Northern Division
District Grand Masters Report June 2018

Ladies and Brethren

It gives me great pleasure to give you the June report.

Over the 18 months I have been looking over suggestions about how we would best utilise the Grand Masters grant of $5000 for all of the Northland District.

At the District meeting I tabled a propsal about  "Kind Hands" which is a project which would benefit  all of the Northland District and we had over whelming support from all Lodges represented.  I then sent the details through the Northtalk to all secretaries to distribute to all Northland Members.  We have had several favouable comments from members but are awaiting written support from our Lodges.  Please Brethren give this your urgent attention and I await your confirmation  so as we can move forward with this most deserving project. 

I enclose some background of the “Kind Hands” respite cottage details in Whangarei.

“Kind Hands” is a Respite Care Cottage for medically fragile children and babies aged between 0-6 years. This cottage is the inspiration of Sharlene Clements, who has been a paediatric nurse for over 23 years and during this time has seen parents exhausted and have very little support available to them while looking after their fragile baby or child. " Kind Hands" has always been a dream of Sharlene’ s but up until now she and her husband haven’t been able to afford to build it, they  have taken a bank loan to finance  the building, which is nearing completion  and hope to open by the end of July. The building at this stage is fully enclosed, exterior and roof completed, interior walls in and most decks completed. This building has a fully functional Type 7 sprinkler system and all the other requirements up to Hospital standard.

“Kind Hands” will benefit the whole of Northland as they will take referrals from Wellsford to the far North, and they will endeavour to give all families the chance to utilize “Kind Hands” in the way that best suits their needs. Some of the conditions the children have could be: they are born early, have a heart condition, diabetes, on home oxygen, failing to grow, cerebral palsy, ACC referral, palliative conditions and many more. Their aim for the future is to be funded and they are also in the process of setting up a trust that will work alongside “Kind Hands” to be able to offer a bed back to the community for those who may not get any funding or just “don’t fit someone’s category”.  They don’t want to turn anyone away.

The $5000 grant from the Grand Master wil cover equipment and resources enabling the Cottage to open fully equipped and ready to operate, hopefully be the end of July.  This is the first step in the Plan.

This plan has been forwarded through to the Div. Grand Almoner for his assistance and I have been advised that the Freemasons Charity may also be able to help after the Cottage opens. 

The District project would then be seeking funds from the Northland Lodges and then applying for a Grant through the Freemasons Charity Fund would be the best option.

May has been an extremely busy month representing Grand Lodge at the Rodney Lodge No 1711 EC in Warkworth. Although their numbers are well down, the hospitality is always exceptional with representatives from the three sister constitutions. A great night was had by all. I was able to resent the outgoing Master, W Bro Bob Fricker with a copy of his Uncles Installation programme, when he was installed in the chair of Lodge Whangarei No 102 (my own Lodge) 70 yrs ago in 1948.

Sat May 5th I had the honour and privilege of accompanying a team of Grand Lodge officers to the Installation of Bro Bruce Wiig at Lodge Manurewa No 222 in Papakura. His twin brother, V W Bro Bryan Wiig was given the honour of installing his older twin (5 mins) into the Chair.  We had an exceptional turnout with 100 brethren in the Lodge room and I had the Honour of being received by no less than 55 Grand Lodge Officers.  A very humbling experience for me.   A most memorable night for Freemasonary.

On May 14th I had the pleasure of Installing Bro Tim Telfer into the Chair of my own Lodge Whangarei 102.

A special pleasure for me as I interviewed Tim and seconded him into the Craft just a few years ago.  He is one of the youngest Masters that we have had for many years.

23rd May we had the honour of receiving the Grand Master, M W Bro Mark Winger, visiting our District, on the occasion of a 1st degree ceremony, for 21 yr old identical twins, Selwyn and Dion Gregory. Assisting with this ceremony were 71 yr old Identical twins, V W Bro Bryan and W Bro Bruce Wiig (the Master of Lodge Manurewa. Who carried out the duties pf the Deacons.   A rather unique ceremony.  The Grand Master presented the charge after initiation.  As usual with our far north lodges the hospitality was incredible and a great evening was had by all.

On a sadder note, several of our Brethren attended a Memorial service at Kerikeri for our late W.Bro Keith Ashcroft, who passed away recently aged 93.  A very well loved Brother and a true gentleman.  He was a Past Master of Lodge Kerikeri and a Past Depute First Grand Principal of the Royal Arch Chapter of NZ. Our condolences to the family.

This month things wil be a little quieter with one Installation at Lodge Wellsford Marsden No 169 on Thursday 21st June, where W Bro John McDonald our venerable Northtalk (Sorry North News Editor) returning to the chair for a second term.   The work allocation for Grand Lodge officers has been distributed. As usual please advise with plenty of time if unable to attend.

Kindest and warm regards for now.

Fraternally Kevin

V W Bro Kevin Burch DGM

DGM Message May 2018


District Grand Master Message May 2018

Ladies and Brethren

As our mild weather continues I wish you well.

Last evening we installed W Bro Roy Scahill into the Chair at the Mangonui Lodge No 78, in the Kaitaia Lodge rooms. This was an historic day for the Northern District. Roy has much enthusiasm and both he and Kathy are very passionate about his Lodge making headway in the year ahead, especially with the prospect of increasing their membership. They will be meeting 4 times a year at different Lodge rooms throughout the district.

Congratulations to The Mangonui Lodge No 78, now becoming a travelling Lodge.  Look out for W Bro Roy and his Brethren popping up somewhere soon. 

Late last month and after my last report went to print, we were advised of the passing of Wor Bro Ray Holland at his home in Mangawhai.  Ray had resigned from the craft a couple of years ago due to poor health and not being able to attend he will be sadly missed by both family & the local community. Our condolences to Jan and the family.

Wed Sat 25 April              W Bro Trevor Hall and I attended the ANZAC service and laid a wreath on behalf of the Freemasons of Whangarei and surrounding District.  Thank you to those Lodges and Brethren who were able to make a contribution toward the cost of this wreath. A very cool morning,  no rain and a great turnout from all of the city groups.

On Thursday last Wor Bro Trevor Hall & Wor Bro John Farley accompanied me to the Installation of Wor Bro Len Field at Lodge Franklin 2138 EC, where I presented the signs of an Installed Master, in the NZ constitution.

This Wednesday the 2nd May I will also be representing the NZ constitution at Lodge Rodney in Warkworth, any Brethren wishing to come and visit our sister constitution, give me a call & we will arrange transport.

Upcoming Dates for your Diary. I would welcome anyone to accompany me if at all possible.

I am visiting the following Lodges in May.

Wed 2 May         Installation Lodge Rodney            Warkworth

Sat 5 May            Installation of Wor Bro. Bruce Wiig at      Manurewa Lodge 222 in Papakura.  Visitors 3.30pm

Sat 12 May          Northern District Trust Bd Mgt   Hobbies Hall, Maunu.                     9.30am for 10.00am.


                                District Meeting                                                Hobbies Hall, Maunu.                     11.00am

Sat 14 May          Installation of Bro Tim Telfer       Lodge Whangarei No 102              6.45pm Visitors 7pm

This Installation will be a full Board, NOTE we are starting a little earlier because of this.

Wed 23 May      Lodge Kaikohe/Ohaewhai 101    1st Degree for Identical Twins – Selwyn and Dion Gregory. The Grand Master M Wor Bro Mark Winger is attending this rather special ceremony and very special for him as well having been born in the Kaikohe area.  The Deacons are a couple of similarly identical twins no prises for guessing who, should be an interesting evening.

Last weekend a small number of Northland Members attended the Divisional Conference in Auckland, a rather disappointing response from our Northland Masters & Brethren. This is a time when we all get a chance to meet up with old friends, make new ones & have a chance to have your say in the running of our organisation, represent your lodge and most importantly vote on any remits which may concern us.


To those Brethren and Ladies who are not well at the present time, Judy and I wish you a speedy recovery.

Brethren, if anyone knows that a Brother or his wife /partner is unwell or in Hospital can you please inform your Almoner who will in turn pass on the information to me.  We are already to help and support where we can, however we need to know when members are unwell.

Regards for now.


Fraternally Kevin

V W Bro Kevin Burch DGM

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