Ashlar Lodge member Gerald Forman gave an absolute masterclass in masonry on a night he’d been planning for years.
The man who’s done his Freemasonry under eight Provincial Grand Masters not only received his sixty-year certificate, but also took the chair to deliver a double first degree ceremony to an impeccable standard.
Gerald had been planning the evening for years, said current PGM Dave Wheeler. “I’ve had this evening in my diary for five years; that’s how long ago Gerald told me I’d be presenting his certificate tonight,” he said.
Saying Gerald was an iconic figure in Lincoln Freemasonry and a ‘national treasure’ to the Brethren of Ashlar Lodge, Dave said he was one of the few remaining Lincoln Masons who met at Mint Street, The County Assembly Rooms and now at The Nightingale. “You attended the last meeting held at the County Assembly Rooms as my guest, and also the first meeting held at The Nightingale.
“The first meeting here, seven years ago, was a new experience for all of us, and the caterers ran out of food before they got to where you and I were sitting. I was a bit bothered by this but you just said: “Don’t worry Dave, this is the first night of the next 50 years and everything will be fine”. Well, here we are, celebrating your special evening and everything is more than fine.
“I was privileged to present you with your 50-year certificate in Concord Chapter in October 2018. You told me that night that I would be presenting you with your 60-year certificate in Craft in 2023, and to “Put the date in my diary”.
“Gerald, it is absolute honour for me to present you with your certificate celebrating 60 years in Freemasonry. You are a special man and a special Freemason and I am delighted to call you my friend and Brother.
“To mark your anniversary, when Ashlar lodge have initiated two new candidates this evening, shows not only the enduring nature of Freemasonry but also that our future is in good hands.”