The Group Executive are concerned for all the brethren in our Group at this very difficult time for everyone’s Health. Decisions are being made elsewhere that are beginning to affect our daily lives; self-isolation for over 70s, social distancing etc. etc. There has also been a major instruction on 17th March 2020, by the The Most Worshipful Grand Master that all Lodge and Chapter meetings within England and Wales are suspended for a period of four months with immediate effect.
We are in an unprecedented, rapidly changing, and potentially dangerous scenario and, have already been directed to curtail social gathering. This will obviously impact greatly on our activities. The Provincial Ball has already been cancelled, Provincial Grand Lodge meeting severely curtailed and UGLE & Provincial Office closed to all visitors.
We have a duty of care to each other and we must look after those brethren over the age of 65 years old, and those with hypertension, heart disease, lung disease or diabetes for the foreseeable future.
Please keep checking on the more elderly and vulnerable members of our Lodges and Chapters, especially those that live alone, remembering that telephoning is probably safest for them rather than visiting in person.
Brethren, we have all been taught to be cautious and we are in a most serious situation. Our caring outlook to our fellow brethren should be uppermost in our thinking at times like this. This Virus outbreak should change nothing in our outlook but make us ever more caring and thoughtful for others. It might increase in us our awareness of our mortal existence. We should listen to the voice of nature. If we feel unwell we should not unduly expose others to unwanted risk. We should never put anyone at risk in pursuing our own enjoyment.
I am acutely aware of what a fragile and perilous existence we live and know we can never take anything for granted. As this virus continues to spread we should continue to take Care of, and value, each other; we should be thankful for what we’ve got and we should be ever mindful of the needs of others
We all have a responsibility to each other. This virus is known to be a killer. The percentage of deaths in all patients may yet be low but, if anything should happen to a member, for him that percentage goes up to 100%.
We have all seen the Government’s full list of those at increased risk and the list of clinical conditions which put people at an even higher risk of severe illness from COVID-19. We have such brethren in our Group though it is not always obvious.
For now, those people are asked to rigorously follow the social distancing advice.
On 16th March, the Prime Minister told a press conference that the latest advice could mean avoiding social contact for 12 weeks “This advice about avoiding all social contact is particularly important for people over 70, for pregnant women and for those with some health conditions,” he said.
Also, under the latest Government advice, anyone living in a household with somebody who has the symptoms of a persistent cough or fever is being told to isolate themselves for 14 days.
If you are fit and well please keep in contact with those who you know to be vulnerable and, please, always be ever mindful of those less fortunate than yourself
I urge you all to take care.
Thinking of you.
Hoping we can all be together again soon.