What’s in a Name?

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Steve Vinton and Simon Groves: What's in a Masonic Lodge's name?
Steve Vinton and Simon Grove

Simon Grove writes: Our Mother Lodge will always be very special but how often do we really think about its name? Founders must make a very important decision – what to call their new lodge.  Sometimes it will remember an auspicious Freemason, or reflect the nature of a specialist lodge or perhaps the school from which it draws its members.  It could be named after a local landmark or area and then there are the Saints that do feature large!   Perhaps the most popular source of names is our ritual, be it one of the many virtues listed or the orders of architecture and so on.  One of my favourites is the Lodge of Upright Intentions, the Mother Lodge of one of my buddies down here in Wiltshire – but do you know from where the name comes?  Answers on a postcard…..??

Using a common source will often lead to several different lodges within Freemasonry bearing the same name.  My own Mother Lodge, Integrity, is no different.  In the past, reciprocal visits were arranged to Cardiff, Plymouth and Dukinfield but, sadly, this seems to have tailed off in recent years.  On a recent trip to Essex for a long-overdue visit to a buddy, I decided to try and rekindle another link – that to the Lodge of Integrity No 5149 that meets in Chelmsford.

It was their Installation Meeting with the Master, WBro Steve Vinton, was being proclaimed.  He was then due to pass not one but two entered apprentices but sadly one was unable to attend.  Obviously a lodge in fine fettle, they balloted for a candidate for initiation as well as a joining member.  The ceremonial was excellent and whenever there was a little variance from what may have been expected, they had a useful, one-size-fits-all expression – “Founders’ wishes”!!

The lodge is one of a number that meet in an annex of the County Hotel in Chelmsford which is very useful for liquid refreshment on arrival and, of course, for the Festive Board.  This proved to be most convivial and I enjoyed both surprising the WM by singing his song and then responding to the visitors’ toast.

The long drive to Essex was very much worth it and I encourage you all to think about the name of your own Mother Lodge.  Take a look at the Lane’s Masonic website (https://www.dhi.ac.uk/lane/) which is a fantastic source of information on lodges – you may find that there may be other lodges bearing the same name as yours.  If so, why not go and see what they are all about.  You just never know where such a link may go.