The Grand Lodge of Antient Free and Accepted Masons of Scotland
William Ramsay McGhee, MStJ, D.L., Grand Master Mason
During the past week, Grand Almoner and I had a very productive meeting with Brother Jean-Pierre Rollet, Grand Master of the Grande Loge Nationale Française and Brother Michael D. Nicholas, Sr., Grand Master of the District of Columbia. They along with the Grand Lodge of Scotland are the three Regular Grand Lodges with a presence in Lebanon. We met to discuss how we can best collectively assist after the disaster that has befallen Lebanon or Beirut in particular. We made good progress and set each other a number of tasks and we will be meeting next week again when we will hopefully be able to bring the plans to fruition.
In Grand Lodge work continues to remove the asbestos from the basement areas of the building. We have also signed a contract to bring fibre optic cabling into the building to enable us to bring our IT systems into the 21st century. It will also give us reliable wi-fi throughout the building. It is good to be able to get this work carried out during this time so that we will have the systems working when we open up again.
Still on IT, we have made good progress with the Grand Lodge Database. Most of the wish list drawn up by the Lodge Secretaries has been implemented and we now look to bringing the Lodges in the Districts onto the system over the next few weeks.
Latest news from the Scottish Constitution Freemasonry Supports Facebook page is as follows –
Last week we reached a milestone with the 400th post on the group
This week we reached another milestone – we have broken through the £300,000.
What a marvellous achievement – thank you.
|Last week||This week|
|No of Members posting||191||194|
|Districts & Lodges abroad||14||14|
SCFS Overseas Report
- We had 23 Overseas Brethren recorded this week, bringing our Overseas Membership of the SCFS Group to
- It is anticipated that the 900th. Overseas Member will be welcomed into the SCFS group this coming week ... details in next week’s Update.
- It is heartening to note that, once again, we had an expansive geographical spread of new members this week ... from The Bahamas, Central South Africa, Jordan, Lebanon, Mauritius, Middle East, Peru, Sierra Leone and The Gambia, Trinidad & Tobago and Grenada, Western Australia, Zambia.
- The largest increase in membership was seen from the District of Central South Africa (thanks to Lodges in the Orange Free State and Country Lodges area) and from the District of Western Australia (with a notable number from Lodge Balmoral, No. 896)
- An interesting post was received from Brother Rinus Grau, District Grand Secretary of Zimbabwe, which highlighted the support which our Brethren in Zimbabwe are providing for the safety of all in the Masonic Homesin Harare
- We look forward to receiving posts from other Overseas Lodges and Districts ... sharing the support which they are providing.
As of yesterday, 161 new confirmed cases of COVID-19 have been recorded in Scotland – our Brethren and their families in a number of areas are under lockdown procedures and family meetings are again under strict guidelines. Despite the fact that things are not improving, I am still getting questions about opening Lodges and Lodge premises. Let me once again try and make it as plain as I can that, first of all, the Heads of all Orders in Scotland have taken a joint decision, based on the fact that the health and well being of our members is paramount, that there will be no meetings of any of the Orders before January 2021 when the situation will be reviewed.
With regard to allowing non-Masonic organisations back into our premises, I have written to the Government twice and have asked that specific question, but I have not received a response from them. I will write again but for the time being, the advice is that (licensed clubs excepted) we keep our premises closed.
I hope and trust that this finds you all keeping safe and well and looking out for each other.
Grand Master Mason