18th June 2008

ME Past Third Grand Principal, Distinguished Guests and Companions. Most of you know, I think, that I am an impromptu speaker, I seldom, if ever, write formal speeches. However, today is a formal occasion and one where I fear that I have to be somewhat constrained.

It is my belief that today is not for making pronouncements about neither policy nor strategy. Suffice to say that the vision of my predecessor has my support though doubtless the style will inevitably change. What I do wish to say in simple terms, is that I have derived immense pleasure during the last three and a quarter years serving as your Deputy Grand Superintendent, with a Team that is second to none.
I am immensely proud of them and I am immensely proud of you.

My message is please encourage membership of the Royal Arch amongst the Brethren of your Lodge, be patient with new Companions, allow them to feel at home, don't expect too much too soon, share the work and be actively involved in the success of a small portion of the work; this is greatly uplifting to members new to the Order. Remember the pressures on younger and the not so young men today.

The concept of a job for life no longer exists so time is very valuable and is not always readily available. We have to recognise and allow for this way of life. Above all, make sure new Companions are never left to feel isolated or ill at ease, but are supported and cared for. I have found in good measure in our Chapters throughout the Province, that they are havens of warm companionships where Masonic development and genuine friendship are fundamental to enjoyment and participation.

May I take this opportunity to thank you all for your presence here today?
To you Sir, our Distinguished friends from Supreme Grand Chapter, our ever present and constant Distinguished Guests from Other Provinces, the Provincial Scribe E, the members of the Secretariat and the many volunteers who have looked after all the arrangements, the Provincial Director of Ceremonies and his Deputies and Assistants and all those unnamed, many of whom are busying themselves as we speak and who have worked tirelessly for our welfare and our protection.

Love the Royal Arch, love and care for your Companions. They are members of your extended family: it's a wonderful family. We have, initially, to look after ourselves and in so doing make ourselves ready to assist beyond the bounds of our belief and our Order.

Companions, I look forward with the help of the true and living God Most High to sharing a bright future with you throughout our wonderful Royal Arch Province.

God Bless You All