PEGASUS & CANTERBURY PAGE: - what's COMING UP, what's BEEN HAPPENING & what do you NEED TO KNOW in our COMBINED CANTERBURY DISTRICTS? - It can all be found here!
(This first page simply lists the highlights or any changes to the various postings on your webpage, they are listed here in the order that they appear below on the main page. Just scroll down to find the latest information or article you wish to view).
PLEASE KEEP US INFORMED ON WHAT YOU AND YOUR BRETHREN ARE UP TO: If you or your Lodge have a Special Masonic Event, Social Occasion or Charity Event coming up and you wish to let all our brethren know about it, please email the details to me at: email@example.com so that the information can be posted on your website.
Upcoming Lodge Events:
Latest Charity Projects & Events:
Richard Baldwin Empty Stocking Fund - How the money is spent.
Past Charity Projects & Events:
Charity projects supported by our Netball Car Parking Project: Total funds donated to date: $16,086
The Pegasus District No.25 “Spud in a Bag for Charity” - Weigh-in & BBQ - Sunday 2rd December 2018.
Past Lodge Events:
Articles of Interest from our Members:
True Reflections - by W Bro. Sam Rowntree.
The Storm - by W Bro. Warren Duff.
Many Flags under One Banner - by W Bro. Sam Rowntree.
A Daily Advancement - "Apron" - from Lodge Doric Brighton.
A Token Symbol - by W Bro. Sam Rowntree.
Freemasonry on TV in New Zealand: Freemasonry in New Zealand has a regular show "Speak Up" on Sky Channel 083 FACE TV? Tune in to "Speak up" on Thursday's at 8pm.
Richard Baldwin Empty Stocking Fund - How the money is spent.
For many years I have been querying how the money collected annually for this charity is actually spent and understand that the last two years a donation has been made to Pillars a charity supporting the children of those incarcerated and has been well received by a worthy cause.
This year we are assisting the Christchurch Y.W.C.A Womens Refuge in Hereford Street which until recently I knew very little about. We had a working bee there recently and over a cuppa discovered the wonderful work of this organisation in assisting women with a “Hand Up” in life. These women and their children have suffered in many ways and are at a very low point in their lives.
I appealed to lodges for unused toys suitable for reuse here and whilst delivering a bundle put foot in mouth and got volunteered to be Santa at their Christmas luncheon today. Wow!!! I later discovered our donation purchased all the children a gift as well as the parent which included a $50.00 Warehouse voucher. Santa duly made his grand entrance and the children (from babes in arms to 8 year olds male & female were awe struck. The looks on their faces said it all.
A little humour and some Christmas Carols and songs made laughter and simple fun enjoyed by all. Not one child needed prompting to thank Santa. The women were overcome with pleasure and some I am sure smiled and laughed for the first time in a while. After Santa had disappeared and Gerald reappeared, a young lass came up to me with a pack of chocolates and said “I think you were Santa Claus Mr and this is to thank you” I felt most humbled. A 3 year old received gumboots and when he excitedly pointed this out, we burst into song singing Fred Dagg’s gumboot song.
This experience really made me appreciate our own children and grandchildren. Please give yours and their Mum an extra hug and feel proud of being able to love your own and bring a little ray of happiness to someone not as well off as you this Christmas, by your small donation to The Richard Baldwin Empty Stocking fund, assisted by the Canterbury Almoners Association.
My only regret is there were no photo’s for security reasons. What sort of world do we really live in?
V W Bro Gerald F. Robertson GDC
Charity Projects supported by our Netball Car Parking Project:
Greetings Brethren, to keep you informed and up to date on our District Charity projects, the following is a summary of charitable causes supported by way of the funds raised from the Netball car parking and also utilising the Grand Masters District Charity support fund.
• Big Brothers Big Sisters – One on one mentoring for children identified as in need. Funding to assist with activities during the year. Total of $5,000 in conjunction with the Canterbury Masonic Charitable Trust.
• Cancer Society Christchurch – Funding of meals for cancer patients living at home and petrol vouchers for volunteer drivers. In partnership with The Widows Sons motorcycle group and The Freemasons Charity. Total $6,000
• YWCA – Transitional accommodation for women and children. Funding for a new washing machine and dryer to assist the residents. Total $3,631. Supported by the Freemasons Charity.
• Womens Refuge – Assistance to purchase emergency alarm bracelets. Total $1,455 supported by The Freemasons Charity (application pending).
Total funds donated to date: $16,086
It is expected that the District can support another 2 to 3 projects in the coming months before the netball car parking funds are exhausted. If you have a cause to support, please contact W Bro. Dai Eveleigh, RW Bro. Bob Wright or W Bro. Graeme Wakelin to discuss.
The official potato Weigh-in & BBQ was held
on Sunday 2rd December 2018 at the Shirley Freemasons Centre
And the Winners are???
LARGEST INDIVIDUAL CROP @ 2.185kg - W Bro. Ted van der bel - Southern Cross Lodge No.6
LODGE WITH LARGEST TOTAL CROP @ 6.6kg - Brethren of The Southern Cross Lodge No.6
We trust that the real winners in this are the individuals and families in need, who are assisted by our chosen Charity - "City Harvest Food Rescue".
To the masters and brethren of the participating District lodges along with our English counterparts of the Conyers Lodge and a large team of 130 "Sparkie Spudsters" from Spark, under the guidance of W Bro Frans Van Zoggle, thank you all for your efforts. We've had some fun and laughs and at the same time donated 168kg's of new potatoes and handed over cash in excess of $1350.00 for John and Jan's team of volunteers at
"City Harvest Food Rescue".
Well done to all who took part!
To the 70 or so brethren, partners and families who joined in the celebratory social hour and BBQ lunch held at the completion of the official weigh in, thank you and I trust you all enjoyed your time together.
By the sound of some of the discussions I heard on Sunday during our BBQ lunch, there are some brethren who are already planning their next years challenge, to try better their efforts of this year.
Maybe as suggested, we will look to run this event next again year, but target a later dig date of February 2020 for the weigh-in to try to avoid the overly busy period before Christmas.
Our fraternal thank you,
Disrtict Grand Masters of the new Canterbury District No.25
True Reflections- W Bro. Sam Rowntree
How do we gauge the strength of our organisation and indeed our lodges themselves? Looking at freemasonry as a whole, it is great to see that a combination of inspired leadership and new initiations our membership is gaining strength. But are the numbers on the role a true reflection of the strength of an organisation?
I suggest that the numbers held within the lodge attendance register are a better and true representation as to the health of the lodge. Only by looking at the membership in attendance combined with the number of visitors can we really see the truth.
During my visits I have come to realise that most lodges have a far greatest membership than there are brethren in attendance. It is not uncommon for lodges which show membership of 30-40 on the books, to see only half that number as active members, some may even struggle to fill the officer’s positions for their regular meetings. It is not unheard of for some lodges to have to call on the help of others outside of their lodge to enable them to perform simple workings. Whilst this is great to see the bonds of support between the relevant lodges, it is a sad reflection as to the true state of the individual lodge concerned.
Yes, there may be members that have moved away and yet still cherish the connection to their mother lodge that continued membership can provide. Some members may not be able to attend due to sickness (themselves or a family member), or old age may have simply caught up with them. However, this only accounts for a certain percentage. The simple fact is that we have members within our organisation who simply don’t attend and their reasons may vary, from lack of transport or a personal disagreement which happened so long ago that no-one can remember what it was about.
So, how do we reconnect with these brethren? It’s all too easy to say it’s the Master responsibility or the Almoner job to contact these lost brethren. But it’s not, it’s the responsibility of all of us. It may take no more than a simple phone call to rekindle the connection and spark the interest, an extra three minute drive on the way to the lodge to pick someone up. The Lodge secretaries could simply send out a contact list to all of the members, if there is a brother that you haven’t seen for a while, why not give them a call. You could even just contact the brother below you on the list, whether they regularly attendees or not (even if you don’t know them particularly well), what better way to strengthen the bonds of fellowship.
How do we limit the loss in the future? We need to build the bonds of fellowship beyond the walls of the lodge, develop and promote teamwork within the lodge, encourage happy banter in the refectory (fun and enjoyment without poor jokes), make the effort to partake of Lodge socials functions, working bees and charity events. The more you put in, the more you will gain from this wonderful organisation.
As we move forward into a new era, we must build and strengthen the bonds of friendship and fellowship, which “since time immemorial”, has been the cement which binds us together.
Whilst this winter has not been as severe as others, I have recently experienced a hard frost that brought back to me a story that my mother told many years ago. Her father, my maternal Grandfather was a Freemason at the St Bathans Lodge Central Otago.
The winter of 1920, I was told, was especially severe in Central Otago, moreover the tiny settlement of Drybread did not escape the heavy fall of snow and the eventual ice cap. It was in these conditions that twin boys were born, premature.
The house had no heating other than what was provided by the ubiquitous Shacklock Orion coal range. The mid-wife knew the premature babies would not survive unless they had constant and steady supply of warmth.
She saw the coal range as their incubator, there was nothing else; they would surely die in the extreme cold. The mid-wife suggested they be placed in the coal range oven.
This would require constant monitoring of the heat 24 hours per day, and that demanded responsibility. Plenty of people to make it happen.
My Grandfather being a neighbour heard of the manpower plight and quickly put in train a roster of Freemasons, their wives and neighbours who all joined in the monitoring of the babies 24 hours per day. I was told many walked many miles across the snow to the homestead to perform this life saving act.
The baby’s survived and grew into strong men surviving well into their 80’s. I have actually met them. It is a wonderful story of human endurance, of survival, of community spirit and neighbours being neighbourly and the local Lodge being seen to expose their tenet of service.
Following a storm in Auckland several months ago, the news covering the event caused me to shake my head as the TV interviewer asked a lady beside her badly damaged home. “How did she manage to get along without power for 48 hours? Yes two days without power. The lady smiled and told the interviewer that she was a country girl and knew how to survive. She knew how to cook a meal and live until the cavalry arrived. That flick of spirit confused the TV interviewer who simply could not continue with any further questions. She was knocked off her perch with the simplest of replies. Adversity was a challenge not a problem so what if she did not have power, “there were others worse off.” Came the reply.
Today we have a large number of agencies established to assist those in need. One of them is the benevolence of a Freemasons’ Lodge. The trouble as I see it, few people know of its existence unless they are introduced to the convenor. We seem to miss out on all media coverage, never mentioned not even in dispatches.
Perhaps the Speak Up Campaign will tell people who we are and put our name in the forefront of the their mind and make a call on us. But in saying this as Freemasons we need to be aware of situations that require our aid then, maybe, just maybe; we are worthy of comment.
That is when the meek, and unprotected require sustenance, succours and financial help then it will it become our finest hour.
Many flags under one banner
Here in New Zealand we have a unique situation where we find that, not only do we share our districts, but in many cases we share our towns with other masonic constitutions. When the home of The Ashley lodge was destroyed in the Christchurch earthquakes little would we know that it would create an opportunity to develop a strong and lasting relationship with our brothers in The Amberley Lodge (English constitution)! This relationship has grown far beyond the simple use of their lodge building, we now share social functions on a regular basis, we have a joint church service once a year, and we have even used members of their lodge to provide catering and stewards for our installations.
With our eyes now open to the larger masonic family that our brother in the sister constitutions can provide, we have established relationships with the other constitutions within the Canterbury area. These regular visits and joint support has seen benefits in many different aspects of masonic life and have strengthened the craft in general across the Canterbury district. The recent ANZAC parade in Rangiora showed the strength of our masonic organisation within the town, when four different lodges from two districts and two constitutions assembled and marched together under a single Masonic flag. The variation in ritual and the different styles of regalia and dress make each visit a voyage of discovery. Being present at the English Tercentenary ceremony and subsequent banquet was one of last year’s highlights, “it’s just a shame that I will be a little over two hundred years of age by the time New Zealand Grand Lodge has the opportunity to reciprocate”.
In these days were membership is relatively low across freemasonry, I am reminded of that old proverb; "That a single stick may break easily, but by gathering many together, it has a strength greater than the whole". We should endeavour to embrace the opportunity to establish connections with both the blue lodges and red lodges from the other constitutions. Together we can forge a strong and positive future for freemasonry here in New Zealand.
A Daily Advancement: - reproduced here by permission of Lodge Doric Brighton No. 236.
The words of men, like all their possessions and activities, are subject to accident. This word came into existence as the result of that type of verbal accident which etymologists call elision, which means the dropping out of something. For centuries the word napron meant a white square of cloth, and from that term came such others as napery, napkin, and map; the phrase “a napron” was used so frequently that at last, and through elision, this became changed into the more easily pronounced “an apron,” and afterwards the “an” was dropped.
The Operative Mason’s apron was made of leather, and was designed to receive hard wear (usually it hung from his neck to his ankles); why was it then that a Speculative candidate is given a white apron? When William Preston wrote his monitorial lecture he acted on the assumption that the colour symbolized innocence. Historians of the Craft would not quarrel with Preston, but they might add the comment that it is white in the same sense that a sheet of paper is white before a writer begins to set down words upon it; which would mean, that it is white because he is a beginner.
A Token Symbol
offered for consideration and discussion,
by W Bro. Sam Rowntree - PM Ashley Lodge No. 28.
The symbols that are associated with Freemasonry are known across the globe; They have been used by Hollywood and countless authors to sell their films and books, but how often are these same symbols used by us individually to promote freemasonry here in New Zealand. How many members wear a masonic symbol on a regular basis? A couple of people may wear a masonic ring, there may even be the odd embroidered jumper out there, but are we utilising symbolism to its full potential? Just imagine if every freemason used a masonic emblem of some description to advertise more often?
It could be as simple as a masonic pin on your collar. There are numerous versions of pins and badges on the market (most of them seem to originate from the USA), they come in all shapes and sizes and use various materials. The history of pins dates back almost as long as the craft itself. During the second world war, freemasons within occupied Europe would wear the forget-me-not pin (allegedly Hilter’s favourite Flower), to secretly show that they were members of the craft, this in a time were membership of Freemasonry meant certain imprisonment and possibly death. The broken pillar pin is traditionally given to the widow of a lodge so that they may be recognised as such.
Pins cost as little as $5 to $10, this has to be the simplest and most cost effective way to heighten the profile of Freemasonry within New Zealand. When people recognise that you are wearing a masonic symbol their reactions can be mixed, but this is a perfect opportunity to educate the misinformed and to provoke a conversation with the curious. There may well be times that you are approached by someone who you have known for some time and yet neither had any idea that you were both members of the craft. So many times I hear that “oh that’s a freemason pin isn’t it, my father (or my grandfather) was a member of that”; In this situation you might ask a simple question like ‘have you not thought of becoming a member yourself’?
You will be surprised by the number of people who notice that you are proudly wearing a masonic emblem and we should be proud. It may be a small display, but it can make a big difference in promoting the Craft.
I invite you to make wearing a masonic pin part of your normal public routine and so be proud to "Speak up for Freemasonry".
Freemasonry in New Zealand: On TV
Did you know that Freemasonry in New Zealand now has a regular show "Speak Up" on Sky Channel 083 FACE TV?
We do - and you can tune in to "Speak up" on Thursday's at 8pm.
Don’t have SKY? Don’t panic - you can still view the programme using the “on demand” facility at www.facetv.co.nz Be sure to tune in and enjoy this wonderful opportunity.
Speakup Weekly Interviews – if you have missed a "Speak Up" programme and would like to view it, just click on the links listed below:
Episode 4 - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bzG_GnbGH04
Episode 2 - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=33bG7BDSqE4
Episode 1 - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Cl6SGVgu5BY&t=2s