FORWARD – RW Bro Simon Duckworth OBE DL PJGW Deputy Metropolitan Grand Master

When I look back over the last six months, I suspect that many of us share a sense of surreality; the world as we knew it seems to have changed, and not for the better. In a matter of a few months the structures, daily activities and even relationships that were part of our daily lives, appear to have been placed on hold, or even fundamentally changed.

At the same time many of us have been given a unique opportunity to look at our world through slightly different eyes, as we share some of the pressures and tensions faced by our country, our local communities, our work colleagues, our friends and families. Masonry with its instinctive sense of
fellowship is feeling the pain as well; concerns for our more vulnerable brethren, sadness at our inability to meet in a meaningful way and the nagging
question of when some form of normality might return.

That sense of concern for others is however one of our greatest attributes. Up and down the country Masons have found opportunities to play a part in
serving wider society volunteering as carers, community organisers, innovative thinkers, or local leaders and offered countless examples of responsible
citizenship. Ultimately it is those behaviours that help the broader population begin to appreciate that the entire ethos of Masonry is about others
and not ourselves.

It makes me feel how privileged we all are to belong to this fraternity, and how good it is to see the lessons we are taught within our Lodges and Chapters being used for the benefit of the many in our country for whom these last months have been so hard. I hope that you, your friends and families, keep safe and well but that we continue to remain mindful of the needs of those who rely on our support and concern. And let us all genuinely look forward to seeing each other once again, for be assured, that time will also come!

Simon Duckworth
Deputy Metropolitan Grand Master

This article is part of the Arena Magazine, Issue 42 October 2020 edition.
Arena Magazine is the official magazine of the London Freemasons – Metropolitan Grand Lodge and Metropolitan Grand Chapter of London.

Read more articles in the Arena Issue 42.