The Grand Lodge of Antient Free and Accepted Masons of Scotland
William Ramsay McGhee, MStJ, D.L., Grand Master Mason
As I sit down to write this week’s update, it has just been announced on the news that the death rate from Covid-19 in Scotland has now exceeded 10,000. Throughout the world it is now at 2.8 million deaths. Our thoughts and prayers at this time go out to all our families at home and abroad who have lost loved ones to this insidious disease.
Initially, I had indicated that we would remember all those Brethren who have died in a special In Memorium Service whenever Grand Lodge can meet again, however, given the numbers involved and the fact that we had to cancel the Grand Lodge Divine Service due to have been held in Glasgow Cathedral over a year ago, I would like to think that we could look at reviving the Divine Service at a suitable time and dedicate it to the memory of all those Brethren who have passed to the Grand Lodge above and invite the families of the Brethren to join with us in an act of remembrance.
I am fully aware that many of our Districts and Provinces are having similar thoughts and I would encourage them to do so but I fully believe that we should do our level best to bring the family of Scottish Freemasons together to unite in a worldwide remembrance service. I will ask Grand Committee for their thoughts at the earliest opportunity.
Could I take this opportunity to thank the Brethren, especially those who attended the under 40 seminars, who continue to feed information into the Strategy Group – it is greatly appreciated. After the Provincial and District meetings we did pull together a list of issues arising from the meetings which were circulated to the District and Provincial Grand Masters. I am hoping that we can do the same with the responses from the under 40 meeting.
- The group welcomed another 47 Brethren into its ranks with its membership now standing at 4923. All group members are 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 731, submitted by 272 of its members.
- These updated contributions can now be attributed as to being made on behalf of 317 Lodges, from within all 32 Provincial Grand Lodges, 23 of its District Grand Lodges, Superintendencies and Lodges under the direct supervision of Grand Lodge.
- The total identifiable monetary value of the contributions now recorded has risen to £1,182,484.
SCFS Overseas Report
- We will be celebrating the milestone of welcoming our 1400th Overseas Member this coming week now that our Overseas Membership has risen to 1398 This is thanks to new members joining us, this week, from Lodges in Sierra Leone and The Gambia, Central South Africa (RSA), Namibia, Nigeria, Lebanon, Republic of Panama.
- The largest increase in membership was from the District of Lebanon with the most Brethren joining from an individual Lodge coming from Lodge El-Mizab, No. 1130,based in Tripoli, in Lebanon.
- Our membership of Brethren belonging to Lodges whose Grand Lodges are in amity with the Grand Lodge of Scotland continues to grow. With the addition of 30new ICMs joining this week, we now have 480 ICMBrethren spreading news of the wonderful support, featured in the SCFS posts, throughout their constitutions. This week Brethren joined from the GL of Ontario, GL of Indiana, GL of India, UGLE (England, Sierra Leone, and The Gambia), GL of South Africa, GL of Washington, GL of Newfoundland and Labrador, GL of Ireland, GL of Victoria, GL of Virginia, United Grand Lodges of Germany, GL of New South Wales and ACT, GL of Quebec, GL of Spain.
- In addition to the above, the list of Grand Lodges represented by Brethren within them joining as ICMs had the GL of New Jersey, GL of British Columbia and Yukon, and the GL of Nova Scotia added to it.
- Again, we are delighted to note that our ICMs are being proactive in inviting their fellow Brethren to join this group. a reflection of the quality of the posts which Brethren are submitting for publication.
- A special welcome is extended to RW Brother Avron Jacobson, who is the Assistant Grand Master of the Grand Lodge of South Africa.
Finally, as always, please stay safe and look after each other
Grand Master Mason