“75 Years of Malling Abbey Chapter”

Royal Arch


Picture of Richard Dixy, a visiting volunteer standing next to the MCF banner

75 Years of our Chapter

What is the Royal Arch?

75 Years of Malling Abbey Chapter

Picture showing members of the Chapter at the festive board, standing raising a glass to the 75 years of the chapter

Malling Abbey Chapter Celebrates 75 years

As usual for Malling Abbey Chapter, much fun, banter and good humour was on display. After the meeting and a champagne reception, 44 Companions were treated to a meal of Stilton and Broccoli soup, Fish and Prawn Mornay; Lamb Shank and seasonal vegetables; Lemon Panacotta and cheese and biscuits with Port.

As for the meeting, the Chapter had invited Ex Comp John Kennet Baker, Deputy Grand Superintendent to be our guest at this meeting.

75th Anniversary

The Scribe E read a synopsis of the minutes of the Consecration meeting of this Chapter, held on 2 November 1948. Attended by 67 Companions, a Procession led by the Most Excellent the Grand Superintendent, the Rt. Hon the Lord Cornwallis, then entered the Chapter room.
Malling Abbey’s Scribe E then read the list of Chapters who were represented at the meeting and was pleased to note that the majority were still in existence, showing the durability of this Order.

The Warrant to commence this Chapter was read and the Grand Superintendent scattered Corn as the symbol of plenty; poured Wine as the symbol of joy and cheerfulness then sprinkled Salt as the symbol of friendship and fidelity.

These acts were accompanied by Bible readings and the singing of songs and hymns. The Scribe E then explained the background to the men who were appointed as the first officers of this Chapter, and it was clear that their legacies in terms of their occupations, businesses and reputations lived to this day.

Ex Comp Michael Lofthouse then gave an interesting and humorous explanation of some of the events locally in 1948, including Bro Winston Churchill visiting the Kent Agricultural Show held at Mote Park; and West Malling Parish Council being preoccupied with issues such as potholes that needed repairing.

Extremely heavy snowfalls across Kent caused substantial drifts. Over the deep snow frosts were severe dropping to as low as – 18C in some places. East Kent light railway having been built to connect collieries in the newly discovered Kent Coalfields, it connected Shepherdswell to Wingham, to Richborough Port, including a passenger service, but it could not be sustained, and the final trains stopped in 1948.

Ex Comp John Stockham highlighted key issues nationally and internationally. Our King, Charles III was born that year. The US and UK began a massive airlift of food, water, and medicine to the citizens of West Berlin following the Soviet Blockade.

Mahatma Gandhi was murdered. The NHS was created; The World Health Organization was established. The founding of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (North Korea) took place. The Treaty of Brussels, signed by Britain, France, Belgium, the Netherlands, and Luxembourg, created a collective defence alliance, which led to the formation of NATO. The Summer Olympics, also known as the Games of the XIV Olympiad, was held in London.

Overall, a fantastic meeting was held to celebrate this marvellous milestone in the history of Malling Abbey Chapter Number 1063

Gordon Scott Brown

Scribe E, Malling Abbey chapter 1063


What is the Royal Arch or Chapter?

“The Royal Arch is a degree of Freemasonry that is present in all main masonic systems. It is worked as part of Craft (‘mainstream’) Freemasonry in some systems and in others in an appendant (‘additional’) order. Royal Arch Masons meet as a Chapter. The Royal Arch is one of the oldest Masonic rituals and dates to at least 1752.” A definition from the new BING AI.

Now to the official explanation.

In England and Wales there is an indissoluble link between Craft Freemasonry and the Royal Arch, with the Royal Arch being considered the completion of a Freemason’s journey in “Pure Antient Masonry”. The Royal Arch has four ceremonies: the exaltation ceremony to admit new members and an installation ceremony for each of the three Principals. The exaltation ceremony is in two parts: a rather dramatic presentation of the principles of the Order followed by three Lectures in which the history, symbolism and principles of the Royal Arch are further explained. Like Craft Freemasonry, the Royal Arch is open to men of all faiths. Its members, called Companions, meet in Chapters under a Grand Chapter. Chapters are presided over conjointly by three Principals, and the Grand Chapter by three Grand Principals, with a Pro First Grand Principal when the First Grand Principal is a Royal Prince. Chapters are organised as a Metropolitan area or Provinces (based on the old Counties), each with a local Grand Superintendent in charge. Excerpt from About the Royal Arch | Supreme Grand Chapter (ugle.org.uk) To find out more, visit our East Kent Royal Arch page, https://eastkentfreemasons.org/royal-arch/ Or head over to the United Grand Lodge of England’s site.  https://www.ugle.org.uk/about-us/royal-arch  
a picture of royal arch regalia

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