W Bro Reggie Taylor-Harding LGR describes this fantastic event
Over 75 Brethren gathered at Freemasons’ Hall on Tuesday, February 12th to celebrate the centenary of Red Triangle Lodge No 4000.
The centenary celebrations took place at an emergency meeting held specifically for that purpose. Despite not being a regular meeting of the Lodge, the centenary meeting was one filled with the most jubilant and congratulatory atmosphere, attended by Masonic dignitaries and friends of the Lodge alike. Indeed, being an emergency meeting meant that the entire focus of the evening was on celebrating the history of this worthy Lodge.
The centenary meeting was opened in excellent form by W Bro Abiola Oshodi, his first full meeting as W orshipful Master , having been installed in the chair of King Solomon just two months prior. After the reading of the dispensation allowing the Lodge to hold this emergency meeting, Red Triangle Lodge welcomed the official delegation from Metropolitan Grand Lodge, headed by Deputy Metropolitan Grand Master R W Bro Simon Duckworth OBE DL PJGW.
With the Deputy Metropolitan Grand Master warmly welcomed by the Lodge, after declining the offer of the gavel from Bro Abiola, the Brethren were treated to a short presentation on the history of the Lodge by the Secretary.
The name of the Lodge refers to the logo of the Young Men’s Christian Association (YMCA) which is indelibly intertwined with the history of the Lodge. Red Triangle Lodge No 4000 has its roots in what was then Red Triangle Lodge no 3874, based in Liverpool. That earlier Lodge was founded in 1918 by Masons who were associated with the YMCA, and it operated out of the YMCA Rooms at Mount Pleasant in that city.
Not long after the founding of that Lodge, several of its members found that they had regular cause to travel to London; they also felt that London-based members of the YMCA would benefit from their own Lodge, to “encourage social and cultural intercourse”. The Liverpool-based Lodge was happy to sponsor a new London Lodge with the same name. A petition made by twenty-six Masons, including seven members of Red Triangle no 3874, was presented to Grand Lodge, who happily acquiesced to the request, granting a warrant of constitution on 3rd September 1919. The Lodge was consecrated six weeks later, on October 23rd.
In line with its YMCA association, the Lodge committed itself to a temperance festive board. This practice came to an end after the Lodge’s 50th anniversary, after an awkward exchange between R W Bro James Stubbs GSec, the evening’ s Guest of Honour, and the Lodge’s Chief Steward, W Bro Stanley Mantor, after he had to decline Bro James’ request of a whisky at the festive board!
With the abandoning of the practice of temperance, the Lodge’s association with the YMCA became less prominent, but the Lodge remained a significant contributor to Charity - among many other accolades, the Lodge became a “Double Patron” of the Royal Masonic Hospital.
This spirit of charity remains ever-present in the Lodge, recently donating £2,500 to the Metropolitan Grand Master’s London Fire Brigade appeal.
After the presentation of the Lodge’s history, Red Triangle was officially presented with their Centenary Warrant, which, after being checked by Bro Simon was read out by the Deputy Metropolitan Grand Secretary W Bro John Wood PJGD. The Brethren were then treated to a rousing Oration by the Deputy Metropolitan Grand Chaplain W Bro Graham Foulis SLGR.
With no other business for the meeting the Lodge was closed in prayer and perfect harmony, and the Brethren retired to the Festive Board to continue their celebration of the Red Triangle Lodge.
This article is part of the Arena Magazine, Issue 40 April 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 40 here.