Sadly this November saw the second Almoner’s lunch cancelled this year for Covid-19 reasons. Many in our Province who have attended such events in the company of their Mark family from all quarters of the Province, recognise just what they bring to those whose lives are a lot less full than once was the case. It is a difficult task to explain to those who have never experienced such a lunch just what type of atmosphere is created at these events.
W.Bro. Paul Leach, the Provincial Almoner, does not think that there is more warmth, love and fraternity on show at any of our vast array of meetings than at these Luncheons. it it was for such reasons that W.Bro.George Foster made contact with him with the suggestion that we send the usual lunch recipients a small gift and a letter from the Province. The reasoning being to remind these people that, at a time of great difficulty, they were not alone, not forgotten and a gift to provide “cheering up. The Cleeves and Whitehead Trust agreed to fund the operation and luxury chocolates were provided by. W.Bro.Trevor Backhouse Pudsey MMM No.658 and Patisserie Viennoise, Otley. During the first week in November, to coincide with the latest cancelled Almoner’s lunch, the gifts and letters were posted to one hundred and fifty five recipients.
Many have responded expressing their surprise and appreciation together with their positive feelings that they are still in our thoughts and have not been forgotten;. It most certainly has done what had been hoped for, a very worthwhile initiative. Particular congratulations to W,Bro,George for the original thought, W.Bro. Paul for developing the idea and seeing it through to fruition and lastly, you the Brethren of the Province for your support to YOUR CHARITY which makes it all possible.
A gentle reminder of a note that I placed in the last Issue of Marking Well. During the past year or so, assistance the C & W to Brethren, their relatives and dependents amounted to £47,134.91 given to 34 individuals. These included requests for wheelchairs, stairlifts, respite care and help with immediate financial hardships, most recently often as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. In these latter cases, assistance has been given to help cover the period during which applications to the national charities (MBF, MCF, CHOICES, etc.) are under review.
Reflect upon this and be very proud of the ‘Jewel in the Crown’, the Cleeves and Whitehead Trust.
Worshipful Brother Duncan Smith, PGSD.