirk was almost always calm and slow moving but in a chopping competition he was described as blasting the log to pieces. Before the war woodchopping was a bushman’s game, belonging to those who lived and worked with tough Australian hardwood. Kirk won his first chopping competition in 1929 at the age of 14. He was Western Districts champion in underhand and standing block from 1931 to his retirement in 1965. He first went to the Sydney Easter Show in 1931, winning the under 21 championship. In his competitive years he won 22 world championships in woodchopping and sawing, making the standing block competition his own. In 1951 his record for the 15-inch standing block was 39 seconds. His brother Peter paired with him in the double hand-sawing events. Kirk also successfully competed at the Brisbane Royal Show and at woodchops all over NSW. He travelled to the United States in 1963, entering and winning 18 events.

He even came second in an axe-throwing competition! Kirk’s main competitor during 14 years of closely fought championships was Jack O’Toole. In 1947 (the year the Sydney Show returned after the war) he lost the standing block championship to O’Toole, but won the underhand. The two men were opposites – O’Toole had a reputation for ferocity while Kirk was mild mannered in all matters except the log he was addressing. There were few sights which proved more exciting at the Royal Easter Show than watching Kirk as the anchor for the NSW team in the state woodchop relay in the old centre ring. After retiring from competition Kirk continued his association with the Royal Agricultural Society by acting as judge, starter, and assistant-handicapper for many years. He was inducted into the Hall of Champions in the early 1980s. An essentially modest man, Kirk was one of nature’s gentlemen and would have dismissed praise while doing what he believed was right. He felt responsible for the welfare of the surrounding forests, and other than the occasional stump and old dirt track it is not possible to see where he and his brothers logged the area for over 20 years. He said it had to be looked after because it gave them their living. Kirk had an intimate knowledge of the trees, birds and wildlife of the bush and will live on in the record books as a great axeman and also in spirit within the newly-proclaimed World Heritage area. Septimus Boyd Wilson Kirk was initiated into Freemasonry on 13 November, 1948 in Lodge Lithgow Kilwinning and received his 50 year certificate and jewel on 14 October, 1998. He died on 15 February, 2001. His first wife Joy died in 1962 and he is survived by children Jill, Robyn and Ken and second wife Dulcie.

Another eye test! In the June issue of the Freemason, there was an article on macular degeneration and eye problems. This is merely a follow-up to test your powers of observance. Answer this question – how many times does the letter ‘F’ appear in the following sentence? FINISHED FILES ARE THE RESULT OF YEARS OF SCIENTIFIC STUDY COMBINED WITH THE EXPERIENCE OF YEARS... Now count the words again just to be sure. Turn to page 33 for the answer!

Woodchopping words! Double sawing? Underhand? Here are a few definitions that might help you understand the traditional sport of Woodchopping! Double saw (or double buck): A team of two push and pull a saw to cut through their log. Requires both strength and coordination to maximise efficiency.

Standing Block: An individual sport, the competitor chops a verticallypositioned log, first on one side, then the other until it is severed. Underhand: Similar to Standing Block, except the log is horizontal and the competitor stands atop the log, swinging downwards between their feet. DECEMBER 2016  FREEMASON



Outcomes – not numbers A Start in Life is often asked about the outcomes and benefits that flow from the assistance we make available.


ot surprisingly, with all the recent media debate following some of the ‘Gonski’ funding reforms, the number of enquiries is increasing. With that in mind we wanted to continue to share the outcomes flowing from the assistance your support enables us to provide to those facing economic and social distress. The central piece within most of the recent news articles is that success is measured only by looking at academic results. A Start in Life knows from its over 90 years of experience working with students and families living in disadvantaged circumstances, that there are many other outcomes which are just as important as academic results. Measuring academic results alone ignores all the important social and learning outcomes that flow from providing support. It also fails to acknowledge that by providing support each year, it prevents problems from prior years being ‘carried over’ into the following years. As we provide students from lower socio-economic status backgrounds with the means to obtain the textbooks and learning resources available to their peers, we know we are providing these students with an equal opportunity to learn and not go backwards. This is an outcome in its own right. Students regularly tell us we help reduce their stress and/or their families stress. Over 50% of our students told us this in 2015. US research in 2001 & 2003 showed



We provide youth with the opportunity for enrichment stress impaired attention and concentration and reduced cognition, creativity and memory, necessary components to learning. We can be fairly certain when we see a teacher’s comment noting the increase in a student’s class engagement, A Start in Life and its supporters have contributed to this and we can expect additional benefits flowing in future years. We know from testimonials, such as this from Dolly Reen, Principal Relieving at William Rose School, that our ‘support has continually assisted students to strive for better and bigger opportunities. The team at A Start in Life play an important and active role in the lives of our students and their families. Their commitment, involvement and relentless endeavour towards our students, makes them valued and unique’. A key component of our charitable service is directed to improving the environment in which the student grows up. Environment is known to be a significant contributor to behaviour and to growing up emotionally healthy. Emotionally healthy children need a reliable care-giver – A Start

in Life assists parents to provide a school uniform, textbooks and other educational essentials. Children need predictable and stable environments – we add economic stability where it did not exist and where food and living arrangements were not always consistent or adequate. Our model of support sees us facilitate reliability and predictability for as long as the support is required, maybe for one year, or in the case of 6% of the students, it maybe for more than six years. We provide youth with the opportunity for enrichment through taking on personalised and increasingly complex activities, by encouraging and providing students with tuition to address areas of underdevelopment. Our advocacy and encouragement of participation in out of school activities such as music, sport, the Arts and community involvement, similarly provide the personalised enrichment youth needs. The enrichment comes as young people develop proper emotions, learn how to respond appropriately, form positive relationships with peers and those they may not ordinarily come in contact with. Children who are actively engaged are less likely to develop bad habits. When children have the opportunity to master their environment they are more likely to develop feelings of self-worth, confidence and independence. We provide children with access to the relevant equipment (IT, Sports or Art) and help through tutoring, making this more attainable. We know how difficult it is to listen, concentrate and learn when affected by ill health. With a health issue we offer assistance designed to ensure the outcome is not increased absences from school, or added difficulty in learning. There are indeed many outcomes which flow from our support which are not necessarily reflected in academic grades. We are delighted by their breadth and also proud to share the fact that the overwhelming majority (67%) of students you help us support, either increased or maintained their grades between mid-year 2015 and midyear 2016. And every one of these students lives in difficult circumstances. For more information on how your lodge can help disadvantaged young Australians to have a brighter future, please contact A Start in Life on 02 9264 3017 or email

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Have charter

will travel

Below and right: Members of Lodge Highway taking their unique brand of Freemasonry to Wagga Wagga Background photo by Sten Porse

The early history of Freemasonry in NSW is enmeshed in the concept of Travelling Warrants or Charters, and of Military Lodges.


n the late 18th century British regiments frequently had a travelling charter issued by the Irish or English constitution and where the regiment went, so went the charter. Such charters still exist today and at least one British regiment in Germany still operates under a travelling, or military, charter. Charters have also been issued in a similar manner to naval vessels and military bases. The Grand Lodge of Ontario in Canada recently issued a charter for the allied base in Kandahar. Prince Hall Grand Lodges have been particularly active and their presence on US bases is widespread. But these charters are more focused on the base itself rather than the ‘mobile’ regiment. In NSW early regular lodges clearly evolved from the example of the travelling lodges. Freemasonry came to New South Wales with the regiments of the British Army soon after the First Fleet in 1788. A Military Lodge sitting under Warrant No 1780, by then having admitted a number of civilians to membership, became Sydney No l, formed with 39 brethren on 13 April 1845 with the first Worshipful Master Bro Richard McGuffin and his Officers, being installed by Bro Alexander. No l operated in Sydney until its closure in 1968. The practice still exists with at least two NSW & ACT lodges having travelling charters. Lodge Highway is a clear example. Have motorbike – have travelling charter – let’s hit the road! Lodge Highway



...taking Freemasonry out of the bricks and mortar and into towns and suburbs where the Craft is struggling... brethren happily don their leathers, roll up their charter and visit other lodges. The lure of the road means that the travel frequently takes them out of the city and over the Blue Mountains. For example: Dear Sir and Brother, The Worshipful Master, VW Bro Ross Jackson, requests your attendance at the next regular meeting to be held at Moss Vale Masonic Centre, 52 Elizabeth Street, Moss Vale NSW 2577 on Saturday 31st October 2015, tyling at 16:00. The Discovery Lodge of Research can meet at any time or place that the Worshipful Master directs. In their case the purpose of travel is usually to deliver a challenging presentation to another lodge or District. Discovery has made special lightweight travelling regalia. Why are there so few lodges with travelling charters? It seems like a good idea and it certainly has the weight of history behind the concept. But there are only two such lodges in NSW & ACT. Or are there

more that we don’t know about? Are there some lodges whose charters allow them to travel but have not done so? Perhaps these travelling clauses lie unnoticed in the small print of fading charters. Are travelling lodges encouraged by Grand Lodge? Are they discouraged? These visits come at a price. When a lodge meets on an ad hoc basis brethren can become confused. A travelling lodge can visit an area where Freemasonry is struggling or an area where the Craft is vibrant and successful. Its presence can ‘lift’ the host district or lodge. Discovery has visited Canberra and the result has been positive for all parties. Lodge Highway has been to numerous lodges over the Blue Mountains and supported Freemasonry in general. But confused. ‘When do we meet this month? I like it when the Canberra blokes come to us but I’m not sure that I want to make the effort to go all that way in return.’ Regalia gets damaged and lost. When a lodge can travel it becomes harder to provide Grand Lodge oversight. Who knows what they are doing when they go away? Some of the issues have not really been considered. The concept of a travelling lodge runs counter to an organisation based on geographic limits – districts, regions and even the state. And if a lodge can meet anywhere the concept of ‘app­roved masonic meeting places’ becomes fragile.


Asia-Pacific Grand Lodges Meet


Different meeting concepts begin to emerge. The ideas of public table lodge re-enactments. Even such details as the size of a lodge’s charter begin to be discussed. We are told that if a thing cannot be controlled it is by definition ‘uncontrollable’. Not a desirable thought. Yet, the idea of taking Freemasonry out of the bricks and mortar and into towns and suburbs where the Craft is struggling has an attraction. Perhaps we should dare to be different and dare to take a few more risks.

large gathering of Masons from the Asia-Pacific Grand Lodges discussed multiple topics at the recent 2016 conference in Taipei, Taiwan. The Asia-Pacific Conference of Masonic Grand Lodges was founded in Sydney in July 2008 with about 20 delegates. This year the meeting in Taipei was attended by approximately 160 delegates, 85 of whom were international visitors from member Grand Lodges and all were warmly welcomed by the Chinese hosts. Freemasonry first came to light in China in the late 1700s. Many difficulties occurred over the years until the final formation of the Grand Lodge of China in Shanghai in 1949 which eventually moved to Taiwan in 1951. Many of the subjects in Taipei gave great insight into what other Grand Lodges are doing in the fields of attracting and retaining membership; Quality vs Quantity; Promoting the Craft; Social Media and the Fraternity and other topics. There was a total of 10 presentations during the conference. Two of these presentations were made by representatives of the United Grand Lodge of NSW & ACT and were received with great interest. The weekend also included the Annual Assembly of the Grand Lodge of China and the Installation of the new Grand Master. It was a most impressive ceremony to see MW Bro Dennis Liao installed and his appointed officers take up their duties.

RW Bro Chris Craven at the Conference

At the conclusion of the Conference the member Grand Masters came together to discuss and vote on the next Conference and to elect their Executive Secretary. There were three nominations for the next Conference in 2018 with the assembly agreeing to be hosted by the Grand Lodge of India in 2018. RW Bro Chris Craven, PDGM and Deputy Grand Secretary of the United Grand Lodge of NSW and the ACT was elected as the Executive Secretary to the Asia-Pacific Conference of Masonic Grand Lodges. The work of the members of the Grand Lodge of China, and in particular their Grand Secretary MW Bro Norman Pin and staff, in the organisation of this international conference cannot be underestimated. It was a well run agenda which saw masons from over 12 jurisdictions come together in Harmony, Brotherly Love and Fraternity. Special thanks were also given to the many brethren of the Grand Lodge of China who made generous donations to the conference and to the Department of Foreign Affair of the ROC who sponsored the event.


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In defence of

Shakespeare As one who frequently laments the state of modern education, it hardly comes as a surprise when I see some new example of political correctness run amok there.


ne of the latest examples: an effort to sacrifice on the altar of political correctness one of the literary greats of the Western tradition, William Shakespeare. Dana Dusbiber, an English teacher at a large inner-city high school in Sacramento, wants to stop teaching Shakespeare all together. Why? Because he’s white, and because he’s a man. As she wrote, ‘What I worry about is that as long as we continue to cling to one white man’s view of life as he lived it so long ago, we (perhaps

Calling all Liverpool brethren! We are looking to form a new lodge, to meet at the LIVERPOOL MASONIC CENTRE. The Committee is meeting on the FIRST THURSDAY OF THE MONTH at 7pm. Liverpool is one of the fastest-growing areas in the state and its residents are showing an interest in Freemasonry. Past Masters, brethren and interested parties are all invited to contact us and express their interest.

FRANK INGERSOLE 9607 7726 or PETER COURT 0435 839 298 18


Cringe if you must, but stay with me...

unwittingly) promote the notion that other cultural perspectives are less important.’ She acts as though, by teaching the work of one ‘white man’, she will somehow be prevented from teaching the work of any ‘women’ or ‘writers of colour’. This, of course, is simply not true. Shakespeare still matters, even if it’s not politically correct to say so. In 1989, a production of Othello staged in apartheid South Africa spoke to black and white audience members. In 2005, a production of Love’s Labour Lost in Afghanistan had men and women performing together, at great personal risk, for the first time in decades. In the USSR, Hamlet was a popular tale of how an oppressive state can hurt the individual. So it’s not just western white men who have studied, and benefitted from, the work of Shakespeare. Four hundred years after his works were first performed, Shakespeare’s plays have been translated into 75 languages (including Klingon, so maybe it’s also taught in space) proving that it has transcended geographical boundaries to become part of a shared global heritage, something that unites us across the world. However, in these days of hypersensitivity, there are teachers willing to throw away 400 years of culture rather than expose kids to another dead white male. In a political and economic climate such as this, parents and communities will

need to take up a lot of slack in education. Shakespeare’s works can be purchased or withdrawn from the library, found for free online, and viewed through film adaptations, some also available for free online. Also, a new big budget Macbeth, starring Michael Fassbender and Marion Cotillard, is in the offing, offering another opportunity to introduce a new generation to the bard. This in addition to the countless community theatre stagings of Shakespeare put on everywhere around the world. There’s even a new option now available in stores that tells Shakespeare’s classic tales … in emoji-laden text messages OMG Shakespeare, a series of books that might actually get your pre-teens to read. Cringe if you must, but stay with me. Yes, your tweens are free to choose from YOLO Juliet, Srsly Hamlet, Macbeth #Killingit and A Midsummer Night #nofilter. While these have been largely derided as literary treason, they can serve the important role of inviting young people into the international conversation about these ubiquitous tales and beckoning them toward the original works themselves. If they’re not going to be taught Shakespeare in school, books like these might be the Trojan Horse needed to introduce kids to the bard in their free time. Sorry, Ms. Dusbiber. The introductions might change with the times, but Shake­ speare is not going, and should not go, anywhere.



A big step

for charity

As masons, amongst other things, we are encouraged to foster kindness, to promote generosity and to live in charity with all mankind. Charity can be viewed as an innate virtue; however, I truly believe it can also be cultivated.


harity features prominently in the formal procedures as masons advance through the various degrees. The ‘cultivated’ path inspired me to plan, organise and implement a philanthropic event in 2015 with the intent of raising funds for a worthy charity and to highlight the wants and needs of others to my children. The journey commenced in February 2015 by way of a conversation with my children on philanthropy whilst en route to their school. I chose the Guide Dogs Association as the benefactor. There were two main parts to the overall event – exercise and fundraising. For the exercise aspect I planned and implemented a structured regime of strength with endurance training over a five months period to tackle and ascend the annual Sydney Tower Stair Challenge – which is, I can now confirm, one challenging undertaking. Both of my children took part in the training. Due to their age, they did not participate on the day, yet the experience presented a yardstick to their understanding: – that everything ‘is’ possible in life when appropriate reasoning and strategy with suitable training is applied. Raising funds was equally challenging with support received from various walks of life. I formally approached various lodges seeking funding and attended many meetings. I pestered many work colleagues, friends, the gym and even the local school to great effect. The journey culminated in December 2015 with funding being finalised via a sizable contribution from Masonicare. In 2015 a guide dog cost $30,000 to breed, train and raise, ready to assist a

visually impaired person. It also takes two years for the training to be completed. The present day cost requirement has now increased to $35,000 since I completed the fundraising event. I trust the $22,858.85 gathered will benefit the Guide Dogs Association in yielding a more beneficial life to a visually impaired person. So what is to be gleaned from such a sizeable undertaking? And how can this knowledge serve to assist others? Following a structured training regimen has highlighted that perseverance can easily overcome any adversity when the end goal is considered, that science of diet and exercise can greatly rebalance the body and mind, and that assisting someone in need is most rewarding. Charity in all its facets is very warm in my heart. I had contemplated participating in an event whilst raising funds to support a charitable organisation for a long time. The ‘eureka moment’ to act on my thoughts came to me when I was asked by my daughter (under 10 years old at the time): ‘Excuse me Dada, what does philanthropy mean?’ In life we have a tendency to take more than we give, and it certainly feels most pleasant, post any charitable event, to have offered something in return. In September 2016 I received the 2016 District 24 District Masonic Service Award for distinguished service in recognition of outstanding contribution to lodge and to the community. The VSL in Hebrews 13:1 guides us to let brotherly love continue – a most notable set of prudent words given the barrage of various contrary messages surrounding us in daily life. I encourage those reading this narrative to pursue a philanthropic undertaking as the end

result far outweighs any challenges experienced on the journey, fosters goodwill towards your fellow man and will in due course be rewarded by the GAOTU. I would also like to make special mention of my mother lodge and my dear brethren therein – The Leichhardt Lodge UGL NSW & ACT No 133 – for all the encouragement and assistance given to achieve the goal and for the commendation for the award received.

Charles Moschoudis BARRISTER

“He has a reputation for honesty and integrity.” THE AUSTRALIAN OCT 8 2016

19 Floor 1 O’Connell St Sydney, NSW

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Mystery card The September issue of the Freemason published a mystery card and asked if any reader could provide background information. Bro Mark Bond has replied with the following report.


Navy Doctor looked at the image and said it was Papua New Guinea and the place names were all Allies of Australia at the time. The symbol on the page (top right and a smaller version under it) is the Masonic symbol, which may be evident of his membership and I think his name is David Linklater as signed at the left side bottom right of the spread and shows on the ANZAC website: As he was a teacher, I would surmise that the owl and the moon on the page are probably from one of his favourite nursery rhymes – Hey diddle, diddle. Here the owl and the moon are talking to each other. They are conversing about the number of places that David has been during his service – 98 places. Two more and he reaches 100. I’m not sure of the reference to burst (owl) but perhaps he’s weary of the travel and the war and 100 marks for him a sadder side to the glory of war. The tent in the middle shows that he camped in these places and perhaps the

pathways signify the travel and how many footsteps they took to reach these places (SQDN = squadron).

Lodge historians Some lodges create an official history of their Lodge and some send a copy to the Grand Lodge Library where it can be accessed by others.


he Grand Lodge Librarian, RW Bro Robert Taylor reports that he is often approached by Grand Officers who are going to an Installation, even Grand Masters, to see if useful information can be provided about the lodge they are visiting. ‘Where we have an official Lodge history we can help, otherwise, no history – no help. Could I ask lodges which have an



official history to check with the Library to see if we have a copy,’ he said. ‘Initially we just need to know who has one and, if we don’t already have a copy, we will ask for one to be sent to us. Some lodges have sent us multiple copies which is unnecessary as we only need one. Our direct telephone line is 9284 2825, or they could send an email advising us. This would be helpful and appreciated.’

Looking at it again in context with Anzac Day – I would say he wrote this the night before (21 April) the troops went in (22 April) and he was reflecting on his life. Some of the symbols denote that he perhaps knew he was at the end of his service and may die, plus also that many men were marching to their death. As for the poles (left side) – they look like a King and a Queen. Perhaps, after 98 places, he now feels they are all pawns in a game handed down by the King and Queen and tomorrow he and his fellow soldiers, will pass through the gates of hell to battle, live or die. There is an air of Alice in Wonderland, but this may be coincidental (King, Queen, the Owl and Moon a little Cheshire Cat-ish, and the places look like talking flowers). Overall I feel, however – sorrow – for the man. He was on the precipice of life and death – questioning right and wrong, duty and freedom, what his life may have been like if things were very different, his life until this point and what may come of the future – if it exists for him.

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Grand Master proclaimed In a ceremony performed with dignity and colour, MW Bro Jamie Melville was proclaimed as the Grand Master of the United Grand Lodge of NSW and the ACT for the ensuing year at the September meeting of Grand Lodge, and duly invested his Officers.


n his Proclamation Address, the Grand Master expressed his surprise at how fast his first year in office had gone and his intention to continue his journey at the same speed at which it began last year. ‘The last three months have come and gone at a rapid pace and I certainly appreciate the words of loyalty and support wherever I go,’ said the Grand Master. ‘Some particular highlights have been the United Grand Lodge of Queensland Grand Installation; the Consecration of Lodge Oorana and The Prince Charles Edward Stuart Lodge; attending the installation of Blacktown Kildare with the Grand Master of the Philippines, MW Bro Voltaire Gazmin; Sydney Lodge’s triple initiation of three brothers; being a Principal Candidate with the Assistant Grand Master and 50 other candidates to take the four cryptic degrees for Mark and Royal Arch Masonry at Petersham; and the Country Masonic Conference in Bathurst with brethren who had travelled from Sydney, Canberra and Broken Hill. ‘I would also like to convey my appreciation to the Board of Management, our chairman RW Bro Bruce Munro and his team. These brethren work with their own respective sub-committee. The Board has been proactive in bringing ideas to our meeting and this has certainly led to some new initiatives which we will also see in the future. ‘Some recent initiatives include a lodge watch list where a number of lodges have been flagged listing total membership, the age of brethren under 60 and the lodge’s



average age. This information will be shared with DGIWs and brought back to the lodges as well as developing new training information for the jurisdiction.’ ‘There have been many highlights during the past twelve months and I am honoured to have represented our jurisdiction both interstate and internationally,’ he said.

I know we have a strong future.

‘I have met with leaders of local communities and government and seen the commitment and dedication from brethren and their families throughout NSW & ACT. This certainly inspires me to work harder to connect the Craft to the community. I wish to thank my Grand Director, RW Bro John Begbie, and his wife, Tish, for their tremendous support and for the leadership role John undertook with our Ceremonial Team as well as those brethren who are stepping down from the various Boards and as DGIWs. ‘With our Freemasons Open Day fast approaching, I thank those who have planning well in hand. I recently attended the open day at Orchard Hills; this was well promoted in the region and certainly well attended by local masons and their

families. There was a BBQ, jumping castle and face painting for the kids. Great support from the members of the Rural Fire Service with trucks on display.’ He announced the new look Grand Lodge website ( will be more ‘user friendly’ in the members’ area and the front page will have a very different look to that of the current website. He also said the Masonic Cruise on 29 November was fast approaching and numbers were well in excess of 100. The Deputy and Assistant Grand Masters are working together to achieve great things, particularly with their support of ClothesLine and the Marlie Accommodation Services in Maitland. These two charity groups now support each other to provide clothing and accommodation for the homeless. This would not be possible without the support from local masons and their dedicated teams who work tirelessly for this great cause. ‘As 2017 approaches, a special event will be hosted which will bring masons from around the world to help the United Grand Lodge of England to celebrate its Tercentenary,’ the GM said. ‘In 1717, four lodges came together in a Tavern called the Goose and Gridiron. Now 300 years later, Freemasonry has reached every corner of the globe and people from all walks of life have joined our ranks. The Grand Master, His Royal Highness, the Duke of Kent will also be celebrating his 50th Anniversary as Grand Master. Special events are planned in our jurisdiction and a delegation from NSW and ACT will be in London to celebrate. ‘Finally, I wish to thank all the ladies, not only those here tonight, but to the many ladies across NSW and ACT who give so much of their time to promote Free­ masonry. I know many ladies are responsible for “making masons” in the way you promote the Craft and your efforts are very much appreciated by the brethren. ‘Abraham Lincoln said “The best way to predict the future is to create it!” I know we have a strong future.’ Earlier in the night, the Grand Master had opened the September Quarterly Communication of Grand Lodge by welcoming all members and visitors and reminding them of the coming functions, such as the Masonic Cruise, the Open Day and the Prostate Charity Appeal.


The Executive Council reported there was concern a large number of lodges had not submitted their 2015 financial statements and assistance is offered to lodges who make an appropriate application. The Grand Treasurer stated there were also a number of financial statements still outstanding for the 2014–15 financial year. In its report on the Museum of Freemasonry, the Board of Management noted that pamphlets have been printed and display facilities are being organised at the Tourist Information Centres at The Rocks, Darling Harbour and Circular Quay, the Son et Lumiere video had 18,449 hits, 7,300 views and 194 shares of the Grand Lodge Facebook site. The Board is considering a new initiative of having a set of pins produced with the Bee Emblem to be presented to masons who have been instrumental in getting members into the Craft. The Board has approved Powerpoint presentations developed by VW Bro Ross Partridge, secretary Lodge Nepean and Bundaleeah Daylight Lodge, as suitable for use throughout the jurisdiction as part of the training and seminars rollout of material to lodges. Masonicare announced a monthly news­letter, the Masonicare Minute, had been launched to increase ground level awareness of the organisation and broaden charitable activities across the jurisdiction.

Agenda for the December Communication The Quarterly Communication for Grand Lodge will be held at the Sydney Masonic Centre on SATURDAY 17 December 2016.

Included on the agenda will be: > 5.30pm Grand Lodge opens > Grand Master’s welcome > Minutes, Correspondence, Treasurer’s report > Reports from the Executive Council, Board of Management, Grand Charity, College of Masonic Studies > Conferral of Grand Rank > General Business > There will be a short break > 7.00 pm for 7.30 pm Festive Function (Ladies invited). > Entertainment by Lushous Strings.


Bored by cracker jokes? Try these merry mysteries at the dinner table this year! 1 Which Hymn’s second verse begins ‘Christ by highest Heaven adored’?

2 Which favourite Christmas song contains the words ‘Christmas cards I write, may your days be happy and bright’?

3 Which Beatle became engaged (later broken) to film star Jane Asher on Christmas Day 1967?

4 Who composed the music for The Messiah, about the life of Jesus Christ?

5 Greensleeves is another name for which Christmas carol?

6 In the song Jingle Bells who was seated by my side?

7 ‘It doesn’t show signs of stopping and I brought some corn for popping’ are lines from which Christmas song?

8 In Tchaikovsky’s Ballet The Nutcracker Suite, the nut cracker’s enemy is: a. a girl called Clare; b. the King of Mice; c. Drosselmeyer; or d. the Magician?

9 Who first sang Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas?

10 Finish these lines: ‘Gosh oh gee, how happy I’d be, if I could only whistle. All I want for Christmas is’...

Think you’ve got them all? See page 44 for the answers! DECEMBER 2016  FREEMASON




Messages from the

Grand Secretary A Sister Constitution

For some time I have had the honour of representing the MW Grand Lodge of Free and Accepted Masons of Japan, near this Grand Lodge. On 5 October 2016, accompanied by my son and Brother Master Mason, Andrew, I had the pleasure of meeting with the Grand Master of Japan, MW Bro Norihiro Inomata, and the Grand Secretary, MW Bro Philip Ambrose PGM, at the Tokyo Masonic Centre. Our hosts were most generous with their time and during discussions it became evident that although our countries are different, there is much similarity between our jurisdictions. Of particular note was the fact that both our Grand Masters had planned an Open Day/House on the same weekend, with the aim of creating greater public awareness and possible membership growth. The Grand Master took us on a

tour of the Masonic Centre, which is situated in the prime location ‘a stone’s throw’ from the landmark Tokyo Tower. Two days later we were welcomed and honourably received into the Kokusai Lodge No 15. Despite minor language difficulties, it was most interesting to see the workings of this Japanese Lodge and to share this unique Masonic experience with my son.

Open Day

On 5 November 2016, across the jurisdiction, a large number of Masonic Centres opened their doors to the wider community, as part of the Grand Master’s initiative, to dispel myths, explain our ethos and welcome possible candidates to consider membership of our Craft. Early reports indicate positive feedback from all centres. The Grand Master has expressed his pleasure with the responses and attributes the success to those who put in a tremendous amount of work, time and effort into preparation prior to and throughout the Open Day. The additional financial commitment made is also appreciated. Many Masonic Centre management groups and Lodges have realised the potential and benefit of reaching out to the community in events such as this, and have indicated their willingness to participate in similar activities into the future.

Literary Award

At the December communication held last year, MW Bro Melville announced the topic for the Grand Masters Literary prize would be Does Freemasonry have a place in modern society? Japanese blue lodge

Tokyo Tower, the second-tallest structure in Japan. 24


The winners, who were announced at the September Communication are: • 1st: RW Bro Robert Hughes PJGW, Lodge Oatley 381. • 2nd: W Bro Ray Posner, Lodge Lachlan Macquarie 1042 • 3rd: VW Bro David Slater PDGDC, The Yass Lodge of Concord 27 Everyone who participated in this competition will receive a hardcover book of all the other participants’ papers. A copy will also be supplied to the Grand lodge library. The Grand Master also stated, ‘I wish to thank all those brethren who submitted papers for this competition. I am also pleased to announce the topic for next year will be; Recruitment – what role should it have in Freemasonry and how should that role be achieved?’

Grand Lodge Website

The Grand Lodge website (www.masons. has recently undergone a complete overhaul to give it a fresh look and focus on membership. It has been designed to have greater appeal to the wider community and to provide accurate and relevant information about Freemasonry. The website is a great focal point and resource for both members and non-members alike. If you are member, we encourage you to visit the new site, login or create an account and enjoy using the site.

Grand Installations

The Grand Installation of New Zealand has now been completed. The Grand Master was joined by another large contingent and well pleased with the support received in Wellington. The next Grand Installation is that of the Grand Lodge of Tasmania, to be held in Hobart between 23 and 26 February 2017. Brochures and registration forms are available from the Grand Secretariat or via website. Please contact the Secretariat for further information on the above items.

DGIWs 2016–2018

Meet the new

DGIWs MW Bro Jamie Melville and RW Bro Bruce Munro with the newly-appointed DGIWs at Grand Lodge.

A two-day seminar was held in September to assist the new DGIWs settle into their roles in the different Districts.


fter a keynote address from the Grand Master, the discussions ranged over a wide number of issues including Masonicare, membership, initiates, conflict resolution, secretarial issues, private lodges and regional meetings. The first day ended with the Quarterly Communication and the Proclamation of the Grand Master. Day Two followed the same pattern with talks on communications, community awareness programs, protocols, ceremonial, finance and funding and the Museum’s role in Freemasonry.



District 11: Michael Herbert Otto ZUSCHKE District 12: John Robert JACOBSON – incumbent District 13: Wayne Stewart BROOME District 14: Thomas Menzies MUIR District 15: Mark William POLLARD District 16: John Colville McDONALD District 17: Robert Colin LLOYD – incumbent District 18: John Stanley BELLETTE

District 31: Peter John BUJACK District 32: Paul Frederick BUCHTMANN District 33: Gabriel Simon BILYK District 34A: Khoder DANDACHLI District 34B: Darren John Paul EURLINGS District 35: Warren David DUNN District 36: Robert Allen McKINNON District 37: George SHENOUDA District 38: John KHOURY District 39: Nicholas Charles WALKER



District 21: Christopher William MATTHEWS District 22: Campbell Donald READE District 23: Lord Peter Nugent WRIGHT District 24: Ian Adrian HOGAN District 25: Christopher James HOLSTEIN District 25A: Jonathan Kristensen Teves ALDEGUER District 26: Peter Michael FIGG District 27: Anton (Tony) PUNZET – incumbent District 28: VACANT

District 41: Graham Augustus MONTGOMERY District 42: Robert John GILLETT – incumbent District 43: Robert William NASH District 44: David Colin KNIGHTS District 45: Robert Andrew FINLAY District 46: Robert Grahame COOKE District 47: David John PATERSON District 48: Roman Mark CHOLAWINSKYJ District 49A: Alec SKLEPIC District 49B: Bernard Wallace ALCOCK





The old grey matter At the age of 65, my grandmother was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease, a type of dementia. In the years following, her memory and behaviour changed almost weekly – from forgetting where she’d left her keys to not recognising her grandchildren.


t was emotionally draining for me to visit my once vibrant Nan and watch her struggle to perform seemingly simple tasks. I’ll admit to making excuses not to visit at times, and when Nan didn’t know who I was, I realised that the victim of this tragic disease was not just her. Last year my Mother, at the age of 75, was diagnosed with the same disease. I obviously worry about my parents and how they will cope but also about my two young children who will have to endure a similar experience to me. So, what is dementia and Alzheimer’s disease, can it be inherited and has a cure been found during the last 20 years? Dementia is the umbrella term for a number of neurological conditions, of which the major symptom includes a global decline in brain function. It can affect thinking, behaviour and the ability to perform everyday tasks to such an extent that it interferes with the person’s normal social or working life. It is a condition that has been noted in people for hundreds of years but was a relatively rare occurrence before the 20th century as fewer people lived to old age in pre-industrial society. It was not until the mid 1970’s that dementia begun to be described as we know it today. There are over 100 diseases that may cause dementia. The most common types of dementia include Alzheimer’s disease, vascular dementia, Parkinson’s disease, Dementia with Lewy bodies, Fronto



Temporal Lobar Degeneration (FTLD), Huntington’s disease, alcohol related dementia (Korsakoff ’s syndrome) and Creutzfeldt-Jacob disease. Most people with dementia are 65 and older but we now know dementia is a disease symptom, and not a normal part of aging, so not all old people get dementia and most cases of dementia are not inherited. It should be mentioned here that there are a number of conditions that produce symptoms similar to dementia. These include some vitamin and hormone deficiencies, depression, medication clashes or over-medication, infections and brain tumours. It is essential that a medical diagnosis is obtained at an early stage when symptoms first appear, to ensure that a person who has a treatable condition is diagnosed and treated correctly. If the symptoms are caused by dementia, an early diagnosis will mean early access to support, information and medication, should it be available. The early signs of dementia are very subtle and vague and may not be immediately obvious. Some common symptoms may include: • progressive and frequent memory loss • confusion • personality change • apathy and withdrawal • loss of ability to perform everyday tasks.


Alzheimer’s disease Alzheimer’s disease is the most common form of dementia, affecting up to 70% of all people with dementia. It was first recorded in 1907 by Dr Alois Alzheimer. Dr Alzheimer reported the case of Auguste Deter, a middle-aged woman with dementia and specific changes in her brain. For the next 60 years Alzheimer’s disease was considered a rare condition that affected people under the age of 65. It was not until the 1970s that Dr Robert Katzman declared (rather boldly at the time) that ‘senile dementia’ and Alzheimer’s disease were the same condition and that neither were a normal part of aging. All complex tasks are mediated by the connections between the brain cells (neurons) called synapses. In the adult human brain there are around 100 billion brain cells, each connected to its neighbours by 5-10,000 synapses. Our brains form a million new connections – a million new synapses – every second we are alive. The pattern and strength of the connections is constantly changing and no two brains are alike. It is in these changing connections that memories are stored, habits learned and personalities shaped, by reinforcing certain patterns of brain activity, and losing others. Brain cells communicate through synapses in a variety of ways. Signals move across the synapse in the form of chemicals that are known as neurotransmitters. Neurotransmitters are passed from one brain cell, across the synapse (connection) and to the receiving brain cell, which collects the neurotransmitter with a receptor. The receiving cell can then send out another burst of neurotransmitters to other brain cells to pass the message on. Going back to the 1900s, Dr Alzheimer examined the brain of his patient, Mrs Deter, upon her death. He found shrinking of the outer layer of the brain or cortex – the region of the brain involved in memory, language and judgment. We know that the so-called shrinking of the brain is caused by the death of the brain cells. Dr Alzheimer also found two types of deposits in Deter’s brain. One kind was found outside the brain cells, which are known as plaques and the other type of deposit was found inside brain cells known as ‘neurofibrillary tangles’. These

plaques impair synapses so signals cannot pass between brain cells. Tangles kill brain cells by preventing the normal transport of food and energy around the brain cell. The outer part of the brain is usually the area affected first by the disease. Short-term memory loss is therefore one of the first symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease. But as the disease progresses to deeper parts of the brain, long-term memory is also lost. The disease also affects many of the brain’s other functions and consequently, many other aspects of behaviour are disturbed. It is not known why one individual gets Alzheimer’s disease late in life and another does not. Scientists are investigating what triggers the formation of plaques and tangles and other chemical changes that damage brain cells in Alzheimer’s disease. A variety of suspected causes are being investigated including factors in the environment, biochemical disturbances and immune processes. The cause may vary from person to person and may be due to one factor or a number of factors. These diagrams show the progress of dementia – the upper figure shows the cross-section of a healthy brain whilst the lower figure shows the cross-section of an Alzheimer’s sufferer’s brain.




In the early stages the symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease can be very subtle. However, it often begins with lapses in memory and difficulty in finding the right words for everyday objects. Other symptoms may include: • Persistent and frequent memory difficulties, especially of recent events • Vagueness in everyday conversation • Apparent loss of enthusiasm for previously enjoyed activities • Taking longer to do routine tasks • Forgetting well-known people or places • Inability to process questions and instructions • Deterioration of social skills • Emotional unpredictability Symptoms vary and the disease progresses at a different pace according to the individual and the areas of the brain affected. A person’s abilities may fluctuate from day to day, or even within the one day, becoming worse in times of stress, fatigue or ill-health. The rate of progression of the disease varies from person to person. However, the disease does lead eventually to complete dependence and finally death, usually from another illness such as pneumonia. A person may live from three to twenty years with Alzheimer’s disease, with the average being seven to ten years. There is currently no single test to identify Alzheimer’s disease. The diagno­ sis is made only after careful clinical consultation. The clinical diagnosis might include: • A detailed medical history • A thorough physical and neurological examination • A test of intellectual function • Psychiatric assessment • A neuropsychological tests • Blood and urine tests • Lumbar puncture for cerebral spinal fluid tests • Medical imaging (MRI, PET) These tests will help to eliminate other conditions with similar symptoms such as nutritional deficiencies or depression. After eliminating other causes, a clinical diagnosis of Alzheimer’s disease can be made with about 80% to 90% accuracy if the symptoms and signs are appropriate. At this time the diagnosis can only be confirmed after death by examination of the brain tissue. 28


It is important to have an early and accurate diagnosis to determine whether a treatable condition other than Alz­ heimer’s disease, is causing the symptoms. If Alzheimer’s disease is diagnosed, medical treatment and other assistance can be discussed. At present there is no cure for Alz­ heimer’s disease. However, one group of drugs called cholinergeric drugs appears to be providing some temporary improvement in cognitive functioning for some people with mild to moderate Alzheimer’s disease. Drugs can also be prescribed for secondary symptoms such as restlessness or depression or to help the person with dementia sleep better. Most importantly, support is essential for people with dementia. The help of families, friends and carers can make a positive difference to managing the condition. Many advances have been made in the understanding of Dementia in the last 20 years, but with no cure on the horizon, I worry for my father. I can remember the devastating effect my grandmother’s Alz­ heimer’s had on my grandfather, everyday. A proud man, he obviously wanted to care for his wife and in the beginning, apart from a mild frustration, all was well, but in the later stages it really took its toll on him on so many levels and I don’t want my father going through the same trials. They say that at a certain stage the Alzheimer’s patient functions as a newborn child, who is handful even under the best of circumstances, but when you add the fact that many caregivers are over 70 and, in my dad’s case 80, you start to realise why support is vital for families and carers as well as people with dementia. In Australia, community support is available for the person with Alzheimer’s disease, their families and carers. This support, in my opinion, is fundamental to make a positive difference when managing dementia. Alzheimer’s Australia provides support, information and counselling for people affected by dementia. Information from Alzheimer’s Australia website, from various sources. NATIONAL DEMENTIA HELPLINE: 1800 100 500

Australian Statistics • There are more than 353,800 Australians living with dementia and this number is expected to increase to 400,000 in less than five years • Without a medical breakthrough, the number of people with dementia is expected to be almost 900,000 by 2050 • There are approximately 25,100 people in Australia with Younger Onset Dementia (a diagnosis of dementia under the age of 65; including people as young as 30) • Three in ten people over the age of 85 and almost one in ten people over 65 have dementia • An estimated 1.2 million people are involved in the care of a person with dementia • Dementia is the second leading cause of death in Australia and there is no cure • On average symptoms of dementia are noticed by families three years before a firm diagnosis is made • Dementia is the single greatest cause of disability in older Australians (aged 65 years or older) and the third leading cause of disability burden overall • Australia faces a shortage of more than 150,000 paid and unpaid carers for people with dementia by 2029 • Total direct health and aged care system expenditure on people with dementia was at least $4.9 billion in 2009–10 • Dementia will become the third greatest source of health and residential aged care spending within two decades. These costs alone will be around 1% of GDP • By the 2060s, spending on dementia is set to outstrip that of any other health condition. It is projected to be $83 billion (in 2006-07 dollars), and will represent around 11% of health and residential aged care sector spending.

The winning Whiddon Team

Cook of the Year, Louise Watts – Whiddon Kelso

Whiddon’s Recipe for Success at the 2016 Aged Care Hospitality Awards Whiddon Kelso was recently named ‘National Catering Facility of the Year’ at the 2016 Aged Care Hospitality Awards Gala Dinner in Melbourne. The national award follows the nomination of five Whiddon residential services for awards in 2016 and is the fourth consecutive year that Whiddon has won a national hospitality award. ‘We’re thrilled to have been recognised in the 2016 Aged Care Hospitality Awards. This accolade speaks to Whiddon’s innovative and person-centred approach to care and the significant role that our people play in caring for, and enriching the lives of our clients and residents.’ Whiddon’s Chief Executive Officer, Chris Mamarelis said. As a leader in the aged care industry, Whiddon people strive to provide care services that go beyond expectations, continually improve what we offer our residents and clients, and think creatively to achieve best outcomes. Whiddon Kelso’s Director Care Services, Ms Nicole Mahara said their National Award reflects the efforts of staff, who go above and beyond every day in their roles. ‘I am so proud of the Whiddon Kelso team for the hard work they have put in to win this award. The team strive each and every day to deliver the highest quality care possible and ensure that meals and meal times are a wonderful experience for our residents.’ ‘Food is a very important part of the care we provide at Whiddon, and we know that it plays a significant role the health and wellbeing of our residents. The team at Kelso continually look for ways to enhance dining experiences, and provide flexibility for residents, and I’m proud that this has been recognised through these awards.’ Life is a journey

Louise has been nominated for her outstanding dedication and ‘can do’ attitude. Despite taking on a catering service that has doubled in size, Louise, a much-loved member of the team, has achieved a more personalised service and enhanced dining experiences for residents at Whiddon Kelso. Food Services Assistant of the Year, Rosa Romano – Whiddon Easton Park A valued and integral team member, Rosa’s deep appreciation for the role of food in wellbeing is strongly reflected in her work. A great mentor, Rosa makes every effort to understand the needs of residents and their families to ensure that their needs and preferences are not only met, but exceeded. Catering Innovation of the Year – Whiddon Casino Whiddon Casino worked together with residents to ensure that everyone is given the opportunity to enjoy, relax and connect together with delicious morning and afternoon tea treats. Their creative texture modified menus have been such a recipe for success that we’re rolling them out in our other homes! Laundry Services Individual of the Year, Pam Whelan – Whiddon Grafton Pam goes ‘above and beyond’ in her role to ensure that residents’ clothing and personal items are freshly cleaned, ready to use and are placed back in their rooms where they can be easily accessed. Most importantly, she achieves this with a smile, compassion, kind words and a great love for what she does.

‘Our dining experience has transitioned into much more than just a meal. We see meal times as a social event, a time to chat with family and friends and we have worked hard to offer a personalised and relaxing experience. We are finding that residents are more engaged, eating more and enjoying a greater dining experience.’ ‘Our team are extremely passionate about what they do and go out of their way to ensure personalised and home-like dining services for everyone. They are an inspiration and have certainly done us all proud.’ Ms Mahara said.

visit our website or call 1300 738 388



A brave

The Australian Service Nurses National Memorial in Canberra Photo by Mattinbgn

nurse Each afternoon at 4.50 pm, the Australian War Memorial holds a closing ceremony in its Commemorative Area. On 14 February 2015, it highlighted the service of Captain Winnifred May Davis


he ceremony commemorates more than 102,000 Australians who gave their lives in war and other operations and whose names are recorded on the Memorial’s Roll of Honour. It commences with the singing of the Australian National Anthem followed by a piper playing a Lament whilst visitors lay wreaths and floral tributes beside the Pool of Reflection. A uniformed member of the Australian Defence Forces then delivers a summary of a service person whose name is inscribed on the Role of Honour. The ceremony concludes with recitation of the Ode to the Fallen and the Last Post. The remembrance of Captain Davis, 10th Australian General Hos­pital, (AGH) Australian Army Nursing Service (AANS), Second World War was delivered by Colonel Bronwyn Wheeler, Head of the Royal Australian Army Nursing Corp. An amended version of the summary follows. Winnifred May Davis, known affectionately as ‘Winnie’, ‘Win’ and ‘Dave’ was born on 7 July 1915 at Lower Coldstream, in the Clarence River area of New South Wales. She commenced her training as a nurse at the War Memorial Hospital, Waverley, NSW, and the Royal Hospital for Women at Paddington, NSW. In 1940, at the age of 25, she enlisted in the Emergency Unit Australian Army Nursing Service on 10 December 1940 at Victoria Barracks, Sydney. Captain Davis and members of the AANS embarked from Sydney on the Queen Mary on 4 February 1941 destined for Singapore. On board were elements of the 8th Division AIF and 51 Australian



nurses. Forty-three nurses were from the 2/10th Australian General Hospital and 8 nurses from the 2/4th Casualty Clearing Station. They disembarked at Singapore in March 1941 and Davis was attached to the 10th Australian General Hospital of the Australian Army Nursing Service. From there she was sent with the unit to Malacca. In those early months conditions for the

More than 10,000 Australian Service Nurses have served in times of war... nurses were good. They attended dances, were able to utilise sports clubs’ facilities, and could travel to Kuala Lumpur or Singapore when on leave. This changed when the Japanese invaded the peninsula. The 10th AGH’s position became unsustainable, and its staff soon retreated to Singapore. Here, conditions were difficult, with frequent blackouts and casualties coming at a fast rate. The Japanese landed on the island on the night of 8 February 1942, and with the fall of Singapore imminent the decision was made to evacuate the nurses. Davis was among the last of the nurses to leave

Captain Winnie May Davis

Photo courtesy of the Australia n War


on 12 February 1942 – three days before Singapore’s capitulation. Davis boarded the Vyner Brooke along with 300 others, mostly women and children. It was a slow vessel, and two days later in Banka Strait it was attacked by Japanese aircraft, and the order was given to abandon ship. In the water, Davis and fellow nurse Sister Janet Gunther clung to a bit of wood until they found a raft. The raft already held another nurse, a radio operator and two British sailors, one of whom was badly burned. Later, three civilian women joined them. It was a small raft, so those who could took turns to swim beside it while holding onto ropes. One of the civilian women fell unconscious and drifted away, never to be seen again. The burned sailor also slipped off the raft during the night, and the others were too weak to pull him back. Suffering from abrasions, exhaustion, and severe sunburn, the group was picked up by a Japanese ship. The prisoners were given a drink and a little food and were kept in a pig pen overnight. The next day they were taken to a gaol in Muntok, and then on to Palembang. As prisoners of war they suffered many privations – poor sanitary conditions, limited food and water supply, cramped sleeping areas – and conditions worsened as the years went on. The group moved camps


The SS Vyner Brooke, the ship which attempted to evacuate the nurses from Singapore

numerous times, usually for the worse, and all were put to hard labour. In 1945 an epidemic of ‘Banka fever’ swept the camp; the symptoms were high temperature, periods of unconsciousness, and skin infection. On 19 July 1945, Winnie Davis died of illness, less than a month before the end of the war. She was 30 years old. Davis is buried at the Djakarta War Cemetery in Indonesia, and her name is listed on the Roll of Honour of the Australian War Memorial, along with some 40,000 Australians who died in the Second World War.

Postscript Winnie Davis was initially buried at the Palembang Dutch War Cemetery, Sumatra, but her grave was later transferred to the Djakarta War Cemetery. Her name is on the Cenotaph of the Memorial Park at Ulmarra, in Westward Park, Grafton, the Grafton High School Honour Roll, the War Memorial, Canberra and a stained-glass window in the War Memorial Hospital at Waverley, NSW. Winnie’s name together with the names of the nurses who served with her are inscribed on the Roll of Honour in the Nurses Memorial Chapel in Westminster Abbey, London.

Only 31 of the 65 nurses who boarded the Vyner Brooke survived the sinking. Twelve nurses drowned and 22 were washed ashore at Banka Island only to be machine gunned on the beach. Sister Vivian Bullwinkel survived the shooting and although injured, escaped into the jungle. She later surrendered to the Japanese and was taken to Muntok prisoner of war camp. Eight of the nurses died from illness during 1945. The remaining 32, including Sister Bullwinkel, returned to Australia. More than 10,000 Australian Service Nurses have served in times of war and 102 have died during or as a result of War Service, since the Boer War. Their names are inscribed in the Australian Service Nurses National Memorial, ANZAC Parade, Canberra, ACT. The inscription on the translucent blue glass wall of the Memorial reads ‘Beyond all Praise’. Acknowledgements: Mrs Jean Lilly (cousin of Winnie May Davis); Excerpts from Family History; Last Post Ceremony, Lyndall Bell; National Archives of Australia; Australian War Memorial; Australian Service Nurses Memorial; Winnie May Davis, Corallie Eggins.

Family Law

Group portrait of AANS sisters in Malacca, 1941. Winnie May Davis is fifth from the left, Back row. Photo courtesy of the Australian War Memorial





The Knights

march out One thing can certainly be said about the Knights Templar: they keep coming back for more!


ast February, Knights and ladies gathered in Coffs Harbour for the Malta Festival. The following month, they were in Inverell to consecrate a brand new Preceptory. Then, in July, everyone converged on the Sydney Masonic Centre to install the even newer Grand Master, M Em Kt Richard Pickering. Visitors came from around Australia and beyond, with representatives from many other Orders as well as our own Grand Lodge. The Grand Master of the United Grand Lodge of NSW and ACT, MW Bro Jamie Melville, was able to be present at a number of functions across the weekend. As always, the Templar Installation was a striking and colourful event. M Em Kt Pickering was proclaimed and placed in his chair by his predecessor, M Em Kt Walter Charlwood. Other Great Officers were also appointed for the ensuing year, including Rt Em Kt Allan Elliott as Great Seneschal, Rt Em Kt Philip Young as Great Prior of Malta, and V Em Kt John Clark as his Deputy.

can be ‘Stewardess’ is the longest word that typed with the left hand d with And ‘lollipop’ is the longest word type your right hand. ends ‘Dreamt’ is the only English word that in the letters ‘mt’. from birth Our eyes are always the same size ing. grow stop r neve ears and nose our but s over jump fox n The sentence: ‘The quick brow bet. alpha the of r lette every uses dog’ the lazy with blink A shark is the only fish that can both eyes.



L–R: R Em Kt Allan Elliott (Great Seneschal), M Em Kt Richard Pickering (Grand Master) and Rt Em Kt Phil Young (Great Prior of Malta)

During the course of the ceremony, the Grand Master’s Charity also made a donation to the Royal Society for Deaf and Blind Children, specifically for their work in providing cochlear implants. The Knights travel far and frequently not only for the excellence of a unique ritual. An added incentive is their flair in organising a great party! Everyone There are only four words in the English language which end in ‘dou s’: tremendous, horrendous, stupendous, and hazardous There are two words in the English language that have all five vowels in order: ‘abstemious’ and facetious. A jiffy is an actual unit of time for 1/100th of a second. Babies are born without kneecaps. They don’t appear until the chil d reaches two to six years of age. An ostrich’s eye is bigger than its brain. Leonardo Da Vinci invente d the scissors. The microwave was inve nted after a researcher walked by a rad ar tube and a chocolate bar melted in his pocket. Winston Churchill was bor n in a ladies room during a dance. Women blink nearly twice as much as men.

enjoyed three wonderful social events – a meet ’n’ greet on Friday night and a splendid banquet Saturday evening (at the Masonic Centre) as well as a relaxed Sunday lunch at Cello’s in the NSW Masonic Club. As a Christian Order, there was also time set aside for worship. The preacher at Morning Prayer was Rt Em Kt Peter Seymour, who spoke about the congruence of Templarism with Craft Masonry, whilst stressing the particular spirituality distinguishing those who were Knights of Great Priory. Under the present constitution, membership is open to Master Masons (of at least two years’ standing) who profess a Trinitarian faith. There are several Precep­tories in Sydney and throughout regional centres of NSW. The Great Vice Chancellor, V Em Kt Jon Greenacre is always very happy to receive enquiries (email Jon at greatpriorynswact@ozemail. The Templars are also building a great new website: Check it out and watch for new features being added regularly.


Record numbers for

the Arch

A record 52 candidates underwent the four Cryptic Degrees on 27 August under a special Dispensation granted to Chapter Cyrus. Normally the four Cryptic Degrees are spread over several meetings.


he event was held in the heritage listed Egyptian Room, the home of Mark and Royal Arch Masonry in NSW & ACT and for the first time the new LED lighting highlighting the friezes was used to illuminate the room. On this occasion the two principal candidates were Companions James Melville of Chapter Macquarie and Companion Bill Driver of Chapter Parramatta Daylight, who are more usually recognised as the Grand Master and Assistant Grand Master of the Craft. The Grand Master and the Assistant Grand Master were joined by Companions from all over the jurisdiction from as far away as Forbes, Canberra, Newcastle, Port Macquarie as well as the Sydney Metro– politan Area. This many candidates for four consecutive degrees on the one day certainly set a record in this jurisdiction and probably all of Australasia. After the Royal and Select Master Degrees were worked in the morning, the candidates and those who had come to watch history being made, adjourned to the soon to be renovated auditorium of

the Petersham Temple for an excellent light lunch provided by the Friends of the Egyptian Room. In the afternoon the remaining two degrees were undertaken before the evening dinner which was attended by the ladies. The Grand Master was again supported by Yuana at the dinner and she was warmly welcomed and received.

The First Grand Principal and Grand Master, Most Excellent Companion Robert Peattie praised the effort of Chapter Cyrus to not only undertake the four degrees of the Cryptic series in one day but to deliver it so efficiently. He also drew attention to the fact that previously no more than 30 candidates had ever undertaken the Cryptic Degrees in one meeting. He further praised the endurance of Companions Melville and Driver who were the principal candidates for all four degrees. In his response, Companion Melville stated he was acutely aware of just how much effort it would take to do four degrees consecutively one after the other on the one day and expressed his sincere gratitude on his own behalf and that of his 51 fellow Companions. The Grand Master also went on to praise the ladies Committee of Supreme Grand Chapter known as the Friends of the Egyptian Room who had worked so hard to provide such a magnificent lunch.

The answer to: Another Eye Test What answer did you get? Two, three, four, five or six? The average reader will come up with three or four. The correct answer is – six. The brain tends to overlook the word ‘of’ and ignores the letter.

Give yourself a top mark if you came up with six on the first go! DECEMBER 2016  FREEMASON




Chairman’s interACTION Grants Message cheque presentations Kiama and Kidzwish Once again it has been a very successful year for Masonicare and I would like to thank my Deputy Chairman, VW Bro Tony Craig and the entire Masonicare Board who give voluntarily of their time and expertise. I would particularly mention RW Bro Lynden Norgate and RW Bro Graham Davies, who retired this year, for their long and dedicated service and welcome RW Bro Peter Ratcliff to the board. The Christmas season is a time when Masons should turn their mind to charity as there are many people far less fortunate than ourselves who could be in need of charitable assistance over this time. It is a good time for masons to look toward their community to see what they can do to assist those less fortunate in our communities. Once again, I thank all Freemasons for their ongoing support of the Grand Charity and look forward to working with you in the New Year. I also take this opportunity to wish everyone a happy and holy Christmas and best wishes for 2017.

Lodge Kiama No 35 presented a $10,000 cheque to the Kidzwish Foundation on 15 September 2016. Kidzwish Foundation provides speech, physiotherapy, occupational therapy, music, dance and sports to disadvantaged children in the Illawarra and South Coast. In the photo are the DGIW, VW Bro John Cosgrove, Mr Beau Thatcher the Community Events Manager, W Bro Peter

Lodge Kiama presenting the cheque

Stemp, W Master of Lodge Kiama No 35 and RW Bro Brian Willis PJGW, RMM R3.

RW Bro Andrew Fraser MP PDGM Chairman

Masonicare Charity Jewels Has your Lodge Management Committee considered making a special presentation of one of these beautiful Masonicare Charity Jewels to a deserving brother at your Installation meeting? One of the jewels could even be presented to the incoming/outgoing MCO at an appropriate time or at the Festive Board. Jewels can only be purchased by the lodge and are not tax deductible in compliance with ATO ‘charity’ regulations. Funds raised from the sale of jewels go to The Benevol­ence Fund.



Masons from Lodge Wyong Tuggerah Lakes presenting a $4,000 cheque to representatives from the Wyong Hospital Geriatric Rehabilitation Unit.

Wyong helping the elderly On Monday 26 September, a cheque for $4,000 was presented by Lodge Wyong Tuggerah Lakes No 247 to Ms Jan Richens, representing the Wyong Hospital Geriatric Rehabilitation Unit. The lodge has been supporting the Rehabilitation Unit every year. This

donation will be used to purchase equipment to enable the physiotherapist and occupational therapists to work on functional and dynamic balance which is essential to assist in functional independence and gain confidence before returning home which is the ultimate goal of therapy.


Farrer helps fight cancer Baulkham

Hills helps hospital flights

Lodge Farrer No 93 presented their cheque for the amount of $10,000 to the Albury Wodonga Regional Cancer Centre Trust. ‘We are so grateful for all the support received from you so please pass on my thanks to everyone involved in the donation,’ said Jane Evans, the Fundraising, Marketing and Events Manager. The Albury Wodonga Regional Cancer Centre Trust will allocate the donation to

L–R: Jane Evans, VW Bro G Howard, RW Bro S Heriot, RW Bro R Allen, W Bro D Cornell, and VW Bro R Bowd

the service area most in need. The four priority areas are, Life Saving Equipment, Cancer Research through supporting clinical trials, professional Development of Medical Clinicians and fitting out the Children’s area.

Charity golf day pays off Lodge Theo Grey No 234 and Lodge Kiama No 35 presentated a $10,000 cheque to Camp Quality EsCarpade on Friday 14 October 2016. In the photo is the Secretary of Lodge Theo Grey W Bro Warren Southall, Mr Earl Tanks from Camp Quality, RW Bro Brian Willis PJGW and W Bro Greg Smith Senior Warden of Lodge Kiama. These brethren and others helped to raise the money at a charity Golf day held at Kembla Grange Golf Club in September.

Presenting the cheque to representatives from Camp Quality EsCarpade

Camp Quality offers many programs to children living with cancer. These include camps as well as day trips and family experiences for these children and their families. Their programs also include financial support, funding of play therapists in the Paediatric Oncology wards, domestic support and primary school education programs.

On 20 August, Little Wings Managing Director Richelle Koller received a substantial cheque from Lodge Baulkham Hills to assist in maintaining their professional, free and safe flight and ground transport service for children from rural and regional NSW to access specialised medical services and treatment in the major centres. The presentation was made at the Little Wings Hangar at Bankstown Airport. The members of Lodge Baulkham Hills are more than pleased to be able to make a donation to an organisation such as ‘Little Wings’. The lodge has been a prominent part of the Hills Community since 1963 and continues to contribute whatever it can to its community,’ said Bill Nash, the Lodge Charity Officer. ‘Lodge members raised money by working with the Hills Masonic District Association, including help with welcoming Sausage sizzles at Bunning’s Stores around the Hills District. ‘Masonicare through its InterAction Grants program contributed substantially to the donation, and Lodge Baulkham Hills tries to focus on smaller charities with a local connection such as Hills Community Aid and the Delta Society.’ The HCA project was a contribution to buying and equipping a mobile Coffee Vending Vehicle which is used as a training tool for unemployed youth while the Delta Society provides pet therapy to health care facilities like children’s hospitals, and aged care homes. The local dog training is carried out at the Castle Hill Showground.





Article The Star Header of Bethlehem Introduction

An astronomical explanation When we are Passed to the second degree we are encouraged to take an interest in the seven liberal arts and sciences and my favourite, from before joining the Craft, has always been Astronomy. So, as we approach the festive season one celestial occurrence comes to mind that has caused a quiet astronomical debate for decades. What cosmic event could have drawn “three wise men” on a journey to find a newborn king?


rof David Hughes from the University of Sheffield, first published a review of the theories on the famous star in the 1970s, having spent many years studying the astronomical explanations and reviewing the associated biblical stories. There are some intriguing historical parallels. The three kings were religious scholars known as the Magi – revered Babylonian astronomers and astrologists. They studied the stars and planets, interpreting the meaning behind cosmic events. Anything very unusual was considered an omen, so the star must have been both rare and visually spectacular. And, says Hughes, it would have had a very clear message for the Magi. This leads the astronomer to conclude that the star of Bethlehem was probably not a star at all, and that it was more than one single event. ‘If you read the Bible carefully,’ says Hughes, ‘the Magi saw something when they were in their own country – [probably Babylon] – so they travelled to Jerusalem and had a word with King Herod.’ According to the story, the Magi told Herod of the sign they had seen and when they left Jerusalem and travelled to



Bethlehem, they saw something again. Hughes’s best explanation for this series of events is something known as a triple conjunction between Jupiter and Saturn – with the two planets coming close together in the sky three times over a short period. This happens when you get an alignment between the Sun, the Earth, Jupiter and Saturn and would have looked striking. It’s remarkable how much your attention is drawn when two very bright objects come together in the sky. And once the planets lined up in their orbits, Earth would “overtake” the others, meaning that Jupiter and Saturn would appear to change direction in the night sky. At that time, people would have set great store by the motions of the planets. Even more significantly, the event is believed to have been in the constellation Pisces, which represents one of the signs of the zodiac. You would only get a triple conjunction like this about every 900 years, so for astronomers in Babylon 2,000 years ago, it would have been a signal of something very significant. ‘A triple conjunction of this kind ticks all the boxes’, says Hughes.

The second favoured explanation is a very bright comet. While certainly spectacular and ethereal in appearance, comets are essentially ‘big, dirty snowballs’ flying through space. When they come close to the Sun, this ice melts – solar wind blows this material out into space, so you get a tail of matter coming off the comet. This tail, which points away from the Sun, is one of the things that has made the comet idea popular, explains Hughes. ‘Quite a few people have said that comets seem to “stand over” the Earth, because of their coma and tail sometimes looking like an arrow.’ The most timely record was of a bright comet appearing in the constellation of Capricorn in 5BC, which was recorded by astronomers in China. A less likely, but more famous candidate was Halley’s comet, which was visible around 12BC. Those who favour this theory point out that the 5BC comet would have been in the southern sky as seen from Jerusalem, with the head of the comet close to the horizon and the tail is pointing vertically upward. ‘Quite a lot of people liked the comet idea, so it crops up in quite a lot of Christmas cards,’ says Hughes.



Article Header

BACKGROUND IMAGE: In the night sky over the European Southern Observatory’s (ESO) Very Large Telescope (VLT) observatory at Paranal, Chile the Moon shines along with two bright companions. Already aloft in the heavens and glowing in the centre of the image is Venus, Earth’s closest planetary neighbour and, to its right, the giant, though more distant planet, Jupiter. Such apparent celestial near misses — although the heavenly bodies are actually tens to hundreds of millions of kilometres apart — are called conjunctions. ESO/Y. Beletsky


Who were the

Three Wise Men? ‘The snag is that they’re not that rare. They were also commonly associated with the “four Ds” – doom, death, disease and disaster,’ he suggests. ‘So if it did contain a message, it would have been a bad omen.’ Another theory is that the star was light from the birth of a new star, or nova. There are records from astronomers in the Far East of a new star in the small, northern constellation of Aquila in 4BC. Hughes says: ‘People who like this theory say this new star would have been [positioned] directly over Jerusalem.’ Dr Robert Cockcroft, from McMaster University in Ontario says a nova is ‘a good candidate’ for the star of Bethlehem. ‘It can appear as a new star in a constellation, and fade again over the following months,’ he explains. ‘It is also not too bright, explaining why we don’t have any records of it in the west.’ Cockcroft suggests that this might also have given the three wise men something to follow. While other “omens” would have been needed to cause the Magi to set out on their journey west to Jerusalem, he says, it would take them months to get there, ‘by which time Aquila and the new star could have risen in the sky to appear in the south. ‘Bethlehem lies due south of Jerusalem, so the Magi could “follow” the star to Bethlehem. The majority of this article was extracted from a 2012 article by BBC reporter, Victoria Gill.

The Three Wise Men, or Three Kings are believed to have been Magi – Persian sages able to read the stars. •

In Spain and Spanish speaking countries they are a much-celebrated part of Christmas. It is actually the three wise men (Los Reyes Magos) who have the task to bring gifts to all children on the Epiphany. Traditionally, children send their wish lists to the wise men. Children are also told that they will receive coal instead of presents if they behave badly. Edible sweet coal is widely available in shops.

People leave their shoes out in the living room, under which they will find their presents the next morning. It’s also traditional to leave some food and water for the kings and their camels.

A parade of the three wise men takes place on the evening of the 5 January in all major Spanish cities and towns. The kings are seen riding their camels and throwing sweets into the crowd.

Basilica of Sant’Apollinare Nuovo in Ravenna, Italy: The Three Wise Men (Balthasar, Melchior, and Gaspar). Detail from: Mary and Child, surrounded by angels, mosaic completed in 526 AD. DECEMBER 2016  FREEMASON






Sydney [E] 170.482412 [S] 44.003345

Article Header [ Date ] 2016-12-25 21:00:00(DST) [ Moon Age ] 25.8


A conjunction occurs when two astronomical objects or spacecraft have either the same right ascension or the same ecliptic longitude, usually as observed from Earth.

Triangulum Alpheratz



as seen from Sydney

When two objects always appear close to the ecliptic – such as two planets, the Introduction Moon and a planet, or the Sun and a planet – this fact implies an apparent close approach between the objects as seen on the sky.














Deneb Kaitos Rigel



Eridanus Fornax



Piscis Austrinus




Canis Major

Columba Reticulum Dorado Puppis









Carina Chamaeleon

Corona Austrina Telescopium


Vela SE

A superior planet is a planet between Earth’s orbit and the Sun, and an inferior planet is one outside our orbit. As seen from a planet that is superior, if an inferior planet is on the opposite side of the Sun, it is in superior conjunction with the Sun. An inferior CONJUNCTION conjunction occurs when INNER-PLANET’S the two planets lie in a ORBIT line on the same side of the Sun. In an inferior conjunction, the superior SUPERIOR CONJUNCTION planet is “in opposition” to the Sun as seen from the inferior planet. The terms SUN “inferior conjunction” and “superior conjunction” are GREATEST used in particular for the EASTERN ELONGATION planets Mercury and Venus, which are inferior INFERIOR CONJUNCTION planets as seen from the Earth. However, this EASTERN definition can be applied QUADRATURE EARTH to any pair of planets, as seen from the one further from the Sun. OPPOSITION













Superior and inferior





Conjunctions involve either two objects in the Solar System or one object in the Solar System and a more distant object, such as a star. A conjunction is an apparent phenomenon caused by the observer’s perspective: the two objects involved are not actually close to one another in space. Conjunctions between two bright objects close to the ecliptic, such as two bright planets, can be seen with the naked eye.



Triangulum Australe




Circinus Crux


Rigel Kentaurus


Lupus Centaurus


The Night Sky – Christmas 2016

This star chart[ Every Starry Night AI v4.0.1 ] by ho

n from Sydney



How many constellations do you know? You probably recognise the Southern Cross (Crux) but there are lots more out there. Above is a simple representation of the night sky on 25 December 2016 at 9pm, as seen from Sydney (It should work for a few months either side and for most of NSW). See how many constellations you can recognise.




Regional Roundup


L odge I nverell No 48

Debs take the stage

WHAT’S ON? Your guide to upcoming events from lodges and districts. L odge Morning Star No 410

Invitation to masonic visitors Lodge Morning Star wish to extend an invitation to any masonic visitors to their regular lodge meetings. 12 Dec (2nd degree), 23 Jan (1st degree), and 27 Feb (2nd degree Past Masters Night). Lodge Secretary: David Leabeater E: M: 0428 579 019

The Inverell Debutantes


odge Inverell held its 135th Annual Debutante Ball in August with six lovely debutantes taking the opportunity to make their debut. It was also a great opportunity for the public to see Freemasonry’s involvement in the local community. A donation was made to the local Volunteer Rescue Squad by the WM before the official part of the evening commenced.

W Bro Glen Greaves did a splendid job as the Master of Ceremonies as did W Bro Eric Higgins as Commander of the Arch. After passing through the Arch the debutantes were presented to Region One RGC RW Bro Les Hicks, the Mayor of Inverell Council, Councillor Paul Harmon and his wife, and to the WM of Lodge Inverell, W Bro Wayne Jones and his wife Vincene.

Coffs Coast F reemasons A ssociation

CanDo Bowls Day T he 8th annual CanDo Cancer Trust Charity Bowls Day was another great success story. This event, organised by the Coffs Coast Freemasons Association, is extremely popular in the local community and with the help of a Masonicare Interaction Grant, the CCFA was able to raise $14,000 for the Trust. CanDo Chairperson Ms Julie Jardine complimented and thanked the CCFA and Masonicare for their continued support.

VW Andy Boyden and his wife, Carolyn were given a special mention of thanks for all their work organising the event. RW Bro Norm Standing OAM, who is also a member of CanDo, told CCFA members that through their dedication and hard work the Trust is in a healthy financial position and payment to eligible cancer patients has now been increased. The Trust provides financial assistance to cancer patients attending the North Coast Cancer Institute in Coffs Harbour.

Lodges and Districts – Publicise your upcoming events in our new ‘WHAT’S ON’ guide. For only $50 you get four entries in the listing. One per issue? Call Bro Simon Pierce on (02) 4344 5133 for more details.

An active mason R

W Bro Tony Punzet DGIW 27 is a man who doesn’t believe in standing still. Apart from his numerous masonic activities, he somehow still finds time to be an active member of his local community at Cobar. At the recent changeover dinner of the Rotary Club of Cobar, RW Bro Punzet was inducted as the club’s new president. Past district governor Don Stephens congratulated the Cobar club on another successful year in which they raised more than $25,000. RW Bro Punzet, who is a former Cobar Apex Club president, said he was very honoured to be named as Rotary’s new president. ‘Being part of a service club has been a big part of my life. It enables me to serve our community and help people in need,’ he said. DECEMBER 2016  FREEMASON




L odge I bis No 361

History in Griffith

L odge Education No 814

Taking flight



he Griffith Freemasons of Lodge Ibis No 361 recently took part in a historic march to mark 100 years since the formation of the town of Griffith. Members hailed from Lodge Ibis Griffith and Leeton/Yanco, gathering at the marshalling point for a start of the 40 minute march. Brethren wore regalia ranging from and including Entered Apprentice, Past Master, Royal Arch, Grand Steward and Grand Lodge. Brethren travelled from Leeton, Narrandera and Hillston to take part and it certainly added colour to the march. Brethren received applause from the

Freemasons celebrating Griffith centenary

public along the way, recognising their contribution to the local community since 1916. Freemasons met in Hanwood (the original town site called Baytown) in 1915 with the intention of forming a masonic lodge. At the time there was no suitable building available so it was several years before a meeting was arranged. This first meeting took place at the Yoogali School. The Griffith masonic lodge building was finally completed for use in 1922.

eptember 2016 marked the 780th meeting of Lodge Education and the fourth installment of the annual Flight of the Winding Stair. The meeting at Petersham was the most attended during the term of W Bro Ferdinand ‘Don’ Pandes as the lodge hosted a total of 105 brethren. During correspondence, a letter was read from the Grand Master of the Philippines, MW Bro Voltaire Gazmin, commending the lodge’s high level of proficiency displayed during his visit in August and commented on how the Filipino members’ role in spreading the good image of the Craft brought him ‘pride and elation.’ The lodge again welcomed visitors from overseas – this time from South Africa and the Philippines as well as 11 incumbent Worshipful Masters. MW Bro Dr Gregory Levenston led the Grand Lodge delegation for the installation by W Bro Pandes of the SW, Bro Jurjen Tayag. During the evening, the Egyptian Room was transformed into the legendary Second Tracing Board as the story of the Flight of the Winding Stair was delivered along with matching visual and musical effects. MW Bro Levenston responded by stating that what he saw in the lodge room during the evening was ‘education come to life.’ He then presented Master Mason’s certificates and was introduced to more than 20 FCF and EAFs.

L odge Blacktown K ildare No 393

Blacktown Kildare celebrates M ore than 200 members and visitors honoured Lodge Blacktown Kildare for the Installation of W Bro Troy Gara. Among the visitors were the Grand Master, MW Bro Jamie Melville and MW Bro Voltaire Gazmin, Grand Master of the Grand Lodge of the Philippines. Also in attendance were ten EAFs and seven FCFs.



During his address at the festive board, the Grand Master presented Mr Wynd, the President of the EAGLES RAPS org– anisation with a cheque for $13,000. EAGLES RAPS is an organisation which fosters teenagers who are homeless, destitute, drug addicted, some even suicidal, takes them off the streets, gives kindness and help, encouragement and

education and hope for the future. In expressing his gratitude, Mr Wynd said the donation would keep about 26 teenagers going, depending on their special needs. Lodge Blacktown Kildare boasts healthy attendances in Sydney’s outer west and plans to move soon to bigger and bolder premises.



Glen I nnes L odge No 44

Two Honours for Glen Innes


t was a special occasion for the Glen Innes Lodge in August when Jacinta Donaldson-James was awarded a State scholarship to help her go to university to study veterinary science. The NSW Grand Lodge awards only two scholarships each year and the local lodge assistant secretary, RW Bro Colin Lute had the honour of presenting a cheque to Jacinta at the Glen Innes High School assembly. High school principal, Ms Shelly Way said Jacinta is an outstanding student with

L–R: Principal Shelley Way, Jacinta DonaldsonJames and RW Bro Colin Lute

a very promising future and was proud of her performance and conduct. ‘Jacinta is a very worthy recipient of the scholarship,’ added RW Bro Lute. ‘Her submission really impressed the judges and we only give one each to a boy and a girl. She has shown great promise with excellent marks in all her studies under difficult circumstances.’

Jacinta will use the money to help with school supplies and hopes she can qualify for university. ‘I want to become a marine biologist. Some students don’t have the money to get the things they need and I am very grateful to the masons,’ she said. The event and presentation was featured in the local Glen Innes Examiner. August was also a special occasion when Bro Simon Haron was raised to the Third Degree. The WM, W Bro Simon Kerry, requested VW Bro Dr Ross Haron, the father of the candidate to occupy the chair of King Solomon to conduct the raising, and Simon’s grandfather, Bro Brian Haron, also a member of the Glen Innes Lodge, proposed the toast to the newly raised brother. To have three generations in the one lodge at the same time must be rare and almost certainly a first for the Glen Innes Lodge. Simon’s father, Ross, initiated and passed him as well as initiating and raising his own father, Brian at the age of 80. The apron with which Simon was invested has a long history in his family, having been worn initially by his great grandfather, Bro Roy Robinson in Victoria, then by his maternal grandfather, Bro Peter Muller in Sydney, then by his father and grandfather in Glen Innes. The Glen Innes Lodge has another father and son pair in Bros Jim and James Donald, respectively senior and junior wardens.

L odge A ntiquity No 1

Antiquity turns 196 I

t was a big night on 5 September for Lodge Antiquity No 1 when it celebrated its 196th anniversary in the presence of the Grand Master. W Bro Jerome Reid and RW Bro Leonard Kearns explained how the lodge was formed with the charter signed in Ireland on 6 January 1820 and then dispatched to Australia. It arrived with surgeon Price on 5 August 1820 and the first meeting was on 12 August 1820. As part of the celebrations, the Immediate Past DGIW of District 38, VW

W Bro Ivan Salazar presents his paintings.

Bro Occy Tescaru formally transferred the Jewel of Office and the Patent of Office to his successor, VW Bro John Khoury. On the same night, the Grand Master presented VW Bro Robert B Smith with his 60 year Certificate and Jewel, thanking

him for his years supporting the Craft. As the brethren retired to the Anniversary Banquet, W Bro Ivan Salazar presented paintings he had done over the past 40 years and donated one to the Grand Master’s Charity.





Lodge Westlake Daylight No 997 hosted a District 16 combined meeting. L–R: VW Bro Stephen Brown DGIW, District 16; the candidate, Bro Garrie Henry, 3rd Degree; and the WM, VW Bro Barry Wilks

Royal order of Scotland

A big night for Scotland


ore than 140 attended a successful night for the annual installation of the Provincial Grand Lodge for NSW of the Royal Order of Scotland at Concord in July. The Provincial Grand Master, RW Bro John Anderson opened the 359th meeting of the Grand Lodge, welcomed visitors, particularly the Heads of Other Orders. Among the visitors were four Provincial Grand Masters and the heads of seven Associated Orders. After the Installation ceremony, the duly elected officers were obligated and invested. An address, touching on the history of the Provincial Grand Lodge of NSW from its foundation in Australia in

1940, was delivered by RW Bro Richard Pickering who spoke about some of the early Grand Masters and notable events over the years. He was supported by Bro Maurice Press who delivered an Address to the brethren before the lodge was closed. At the banquet, RW Bro Antoine Georges, the DGM of the United Grand Lodge of NSW, responded to the visitors’ toast on behalf of the Associated Orders. The banquet featured a pipe band and other entertainment with the Provincial Grand Master extending special thanks to three ladies, Cynthia Ramsay, Josie Foti and Maria Mangold, who prepared 140 meals for the evening.

T he Sydney L odge No 1020

Sydney’s Red Letter Day


unique occasion occurred when the three Gavarra brothers, each a Lewis, were initiated on 29 August in The Sydney Lodge in the presence of their father and the Grand Master who was accompanied by a delegation of sixteen Grand Officers including the DGM, RGC and DGIW. During the ceremony, the GM delivering the Signs and Secrets and presented the candidates with their lapel pins. An excellent banquet was held at the French Bistrot Gavroche on Broadway and all guests were given a bottle of bubbly and a small box of chocolates as they left.

T he Sir Walter Scott L odge No 123

Mark Man Ceremony A

craft lodge Mark Man Ceremony was conducted in October at the Auburn Masonic Centre hosted by The Sir Walter Scott Lodge. The GM MW Bro James Melville and the Grand Master of the Mark and Royal Arch Masons Most Excellent Companion Robert Peattie were among 80 people in attendance from within the district and beyond. Candidates for the evening ranged



from those of Grand Rank, serving and Past Masters as well as Master Masons numbering a record 40 in all. The WM, W Bro TJ McGann thanked the Companions of Federation Mark and Royal Arch

Chapter 11 who assisted with the work of the evening. The Mark Man working is a supplementary Ceremony which builds on what has already been learned in the Second degree.


MASONIC NEWS FROM NSW & ACT L odge Condobolin No 185

Condobolin says thanks


barbeque was the backdrop at a mem­orable occasion for Lodge Con­ dobolin when it presented certificates and also said thanks for lodge renovations. Bro Dudley Norton, Bro Bob Menzies and Bro Neil McDonald were each handed 50 Year certificates by the WM, W Bro

Brett Farrar who said their support had played an important role in the survival of Freemasonry in Condobolin. Brethren and guests were also impressed by the renovations to the lodge rooms, made possible by a grant of $65,000 from the Masonic Building Fund committee.

L odge Bulli T hirroul No 1040

Kirk decides to join R egular visitor Kirk Cruz found it hard to resist and in September became a member of Lodge Bulli Thirroul. Among the members taking part in the ceremony were the AGDC VW Bro Arnel Landicho as Senior Warden, the Grand Senior Deacon W Bro Khris Albano as Junior Warden, RW Bro Rey Porras as

Senior Deacon, RW Bro Brian Potter as Junior Deacon with brethren present from Lodges Camden, Jose Rizal, Sydney St George, Horizons, Hornsby, Kiama, Theo Grey and Bulli Thirroul. RW Bro Brian Willis conducted the ceremony.

WM Bro Jamie Melville and RW Bro Charles Wattle at the 175th anniversary of Lodge Richard Coley

L odge R ichard Coley No 152

A big night for Richard Coley

N Jubilee Southern H ighlands Daylight L odge No 162

Bowral on the march


everal thousand people were present to cheer local masons who paraded in Bowral during the September Tulip Festival. At least 30 brethren assembled under the direction of W Bro George El-Chami for the march which was sponsored by Jubilee Southern High­ lands Daylight Lodge, with local masons W Bro Stephen Blinkhorn and Bro Cristian King co-ordinating the event. The lodge banner was proudly hoisted and the AGM, RW Bro Bill Driver led the procession from Banyette Street to Corbett Plaza. Local residents and other spectators lined both sides of the 1 km route and

Bowral masons marched out in force to support the local September Tulip Festival.

cheered all of the participants in the parade. There were approximately 10,000 visitors to Bowral over the weekend. It was a momentous occasion for Southern Highlands Freemasonry, as there had never before been a public procession of Freemasons in the area. Special dispensation was given for the march and the organisers thanked the brethren who came to Bowral and participated in making the day a wonderful occasion for Freemasonry.

ot too many organisations can boast about having been in continuous existence for 175 years – Lodge Richard Coley can and the lodge acknowledged this significant milestone with a weekend of celebrations in October. The Grand Master, MW Bro Jamie Melville attended the lodge meeting together with many brethren, ladies and special guests. Lodge historian, RW Bro Gary Dean delivered an informative presentation on the lodge’s history. The next day the Grand Master accompanied the Worshipful Master, RW Bro Charles Wattle, and others, on a bus tour of historical sites in the Hawkesbury region followed by a delightful lunch at the ‘Church Bar’ which now occupies the former Windsor Masonic Centre. A full article on the history of the lodge will appear in the March issue. DECEMBER 2016  FREEMASON




Freemason Welcomes New Members To The Craft Name


ABOU-ANTOUN, Tony ACOSTA, Randelle ADOLPHE, Christophe AGELOS, Kosta

Lodge Jose Rizal 1045


Lodge Sydney St. George 269

Lodge Ionic 65

DILLEY, Robert

Lodge Southern Cross 91

OGDEN, Scott


Lodge Fire Brigades 940

O’HARA, Owen

The Sydney Lodge 1020


Lodge Germania 1036 Lodge Blacktown Kildare 393

ARIZALA, Don The Hawkesbury Heritage Lodge 150 ATALLAH, Alain

Lodge Axiom 1047

AVATI, Anthony

The Sydney Lodge 1020


Lodge Germania 1036

AZAR, Richard

Lodge Liverpool 197


Lodge Germania 1036


Lodge Galileo 1019

Lodge Chelmsford Technology 261


Lodge Armidale 641 Lodge Canoblas Lewis 806 Lodge Warringah 83 Lodge St Andrews 281 Lodge Richard Coley 152 Lachlan Macquarie Lodge 1042 Lodge Antiquity 1

Lodge Wyvern 813


Lodge Galileo 1019

PALIN, Harley

FULLER, Scottie

Lodge Gundagai United 25


Lodge Lake Macquarie 243


The Sydney Lodge 1020


The Sydney Lodge 1020


The Sydney Lodge 1020


Lodge Army and Navy 517

GOAD, Ralph

Lodge Celebration of Fairfield 345


Lodge Caledonia of Canberra 938


Lodge Sutherland 585

GORMAN, Jordan Lodge Queanbeyan St Andrew 56 GREEN, David

The Hills Lodge 1025


Lodge St Andrew Twilight 7


The Hawkesbury Heritage Lodge 150

HADDAD, Markes Lodge Celebration of Fairfield 345

Lodge Star Of Wauchope 310

HANDLEY, Michael Lodge Queanbeyan St Andrew 56

Lodge Allan Stuart 416 Lodge Guyra 325 Lodge Enterprise 400 Lodge Merrylands 479 Lodge Bulli Thirroul 1040


Lodge Port Stephens 522


Hark! the Herald Angels Sing White Christmas Paul McCartney George Frederic Handel What Child Is This? Let it Snow B – The King of Mice Judy Garland Miss Fanny Bright my two front teeth! FREEMASON  DECEMBER 2016

1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 7. 8. 9. 6. 10.

So, how did you do?

Lodge Cronulla 312 Bundaleeah Daylight Lodge 992 Lodge Sir Joseph Banks 300 Lodge Macquarie 53

PARIS, Jason

Lodge St James 45


The Leichhardt Lodge 133


Lodge Ku-Ring-Gai 1033


Lodge Ku-Ring-Gai 1033

REEVES, Troy Lodge Commonwealth of Australia 633 REYNOLDS, Eliot

Bundaleeah Daylight Lodge 992


Lodge University of Sydney 544


The Australian Lodge of Harmony 5 Coeur De Lion - Narooma 84


Lodge Cooma Monaro 164 Lodge Germania 1036


Lodge Germania 1036 The Sydney Lodge 1020


Lodge Kensington 270 Lodge Merrylands 479 Lodge Sydney St. George 269


The Lodge of Tranquillity 42


Lodge Enterprise 400


Lodge Antiquity 1 Lodge Axiom 1047 Lodge Liverpool Plains 191

City of Newcastle Lodge 170


Lodge Southern Cross 91

City of Newcastle Lodge 170


Lodge Morning Star 410 Lodge Gloucester 291


Lodge Alpha 970 Lodge Germania 1036

KHATIZ, Zemarai

Answers to the Christmas Quiz!

Lodge Toukley 933


HOWARD, David Lodge Caledonia Of Canberra 938


The Sydney Lodge 1020

Lodge Sylvania 853



Lodge University of Sydney 544

Lodge Nepean 29

KHARMA, Daniel


Lodge Miguel De Cervantes 1038

Lodge Kiama 35

NASH, Craig


Lodge Artarmon United 285 Lodge Galileo 1019



DARALLA, Efraim Lodge Celebration of Fairfield 345 DE LEONARDIS, Luca


The Lodge Of Australia 3

AHMAD, Youssef

BAGALA, Anthony


DEAN, Terence

Lodge Liverpool 197



Lodge Axiom 1047

Lodge Axiom 1047

KUMAR, Ronny

Lodge Germania 1036


Lodge Morisset 441


Lodge Trinity 666 Lodge Richard Coley 152

TRAINA, Daniel

Lodge Ionic 65

TRAN, James

Lodge Germania 1036


Lodge Warringah 83


Lodge Sydney St. George 269 Lodge St Andrews 281


The Cobar Lodge 97

LAPRADE, Kian The Australian Lodge Of Harmony 5


LE, Andrew

Lodge Germania 1036

VILLONDO, Vincent Lodge Celebration of Fairfield 345

Lodge Hastings 69

VISCHSCHOONMAKER, Mark Lodge Germania 1036

LEONARD, Michael

Lodge West Epping 731

WAGNER, Michael

Lodge Millennium 2000

LOUTERBACH GAVANIER, Thomas Lodge Galileo 1019


Lodge Prince Leopold 87


Lachlan Macquarie Lodge 1042

WHITE, Morgs


Lodge Cowper 295

LIM, Eco

Lodge Germania 1036



Lodge Sir James Hardy 1046 The Sydney Lodge 1020

Lodge Trinity 666


Lodge Dawn 511

WOOLTERTON, Jack Forster Great Lakes United 994

Lodge Canoblas Lewis 806 Lodge West Epping 731 Lodge Gowrie Of Canberra 715

WORDON, Grant WREN, Tom YAGHI, Rameh

Lodge Sir Joseph Banks 300 Lodge Livingstone 71 Lodge Illawarra 59 Lodge Burns Wentworth Tuscan 21

Lodge Sutherland 585


Lodge Toxteth 1052

Lodge Trinity 666

YEPES, Alejandro

Lodge Sylvania 853



V48 N4 – DECEMBER 2016


V48 N2 – JUNE 2016









Chinese New Year!

Sydney’s Royal

Botanic Garden Sydney’s Taronga Zoo



Celebrating 200 years of history




Thank you

11 12 13

to all our sponsors both individual and corporate who have helped to make this edition possible. 19


17 & 47


qq Charles Moschoudis

qq Frank Whiddon Masonic Homes of NSW


qq Liverpool Lodge


qq O’Connor Legal


qq Quest Effect


qq Rembrandt


qq Royal Freemasons’ Benevolent Institution of NSW


qq Terry McCallum Photography

13 5

Aims of the Freemason magazine



ACROSS 1 Oddly came to repent for a cardinal virtue (10)

11 Briefness exercised with stewed nectarines (10)

5 Oddly sophists get roasted on this (4)

14 Rector in trouble with old style head gear (8)

9 Strange grips for a spray of evergreen (5)

15 Rehearse to get it right sounds like a good rehearsal (8)

10 Doctor if tutored displays more of 1 across (9) 11 Man of the cloth never in three-d (3, 8)

q To foster a better understanding of Free­masonry within the general community.

17 Use rare characters for this deletion (7)

12 Drain fitted at the lowest point (5) 13 Another 1 across with no drinks, just ice (7) 20 Probe librarian camouflaging deceased reference signs (5)

16 Some number made the procedure unremarkable (8) 18 One legged support manufactured from dupion (6) 19 See 10 down 21 Around the first of May, 20 across finds clots (6) 24 Foreshadows hidden fuss or difficulty (3)

22 Free chicken tangled up in neck wear (11) 23 A rich opal turns out to be a parish pump matter (9) 24 House made from adobe materials (5)

q To publicise the charitable works of Free­masonry.

25 Tied up with a controlled menu (4)

q To provide articles of interest and education and to disseminate masonic news and views.


q To recognise masons who make significant contributions to the Craft and the wider community.



q To uphold and promote those values, morals and virtues which Freemasonry believes are universal and enduring.

q To provide a forum for discussion on masonic issues.





qq The Happy Masons Shop




qq Blashki & Sons

qq Dion Accoto Lawyers and Migration Agents


Solution September 2016

26 See 8 down

1 Doctor I am Satan in this state (8) 2 Innumerable number produced army ID (6) 3 Urge poultry production (3) 4 On course to get horny (8) 6 Girl’s name for another 1 across (8) 7 Stewed about his duds (6)

If you would like to sponsor the Magazine through placement of an advertisement, contact APM Graphics Management on 1800 806 930 or email

8 & 26 across – Lodge Officer displays a reformed esoteric icon (8, 2, 10) 10 & 19 down – What we use to first made inquiries about being a member (4, 4)







Years Service


Lodge Oatley 381 Bankstown Daylight Lodge 996

WILLIAMS, Courtney

Lodge Illawarra 59

JOHNS, Kevin

LEE, Ronald

Lodge Epping 390


Years Service


SAYERS, Bernard SMITH, Robert

Lodge Brotherhood of Maitland 1029

SNELL, Bruce SOLOMON, Frank TAYLOR, Herbert


TRITTON, Leonard

BRYANT, Norman

Lodge Cowra 33

COOPER, John Lodge Laurieton Haven United 1031




BRYANT, Thomas

Lodge Cowra 33

BURTON, Charles

Lodge Liverpool 197

CUMMING, Grahame DANCE, Barrington DARLING, Alexander DENNIS, Ronald

Lodge Benjamin Pryor 709 Lodge Epping 390 Lodge John Williams 148 Lodge Illawarra 59 The Lodge of Australia 3


Lodge Gymea 796

Lodge Kensington 270


Lodge Speers Point 538

The Prince Alfred Lodge 94 Lodge Antiquity 1 Lodge Paxton 608

BAILIE-MACE, Edward BAKER, Geoffrey

The Schools Lodge 639

EYB, Donald

Lodge Kngsford Smith 1028


Lodge Epping 390


Lodge Edinburgh St John 38


Lodge Oatley 381

IRVINE, Phillip

Lodge Illawarra 59

JAMES, Leonard

Lodge Forster Great Lakes United 994

Lodge Richard Coley 152 Lodge Mark Owen 828 Lodge Forster Great Lakes United 994 Lodge Cowra 33

Floral fable

Below: poinsettias, also known as the ‘Christmas Star’

DENNE, Roger

Lodge Liverpool 197

Years Service

APPLE, Raymond

BARRON, Kenneth Lodge Wyong Tugerah Lakes 247

The Schools Lodge 639

Lodge Punchbowl 244

BARRINGER, Bruce Twin Towns Daylight Lodge 981 Lodge Illawarra 59

Lodge Epping 390

JONES, Brian Lodge Forster Great Lakes United 994 MONKS, Jesse


The Schools Lodge 639

JEFFERIES, Frank Lodge Wyong Tuggerah Lakes 247

Have you heard the story from Mexico about a girl named Maria and her little brother Pablo? They were poor but always looked forward to the Christmas festival. Each year a large manger scene was set up in the village church and the days before Christmas were filled with parades and parties. The two children loved Christmas but were always saddened because they had no money to buy presents. They specially wish­ ed they could give something to the church for the baby Jesus. But they had nothing.

Lodge Nambucca 271

LEE, Robert

Lodge Kensington 270

LYONS, Kenneth

The Central Coast Lodge 2001


Lodge Forster Great Lakes United 994 Lodge Oatley 381

The Sir Walter Scott Lodge 123


The Maroubra Lodge 725

One Christmas Eve, Maria and Pablo set out for church to attend the service. On the way they picked some weeds growing along the roadside and decided to take them as their gift to the Baby Jesus in the manger scene. They were teased by other children when they arrived with their gift but said nothing, for they knew they had given what they could. Maria and Pablo started putting the green plants around the manger and miraculously, the green top leaves turned into bright red petals. Soon the manger was surrounded by beautiful star-like flowers. Everyone who saw them were sure they had seen a miracle. From that day on, the bright red flowers were known as the Flores de Noche Buena, or Flowers of the Holy Night. We know them as poinsettias.

Interested in Freemasonry? Have you ever wondered about Freemasonry – what it is and what its members do? Do you ever think about joining but don’t know any masons or what action to take to find out more? If you are interested and would like to talk with a mason, contact Grand Lodge who will put you in touch with a member from your suburb who can give answers and advice. Photo by André Karwath



Grand Lodge is available Monday to Friday on (02) 9284 2800 or you can contact us by email at

Dion Accoto L AW Y E R S & M I G R AT I O N A G E N T S

*In the legal profession for over 25 years* ‘A brilliant legal mind.’ – Paul S

‘One of the smartest lawyers we’ve ever met.’ – Director, Australian Civil

‘A fearless Litigator.’ – I Larney

Whatever the legal problem – we’ll give you a common sense, no nonsense solution.

Call 1300 999 099 SYDNEY & PARRAMATTA 14th Floor, 309–321 Kent St Sydney NSW 2000 91 Phillip St Parramatta NSW 2150


Liability Limited by a Scheme Approved Under Professional Standards Legislation MARA#1572156 *Dion Accoto was admitted to legal practice in August 1999. He started work as a legal clerk in 1991.

Merry Christmas from RFBI From all of us at RFBI we wish you a safe and happy Christmas. During this festive time, we invite all brethren to visit your local village and celebrate with us, as it is thanks to your continuous support we are able to make a positive impact on people’s lives. For all enquiries, donations or to organise Speakers for Lodge meetings, please contact our head office on 02 8031 3200 or email

Masonic Villages: It’s how to live...



Photos by Chris Phutully

Happy Year of the

Rooster! 28 Jan 2017– 15 Feb 2018

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