There can be only a few occasions in the life of any lodge that can be classed as exceptional
Such an occasion was the 125th anniversary of the Peace Lodge No. 2269 and the dedication of their new banner to celebrate the life of the lodge from 1888 to 2013 and still going strong.
The masonic hall at Brookfield was packed with 98 brethren. The Assistant Provincial Grand Master Ray Martland presided over the dedication ceremony. It was something very special not only for the lodge but for Ray as it was his own lodge and the one he was initiated into.
Ray started the ceremony in his usual way 'Brethren are you sitting comfortably? Then I'll begin.'
Following a summary of the lodge history, the banner dedication team paraded round the lodge. The honour of carrying the banner was given to Gavin Charnock, the most junior member of the lodge.
The banner was presented to Ray who then delivered it into the hands of the WM Gary Fisher in the knowledge that it will be passed to his successor pure and unsullied as he received it.
The Provincial Grand Chaplain Graham Halsall gave an excellent oration, which was well received by the brethren. At various stages throughout the ceremony the Provincial Choir sang with gusto which itself was quite moving.
On the rising for the grand lodge officers John Robson said he was lost for words and that this banner dedication was one of the best he had witnessed.
On leaving the lodge all brethren were presented with a souvenir book depicting the history of the Peace Lodge on its 125th Anniversary 1888-2013.
The celebrations continued at the festive board where another treat was in store, this was a display of the memorabilia of 125 years of masonic history, from the founder’s jewels to present day.
Later a raffle raised £601 for charitable and other good causes. Members of the lodge also donated cheques for £185 for Movember (growing a moustache to raise funds for testicular and prostate cancer), £120 for the widows and £100 for the charity Follow your Dreams.
Just to witness this superb celebration felt like taking part in history - a wonderful experience!