Provincial Almoners Letter from Andover

On the 7th December, about thirty brethren from the Province attended the Annual Assembly of Royal Ark Mainers Grand Lodge where 4 Brethren, W. Bros. David Ryan, Ian McGrain, Ian Small and Ian Vincent received their Royal Ark Mariners Grand Rank. Many congratulations to all of them. It was a very enjoyable day even though we were masked up for the meeting. The after proceedings were very convivial, a most beneficial day. I personally had a nice time with a former police colleague of mine, W. Bro. Keith Bristow, it was good to catch up.

The garden is looking drab at the moment, with leaves scattered on the lawn, leaving the surrounding trees with their branches bare. Not much action on this front at the moment while nature draws back for the colder weather. I was advised by my lawn expert though that the leaves should be cleared from the grass otherwise it may become patchy. Another little job for in the week.

Unfortunately the virus still is affecting more people and the government have had to tighten up some of the restrictions with regard to the wearing of face masks and social distancing. I have noted that more and more brethren are wearing coverings whilst attending meetings and some masonic centres have given very strict guidelines which we must follow. This is understandable as we wish to stop the spread of Covid. Perhaps in the New Year, when the weather warms up more brethren will feel more confident and comfortable in attending meetings, I hope so.

In this season of goodwill please keep up the personal communication with one another. Where we are not seeing everyone it is difficult to gauge or know exactly how everyone is coping with conditions, so please pick up the phone where possible and have a chat with a brother who may be on his own.  When you are out and about please remember a saying I saw in Malta when I first visited there, ‚ÄúIf you see someone without a smile give them one of your.‚Äù  (You are saying, ‚ÄúWhat an idiot Malcolm is, most people are wearing masks. I know but genuine smiles are in the eyes as well.)

 I am not in the position to send you all a Christmas card, so Please;

Have a Very Enjoyable Christmas and above all a Healthy and Peaceful New Year.

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