A special service was held at Hereford Cathedral on Friday 2nd October 2020 to dedicate some new furnishings for the Booth Chapel above the north porch, following its recent refurbishment. Herefordshire Freemasons with donations from other Provinces and Orders supported the Cathedral in this refurbishment, by providing an altar and two benches in memory of our late Right Worshipful Provincial Grand Master, The Rev’d David Bowen
The Cathedral had chosen the Booth Chapel as a refurbishment project to celebrate the 700th Anniversary of the Canonisation of St Thomas Cantilupe. Herefordshire's present Provincial Grand Master, Michael Holland, saw an opportunity to provide a permanent memorial for David, in a setting which meant so much to him. For many years a parish priest in the Diocese of Hereford, David had done a great deal during his tenure as Herefordshire's Provincial Grand Master to maintain and develop the excellent relations we enjoy with the Cathedral.
The proceedings began with a socially-distanced Eucharist service in the body of the Cathedral, followed by a service of dedication in the chapel itself. As the chapel is small only six were able to climb the narrow winding staircase in the north porch for the dedication, including the Bishop, The Rt Rev Richard Jackson and the Dean, The Very Revd Michael Tavinor. The Province was represented by the Provincial Grand Master and Mike Hopkins, who had worked very closely with David as his Provincial Grand Secretary throughout David’s period as Provincial Grand Master. Also present in the chapel were David’s two daughters, Naomi and Caroline. David’s widow Jill and son Daniel were present for the Eucharist, along with Mark Bennett, representing David’s Lodge, Vitruvian, and the Provincial Grand Almoner, Malcolm Davies.
It was unfortunate that because of the current restrictions not more people were able to be present, but it was a very special occasion for David’s family and Herefordshire Freemasons, who now have a small but permanent spot in the Cathedral dedicated to their former Provincial Grand Master's memory, which they hope many will be able to visit once circumstances allow.