On a wet January evening, the companions of Rose of Raby Royal Arch Chapter assembled at Staindrop Masonic Hall to welcome the Grand Superintendent John Thompson accompanied by a full team of provincial officers, on this their first visit of 2024.
This was an extra special evening for the Chapter, not only being honoured with a full team visit, but also witnessing the exaltation of Andrew Pye of Tristram Lodge.
The three principals conducted the opening of the Chapter.
The Provincial Grand Director of Ceremonies then announced that John and his team were at the door, and then followed the procession into the Chapter room.
The First Principal welcomed John into the Chapter, and the team then took their places to witness the exaltation of Andrew.
The Officers of the Chapter conducted an excellent exaltation ceremony, a highlight of which was the Mystical Lecture delivered by Owen Guy-Fisher.
The Chapter was closed, and all retired to the festive board.
In response to his toast John thanked the Chapter for a wonderful evening and for the cheques to Durham Benevolence and TLC teddies.
He continued by congratulating the 3rd Provincial Grand Principal Dr Rakesh Bhalla on his appointment as Assistant Provincial Grand Master, together with John Watts as Deputy Provincial Grand Master, the investiture taking place at Gateshead Masonic Hall to a sell-out lodge room.
The Grand Superintendent then went on to mention the Chapter Festival Month that is coming up in March and April, where one of the events ‘The Keystone Connection’ would see him, in his words, ‘Face Off’ with David Hanson the Provincial Grand Master of the Mark degree. Details of this and all the events happening can be found on the events page of the website.
The Provincial Team were thanked by John for turning out in full and supporting him.
Before the final toast of the evening, the Visiting Support Officer John Crombie Parker reminded everyone that the 25th of January was ‘Burns Night’, and even though Haggis was not served at the festive board, the evening could not pass without him delivering some ‘Rabbie Burns’.