Freemasons of South East NSW
Eden-Monaro covers an area of approximately 29,499 sq km from Queanbeyan to South Durras in the north, south to the Victorian border, extending to the southern and eastern borders of the Australian Capital Territory.
The main towns include Adaminaby, Batemans Bay, Bega, Berridale, Bodalla, Bombala, Braidwood, Bungendore, Captains Flat, Cooma, Dalmeny, Delegate, Eden, Jindabyne, Merimbula, Moruya, Narooma, Queanbeyan, Sutton and Tathra.
Products / industries of the area include timber, beef cattle, sheep and wool, dairy farming, dairy products and mixed farming. The Snowy Mountains hydro-electric scheme, snowfields and tourism are important industries for this division. It is one of the largest electoral regions in New South Wales stretching from the snowfields of Kosciusko to the sapphire waters of the Far South Coast. It also home to 7 Masonic Lodges which meet at Masonic Centres in Cooma, Bombala, Bateman's Bay, Moruya, Bega and Pambula in what is known as District 49 from 10th September 2014. These Lodges were formerly contained in two districts, 105 and 114 under the jurisdiction of the United Grand Lodge of NSW and ACT. See "Regions and Districts" in the main menu to the left. At the June 2016 Grand Communication it was announced that District 49 would split into two areas each with a DGIW in view of the geographical size of the total area and the time and risks taken visiting distant Lodges especially at night. The new districts are 49A in the North with 3 Lodges and 49B with 4 Lodges in the South. This change came into effect at the September 2016 Grand Communication and Proclamation. At the March 2019 Communication, Lodge Milton was added to 49A.
Fraternal Notices (Info taken from notice papers received):-
24th January: Eurobodalla D/L - tyling at 9.30am
25th January: Pambula D/L, tyling at 10am, 2nd degree expemplification,.
5th February: Batemans Bay D/L tyling at 10.30 at Moruya Masonic Centre as Soldiers Club is unavailable. Change of day also.
7th February: Cooma Monaro, tyling at 7.30pm
8th February: Mountain Lodge tyling at 7.30pm
10th February: Lodge Milton, tyling at 6pm
13th February: Coeur de Lion tyling at 7.30pm after FB at 6.30pm
19th February: Bega Remembrance tyling at 7pm.
Read/download the Grand Master's latest Newsletter, Click here for pdf file
District 49 Facebook page:
BUSHFIRE AND DROUGHT RELIEF
Freemasons NSW and ACT –– making a difference
Vast areas of NSW and the ACT have been devastated by the continuing depredation of drought and the sudden onrush of bushfire. As your Grand Master, I am proud to announce the leadership team of Freemasons NSW and ACT has prepared a comprehensive plan to give immediate and practical assistance to affected communities throughout our jurisdiction.
The plan involves all elements of our Order and is aimed at coordinating and mobilising the resources of the Craft: Grand Lodge, its boards and committees; individual Lodges and most importantly every Mason. I want us to provide the best possible level of co-ordinated and practical assistance to those who have been left wanting and in need.
Many Freemasons have already taken action and are donating material to organisations. This is to be congratulated. My request now is that we maximise our efforts by creating the one state-wide campaign. This is an opportunity to make a larger, united contribution to those who so desperately need assistance.
NSW FREEMASONS' DISASTER RELIEF FUND
Following discussions with the Commissioner of the NSW Rural Fire Service, Shane Fitzsimmons AFSM, our first donation – of $100,000 – will be made to the NSWRFS to supplement its assistance to RFS volunteers and also the widows and children of those firefighters who tragically lost their lives defending their communities.
Our aim is to make further considered donations. In order to be able to do this, I ask the broader NSW and ACT Masonic community make donations to the Disaster Relief Fund so we can make further targeted donations to relieve the distress of those affected. I appeal to all Lodges, Masonic entities, individual Freemasons and the Masonic Orders and Organisations of this Jurisdiction to make significant donations. All donations are tax-deductible and can be made in the following ways:
• Direct Bank Transfer
It is faster, simpler, takes 30 seconds and goes directly into the Disaster Relief Fund account.
Made payable to the NSW Freemasons Disaster Relief Fund and posted to Freemasons NSW & ACT, PO Box A259, Sydney South NSW 1235
• By Phone
(from Monday, January 6 2020) Telephone Freemasons NSW & ACT on 02 9284 2800 and provide credit card details.
MASONIC ACTION SATURDAYS
We have a statewide network of Masonic buildings that make an ideal donation drop off centres. In order to marshal this resource, I am asking that, from Saturday 25 January 2020, Masonic Centres open on a roster basis to receive donations of clothes, toys, food items and items of practical use that can then be distributed to those in need. These “Masonic Action Saturday” openings will continue to be rolled out as the campaign progresses. Centres will be asked to become central collection points and I propose to involve our Regional Grand Counsellors, DGIWs and local brethren in the selection and operation of these venues for this purpose.
Think now about how you can spread the word to your local communities (especially those unaffected by these twin disasters) and encourage them to make donations that can be delivered to your local masonic centre.
Local Freemasons are best placed to know their local communities. This is why I am asking local Lodges to identify individuals and families in their area who have lost loved ones, property or are otherwise affected by the combined tragedies of bushfire and drought. I encourage Lodges to use any accumulated funds to provide practical assistance to local communities. The support should be tailored to meet the personal needs of the individual. In some instances, cash grants may be appropriate to allow the recipient to purchase without embarrassment or undue intrusion items of a personal nature. In other cases, direct payments to local businesses may be the best way of ensuring needs are met. Or, it may simply be the gift of companionship, compassion and consideration. Where we can, we should be seen to be supporting the local communities in the affected areas.
We must remember firefighters, volunteers and others who have been hospitalized as a result of this ongoing tragedy. Hospital visiting by Masons is a practical way to show we care. It also enables us to find out what assistance the Craft can render to those who have been injured and their families. Here also, a cash donation from a Lodge might be a most appropriate solution.
A CONTINUING COMMITMENT
There is going to be a need to provide continuing assistance. It is safe to predict the scars of this tragedy will be present next Christmas. You have my assurance that, under my leadership, our Craft will continue to action practical assistance and in this regard drought and bushfire assistance will be a standing agenda item for the future meetings of Masonicare, the Board of Management and the Executive Council.
I welcome and seek submissions and suggestions for future action all of which will be given proper consideration in the future planning process.
I state firmly that Masonic assistance is to be rendered to all those in need: irrespective of the creed, race or social status. Whilst we are all Brethren, all those who have suffered are our brothers and sisters.
Further announcements and updates will be regularly made through my newsletter.
We can – and will – make a difference
Derek J Robson AM
January 4 2020