St. John’s Lodge No. 8972

St John's Lodge at Newark was consecrated on Friday 30th January 1981 by the then Provincial Grand Master C. H. V. Elliott, assisted by the Deputy Provincial Grand Master L. J. Mitchell, the Assistant Provincial Grand Master D. A. Rudge and 14 other Provincial officers.

Only one member of the consecrating and installing team is alive today and is still a subscribing member of a Lodge.

There were 20 Founding members with multiple memberships between 14 Lodges. As the Worshipful Master designate and the greater number of Founders were members of Newton Lodge in Newark then it has always been regarded as the sponsoring and mother Lodge of St. John’s. Regrettably, only one Founder member is alive today and is still a subscribing member of his mother Lodge.

Whilst the Founders chose the name referring to St. John the Evangelist, the banner design was obtained from the Gospel Book known as Codex Aureus and was researched and supplied by two scholarly members of Porchester Lodge No. 4907.  The banner dedication took place on the 15th February 1983 and it is worthy of note that the name on the banner and consecration documents, all have Saint John’s rather than being abbreviated to St. John’s as can be seen today.

StJohns banner

 

The majority of founders were Newark Masons but many soon joined from Mansfield and covered a wide range of occupations but in the 1990’s and early 2000’s the Lodge was recognised for having a number of current or retired police officers.

The Lodge has experienced changes in membership numbers over the years and is currently regarded as vibrant with above the Provincial average.  Whilst it is relatively new in masonic terms, it has maintained those traditions set by its founders.

It has the distinction of being one of only two Lodges in the Province, and the only one in Newark, to perform the ‘Universal’ ritual as opposed to ‘Emulation’ performed by most others, and its festive board does not follow the normal conventions, which when combined overall, makes it an attractive alternative to other Lodges and an enjoyable experience. 

As you would expect from a vibrant and successful Lodge, the average age is relatively high but it is forward-thinking and whilst maintaining traditions, is not averse to change for the benefit of younger and newer members whose expectations may not be the same as their own, or of those founder members.

It meets at Newark on the 2nd Tuesday in January and the 3rd Tuesday in February, March April, October and November and has its own Study Circle rather than a warranted Lodge of Instruction.  Its social activities are varied and tend to revolve around those organised by Newark’s Ways & Means Committee whose main function is to raise funds for the Hall. Several of the Lodge members are on that committee. 

Newark Masonic Hall is not a commercial premise and has probably the lowest membership subscription and dining charges of any other Masonic centre in Nottinghamshire.