Funerals

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Funerals

Postby ohharr » Mon Jul 10, 2017 8:27 pm

Hello everyone,
I attended a funeral this week for one of our officers. Prior to us all going in someone kindly handed me a sprig of greenery. I wasn't too sure what to do with it. As we entered the crem other brothers put these sprigs onto the coffin. What is the symbolism here, what should be done with the greenery and what bush should it be from.

Thanks in advance,
S & F
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Re: Funerals

Postby Richard George » Mon Jul 10, 2017 8:38 pm

First question: Are you EA/FC/MM?
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Re: Funerals

Postby ohharr » Mon Jul 10, 2017 8:39 pm

MM.
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Re: Funerals

Postby Richard George » Mon Jul 10, 2017 8:40 pm

Then think about what you were told during the Traditional History ...
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Re: Funerals

Postby ohharr » Mon Jul 10, 2017 8:45 pm

Thanks, so it should be Acacia then? I was handed a bit of evergreen shrub. More importantly, should it be worn in the lapel prior to entering the crem. Does everyone place it on the coffin?
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Re: Funerals

Postby Richard George » Mon Jul 10, 2017 8:59 pm

It should - although an evergreen is often used as an alternative. As to where you wear it .. up to you really. Personally I've never been to a funeral where it's happened.
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Re: Funerals

Postby ohharr » Mon Jul 10, 2017 9:04 pm

Thanks, i am only being so picky as I am a Priest and often get asked to take funerals and I want to get the "Ritual" of it right.
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Re: Funerals

Postby Mike Martin » Mon Jul 10, 2017 11:25 pm

ohharr wrote:Thanks, i am only being so picky as I am a Priest and often get asked to take funerals and I want to get the "Ritual" of it right.

Under the UGLE the sprig of acacia going into the grave comes from this, the no longer worked Graveside Address which you can read here: http://merseylodge5434.org/info/?page_id=562
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Re: Funerals

Postby ohharr » Thu Jul 13, 2017 6:31 pm

Mike Martin wrote:
ohharr wrote:Thanks, i am only being so picky as I am a Priest and often get asked to take funerals and I want to get the "Ritual" of it right.

Under the UGLE the sprig of acacia going into the grave comes from this, the no longer worked Graveside Address which you can read here: http://merseylodge5434.org/info/?page_id=562

That is lovely, thanks for the pointer.
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Re: Funerals

Postby Lloyd Wiebe » Sat Jul 15, 2017 1:54 pm

That is common practice in Ontario. We do not refer to it as a funeral, but rather, a Masonic service.
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Re: Funerals

Postby kaushik.chowdhury » Sun Jul 16, 2017 4:12 am

Fraternal Greetings Brethren All,

I understand that something called a Lodge of Sorrow is also held by the members of the lodge where the deceased brother was a member. I also understand that it is no longer done by the lodges under the UGLE. I have attended only one where the same was done by another recognised constitution and where I was an invitee. It was a beautiful ceremony.

Fraternally,

Kaushik Chowdhury
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Re: Funerals

Postby Peter Moir » Sun Jul 16, 2017 3:17 pm

Here in Scotland we hold Lodges of Sorrow frequently and I have attended many through the years. You are correct Bro Chowdhury when you say it is a beautiful service. Although it was a daunting task to carry out I had the privilege to conduct such a service for one of our Past Masters when I was Master of my Lodge.
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Re: Funerals

Postby Mike Martin » Sun Jul 16, 2017 11:24 pm

kaushik.chowdhury wrote:I understand that something called a Lodge of Sorrow is also held by the members of the lodge where the deceased brother was a member. I also understand that it is no longer done by the lodges under the UGLE. I have attended only one where the same was done by another recognised constitution and where I was an invitee. It was a beautiful ceremony.

Hi Kaushik,
You are confusing two different things and I can tell you that Lodges of Sorrow are still perfectly acceptable and carried out by Lodge under the UGLE, case in point being my own Mother Lodge which held a Lodge of Sorrow to mark departed merit just last year.
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Re: Funerals

Postby eckywan2 » Fri Jul 28, 2017 8:48 am

Good question Bro Oharr
and guid answers too
In Scotland and elsewhere l;odges often ( or maybees bi annually) will hold a lodge of sorrow withing lodge / temple to acknowledge those that have passed since last one
or sometimes for a particular bro when , as Peter says its a beautiful ceremony
difficult to do as it will be emotional and remind floor workers of auld friends

Its banned or at least frowned upon by Grand Lodge up here, but continues to be carried out in wee villages all over Scotland
where either at crem or at graveside a "sprig of Accia" or more likely some other evergreen as accia is difficult to source will be placed on the coffin , or dropped in the grave by any brother wishing to so do
Sometimes restricted to RWM and senior office bearers but the last such I attended about 40 brethren from the locality did so.
Its a nice touch where you can respect departed merit personally rather that only a well ordered service...... which isn't a put down for them its just an nice extra allowing friends / relatives that personal touch
and allowing non members to see the reverence respect given
slainthe
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Re: Funerals

Postby MrMason » Fri Jul 28, 2017 10:08 pm

eckywan2 wrote:Good question Bro Oharr
and guid answers too
In Scotland and elsewhere l;odges often ( or maybees bi annually) will hold a lodge of sorrow withing lodge / temple to acknowledge those that have passed since last one
or sometimes for a particular bro when , as Peter says its a beautiful ceremony
difficult to do as it will be emotional and remind floor workers of auld friends

Its banned or at least frowned upon by Grand Lodge up here, but continues to be carried out in wee villages all over Scotland
where either at crem or at graveside a "sprig of Accia" or more likely some other evergreen as accia is difficult to source will be placed on the coffin , or dropped in the grave by any brother wishing to so do
Sometimes restricted to RWM and senior office bearers but the last such I attended about 40 brethren from the locality did so.
Its a nice touch where you can respect departed merit personally rather that only a well ordered service...... which isn't a put down for them its just an nice extra allowing friends / relatives that personal touch
and allowing non members to see the reverence respect given
slainthe



Certainly not banned or frowned upon in my "Scottish" Province as I've co-ordinated at least 3 of these, with several members of PGL attending.
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Re: Funerals

Postby eckywan2 » Sat Jul 29, 2017 4:30 am

Aye Bob I know
I was born in Kilwinning and brought up In nearby WK which is where I was talking about
but now I live in Edinburgh and its so different between east and west
( ive had a lot of fun at expense of last PGM there as we have same surname and first initial
and sometimes have signed attendance book and see SW / PMs looking for Archie C )
Cant even get decent potatoes over here !)
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Re: Funerals

Postby Peter Taylor » Sun Jul 30, 2017 8:45 am

eckywan2 wrote:Its banned or at least frowned upon by Grand Lodge up here, but continues to be carried out in wee villages all over Scotland
where either at crem or at graveside a "sprig of Accia" or more likely some other evergreen as accia is difficult to source will be placed on the coffin , or dropped in the grave by any brother wishing to so doslainthe


Certainly not banned or frowned upon. The Grand Lodge of Scotland even publish a Ritual for the whole Ceremony for a Lodge of Sorrow. It very much encouraged.
http://www.grandlodgescotland.com/shop/book-of-ceremonials
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Re: Funerals

Postby eckywan2 » Tue Aug 08, 2017 9:35 am

Right as always Pete
BUt I was thinking more of a real graveside with brethren dropping evergreen onto coffin in grave
or crem where its laid on top
rather than lodge of sorrow in lodge
PS Peter I hope to have a paper for you at your SRIS soon
regarding the French effort I think you are aware of

Aye
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Re: Funerals

Postby Peter Taylor » Sun Aug 20, 2017 9:32 am

eckywan2 wrote:Right as always Pete
BUt I was thinking more of a real graveside with brethren dropping evergreen onto coffin in grave
or crem where its laid on top
rather than lodge of sorrow in lodge

Well I've been to those types of funerals with Grand and Provincial Grand Lodge Office Bearers in attendance and even dropping / placing evergreen onto the coffin at the graveside and the crematorium. So I don't think it's frowned upon. Perhaps it's been the feelings of a particular Grand or PG OB?
eckywan2 wrote:PS Peter I hope to have a paper for you at your SRIS soon
regarding the French effort I think you are aware of

Looking forward to that!
Regards, Peter
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Re: Funerals

Postby wayne cowley » Fri Sep 01, 2017 10:50 am

Interestingly, UGLE cover the matter of Masonic funerals in the booklet Information For The Guidance of Members of The Craft

RELATIONSHIP OF MASONRY AND RELIGION

The Board has been giving the most earnest consideration to this subject, being convinced that it is of fundamental importance to the reputation and well-being of English Freemasonry that no misunderstanding should exist inside or outside the Craft.

It cannot be too strongly asserted that Masonry is neither a religion nor a substitute for religion. Masonry seeks to inculcate in its members a standard of conduct and behaviour which it believes to be acceptable to all creeds, but studiously refrains from intervening in the field of dogma or theology. Masonry, therefore, is not a competitor with religion though in the sphere of human conduct it may be hoped that its teaching will be complementary to that of religion. On the other hand its basic requirement that every member of the Order shall believe in a Supreme Being and the stress laid upon his duty towards Him should be sufficient evidence to all but the wilfully prejudiced that Masonry is an upholder of religion since it both requires a man to have some form of religious belief before he can be admitted as a Mason, and expects him when admitted to go on practising his religion.

The Board hopes that Grand Lodge will agree that this is a valid statement of the Masonic position, and in the practical application of these principles will lay down:

(i) that Masonic rites, prayers, and ceremonies be confined to the Lodge room, and that dispensation to wear regalia (which term includes white gloves) in public be granted only in exceptional cases;

(ii) that there be no active participation by Masons, as such, in any part of the burial service or cremation of a Brother and that there be no Masonic prayers, readings, or exhortations either then or at the graveside subsequent to the interment, since the final obsequies of any human being, Mason or not, are complete in themselves and do not call in the case of a Freemason for any additional ministrations. That if it is wished to recall and allude to his Masonic life and actions, this can appropriately be done at the next Lodge Meeting in the presence of his Brethren, or at a specifically arranged Memorial Service;

(iii) but that while no obstacle should be put in the way of Masons wishing to take part in an act of corporate worship, only in rare and exceptional cases should they be granted dispensation to do so wearing regalia; moreover that the order of service should in all cases be such as the officiating Minister or his superior consider to be appropriate to the occasion.

(Extract from Report of Board of General Purposes, adopted 12 September 1962)



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