DISTRICT GRAND KINGS REMARKS - Saturday 7th March 2020

Companions may I thank you all for your attendance here this afternoon to help Iveagh RAC No.80 celebrate their 125th Anniversary.

Attendances at recent Convocations of the Grand Royal Arch Chapter of Instruction have been very poor. The exemplification teams put in a lot of hard work and deserve our support and encouragement. The next Convocation is on Saturday 28th March in Galwally House, Belfast at 2:30pm. I would encourage any Companion who is free that day to attend and I know the Grand Registrar would greatly appreciate your support.

Following on from last year’s very successful Dinner Dance in the Millbrook Lodge, Ballynahinch this year's social event will be a BBQ to be held on Saturday 22nd August 2020 in Regent Street Masonic Hall, Newtownards. This is open to everyone and is an excellent opportunity to thank the ladies for supporting us throughout the year. It should be an excellent evening and I look forward to your support. Tickets will be available from June, cost £12.50pp.

V.E.Comp. Rev. Canon George N Little has been one of our District Grand Chaplains since 1992 but has been unable to attend District Chapter, on a regular basis, for quite some time. In a conversation with him a couple of weeks ago it transpired he is no longer a member of a Chapter in Down. Unfortunately, this means he can no longer hold Office in District Chapter and therefore has had to stand down as District Grand Chaplain. I thank him for his contribution and service over the last 28 years and wish him well.

The District Grand Kings Advisory Committee has been reviewing District Chapter requirements with regard to our permanent Officers and has recommended the appointment of an additional Director of Ceremonies to cover our present and future needs. To this end it gives me the greatest pleasure to announce that to the Office of District Grand Director of Ceremonies I have appointed E.Comp. Ian Butler PK of Cottown RAC No. 430. 1 am delighted Ian has accepted the appointment and look forward to investing him as District Grand Director of Ceremonies at our next Convocation.

Having served as District Grand Almoner for 10 years V.E.Comp. Brian Gardner has decided to stand down. As I'm sure you are all aware, Brian has a very busy schedule as Provincial Deputy Grand Master and I have therefore accepted his decision, with regret. Brian has been a faithful servant to District Chapter for the last 10 years and on behalf of the District I thank him for his contribution and dedicated service and wish him well.

This has created a vacancy and it gives me the greatest pleasure to announce that, to the Office of District Grand Almoner I have appointed R.E.Comp. David Mercer PK of Farmers Friendship RAC No. 978 Ballylesson and Past District Grand Chief Scribe 2010/11. I am delighted David has accepted the appointment and look forward to investing him as District Grand Almoner at our next Convocation. Do you concur Companions?

Having served District Chapter as District Grand Kings Standard Bearer 2002/03, District Grand Inspector 2006/08 and District Assistant Grand Registrar from 2008 M.E.Comp. Norman Kelly has decided to stand down, for health reasons. He has been under the weather for some time and it is with deep regret that I have accepted his decision to resign. Norman is held in the highest esteem in Royal Arch circles throughout Ireland. He has been a faithful servant to District Chapter since he first took office, his wealth of knowledge and expertise made him the first point of contact for any Chapter or Companion with a problem or query. He has been a stalwart in the District Office and will be greatly missed. On behalf of all the Companions throughout District I thank him for his contribution, his friendly manner, his dedicated service and for the help he has given to so many. We wish him well in his retirement.

This has created a vacancy and it gives me the greatest pleasure to announce that, to the Office of District Assistant Grand Registrar I have appointed E.Comp. Gerry Fleming PK of Farmers Friendship RAC No. 978 Ballylesson. I am delighted Gerry has accepted the appointment and as this is such an important role and he is here today I will be invest him shortly.

Companions thank you for your attention and I look forward to seeing you all at the Belmont Hotel Banbridge on Tuesday 2nd June to help Banbridge RAC No. 124 celebrate their 190th Anniversary. Have a safe journey home.