What was that? Initiation for a hard of hearing candidate

W Bro Ronald A. Wainer SLGR reports


Fifty members and guests attended a bumper meeting of The Polytechnic Lodge No 2847 to conduct two separate initiation ceremonies in the presence of W Bro Michael Todd PSGD, MetGInsp. The Lodge welcomed various guests from the District Grand Lodges of Corfu, Athens and Cyprus. The first initiate was Sebastiaan Eldritch-Bőersen. So far, nothing out of the ordinary except that Sebastiaan is profoundly deaf. To be able to meet his needs, the Lodge introduced several adaptations to perform a rarely seen ceremony. Some of the limelight may have been stolen by a certain Arlo …

Arlo is Bro Sebastian’s Hearing Assistance Dog. He was with him throughout the ceremony, proving quite a challenge for all those involved. Arlo can be seen in the photo, sitting on Bro Sebastiaan’s lap.

The second candidate, Irfan Mithage, enjoyed a more traditional ceremony that was watched by both Bro Sebastiaan and Arlo.

During the meeting, Bro Irfan, being the most junior member of the Lodge (if only by an hour), presented a cheque to the Metropolitan Grand Inspector for £5,000 as a donation to the London Freemasons’ Charity.

In response, Bro Michael commented, ‘Having attended The Polytechnic meeting, I was blown away by the amount of effort expended to adapt the Initiation ceremony for a profoundly hard of hearing brother, as well as the contribution to the London Freemasons’ Charity of £5000 on top of a further donation of £6000 to other charitable causes.  Polytechnic is clearly a Lodge that is steaming into the future!’

If your Lodge has a deaf candidate and you are wondering how to run the ceremony, you can contact W Bro Ron Wainer, who will gladly talk you through the intricacies of the adapted ritual, ensuring compliance with the requirements of MetGL. (Contact: Secretary2847@freemasons.london)

This article is part of the Arena Magazine, Issue 47 January 2022 edition.
Arena Magazine is the official magazine of the London Freemasons – Metropolitan Grand Lodge and Metropolitan Grand Chapter of London.

Read more articles in the Arena Issue 47 here.