When Gordon Smith was initiated at a Freemason on April 16th 1963, he could hardly have imagined what career lay before him. Sixty years later, and with his 90th birthday just celebrated, he has been a central figure in Lincolnshire Freemasonry for decades.
The current PGM Dave Wheeler made a surprise visit to St James Lodge to present Gordon with his 60-year certificate, and to celebrate the 90th birthday. He said: “It really was a very special occasion, not only to be able to present RW Bro Gordon Smith with his 60-year certificate but, despite the surprise nature of the visit, to witness an exemplary third-degree ceremony for Brother Ian Lindley, who’s now a Master Mason.
“It was a privilege, as always, to hear Gordon speak so eloquently about his personal journey and his reflections on Freemasonry. His comments were very well received by all present. It was also a pleasure to belatedly celebrate Gordon’s 90th birthday and to be able to recognise his wonderful contribution to Lincolnshire Freemasonry.”
Gordon was initiated as a member of St James Lodge 7415 in Grimsby, and has been a member ever since, having been raised on April 21st 1964.
He is an honorary member of numerous Lincolnshire Lodges – Saint Mary; Sir Joseph Banks Daylight; Fenland Daylight; Wellow Abbey, of which he was also a founder member; Vermuyden; Trent Valley Daylight; Glanford Vale; Daylight; Provincial Grand Stewards; the Bicentenary Lodge of Installed Masters, and Mizpah in London.
His career in the Royal Arch is almost as long, since he was exalted in Lincolnshire as a member of Astral Chapter in December 1965. He was a Founder member of Wellow Abbey Chapter, and is also a member of the Geoffrey Cooper Royal Arch Chapter of Installed First Principals in Lincolnshire as well as Mizpah and the Clerkenwell Chapter of First Principals in London.
Milestones in Gordon’s career in the Craft saw him in the Chair of his Lodge in 1976, then given the rank of Past Assistant Grand Superintendent of Works in 1986 before becoming Lincolnshire’s Provincial Grand Secretary in 1990. Promoted to Past Junior Grand Deacon in 1994, he became Deputy PGM in 1997, which was followed by another grand rank appointment as Past Grand Sword Bearer in 1998, and PGM in 1999.
In the Royal Arch, he was Provincial Grand Scribe E between January 1987 and New Year’s Eve in 1994; promoted to Past Grand Standard Bearer in April 1989; Past Assistant Grand Sojourner in 1999, followed by an active rank as Grand Sojourner in 2001, and Past Deputy Grand Sword Bearer in 2005.
Gordon has also served 55 years in the Mark degree, having been Lincolnshire’s PGM for the Mark between 1993 and 2007, and he has also been a member of Rose Croix for 50 years.