Provincial Almoners Weekly Letter

What a mixture of weather again this week, snow, sleet, rain and some sunshine. The poor plants in the garden are having to put up with these changes and they must be getting confused as to whether they should be growing or holding back and wait for the warmer weather. There does not seem to be any damage to the foliage at present so all must be well with nature. The tulips are now coming forth in their splendour, we have a variety in the garden some single colours and others multi coloured. I was watching, out of the kitchen window, a beautiful bumble bee flying from one flower to another collecting the pollen. Pat tells me she had many birds in the garden the other morning including goldfinches, of course pigeons and sparrows. 

There was some good news this week, W. Bro. Martin Howe, W.M. of Albany Mark Lodge, TI, has been released from hospital after weeks of suffering. He is now in a nursing home but is in self isolation. I am hoping that others who are suffering are also getting on the road to recovery. Unfortunately, Bro. Oliver Webb, PProvGStB, an Honorary member of the same Lodge was called to the Grand Lodge above during this week. He served masonry well working hard for the benefit of others, and will be greatly missed.

Today is a special day, firstly we have the Virtual Business Meeting of the Mark Province and I hope that I will see many of you there. I wish the PGM all the best for this meeting. This is a significant day with changes in the Provincial Secretariat, and I thank W. Bro. Nigel Bell for all of the help and advice that he has given me during my time as Provincial Almoner. Secondly during the afternoon we will be able, if we wish, to watch the funeral of His Royal Highness, The Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh from Windsor Castle. We will have The Queen and her family in our thoughts and prayers.

The latest news from the Grand Secretary is heartening in that the restrictions are to be relaxed a little more so that we might be able to get back together again soon. I am mindful though that not all of the Masonic Centres are ready to be opened immediately or that some brethren will not want to rush back. It will have to be a personal choice, without any pressure. There will be the wearing of face coverings and social distancing to be considered but there is hope on the horizon.

Look after yourselves and keep safe.

Malcolm Lloyd, G.S.D., Prov. Grand Almoner