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Newry Visit

Vist of Brethren from Newry 20th Nov 2009 by D. Abercrombie

Freemasonry is indeed a worldwide organization with active members in every country all over the globe. One of the most enduring privileges and pleasures that a member of the Craft enjoys is to visit other Lodges where he is assured of a warm welcome and be amongst friends. That was indeed the case when Bros.Kevin Thompson & Dougie Abercrombie of Lodge Coupar o’ Fife No.19 took a trip over the Irish sea to Newry, Co.Down, Northern Ireland, in April of this year. Not only were we able to enjoy breakfast and harmony with the Brethren of Lodge St.Patrick’s No.77, but in company with them and other Newry Brethren, visit the Grand Lodge of Ireland in Dublin. This was just to mark the occasion of their last meeting of the season. Any excuse!

Suffice to say that was a very interesting, enlightening and enjoyable experience. Later we returned to the Newry Masonic Hall for an evening meal and most enjoyable Harmony. All went so well that everyone resolved to repeat the experience and so it was in due course decided that Lodge Coupar o’ Fife No. 19 would return the compliment.

Matters were then organized through the good offices of Bro.Don Revels and the Newry Masons on Tour roadshow set off in the wee sma’ hours of Friday 20th November for the long journey to the Kingdom of Fife. Unfortunately, due to the oversight of Dougie & Kevin, it had not been observed that the Installation of Office Bearers of Lodg St.Regulus # 77 was to take place the next night. For that error we offer due apology.

Despite bad weather, the ferry saw our Brethren safely over the North Channel on to the shores of Caledonia. A 5 hour drive in their minibus arranged per Bro.Edgar McLenaghan, via a slight detour past the Wallace Monument at Stirling, then saw the Irish Brethren arrive in the Station Bar in Cupar. There they were met by various Cupar Brethren and all sat down to a meal arranged by Andrea McLellan and Bro.Tam Donaldson, Lodge Inchinnan No.1405.The Selkirk Grace by Bro.Robert Burns, was delivered by Bro.Dougie Abercrombie.

Then the tourists sojourned to the Rathcluan Hotel ( in Cupar, where they were met by the Proprietor Bro.Joe Jacques, member of Lodge 3194 Penshaw, Co.Durham. A very pleasant stay was enjoyed by all in that fine, well run establishment.

There being not much rest for the wicked, the Newry Tourists then took the short trip down the street to our Hall. A good turnout of Lodge members and visitors from all around Fife greeted them there. The Columns were well filled. It may be the case that this was the first occasion in the Provincial Grand Lodge of Fife and Kinross ( that we have had the privilege of welcoming a delegation of Brethren from the Irish Constitution.

After due ceremony of Opening, our visitors were welcomed in the traditional manner of our Lodge. Thereafter, the gavel was passed to Bro.Douglas Wilson PM who was to conduct the labours of the evening-a Fellowcraft Degree. Bro.Drew Cartmell of Lodge Union # 23, Newry, kindly volunteered to be the substitute candidate. An excellent working of the Degree was performed by a team frae a’ the airts- composed of Bros.Davie Porter Lodge St.Andrew # 25, Ron Hall Lodge Glenrothes # 1549, Bill Rocks lodge Randolph # 776, Len Lindsay Lodge Earlshall # 1292, Bill Archibald Lodge St.Regulus # 77, Mike Ford & Willie Welch Lodge Coupar o’ Fife # 19.

Then, some presentations were made and accepted. Bro.Don Revels PM Lodge Union # 23, Newry, spoke on behalf of the Irish visitors. He remarked on the genuine warmth of our welcome and the efficient manner in which the Degree had been worked, noting small differences in the ritual. On behalf of all the Newry Brethren Bro.Revels presented an engraved sword to our Lodge. Some of the Brethren at that point were wondering if our RWM Bro.Tom Marshall was going to get knighted or beheaded. But no, this fearsome weapon will find a place of honour in our Hall.

Bro.Marshall then presented a suitably inscribed Bible and made various eloquent remarks about the significance of the Volume of Sacred Law in the Craft. He also presented a framed poem entitled Hands Across The Sea, also suitably inscribed. Due credit is offered to Bro.Ian Young’s wife for her calligraphy work.

Bro. Wm Archibald PM of Lodge 77 then presented RWM Alex Hanna of Newry Lodge 77 with a 250 year anniversary medal along with pin badges for all the Irish brethren. In return Bro Alex presented Lodge 19 with the magnificent gavel shown here.

At the close of the meeting, Bro.Winston Dey, RWM Lodge St.Regulus # 77, Cupar, spoke enthusiastically on behalf of all the visitors, acknowledging with gratitude the warm welcome received, congratulating the candidate on his demeanour, and the degree team for their work. He passed on warm fraternal greetings for all the visiting Brethren and on their behalf undertook to return our greetings at the earliest convenience.

They also took time to visit Lodge St Andrews the next day.....

and the local barracks.....

with Bro (and Capt) Joe Preece in the foreground

To the Brethren of Newry and Mourne

Fond greetings tae each loyal fiere,
Wha hauds Ulster’s name fu’ dear;
Wi’ ancestral ties that still appear,
Tae link oor lands.
Frae the Ulster Scots o’ yesteryear,
Tradition stands

May oor work gie joy an’ pleasure,
Wi’ mony memories you will treasure,
Satisfaction as weel, in equal measure.
Frae Coupar o’ Fife.
Makin’ friendships that will endure,
The paths o’ life.

Frae Newry an’ Mourne travel an’ trace,
Treasured values o’ each ancient race.
We pray that they will haud in place,
Sae each yin stands.
Auld Scotia an’ Ulster, gie us the grace
To toast twa lands.

I.P.M. Bro. Craig Rodger