As Gloucestershire Freemasons have a close relationship with local charity Meningitis Now we are kindly invited to their annual Christmas carol concert in the cathedral.
This year there was a Tree of Remembrance commemorating those whose lives have been touched by meningitis. The charity and the event itself offers comfort to those such as Jess Vickery: she told the five hundred strong congregation how she lost her forty year old husband to the disease twenty-four hours after he become ill reinforcing the message that it can strike swiftly, at any age, and so easily be mistaken for flu or Covid.
The concert is also however a celebration of life: who can resist small children singing carols and the children of Highnam Primary Academy obliged handsomely. The sound of the Chalford Band swelled until it seemed to fill the whole of the cathedral and the massed ranks of the Cheltenham based Rock Choir simply radiated happiness.
The Masonic Charitable Foundation gave Meningitis Now a £45,000 grant over three years which will come to an end next year. Meningitis Now’s Chief Executive Tom Nott is keen to keep the good relationship with Gloucestershire Freemasonry going and is keen to tell us all about what our money has been used for, so watch for an article in late spring or early summer.
Dom Cotter of BBC Radio Gloucestershire once again acted as the announcer. Over mulled wine and mince pies afterwards he said how impressed he was by the amount Gloucestershire Freemasons had donated for Project 21 (£330,000 in eighteen months) and how Karen Organ of the NHS charity had told everyone what a difference those mobile scanners had made to the people of Gloucestershire on his radio show.
It really seems the season of goodwill toward Gloucestershire Freemasons!