May is an even more distinct month than others on a West Lancashire Freemason’s calendar. And May 2016 is singularly special for Blackpool and Fylde Freemasons. It heralds the Provincial Grand Lodge meeting on Thursday 12 May at which many Masons will be rewarded for their commitment to our fraternity. Additionally, Royal Arch Masonry is being promoted at a ‘Talking Heads’ presentation on Friday 20 May at a meeting of Ashlar Lodge No 5154 and the ‘Light Blues’ meet again for another fun-packed evening on Friday 27 May in Fleetwood. There is, consequently, something for everyone.
The significance of the Provincial Grand Lodge meeting extends far beyond that of recognising and celebrating individual Mason’s endeavours. It is a spectacular statement of the pride and confidence that we have in our movement; a capital opportunity to demonstrate the camaraderie, the charitable empathy that drives us and the personal development and fulfilment promulgated in our ethos.
Hundreds of Masons from throughout the Province of West Lancashire and beyond will converge on Blackpool on Thursday 12 May to participate in one of the most flamboyant spectacles of pageantry, tradition and fellowship in Freemasonry. And all this is on our doorstep at the Winter Gardens, a mere stone’s throw from the Masonic Hall in Blackpool. There cannot be a better opportunity for Blackpool and Fylde Masons to participate in and relish this marvellous experience. We can most certainly clasp the opportunity to support and applaud our colleagues who will be receiving honours, be they first appointments or promotions, but it is also a unique chance for each of us to delight in being a Freemason.
Whilst it may appear that much of the pageantry throws a spotlight on the higher echelons of grand officers and Provincial officers, it is not ‘their’ day. It is ‘our’ day. A day on which Freemasonry is celebrated; a day on which all Freemasons come together in a common aim of extolling the greatness of Freemasonry. We make the day. Without us, it would be an anti-climax; a day with less impact, little atmosphere and limited significance. We, the heart and soul of Masonry, make it a day to rejoice. Be part of it. Make it a day that ‘we’ remember.
And to make the day even better, the Masonic Club at Adelaide Street will be open all day for refreshments and meals, although if you wish to sit at a table to eat, prior booking will be necessary.
The month of May also brings a performance of the ‘Talking Heads’ presentation which takes the form of a dialogue between a recently raised master Mason and a more seasoned colleague who, while preparing to attend a Craft lodge meeting, is approached by the young Mason enquiring about the Royal Arch. A discussion between them ensues; the young Mason asking the veteran a number of searching questions which the Royal Arch companion clarifies in a very informative and entertaining way. A diversity of aspects is covered without revealing any of the ‘mysteries’ and theatre of the order, ensuring that the prospective member will enjoy the spectacle of Royal Arch to the full.
The presentation has been fashioned to diffuse any possible confusion that may exist about the Royal Arch and introduces and explains the purposes, aims and pleasures of the Royal Arch, often referred to as the ‘completion and climax of Freemasonry’. Those who have had the good fortunate to attend a performance of the presentation have enthusiastically praised John Cross and Paul Darlington who play the two Masons in the presentation. The standard of presentation is first class with John and Paul having memorised all the dialogue and enacting it in a relaxed, sincere and spontaneous manner.
The show is open to all Masons and will be performed at the meeting of Ashlar Lodge on Friday 20 May, starting at 18:30 at Blackpool Masonic Hall. For further details and to reserve a place, contact the lodge secretary at L5154@westlancsfreemasons.org.uk.
Following the success of the ‘Light Blues’ social evening in April, a second event will take place at the Strawberry Gardens in Fleetwood on Friday 27 May. The fact that it coincides with the local beer festival suggests that the intention is to have even more fun than at the first event – and some are still recovering from that evening! An upstairs room at the Strawberry Gardens has been hired to accommodate the revellers and all are welcome.
Although it is anticipated that the bulk of the carousers will be ‘light blue’ Masons, grand officers and Provincial grand officers will also be welcomed. And non-Masons who may have expressed an interest in Freemasonry are also welcome to meet young brethren and learn about the joys and pleasures of our fraternity.
Please register your interest in joining the party-goers with John Lee on email@example.com.