September Newsletter

Avant-Garde 503
September 2011 Newsletter
The month of August has come and gone with winter showing off it's glory and the havoc it can wreak upon the country side covering it with snow down to extremely low levels from North Cape to the Bluff, well almost. This storm is one that does not happen very often, perhaps once in a life time and many elderly have commented that they have not seen this in their memorable time here. Not many of us could say they have seen snow settle in New Plymouth but settle it did right down to the sea shore.

Things slowed right down with many not being able to travel to work, no power, roads shut off, or unable to fly out or around the country and in some areas like Christchurch, came to a slippery, stumbling halt completely, for nearly three days which was not very helpful for those still suffering from the disastrous quake effects. We must never loose sight of the needs of these poor citizens for we too may suffer from a similar disaster in our own area sometime in the future and require help the same as they do.

Our Installation is about to happen and we look forward to a very enjoyable weekend meeting up again with friends from around the country. Remember Brethren, the success of an organisation is up to the membership and we are on show this weekend. Brethren look well to our visitors and don't forget the Brunch on Sunday morning at Roger and Pam's from 9.00am but earlier for those doing the cooking etc.

We welcome Bill and Lorraine into the fold of Leadership of our Lodge and look forward to another eventful term of office for them as other have given us. I'm sure you will give them both full support and appreciation of their efforts and will fully assist them in all they do to develop the Lodge along the path that already distinguishes us from the rest.

We must continue along the path of building our Public Image with inspired quality membership. Our Lodge is not a one man band but a group of structured, organisational and enthusiastic men willing to put themselves out in the forefront and shake the trees making things happen. If you have friends of a similar nature we would be keen to meet with them and invite them to consider becoming members of our prestigious Lodge but it is first your responsibility of introduction. This can happen in various ways, at social type gatherings, either out helping at public functions or in private homes chatting over a drink but it is entirely up to your imagination. Give it some thought.

We have been rather fortunate to have had an e-mail forwarded to us through the Grand Lodge site from a gentleman expressing interest in becoming a Freemason. Whom I might add,sounds quite intelligent, for he is studying medical science at the moment and has expressed a desire to know more of the Craft, as his grandfather had been a member, of which I'm about to find out about. I am to arrange a meeting with him over the next week or so and I would like to think that we may be able to encourage him to join with us if he passes the scrutiny. Time will tell.

We have tried to hold a couple of practices for this installation meeting and I must say it was a disaster with only a few making the effort to attend and only three at the last one. There is no need for this to happen, for we could just as easy cancel and have an enjoyable evening at home instead of rushing about to get there on time to find an empty hall. Not a good feeling by any means so Brethren, please let the Master know of your intentions to attend or absence yourself and he can arrange more suitable timing. Better still give him assistance at the planning stage to select the correct days that we can meet for these important practices.

Brethren, our Lodge has a policy of including every member as attending all Dinners and Social functions arranged for the Lodge membership which means that bookings are made in your name and it is your responsibility to inform our Junior Warden or the Master of your non-attendance a couple of days prior. This practice has been in operation since our formation and it has worked quite well to date so please make the effort required so that we don't have to charge the Lodge for your Dinner Fee which in turn will increase our Lodge Dues.

At our last Management Meeting we decided to arrange a Junior Practice evening on the Last Tuesday of each month to help our younger members come to understand the functions of Freemasonry. These practices are the time that we don't require all members to attend only the newer ones and they will be instructed on the procedures and requirements to make the Lodge function to it's capabilities. I will mange this practice and attempt to construct an informative process of instruction that should help them to understand and improve our Lodge in the longer term.

It is not open to the older members of the Craft for you have made your contribution which is well noted, so please don't feel you are left out for I'm sure that if there are difficulties experienced, you will be called upon for advice and assistance later on. If you wish to take part of this Practice Evening, then contact myself on 753 0990 and I'll be able to judge the interest of members and allocate the time to prepare and assist and perhaps get it off the ground for Tuesday the 27th September at Darnell Street from 7.30pm. One can expect instructive participation at these evenings and there should be value for money.( or, not a waste of time) all we need is three or four to get it going..

The Research Lodge of Taranaki must be congratulated for hosting the Australian & New Zealand Masonic Research Council's, Travelling Lecturer, who addressed Brethren on the topic titled; Masonic Pride Has Been Handed Down To Us, by Wor Bro Rodney Grosskopff. P SGD (EC) from South Africa. He is well versed in Freemasonry and has travelled about building knowledge of his topic and was able to convey the message, suggesting Brethren must have pride in their Lodge and be seen out amongst the community, working and showing that we are a power of goodness and no different than the rest. Also the fact that Lodges must develop a “5 Year Working Plan” that can build the Lodge with a strong foundation and operate successfully for the good of the Craft, the Membership and as well as the community. I felt that he was expounding the same views of myself and was describing our Lodge to some degree, for we have begun some of the items he mentioned and others are in the pipeline or have been mentioned to the membership.

The last newsletter went out before our Longest Morning Tea actually took place and therefore I must thank those members and partners who provided a very good morning, along with the supply of food but once again there was not a good attendance, perhaps about thirty people. I think that we need better advertising with perhaps an invite leaflet drop around the town and the culmination of a project that has caught the imagination of the public and has drawn publicity and talking points. It most certainly was worthwhile and most enjoyable meeting with other people which we should again encourage next year. Planning is the answer and it needs developing further to reach the right people in time that they know it is on. We raised approximately $101.00 from the Gold Coin entrance fee, to donate to Alzhiemers Taranaki towards their fund of assistance. A good effort everyone.

Please remember, our November Regular Meeting 2011,we have a challenge handed down to debate the topic that; “Freemasonry is like a Dinosaur, of very little use in Modern Day Society.” We require a few members to speak-up on our behalf to the negative of the Topic. (Volunteers or Appointments) We shall have to prove the statement wrong and that there are benefits of Freemasonry for Society. I ask, “is there anyone of our members prepared to defend our Lodge in this debate?”, for if there is, would you please advise the Secretary ASAP, for we need to put forward a combined Winning Team effort, that is going to blow the others out of the water, so to speak.

The final social function of the Master's term was arranged for last Sunday at Margaret and Grahams proving a rather nice Pot Luck Luncheon for those who attended with reasonably fine weather holding on until late in the afternoon. There were only a few members and partners present which is not really good manners for these two have contributed a lot to our Lodge during their term and we should show our appreciation of their hospitality.

Our Christmas Dinner is on Saturday the 27th of November and the venue is being investigated for suitable times and pricing, so will advise as it develops towards certainty. Put this date in the all important program for your attendance and lets make it something exciting with a good Christmas Spirit theme. Invite all your family and friends to attend so we can make a fuss of them and have them talking about the fun of the occasion.

Next Management Meeting is on the 13th Sept at 9 Ashmore Drive New Plymouth. 7.30pm

Next Regular Meeting; Tuesday the 1st November 2011 at Darnell Street NP . Time of Tyling is 6.30pm. This is our First Regular Meeting with the New Master and Officers as well as hosting The Research Lodge of Taranaki Province. Don't forget to have a team to Debate the topic?.

B.A. B.

nothing great was ever achieved without enthusiasm