The Grand Lodge of Antient Free and Accepted Masons of Scotland
William Ramsay McGhee, MStJ, D.L., Grand Master Mason
Grand Secretary and I had just arrived in Panama last week in sufficient time for me to compile last week’s update. It was a memorable week in Panama for many reasons.
First, our new Grand Superintendent, Bro Enrique Sanchez, was a senior engineer on the Panama Canal for 38 years and is now on the Board of Directors. He has an encyclopaedic knowledge of the canal much of which he imparted to the Substitute Grand Master, Grand Secretary, and I when he took us into the Control Room at the Lock Gates. It was a fascinating trip during which we witnessed four ships being expertly manoeuvred through the locks.
The following day we learned much more about the history of Panama when we visited two museums during which we were briefed on the failed Darien Scheme back in 1700 when many Scots lost their lives. That evening we met with representatives from the Grand Lodge of Panama in what was a very positive meeting.
Saturday was the main event. I opened Grand Lodge and thereafter proceeded to Consecrate the new Superintendency and the new Lodge Building, assisted by our Substitute Grand Master, Bro Alexander Moncrieff, and Grand Secretary. We were collectively assisted by Past Masters Anibal George, Carlos Almengor and John Mercier. After the Consecration ceremony was complete, we broke for refreshment before assembling once again to install Bro Enrique Sanchez as the first Grand Superintendent. In the evening we were joined by the ladies for a superb Gala Dinner.
On Sunday morning a large Deputation from the Superintendency gathered in the Cathedral of St Luke for the morning service, which was conducted by the Bishop, His Grace, Julio E Murray, who delivered a very powerful and thought-provoking sermon based on Matthew 21 verses 23 – 32.
After Church we drove to the Gamboa Rainforest Resort where we enjoyed an excellent lunch. The lunch concluded the formal part of the visit. We all returned home on Monday.
A full report will appear in the 2024 Yearbook.
- The Group saw its membership rise to 7329 Brethren from not only the Scottish Constitution but from many of our Sister Constitutions throughout the world.
- This week saw the total examples of charitable giving recorded within the group rise to 1836, submitted by 516 of its members.
- These updated contributions can now be attributed as to being made on behalf of 448 Lodges, from within 59 of its Provincial Grand Lodges, District Grand Lodges, Superintendencies and Lodges abroad under the direct supervision of Grand Lodge.
- Thanks is extended to the following Lodges who had posts submitted on their behalf this week.
- PGL Glasgow, supporting various organisations throughout Glasgow.
- Tower, No. 1523 (Glasgow), supporting Drumchapel Foodbank.
- Prestwick, No. 1060 (Ayrshire), supporting Ayrshire Cancer Support & Ayrshire Foodbank.
- PGL Edinburgh, supporting PGL Edinburgh Charity Partners & MND Scotland.
- Airdrie St. John, No. 166 (Lanarkshire Middle Ward), supporting Coatdyke Congregational Church.
- The total identifiable monetary value of the contributions now recorded has risen to £3,810,898.
This week we welcomed several new members from Lodges overseas. Particular mention must be made to Brethren joining from Lodge Elgin, No. 1562 (Jamaica) and Lodge Ethiope, No. 1780 (Nigeria). The support of the new members who have joined is greatly appreciated.
- Brethren from other Masonic constitutions (ICMs) were similarly welcomed. These Brethren help spread news of the wonderful support featured in the post on SCFS to a worldwide audience. This week we welcomed Brethren from Lodges operating under the GL of the Czech Republic, GL of Illinois, UGLE(Eastern Archipelago), and the United Grand Lodges of Germany.
- Over the past number of months, we have published extremely interesting posts from our Lodges abroad and these have been commented upon very favourably. We are grateful to those Lodges and would encourage others to send in news about their Masonic support activities.
Today, I am in Edinburgh to formally sign the Covenant pledging our support to the military by supporting them in many different and diverse ways. I am looking forward to the ceremony.
On Saturday, I will be heading a Deputation to Lodge Ythan No 892, Mother Lodge of Past Grand Master, Brother Charles Iain Robert Wolridge Gordon of Esslemont to Rededicate the Lodge building on the occasion of its Centenary.
Finally, as always, please stay safe and look after each other.
Grand Master Mason