Pro Grand Master Peter Lowndes welcomed five recipients of the Grand Master’s Order of Service to Masonry (OSM) for a special lunch at Freemasons’ Hall on 21st February 2019
OSM recipients Sir John Welch, Charles Grace, Edward Ford, Professor Aubrey Newman and Keith Gilbert were in attendance for the first event of its kind. They were also joined by Dr David Staples, Grand Secretary, and Quentin Humberstone, Grand Treasurer.
Instituted in 1945, the OSM is an acknowledgement of exceptional service to Freemasonry and is the highest honour the Grand Master can confer on any member of the Craft.
The Order is a neck decoration in the form of a Garter blue ribbon from which hangs the jewel of the Order. The jewel is of silver-gilt, being a double-circle with a pair of compasses extended on the segment of a circle, and the letters O S M; beneath it is the motto In Solo Deo Salus “In God alone is our safety”.
Read the OSM citations of each of the recipients:
Members of Silverdale Lodge No. 6926 in West Lancashire have raised £1,126 for Bleasdale School to allow six special needs pupils to attend a residential outdoor learning course
Bleasdale School is based in Silverdale which is a small village on the north edge of the Province. It only has a population of around 1,300 people, but boasts its own masonic hall and a very active and supportive lodge, working with the community.
Bleasdale School, which is located a short distance from the masonic hall, is a school for pupils aged 2-19 with Profound and Multiple Learning Difficulties (PMLD).
Speaking about the impact the donation would have, Headteacher Kairen Dexter said: ‘Outdoor activities and inclusion within the community form a large part of our curriculum. This is why I want to thank Silverdale Lodge for its generosity in donating money to allow our pupils to access a residential at Bendrigg Lodge which is a residential activity centre specialising in high quality courses for disabled and disadvantaged people, of any age or ability.
'The pupils enjoy these activities so much and they are able to access activities such as the climbing wall, abseiling, archery and water sports, all activities which their mainstream peers, access without hesitation.'
The recent Installation of the new District Grand Master/Grand Superintendent of the District Grand Lodge and Chapter of Barbados and the Eastern Caribbean, Clement Bird, saw the District welcome an NUD (Not Under a District) Lodge and Chapter into its fold when St. George Lodge and Chapter No. 3421 officially became part of the District
The Installation Ceremonies of the new District Grand Master/Grand Superintendent Clement Bird was conducted by United Grand Lodge of England (UGLE)'s Deputy Grand Master Jonathan Spence.
The transition from being an NUD Lodge to becoming part of the District is the first time such an event has happened in 30 years, when two other NUD Lodges in the Caribbean, St Ursula’s Lodge No. 8952 (British Virgin Islands) and Harmonic Lodge No. 356 (U.S. Virgin Islands), became part of the same District in 1989.
Until November 2018, St. George Lodge No. 3421, which was consecrated in March 1910, was one of only nine NUD Lodges that report directly to UGLE. However, after due consideration and long-term discussions amongst its current membership – and given its geographic location – the lodge requested that it be allowed to become part of the District.
St George Lodge’s members have been regular visitors to some of the 20 lodges in the islands that comprise Barbados and the Eastern Caribbean and felt that becoming part of a larger entity would offer them more support and enable them to tap into a greater educational resource function.