Cancelling or Adjourning Lodge meetings or Chapter convocations
Brethren and Companions,
You will probably have seen by now the latest update from UGLE regarding Coronavirus and which strongly recommends that those over the age of 65 years old and those with hypertension, heart disease, lung disease or diabetes no longer attend Lodge meetings or Chapter convocations for the foreseeable future.
Based on this advice you may be considering either cancelling or adjourning your meeting/convocation.
As matters stand at present this is not possible due to Rule 137, Book of Constitutions and Regulation 58, Supreme Grand Chapter Regulations.
It may well be that UGLE/Supreme Grand Chapter will dictate that the current Coronavirus pandemic should override this but that is not yet the case.
Lodges and Chapters should, therefore, be summoned in the usual way.
The quorum for a valid Lodge meeting is 5 (not including the Tyler or any candidate) one of whom must be an Installed Master who does not have to be a member of the Lodge; that for a valid Chapter convocation is also 5 (not including the Janitor or any candidate) three of whom must be the Principals together with the two Scribes.
If on the day of the Lodge meeting or Chapter convocation a quorum cannot be achieved the meeting must be abandoned and a note to this effect entered into the Minute Book.
The suggested wording is:-
“The regular meeting (convocation) of the Lodge (Chapter) on …………. 2020 was duly called in accordance with the attached Summons.
Owing to the incidence of the Coronavirus the required number of Brethren (Companions) to open the Lodge (Chapter) could not be assembled and the meeting (convocation) was abandoned.”
If the meeting that is abandoned in this way is that for the election of the Master then the final paragraph of Rule 106, Book of Constitutions, will govern the situation.
If the abandoned meeting is that for the Installation of the Master then Rule 108 will apply.
The above is the regular position as of today, but the situation is changing daily, and further advice and guidance will be provided to you as and when received from the Grand Secretary/Grand Scribe E.
R W Bro/E Comp Peter R A Baker
Pro Provincial Grand Master/M E Grand Superintendent
14 March 2020
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