From left: Bro Senior Deacon Micvi Fidel, RW Bro Fidel Pamplona, Bro Justin Bayliff, VW Bro Graham Andrews & RW Bro Manny Maniago [Photo by W Bro Romy Nieto - www.nieto.com.au]
Approaching fifty, including the Brethren, their wives, family and friends, not forgetting the little ones and tiny tots, were in attendance at the Castle Hill Masonic Centre on Saturday night - the 13th of July. Most to witness, others to take part in and all to enjoy; not only the Raising Ceremony of Bro Justin Baylifff but also to take part in the birthday celebrations of Bro Micvi Fidel [Age undisclosed].
With RW Bro Fidel Pamplona "In The Chair”, W Bro Romy Nieto as IPM, RW Bro Emmanuel Maniago as acting Senior Warden and VW Bro Rudy Romerosa as acting Secretary, the Lodge Tyled at six o’clock sharp.
Among the twenty eight in the Lodge room, were no fewer than three Entered Apprentice Freemasons and two Fellow Crafts and after all visitors were admitted, an alarm was sounded and upon inquiry it was found the District Grand Inspector of Workings for District Thirty Two, VW Bro Graham Andrews, was in attendance and seeking admission. With the acting Director of Ceremonies, RW Bro Rey Porras and the Deacons taking up their respective positions, the distinguished visitor was admitted and made extremely welcome by the Worshipful Master in The Chair.
Before the work of the evening commenced, RW Bro Pamplona offered his sincere condolences to W Bro Romy Nieto and Family in the passing of Sis Ellen’s dear mother - Monica Sanqui Nunez.
The Worshipful Master in the Chair then asked all Entered Apprentices to retire and opened the Lodge in the Second Degree. At RW Bro Pamplona’s request, the Senior Deacon, Bro Micvi Fidel presented Bro Justin Bayliff to the Obligation Table where he was subjected to the Preliminary Examination. Bro Bayliff, obviously well tutored by his mentor, RW Bro Emmanuel Maniago, had no problem with the examination and after all Fellow Crafts were retired, including W Bro Fred Sese, the now Worshipful Master of Lodge Baulkham Hill, the Lodge was raised to the Third Degree.
The Lodge Room being suitably prepared, an alarm was sounded and after the Director of Ceremonies, the Deacons and Lodge Chaplain had taken up their respective positions, Bro Bayliff was re admitted "On The Square” and in due course, raised to the Sublime Degree of a Master Mason. The work of the evening was of the particularly high standard, of which Lodge Jose Rizal is renowned but particular mention must be made of the Traditional History narrated by W Bro Romy Nieto and the extended signs so well explained by Bro Robert Urqueza. Meanwhile, the ladies outside, were obviously enjoying the night and having a great time judging by the music, laughter and squeals of delight issuing forth.
The ceremony over and a photo opportunity taken, the Lodge was returned to the First Degree and all Masons were re admitted. RW Bro Pamplona then gave welcome to the visiting District Inspector who, in rising to the response, and apologising for his absence at the last meeting, asked for the assistance of the Director of Ceremonies and went down onto the floor and greeted the Entered Apprentices in turn, crossing the floor, he also congratulated the newly Raised Brother Bro Bayliff, and greeted the Fellow Craft in attendance.
On returning to the dais, VW Bro Andrews, spoke of his recent contact and conversation with the Most Worshipful Grand Master, who is in Brisbane, at the moment, for the Queensland Grand Installation and will soon journey to New Zealand for their Grand Installation, thus continuing the very strong Australasian bond of Freemasonry. Continuing on, VW Bro Andrews spoke of the recent Grand Lodge Communication and of VW Bro Robert Moore’s successful application for the role of RGC at the "soon to be” Region Two. He also spoke of the Grand Master’s desire to visit District Thirty Two and urged all Lodges in the District to give the Grand Master timely notice of any function they wished him to attend.
VW Bro Andrews then retired and before closing the Lodge RW Bro Pamplona asked for any announcements ---
The Worshipful Master of Lodge Hornsby rose and invited all to Lodge Hornsby’s next meeting which will be the investiture of Officers for the ensuing year.
RW Bro Bill Driver spoke of the huge financial success of the sausage sizzles held at the various Bunning’s outlets and called for volunteers for the forthcoming Castle Hill roster where it is 'guesstimated' that over six hundred and fifty sausage sandwiches will be sold on the day, returning more than two thousand dollars. Well done RW Bro Driver.
There being no further business, the "Master in The Chair” closed the Lodge and after a photo opportunity was taken of all the Brethren who had taken part in the night’s ceremony, all retired to the Festive Board to join the ladies, family and friends and, after Grace was recited by the Lodge Chaplain, Bro Julio Roson, all enjoyed a beautiful meal and delicious sweets prepared and presented by the ladies of Lodge Jose Rizal.
After RW Bro Pamplona had proposed The Loyal Toast, he proposed a toast to The Most Worshipful Grand Master, which was responded to by the visiting District Inspector. Bro Troy Quimpo then proposed a toast to the newly Raised Brother and in his response, Bro Bayliff, in thanking Lodge Jose Rizal, especially RW Bro Maniago, for all the support and encouragement in his Masonic journey thus far, said that he would soon be moving to Canada and would join a Lodge over there but would always have happy memories of Australia and be so proud to call Lodge Jose Rizal his Mother Lodge.
In the absence of Bro SW Manny Placido, RW Bro Rey Porras proposed a toast to the ladies and visitors, which was responded to by W Bro Ian Harrison, from Lodge Alpha. W Bro Harrison has applied for affiliation papers and soon to be an affiliate member of Lodge Jose Rizal.
The Director of Ceremonies then announced that it will be Bro Micvi Fidel’s birthday and all joined in singing a happy and hearty "Happy Birthday” song. In response, Bro Micvi asked all to continue the evening and participate in his birthday celebrations and in doing so invited all to sample some special birthday food he had placed on the tables.
The raffle was then drawn and Bro Mario Baylon Jnr proposed the Junior Wardens Toast and whilst some went home, others stayed and joined in the birthday festivities and extended South well into the night or should one say "early morning”. Such was Lodge Jose Rizal’s July meeting, another night of both admiration and inspiration and totally enjoyed by all in attendance and all looking forward to ----
"Our Next Happy Meeting at Lodge Jose’ Rizal No 1045”
Which will be held at the Castle Hill Masonic Centre,on the fourteenth of September, where a warm welcome will be extended to all.
Article by RW Bro Bruce Quirk, as appeared originally on the District 32 website.