Wor Bro Rob Ellis

Full Un-edited Transcript of the video:

Hello, my name is Rob Ellis. I’m a member of the Duke of Albany Lodge,

which is based in Hellensville, 50 kilometres northwest west of the Auckland CBD.

This is a real country lodge.

I’m also a member of the Duke of Albany

chapter, which is basically the same lodge room.

I’m also a member of the of the local mark, George Mark and Constantia.

Which is a conclave of the order of the Red Cross of Constantine.

They’re all based on the same lodge room.

I’m a past master of the Duke of Albany Lodge. I held the rank of past

District Grand Persuavent. In the chapter.

I am currently the first principal

and I am what is known as the most

Persuavent Sovereign of Constantio. Which is pretty grandiose title as it is.

And certainly means you’re in the chair. I joined in 2010.

It’s been a fairly

a fairly convinced Masonic career, I guess because of my age

at the age of 76. You never know.

I could be Ghoga by this time next year, so I might as well get it then.


And I was born in New Zealand and I’ve always lived here.

I grew up in Northcote, which is a suburb just to the north of the Harbour Bridge in Auckland.

That was in the days before the Harbour Bridge, of course,

When Northcote was a village,

Birkenhead was the nearest village

and then there was Takapuna and Devonport, which were separate villages.

So, Northcote was a very different very different place in those days.

But I came to the craft in this manner.

My wife and I

live as all our married and working life and where we brought up our children

in Glenfield, which is a suburb in Auckland and adjacent to Northcote.

And we move to the Hellensville area

when we retired.

And I saw a notice on the local paper,

one day advertising for members

of the local Masonic Lodge and it was extremely well written.

I thought this must be a great bunch

of guys to be able to sit down and write an article like this.

I think I’ll go along and see about joining started.

I’ve been asked over the years if I was

interested in joining the usual method of approach.

Back in those days, they’d say, Oh well, you come along and have a drink with me.

And that was the usual approach from Freemason’s back in the day.

And I knew what it was about, but I wasn’t really interested in that state.

And it was until I retired that I became interested in.

My father had been a Mason back in the 1950s, and I know he,

he enjoyed it for a time

and I thought it would be interesting.

But he resigned from Masonry back in the day when you weren’t supposed to.

 And he fell out for some reason.

 And I asked him over the years,

 I was asking, dad, why didn’t you resign from Masonry?

And he would never say.

And it wasn’t until having joined and

looking back on his old lodge room  and the name is on the noticeboard.

I had a fair idea why he did resign. Knowing something about the local politics

of what needs to happen in the local area back in those days.

But I didn’t join until after he died

and I would not have joined while he was still alive.

So that’s a bit of psychology.

I think it was part of emotional.

And I know that he learned his ritual

properly and always thought he was an able and he ran a small business

and he was a respected man in the local community.

So I don’t think he was passed over because he wasn’t good enough.

Well, especially a group of men and in a village, as it was on those days.

And anyway, that’s all in the past.

but that’s that’s the fact of the matter.

My first career was as an accountant and I

worked as an accountant from 1960 when I was a clerk back on those days.

And you could get your accounting

education while you worked on the job through till 1975

and then I became involved in coat manufacturing.

And later on when

New Zealand lifted the lid on imports

and the local manufacturing businesses were having a hard time.

I became involved in importing

women’s fashion and wholesaler throughout New Zealand.

That was my last career.

So I’ve been an accountant.

I’ve been in manufacturing and I’ve been in marketing.

My wife and I married for nearly 50 years

and we have three children in the forties and two grandchildren.

One is an accountant.

One is in human resources and the other is

a is a contractor in the computing business,

I was married in Whangarei.

My wife came from Whangarei.

I met with work in Auckland.

When my wife was in Auckland working, we worked in the same office.

That’s where we met.

I’m in my second year, I started in my office, District Grand Persuavent and now I am past District

Grand Persuavent, because that’s an office you hold for one year.

I don’t regard the craft really is something that we are particularly interested in rank.

I just enjoy it.

If rank comes along well, that’s okay.

But it’s not as if I expect at all or go on looking for it.

And I don’t think that’s probably the right way to go about Masonry.

If you’ve got ambition regarding your rank in an organization,

you’re probably better off to go somewhere else.

In Masonry, we don’t compete.

And the thing about Masonry is you go along to a lodge meeting

and you end up with a whole a whole other bunch of guys you’re friends with.

 If you’re not friends with, you can become friendly with them.

 One thing about Masons is that you can trust the.

 And you don’t you can’t trust people who you’re competing with for promotion,

 and that’s one of the very good things about Masons.

 So we don’t we don’t compete with the. If promotion comes along.

 That’s absolutely fine.

 But I doubt any I doubt any of us are actually looking for it.

 Well, I think the main strength of Masonry

 is the trust we have on each other,  as men.

 The main weakness of this stage is that Masonry has been reducing in numbers.

 And I’m sure that that’s about to change.

 But the reason why that’s happened is because the young blokes,

 obviously, we’d like to see you,

 members of Masonry but the young blokes, got so many other things to do

 these days.

 They’ve got to work longer hours than most of us.

 And our generations had to do

 very heavy responsibilities in

 regard to mortgages and child raising, which seems to be

 full of so many do’s and don’ts these days that whenever our restrictions

 and and they’ve just got all this stuff weighing down upon them

 and they probably feel they don’t want to be saddled with anything else.

 The thing about Freemasonry is that

 Masonry does not seek to put responsibility onto its members.

 An actual fact

 With masonry, you can get help in a whole lot of other things of masonry has a lot

 to offer that you really only find out about

 when you join.

 And for a young bloke joining a masonry,

 you will find that he is not saddled with any responsibility that he doesn’t want.

 Certainly responsibilities are available to him but they are not expected.

 Masonry in recent years has become a lot more open than it used to be

 50 years ago.

 Masonry was pretty much a secret society, and that’s by no means the case.

 Now, masons very open about about what they do,

 what they do in the lodge as well as outside the lodge.

 I think we have to become more open still and more openly welcoming.

 Well, I think the main thing is, 

 you’ve got to make sure that your wife or partner is.

 well informed

 because it’s important to get the backing of your wife or partner.

 I you don’t get that, you’ve got a problem.

 And more or less what I’m going to be talking about, the fact is what

 a mason has to offer what is expected of him.

 And more importantly, what is going to be expected of him.

 The thing is, he’s going to have to spend

 a certain amount of time, probably a minimum of one evening a month.

 And he really needs to be able to spend

 that time. his wife or partner

 has to be prepared for him to go out and have

 a night with the boys that way or at least once a month.

 Well, I think Freemasonry is more important in today’s world than ever.

 Today’s world is full of so many changes

 and it’s pretty hard to keep up with all these changes.

 But there are some aspects of Freemasonry that are absolutely timeless.

 Freemasonry has been in existence for over three hundred years.

 Some of the things that we done in the lodge

 pretty much unchanged over all that time.

 And they are not going to change.

 And that’s an important other important thing about Freemasonry is that you go

 along to a larger meeting and you’re not faced with the constant

 demand to keep up with change, that you are in the outside world

 and go along if you’re comfortable, the kind of pressures that you get

 with a lot of work are just not there in Masonry. Masonry is actually a good antidote.

 To the day’s events, you go along and have some fun and relax and enjoy yourself. And also

 find you’re getting some value out of the night in Masonry.

 I think the charitable side, quite frankly, is difficult.


It seems to me that the Masonic charity now are trying to put pressure on members to give

 and up to a point that’s fine as long as they don’t push it too hard.

 But I think they have to be very, very careful.

 Otherwise, they’re going to drive people away.

 I think they kind of take a leaf out of the

 English Masonry book as it applies in England.

 where some of their members

 are probably very well and they dip their hands

 to their pockets in any time.

 But that is not the case with New Zealand Masons.

 And some of the Masons in New Zealand are hard pressed

 financially and they can only just pay

 the Dues and unless the charities are very, very careful.

 They’re going to be driving people away.

 It’s the way I see it going right at this moment.

 I am what is known as the most

 sovereign of constant here, which is pretty grandiose title, isn’t it?

 What’s it mean and certainly made here in the chair.

 If you get any interesting,

 humorous stories in the crowd, the crowd stayed in the news now.

 None that I can think of offhand.

 There is plenty of them there, but I just don’t immediately cut the line.


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