Former stonemason and building contractor George Christie was installed into the chair of Liverpool Epworth Lodge No 5381 in a delightful ceremony at Liverpool Masonic Hall. Scotsman George is big man and a colourful character well known for his genial personality.
The lodge meeting and proceedings were considerably enlivened by the presence of a large delegation of brethren from north of the border and in particular from George’s mother lodge, Thistle and Crown No 1167 in the Scottish Constitution. The Scottish brethren from Neilston near Glasgow were led by the Provincial Grand Master of Renfrewshire East John Miller and by the master of Thistle and Crown Lodge, David Wallace. This contingent also contained George’s son Mark and his brothers Freddie and Brian. There were also a great many visitors from local lodges and from Cumbria.
The ceremony commenced with the arrival into the Roman Suite of Peter Connolly representing the Provincial Grand Master on this occasion. He was preceded by deacons of the lodge and accompanied by grand officers John Wreyford, a member of Epworth Lodge, Liverpool Group Chairman Sam Robinson, hall chairman John Roberts and Roy Ashley. Also present were Provincial Grand Steward Gordon Farmer and Past Provincial Grand Stewards Robb Fitzsimmons, Phil Pattullo and Geoff Cuthill.
The installation ceremony was conducted by IPM Carl Futter, lodge DC David Bruffell and secretary Stephen Foster. George was presented by ADC Paul De Ville Forte and James Jones and having assented to the antient charges was installed into the chair of King Solomon a most proper and dignified manner.
Notable highlights of the ceremony included the seldom heard presentation of the working tools of an installed master by Robb Fitzsimmons and the explanations of the working tools of each degree by Ian Brenchley, Brian Christie, and Colin Patterson. The address to the worshipful master was given by John Miller, to the wardens by Andy Whittle and to the brethren by Peter Connolly.
At the conclusion, Peter rose and congratulated George on his ascension to the chair on behalf of the PrGM. In return, George presented Peter with two cheques each in the sum of £125 representing donations from the brethren of Liverpool Epworth lodge to the West Lancashire Freemasons’ Charity and the Liverpool Masonic Hall Building Fund. Peter thanked the lodge and commented that these were generous donations from a lodge with few members.
The ceremony concluded, the lodge adjourned to the festive board which was a very jolly affair enhanced by the presence of a large number of visitors. Highlights included the rendition of the master’s song by Roy Ashley and a Dutch auction conducted by group almoner Geoff Brown. This raised the magnificent sum of £201 for charity.
George Christie can now look forward to a busy Masonic year ahead with two new candidates to be initiated as well as degree ceremonies to perform.