Once again, I am delighted to see so many of the knights of this province here at our annual meeting. This is our meeting Brother knights and your support is essential for its success.
As you have already seen and heard every Preceptory is represented, but the laurel for best attendance goes to Wellesley Preceptory No 204; appropriate in their Centenary year; but who were closely followed by several others.
All in all, there no Preceptories who have not been well represented this year. That all are so well represented today accounts for our record attendance.
The Past Year
The Vice Chancellor has given details on our Provincial visits over the year, in his report. Our usual three team visits crept to four to welcome guests from Gloucester & Hereford at Outremer Preceptory, and we hope to return that incursion with a trip to Gloucs & Hereford in the Spring.
We again had an extra Malta ceremony at LFD Preceptory in March for those who could not get to our Annual Malta Meeting.
My thanks to all the retiring Provincial Officers for their enthusiasm and support of those visits.
New Provincial Officers
My congratulations to our new Provincial Officers, who I have just invested. You have been justly honoured for the work that you have done in your Preceptories. But I will now be expecting more from you, in the Province in the coming year.
As part of the Provincial Team you will have the opportunity to visit all of our Preceptories with myself or the Sub Prior or on your own, but especially on the full Provincial Team Visits.
Whilst it may not be possible to attend everything during your year as a Provincial Officer, make a commitment to be there whenever you can. You will find that it is well worth making that special effort.
Our biennial Provincial Church Service at St Helens Church Abingdon will be held on Sunday 9th June 2019. This is always a popular event with all the Provincial Banners paraded under the direction of our Provincial Marshal. It will be an occasion to bring friends and family to join us in a Service of Thanksgiving, followed by tea and light refreshments.
St John Eye Hospital
Bro Kts, you all know I always like to promote the St John of Jerusalem Eye Hospital and encourage every Preceptory to make a donation to the Eye Hospital every year to give a continuity to the funding of the work in Jerusalem. We will present the Certificates at our Malta meeting in November to acknowledge the good charity work in the Province.
Lesley Felgate Dring
Bro Kts, I hope you have seen a flyer about the November meeting of the Leslie Felgate Dring Preceptory, at Sindlesham. On 29th November, we will be hosting a team from the Hampshire and IoW Team led by RE Kt Trevor Gulliver, with their demonstration of a Medieval Installation Ceremony. It will be an occasion not to miss.
Bro Knights, as usual my final thought, is to reflect on our other commitments; do not forget that whilst we enjoy our Templar masonry, we must not neglect our Craft Lodges or Chapters, for without them we would inevitably fade away. Remember, to create an interest in the other orders, you have to get to know the younger or newer masons. I have said before that an experienced and dedicated Mason in Lodges or Chapters, who is there to lead and guide, will always create more interest for further progress, than someone who never appears at meetings.
Thank you, Bro Knights of Oxon, Berks & Bucks for your support during the year and to everyone for their
It is nearly time for us to close this meeting; so until we meet here again, may God hold you in the palm of his hand.
R E Kt Raymond E. Cochrane
Sindlesham, 17th September 2018