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The Cross Keys The Monthly Newsletter of Lodge Houstoun St. Johnstone Walking the Road / Seeking the Light December 2011

In this issue: 18th C Grand Lodge of Scotland Part 1 More Thoughts about Advertising Installation Photographs The Mark Wright Project The Lodge in Ibiza St. John Another Brother’s Travels

Cross Keys December. 2011

Number 153

The 18th Grand Lodge of Scotland Part 1


rand Lodge and fees have been an ever present source of conflict. Few brethren bother much about the business at the communications, but suddenly when fees are mentioned then there is almost disdain at the proposals. Not surprisingly, this has always been the case. In the early days of GL (mid 1700s) lodges’ fees fluctuated and also privileges were afforded to operative members. In 1780, GL attempted to charge a minimum fee to avoid low fees in some lodges which eventually led to their ruin. This led to some dissatisfaction: a circular was sent to solicit opinions over the proposed increase. Apparently, only thirty-two letters were sent, and the Grand Secretary reported that ‚fourteen Lodges were for adhering to the resolution of the Grand Lodge, that nine were against it, and nine…took no notice of the resolution.‛ Unimpressed by the posturing of GL, over half of the surveyed lodges either opposed the resolution or simply did not respond. Expulsion was then threatened and it can now be seen that GL was progressing from its titular position to more bureaucratic and centralised ruling. GL was firm in its decisions and was non-discriminatory: Kilwinning Scots Arms, an old Edinburgh lodge, and Rutherglen Royal Arch, the newest lodge were on their hit list. During the late 1790s, however, the Grand Lodge asserted itself as a real and powerful presence. National fears of a French-inspired revolution produced a wave of scepticism of all clubs and societies that met and deliberated in private. Certainly, the impact of government legislation passed to regulate such perceived threats was only a partial consequence of the recent criticism of freemasonry. Perhaps more important, though, was GL’s interpretation of parliamentary acts as extensions of its power to enforce national as well as masonic legislation. Without the radical environment in which the Unlawful Oaths and Secret Societies Acts were passed, it is highly unlikely that the government and masonic responses would have been so intense. By 1799, the Grand Lodge of Scotland had come to view itself as the final voice in all masonic affairs, also reserving the power to sue any lodge failing to adhere to the stipulations set forth by the Secret Societies Act. The heavy-handed tactics displayed by the Grand Lodge – including threats of suspension, exclusion from the Grand Roll, and legal action – undoubtedly played a key part in forming the popular resentment which ultimately resulted in the Masonic Secession of 1808. (And that is another story). However, it did imply that freemasons were accountable to a higher power than just the lodge. This alone was influential in ensuring the survival of the Craft while so many other clubs or organisations disappeared from society. What was clear, however, is that GL was here to stay and although fees have always been a sore point, GL is the representation of the Scottish Craft. Scotland has been lucky compared to many other countries who have had other competing GLs—Scotland has never had a breakaway GL. That says it all! An Informed Mason is an Involved Mason Cross Keys December. 2011

More Thoughts about Advertising The answer is not a simple yes or a no.... I have touched on this subject, briefly, in my first edition of Al-Manarah (The Lighthouse) when I was responding to a question, why the Cedars Lodge is on Facebook. Allow me to re-post the reply here, as follows : THE


Dear Brethren and Friends of The Cedars Lodge, With great pleasure, I inform you that The Cedars Lodge is now on FACEBOOK. You might ask why did we create a Facebook page? Are we following the hype? The answer is not as a simple Yes or No. The Cedars Lodge No. 1041 has a dedicated website where you can visit and find interesting, practical, and useful information, this serves as the formal platform of Lodge. On the other hand, the presence on Facebook serves as a social platform showing that the fabric of the lodge is made of real members like you and me who have families, kids, careers, interests and so on. It allows us to have a more personal relationship with other members on daily basis, and to share ideas and provide feedback constructively and efficiently. Both sites have ONE purpose : Awareness. The purpose of Awareness is to get the word out: Who we are, What we do, and That for which we stand. We need to proclaim this message to our own brethren, to our families and to our communities at large. Masonic Awareness is first about Communication. We as Masons for many years were excellent at keeping a low profile and doing our good works quietly. We were so effective in being invisible that our communities forgot who we were. The work of Freemasonry became shrouded in a cloak of misunderstanding and many thought us to be some secret society, or Devil worshipers, etc. We as Masons know better, but the public at large is only now beginning to understand the good for which Freemasonry stands. In these days, when terrorism haunts our world and moral values seem to be declining, our strong principles are needed more than ever. As Masons, we need to proclaim that goodness and show that we are committed to that task. As our communities grow to understand us better, we believe that many worthy men will want to join with us. The second purpose of the Awareness then becomes to increase our ranks with good people. As our numbers grow, so will we; and so will our ability to serve each other and our communities. Masonry has a long history of improving men and those men in turn improve their communities; we are committed to building upon that tradition. What Role are YOU going to PLAY in the Awareness of The Cedars Lodge in Particular, and Masonry in general?

Cross Keys December. 2011

More Thoughts about Advertising (ctd) In addition to the above, we have had successes with our Open Day, were 120+ members of the public joined us to explore Freemasonry. Attached is a copy of the invitation/flyer distributed for the occasion. Edition 3 of our newsletter covers the open night extensively. Please feel free to download from our website Another success, is that The Cedars Lodge, along with another lodge were selected by Compass program from ABC (Australian Broadcast Corporation) to cover a segment on Freemasonry. RW Bro Garry Sayed & Mrs Sayed have opened their house, and spoke eloquently about the Craft. For those who wish to see it or wish to down load a file to watch it later (and this is legal J please see: download.htm A very recent success, is when members of the craft participated in a backyard-blitz activity to assist a sick mother, who has recently lost her husband and has 2 little girls. The attached link provides you with an article describing the event - some good works by a bunch of great people, inc. Masons - story/mums-backyard-bliss/ The result of this activity, not only Freemasons were active in the community but also we had 5 applications on the day to join the Craft. In conclusion, yes, we need to be visible, we need to be active and engage in our community we need to project the teachings of the Craft outwardly. We took an oath to bring worthy men, we pray to the Almighty to prosper the Craft ......So Mote it Be !

Contributed by: Sami Dagher The Cedars Lodge No. 1041 – SD & Communication Officer The Discovery Lodge of Research No. 971 – Foundation member Lodge Southern Cross no. 91

Cross Keys December. 2011

60TH ANNIVERSARY OF FORMATION 1959 -2009 To commemorate the 60th Anniversary of the formation of the Royal Highland Fusiliers from the Royal Scots Fusiliers and the Highland Light Infantry, this superb jewel was commissioned. It is composed of the lodge crest surrounded by the lodge name and anniversary title.

Grand Lodge of Massachusetts

Grand Lodge of Massachusetts has created site to assist non-members join in any US state. It has a live forum to talk to Freemasons, a section devoted to advice from ‘Ben Franklin’ and all kinds of info about the Craft and orders for the new MM. Definitely worth a look—just click above. Cross Keys December. 2011

Michigan Shriners in Trouble The Grand Lodge of Michigan has withdrawn official recognition of the Shrine there, and it has been declared clandestine and illegal. Michigan Masons may not attend Shrine meetings in that state. The problem stems from a Mason who was expelled by the Grand Master in July for pleading guilty to a crime punishable by incarceration of one or more years, and per Michigan's Masonic rules. Unfortunately, the Elf Khurafeh Shrine and the Imperial Shrine in Tampa didn't agree and kept the suspended Mason as a full member of the Shrine. A slight complication: he's the current Potentate (master). He had pled guilty to possessing and operating gambling devices, and probably won't be sentenced until February. However, since he did plead guilty, the GM expelled him. The Shrine did not. The Shrine raises millions of dollars every year for hospitals, etc and have reduced entry from being a 32 degree mason to a MM with some even discussing not being a mason to join. This could have ramifications for other GLs and the Shrine across the US.

A Striking Temple

Masonic Lodge in Atlanta, US. What candidate would fail to be impressed with this lodge room? Cross Keys December. 2011

The Grand Lodge of Peru

The entrance to the Grand Lodge in Peru must be one of the finest at night. Although the premises may not be a patch on may Grand Lodges around the world, the lighting of this Grand Lodge does set a good impression. Unfortunately, many Grand Lodges are not open at night and so stay hidden in many busy streets, but not in Peru.

New Book for Christmas In 1970 Richard Jaffa became a Freemason, later Master of four Lodges and eventually Assistant Provincial Grand Master of Warwickshire and a Junior Grand Deacon of the United Grand Lodge of England. Rudyard Kipling remains one of the most intriguing and elusive personalities in English literature. He was a Nobel laureate, prolific writer, political figure and one of the outstanding men of his era. There are many dimensions to his work but no-one has previously examined in depth his interest in Freemasonry and its impact on his literary output. This book looks at the life of both the young Kipling and the old one and shows how, at two major stages of his life he turned to Freemasonry, not only for dramatic impact, but also as a source of spiritual comfort after the horrors of the First World War. To order click on the picture to go to the website.

Cross Keys December. 2011

Random Thoughts Over the years, a number of readers have emailed various questions about articles or just made general comments and statements. I have decided to put these into print less the names and they appear as they were sent rather than as by topic. If any brother feels strongly about one or can contribute to a better understanding, please email me and I will include your response (named or anonymous) in a later edition of The Cross Keys. Most lodges would function without Grand Lodge—why have them? How many brethren know the Con & Laws? Are they made to confuse brethren? Why does Grand Lodge not use a postal/email voting system for brethren unable to attend? All companies must allow its customers/share holders to vote. Why can brethren not choose the Grand Master Mason? Why do many Provinces have only one candidate for PGM? If a lodge returns its charter, Grand Lodge should allow the PMs to join another lodge with that status. Why does GL/PGL not produce a 2, 3 or 5 year strategic plan? Can GL be used by daughter lodges to confer special degrees? Can GL give very low interest loans to lodges seeking to improve their premises or make emergency repairs? How many masons are in the Masonic Home? I just saw some 18th century aprons. Why can’t we paint symbols on our working aprons (tradition!!) instead of paying regalia makers silly amounts of money? Why do PGL need to be present at installations and appear on toast lists? Could GL meet on a Saturday and away from Edinburgh once a year Can a lodge conduct a degree only meeting with it being minuted with a normal meeting? We give a lot to charity. We are a struggling lodge so why? Should we not look after ourselves first as lodges used to do? Membership is down and lodges are closing: has being more open with the public worked? Why do all lodges not read the Aims & Relationships at the installation? No one listens to them anyway so why not read them at the AGM? Why is The Ashlar not promoted more by GL and PGLs? GL held a successful organ recital—could we have more events at GL?

The first point (I hope) is answered with the opening editorial this month. One outlandish question was why GL does not remove the charter of a lodge with no candidate for more than 3 years, does not confer degrees and has less than 20 members. I will leave you to think about that one yourself!

Cross Keys December. 2011

Spot the Brother! The charity walkers for the Masonic Home stopped at 242; they included Brother Gordon Fraser and his wife, Dawn Oliff from Grand Lodge (far left) and other well kent faces including, Brother David Bloomfield PGM of Kilwinning, Brother Iain McPhee SPGM and Brother Bill Fleming SPGM (designate) of Renfrewshire East. But who is that in the background?

Pre Grand Lodge of Scotland The Grand Lodge of Scotland was founded in 1736, but prior to that noblemen of Scotland had an active part in the affairs of Grand Lodge—of England. The following six served as Grand Masters: Francis Scott, Earl of Dalkeith then Duke of Buccleuch Charles Lennox, Duke of Lennox & Richmond James Hamilton, Lord Paisley then Earl of Abercorn James Lyon, Earl of Strathmore John Lindsay, Earl of Crawford John Campbell, Earl of Loudon

1723 1724 1726 1733 1734 1736

This link continued with the following who served Scotland first: John Keith, 3rd Earl of Kintore GM 1740, GMM Scotland 1738—39 James Douglas, 14th Earl of Morton GM 1741, GMM Scotland 1739—40 Thomas Lyon, 8th Earl of Strathmore GM 1744, GMM Scotland 1740—41 A further three also took the English Chair. Did these noblemen join English Freemasonry for titles, for esoteric interests or were they sought as Freemasons to be patrons of the English Craft who recognised Scotland as having old practices? We may never know, but from 1736 they have been associated with the Scottish Craft.

Cross Keys December. 2011

From the Columns On 11/11/11, Bro. Graham B. Scott was installed as master for the third (not consecutive) time by a last minute stand in, Bro. Allan Stobo PM. Unfortunately, the main installing master, Bro. Garry Forbes PM, was taken into hospital the night before with a chest infection so Bro. Allan took up the challenge in an extraordinary and efficient manner. I dare say, this will not be the last we hear of this!! Congratulations to the other brethren also thrown in at the last minute. On the night, Bro. David Golding TRES was made Honorary Grand Asst. Treasurer of the Grand Lodge of Scotland for serving as Treasurer since 1983. Bro. Davy was presented by the PGM Bro. David A. Reid in what will be one of his last gestures before retiring as PGM. This was appreciated by not just Bro. Davy, but by all the brethren of 242.

Bro. Davy to the left and office-bearers for 2011—2012 below. Please note the new Secretary, Bro. Danny. He is delighted to be the new ‘agony aunt’ for brethren. Doesn’t Davy Mabon look scary at the left rear row?!!

Cross Keys December. 2011

GL News At the last meeting of GL, Bro. John Samuel Miller was ratified as the Provincial Grand Master Designate of Renfrewshire East. His team of commissioned office bearers will be: Andrew Hosie (Depute PGM), Neil Fraser, Ian McPhee & Willie Flemming (Sub PGMs), Grant Macleod (PG Secretary) and Pastor William Shirlaw, Rev John McConnell & Rev Robert Craig (PG Chaplains). Congratulations also to Bro. David Reid elected as Grand Inner Guard.

PGL News Monday 9th January, 2012—PG Committee in Barrhead at 7pm. Saturday 21st January, 2012—PG Office-bearers briefing in POW, Renfrew at 10.30am. Saturday 28th January, 2012—Tri-Annual Communication in POW, Renfrew. This meeting will also include the presentation of cheques to the six nominated charities. Their representatives will be invited to attend after the meeting to receive the donations from PGL. It would be good to show the ‘outside’ world our support. Common Good Fund PGL has the Common Good Fund which contains some money for lodges to borrow at 0% interest. It is used for lodges if they suddenly require financial assistance. Applications should be made by the lodge secretary to the PG Secretary.

Pop Up Lodges! Ever fancy making a pop=up lodge. Well now you can! The ‘House of the temple’ in Washington DC is available to be made at: content/House%20of%20the%20Temple%20Popup.pdf Just cut it out and follow the instructions. I have to admit, I haven’t tried it!

Cross Keys December. 2011

PGL of Glasgow On Wednesday 30th November 2011 the second St Andrew’s Night Celebration was held by Provincial Grand Lodge in Lodge Cadder Freestone. A large audience of Brethren and their families enjoyed a Concert given by the Glasgow Phoenix Choir. The company included the Provincial Grand Master of Dunbartonshire Brother Tom Leckenby and his wife, and the Provincial Grand Master of Renfrewshire East Brother David Reid. The provincial Grand Master explained that out of the total donation to Parkinson’s UK £2k would be donated to each of the Support Groups at the Southern General Hospital and Stobhill Hospital; the remainder of the donation would help fund a Research Project at Edinburgh University. The assembly were treated to an impromptu performance from one of Scotland's greats of stage and screen, Mr Johnny Beattie M.B.E. who had the audience in stitches with a traditional stand up routine. Johnny assisted the Provincial Grand Master Brother Alistair Henderson (on the right) in handing over a cheque to Parkinson's UK for the magnificent sum of £32,700.

Freemasonry is Good for your Health Just two hours a day spent keeping the mind and body busy is as effective at warding off dementia as drug treatment. Simple activities such as gardening, doing crosswords or sudoku, making snacks and singing helps keep the brain healthy, and even slow the course of dementia in sufferers already diagnosed with the condition. The impact was ‘at least as good as’ treatment with cholinesterase inhibitors, typically prescribed to treat dementia, study author Professor Elmar Graessel, from the Friedrich-Alexander University in Erlangen, said. It confirms longstanding theories that keeping the brain active helps keep it healthy. Learning ritual falls into this category—surely an incentive for young brethren to learn some lectures and lessen the probability of dementia..

Cross Keys December. 2011

At a committee meeting early in 2009, it was proposed to hold a special meeting of the Caledonian Lodge No 392 on Wednesday 30th September 2009. This would give the Lodge the opportunity to invite those Lodges which meet on the 2nd and 4th Wednesdays whom we rarely get to visit, whilst raising funds for charity. It was also arranged to invite the military Lodges within Edinburgh and Lodge St Clair No 349. The main business of the evening was to raise funds for The Mark Wright Project. Bro Mark Wright was a member of Lodge St Clair No 349 and the III Battalion, The Parachute Regiment; Bro Mark lost his life whilst on active service in Afghanistan and was posthumously awarded the George Cross for his actions, which upheld the highest traditions of the Army and the principles of Freemasonry. The Mark Wright Project founded by Bro Bobby Wright and his wife Jem, in the name of their son to support service personnel past and present, as well as their families overcome the physical and mental scars of conflict. The Lodge committee enthusiastically agreed to the proposal the Right Worshipful Master Bro Rab Brown giving his full support. On the evening the Lodge worked a 2nd Degree, carried out by ex-servicemen of the Province of Edinburgh. Prior to the degree a eulogy to Bro Mark Wright GC was given by Bro Bob Mitchell IPM. The Temple was set up for a FC degree with the addition of the Alter being decorated with a black cover, Acacia leaves, a Parachute Stable Belt and Beret. The following brethren took office within the Lodge and carried out ritual: The Office Bearers: CM WSW WJW SD JD IG BB Chaplain

Bro Bob Mitchell IPM The Caledonian Lodge No 392 Bro Keith Miller IPM Lodge Journeymen Masons No 8 Bro Tom Stott RWM Lodge Water of Leith No 1267 Bro Bob McKenzie RWM The Lodge of Brotherly Love No 1428 Bro Willie McLeod PM The Caledonian Lodge No 392 Bro Alfie Docherty MM The Caledonian Lodge No 392 Bro Arthur Symington PM The Caledonian Lodge No 392 Bro John Buchan MM Lodge Water of Leith No 1267

Ritual: S&S Apron SEC WT TB CC Cross Keys December. 2011

Bro Willie McLeod PM The Caledonian Lodge No 392 Bro Keith Miller IPM Lodge Journeymen Masons No 8 Bro Arthur Symington PM The Caledonian Lodge No 392 Bro John Buchan MM Lodge Water of Leith No 1267 Bro Bob McKenzie RWM The Lodge of Brotherly Love No 1428 Bro Tom Stott RWM Lodge Water of Leith No 1267

Mark Wright Project Bro Paul Selwood who had recently joined Lodge Journeymen Masons No 8 and attained the rank of fellow of craft, on hearing of the degree immediately volunteered to take part in any way he could. Bro Paul was our candidate for the evening. The Office Bearers and those performing ritual were invited to wear their decorations, on the night many serving serviceman attended in uniform and ex-servicemen attended proudly wearing their decorations. It has been traditional within the Lodge that on the night of our charity degrees all proceeds raised are given to the nominated charity, this night was no exception. With more than one hundred brethren in attendance the collection in the Temple raised over £500, when the proceeds of the whisky draw, raffle, harmony and auction, run by Bro Bob McKenzie were added, the total raised was almost £1600. The Harmony Board provided an ‚All in Stew‛, this is traditional military fare known to everyone who has served in any of the services, though under a number of different names which I couldn’t put into print. This was produced by Bro’s Tom Stott RWM and John Buchan MM of Lodge Water of Leith No 1267 and was served in mess tins much to the delight of the Brethren. The entertainment arranged by Bro Bob McKenzie was a folk band Houghmagandie, who though not all members are in the craft volunteered their services and made what was already a successful night into an exception night. A recent set of donations is: sum of £550 - being the amount raised from working two MM degrees at Lodge St Andrew No 25 £350, a donation from visiting Brethren of Lodge Ancient No.49 of £100 and a donation of £100 from Albany Conclave No 55 (RCC). It is encouraging to see other orders join with the Craft towards one charity—perhaps we’ll see more of it.

To donate click on:

December’s Events in 242

Thursday 8th Dec—FCD at 7.30pm Thursday 22nd Dec—Cancelled

Sir William Wallace RAC 15th December—RA at 7.30pm

Cross Keys December. 2011

Ibiza While we suffer in the depths of winter, I thought it would be good to look at warmer climates. Ibiza is not normally associated with Freemasonry, but more with clubs and holiday shenanigans! However, there is also a more serios side to the island—the Craft. During the summer Bro. Scott Jones from 242 went to Ibiza (with his suit) and visited the lodge. Although not large, it proves that the Craft can be successful and serve the community just as well. The pictures say it all.

Cross Keys December. 2011

Charter from the Grand Lodge of Spain

Ever Dreamed?

How many brethren would love to have a go at the PGM? The Provincial Grand Master of Cumberland & Westmoreland R.W.Bro. Norman James Thompson takes it on the chin from one of the winners of the Provincial Boxing Tournament held in Carlisle. Cross Keys December. 2011

St John The following has been taken from AQC Volume 21—the transactions of Quatuor Coronati Lodge No.2076 (EC).

Cross Keys December. 2011

Another Brother’s Travels

Bro. Don in front of the Italian Consulate in Port Said and to the left at the memorial.

Bro. Don MacLean (who joined 242 in 1960) attended the Royal Marines Commando annual re-union at the RM Commando Training Centre in Lympstone, Devon with around 1200 members present. There is a band concert on the Saturday, then full parade on Sunday, including recruits and regular squads with full blown RM Band. Behind in the photo is the RM Commando Memorial Wall unveiled 2 years ago and the diamonds have the names of every Marine killed in Afghanistan. The bereaved families are also present, each family accompanied by an officer and SNCO, and it is very impressive to see the care they are given. Bro. Don served during 1956-1958, did basic training at Lympstone, then went to Bickleigh, near Plymouth for Commando Training where the coveted beret is awarded. (Apologies to my ex- and serving Paras – I fully appreciate it is second best!!!!). Then onto to Malta and Suez for the landings at Port Said. All joking aside, a fine gesture for the many RMs serving today.

Cross Keys December. 2011

Masonry on This time Famous Masons 窶田lick on the picture. Some old favourites, and some less known such as Johnny Cash.

Texas Masons now Official The Department of Motor Vehicle Registration in Texas has now allowed masons of Texas to have their own plates with 5 letters which can be customised. Super idea, but perhaps not in Scotland!

Cross Keys December. 2011

New Lodge Secretary Brethren, Please take note that the new secretary will be: Bro. Danny Birrell PM


Houston Renfrewshire PA6 7LQ

Chancing Your Luck! An old advert from a 1950s magazine. Imagine your wife窶馬o more meetings!!!!

Cross Keys December. 2011

*************** Advance Notice *************** The Provincial Grand Lodge of Renfrewshire East will hold another Education Dinner which will take place on 18th May, 2012. Although slightly early, please note the date in your diary. The first dinner with the Grand Master Mason as the only speaker was a great success and it is hoped to continue this format. The main speaker is WBro. Dunlop, The Grand Master of Ireland and a question & answer session will follow. The event will take place in the premises of our lodge and we are honoured to host this popular event.

New Member On June 10, 2011, Bro. Richard Dreyfuss, the well known actor, was made a Master Mason "at sight" by the Grand Master of Masons of the District of Columbia at the Washington DC Scottish Rite building, as well as a 32nd Degree Scottish Rite Mason and is a member of the Valley of the District of Columbia, Ancient Accepted Scottish Rite. A particularly interesting website is the Dreyfuss Initiative.

In Memoriam The dead are like the stars by day … withdrawn from mortal eye… yet not extinct that hold their way In glory through the sky… .Spirits of bondage thus set free… .Vanish amidst immensity… While human thought… .Like human sight… .Fail to pursue…. Their trackless flight.

It is with deep sadness and much regret that we have to inform you of a loss sustained to the craft in Renfrewshire in the passing to the Grand Lodge above of the following brethren:

William Webber Robert Grimsley

Cross Keys December. 2011

The Cross Keys is Edited and Researched by Brothers - Grant Macleod & Brian Kerr E-Mail:

Lodge Websites Thanks to Bro. Allan Stobo WJW for proof reading.

Don’t forget to support The Ashlar magazine— Scotland’s only Masonic magazine., especially with 242 on the front Just click on the magazine to find out more.

Cross Keys December. 2011

Cross Keys December 2011  

Masonic newsletter

Cross Keys December 2011  

Masonic newsletter