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Theo Devagnanam
Dear Brethren,

We had hoped to recommence Craft and Royal Arch meetings in April. The, merciless, second wave of Covid-19, has now made that a distant dream. It has also put paid to the Annual Investiture meeting of the DGL which we must now cancel. In view of the prevailing conditions, I request you, Brethren, to please avoid all forms of physical meetings and stick to virtual gatherings.

While many of you have been fully vaccinated, we cannot let our guard down and must continue to follow all Covid-19 protocol. Please be extremely careful.

I had the pleasure of meeting with the Pro Grand Master and the Grand Secretary at a virtual meeting attended by the other three DGM's from India and the DGM of Sri Lanka. All of us reported on the current situation in our respective Districts. The Pro Grand Master said that the conservative, and cautious, stand taken by our District in remaining closed, is in line with the Grand Lodge's thinking. He, and the Grand Secretary were most appreciative of our L&D initiative, which has been so successful, thanks to the untiring efforts of our DG Mentor, and his L&D team.

Another major undertaking of the Grand Lodge is the roll out of the Hermes platform which is the software that well completely change the way we communicate with the Grand Lodge. It will digitally connect every Lodge and Chapter to the DGL and the UGLE. The transition team is in place and will be in touch with the Lodge Secretaries and the Scribe's E of the Chapters.

Brethren, my good wishes. Please stay safe.

Grand Lodge Affairs

Brethren, you are all aware, at the Grand Lodge, under the stewardship of the Grand Superintendent of Works is making a tremendous effort to make sure that not only the Grand Lodge building in London but all Masonic Halls in England are brought up to scratch. This means that the quality of these Masonic Centers should be attractive enough for Masons and their families to want to spend time there. After a great amount of work the Masonic Halls Guide has been produced and it is available in the members section of the UGLE website. It aims to provide a, "best practice", guide to help Lodges and Districts to improve their halls and meeting places and how they are managed. Following this guidance from the UGLE we must strive to protect the Masonic Centers in our District and make absolutely sure that they are maintained and always kept up to scratch. In order to assist Lodges in achieving these goals we have set up the Masonic and Heritage Building Trust especially to assist in the finance required to maintain our buildings.

Recently a portion of the ceiling in the Grand Temple developed cracks and some of the mosaic fell. After thorough testing and analysis it has been found that there is no immediate cause for danger and the restoration work will be started shortly.

The District

I am very pleased to inform you that the District continues to be well administered and that our finances are in good shape. As always our dues to the Grand Lodge have been paid on time as well as our annual contribution to the Masonic Charitable Foundation.

As you know, thanks to the efforts of the W. Bro. Praveen Nair and W.Bro. Ilango Raphael, the Coromandel Courier has been revived as an online quarterly publication. I am sure that most of you have been reading it and that you will agree that its new format is far superior to that which we had in the past. The content also makes much more interesting reading. On the suggestion of the District Grand Secretary the District has started greeting each member on his birthday. I must say that this effort has been very well received and we have had several messages of appreciation from individual Brethren.

At the end of the year the President of our District Grand Charity, W.Bro. Mathew Joseph sent out New Year wishes, together with a gift of spices to all the elderly Brethren of our District. Brethren, apart from being kind gestures these efforts must be appreciated as a great way of making Brethren feel remembered and of strengthening the bonds of Brotherhood.


From the audio visual presentation made at our Half Yearly Meeting you will remember that our Charity Council is extremely active. There is no presentation at this meeting, but we intend to make it a regular feature of our Half Yearly Meetings. Our charitable work, however, continues at a brisk pace and with the involvement of W.Bro. Mathew Joseph and several others, I think we can truly say that whatever we give in the name of charity is being thankfully received and faithfully applied.

The Cornwallis Masonic Home is our main source of income which we receive in the form of rent.

I would like to thank the following Brethren for having represented me at the installations of various Lodges and for having inspected the records of those Lodges.

W.Bro.Sukesh Menon The Cauvery Lodge No.3848 13.07.2019
The Lodge Southern Brotherhood No.3311 25.11.2019
The Lodge of Rock No.260 04.01.2020
The Lodge Cochin No. 4359 18.01.2020
The Golconda Lodge No.3249 31.01.2020
W.Bro.A.C.Patel,Dy DGM The Lodge St. George No. 2532 27.09.2019
The Archibald Campbell Lodge No.4998 30.10.2019
The John Miller Lodge No.1906 20.11.2019
The Lodge of Universal Charity No.273 20.12.2019
The St. John's Lodge No.434 27.12.2019
The Kerala Lodge No.2188 04.01.2020
The Pitt Macdonald Lodge No.1198 09.01.2020
The Lodge of Perfect Unanimity No.150 10.01.2020
The Lodge Ampthill No.3682 18.01.2020
W.Bro.A.K.Nair The Lodge Quilon No.5839 11.01.2020

The records of The Archibald Campbell Lodge were inspected by W.Bro. Sunil Koliyot and The John Miller Lodge, The Lodge of Universal Charity and The Lodge of Perfect Unanimity, were inspected by W.Bro. Mathew Joseph.

Brethren, you would have noticed that there have been several changes in responsibilities for the forthcoming year and I would like to congratulate all the Brethren who have been invested this evening. I would also like to reiterate that the ranks or promotions you have received this evening are not given for your past services to Freemasonry but are meant to encourage you to continue to contribute in the future.

I would like to thank W.Bro.Sukesh Menon my Asst. District Grand Master for his services as President of the Board of General Purposes, W.Bro. Viji Joseph, our District Grand Treasurer, W.Bro. Sunil Koliyot, our Past District Grand Director of Ceremonies and President of Board of General Purposes, W.Bro. Mathew Joseph, President of our Charities and W.Bro. Ilango Raphael, our District Grand Secretary for the time and effort they had given towards the running of the District Grand Lodge. My thanks are also due to W.Bro. P.B. Shanker and his team at the District Grand Lodge Office.

During the year both our District Grand Mentor, W.Bro. M.S. Duleep, and our District Grand Orator, W.Bro. Mathew George have been active and I think that some private Lodges have gained from their activities during the year. Brethren, let us all thank them for their efforts. I am sure that those of you, who attended the training programme for Lodge Almoners, organized by W.Bro. M.S. Duleep yesterday will agree that it was a most educative and enjoyable session. I assure you Brethren that such interesting events will continue to happen in the future.

Brethren, very sadly, since we last met the following Brethren have been summoned to the Grand Lodge above.

Bro.R.Unnikrishnan,MM, The Lodge Quilon No.5839 07.11.2019
Bro. Dr.K.G.Rammohan,MM, The Lodge Quilon No.5839 09.11.2019
W.Bro.G.Dilip Mohan,DAGDofC, The Lodge Quilon No.5839 26.11.2019
W.Bro.L.Anandan,PDDyGDofC, The Pitt Macdonald Lodge No.1198 12.11.2019
Bro.C.R.Krishnan,MM, The John Miller Lodge No.1906 01.01.2019
W.Bro.T.A.Krishnmoorthy,PDAGDofC, The Lodge Minchin No.2710 23.01.2020

Brethren I request you to rise and observe a minute's silence in memory of our departed Brethren.

Thank you, Brethren, once again for being present this evening and I wish you all well till we meet again in August.

The Most Excellent. Grand Superintendent's speech at DG Chapter Annual Investiture Convocation at Chennai on 08.02.2020 – Morning

Good morning Companions and welcome to Chennai and the warm hospitality of the Lodge of Universal Charity.

I am indeed glad to see that so many of you have made the effort to travel to Chennai and to attend this meeting.

As is customary I would like to start by welcoming our distinguished visitors whose presence we always enjoy. I extend a very warm welcome to E.Comp. Vijay Vasudevan PG Sc N, & P II RG Pr, who is here representing the Grand Superintendent of the Regional Grand Chapter of Southern India, E.Comp. Ferhad Nilgiria, The Grand Superintendent of the District Grand Chapter of Sri Lanka, E.Comp. P. Venkataraman, Past District II Gr Principal who is here representing the Grand Superintendent of the District Grand Chapter of Bombay and E.Comp. Ganeindran Sinnathamby PDGDC, who is here representing the Grand Superintendent of the District Grand Chapter of the Eastern Archipelago. Companions, I trust that you have been comfortably accommodated and have enjoyed our proceedings thus far.

I would also like to extend a very warm welcome to all the Brethren who have travelled with our visitors to spend this weekend with us.

Supreme Grand Chapter

In his recent address to the Supreme Grand Chapter the M.E. Pro First Grand Principal, M.E. Comp. Peter Geoffrey Lowndes noted that although the Supreme Grand Chapter has seen a marked improvement in the membership of the Royal Arch, there is still ample scope for growth. He observed that the five main reasons that prevent most Masons from joining the Royal Arch are, lack of knowledge of the Royal Arch, disinterest despite knowledge, cost, time, and involvement in other Masonic Orders. Companions, we all know that while most Masons have the options of joining a large number of legitimate orders, we should encourage them to make the Royal Arch the first. Fortunately for us, in our District, we have a very good Royal Arch membership and the cost of the membership is comparatively low.

District Grand Chapter

The District continues to be administered very well – thanks to the efforts of the President of the Committee of General Purposes and the team in the District Grand Chapter office. The President of the Committee of General Purposes E.Comp. Mathew Joseph has been making a tremendous effort to increase the membership of the Royal Arch and to improve the working of the various Chapters. Both of which are most important to the future of this beautiful order. I must express my appreciation for the amount of work he has done. Since we last met E.Comp. K.R.N. Menon of Chapter School of Plato No.150 completed 50 years in the Royal Arch. I had the pleasure of attending the Convocation, on the 31st October last year and presenting him with the 50 year lapel pin and citation. The whole evening was most enjoyable.

Installation Convocations

I would like to thank the following Companions for having represented me at the installation convocations of various Chapters as follows:

E.Comp.A.C.Patel Chapter John Miller No.1906 30.09.2019
E.Comp.Sukesh Menon Chapter Rock No.260 06.07.2019
Kerala Chapter No.2188 02.11.2019
Pitt Macdonald Chapter No.1198 16.12.2019
Chapter School of Plato No.150 21.01.2020
Chapter of Universal Charity No.273 23.01.2020
Chapter Southern Brotherhood No.3311 30.01.2020
E.Comp.K.Ravindran Chapter Benson No.1093 02.08.2019
E.Comp.K.Muralidharan Chapter Minchin No.2710 23.11.2019
Chapter Ampthill No.3682 21.12.2019
E.Comp.W.C.Thomas Chapter Cochin No.4359 14.12.2019

The inspection of the Records of Chapter of Universal Charity No.273 was carried out by E.Comp. Mathew Joseph.

Companions, I would once again, like to express my appreciation for the efforts of the above Companions some of whom have travelled substantial distances at their own expense, in order to fulfill their Masonic duties.


It is with grief that I inform you that the following Companions have passed away since we last met:

E.Comp. G. Dilip Mohan, PDG 1st Asst Sojr of Chapter Quilon No. 5839 on 26.11.2019

Comp. C.R. Krishnan of Chapter John Miller No.1906 on 01.01.2020.

Companions, please be upstanding to observe a minute's silence in their memory.

I will be addressing all of you at greater length this evening and will therefore end my address with a word of thanks and appreciation to E.Comp. Mathew Joseph, President of the Committee of General Purposes, E.Comp. Ilango Raphael, Dist. Grand Scribe Ezra, E.Comp. Viji Joseph, District Grand Treasurer, E.Comp. Sunil Koliyot, Dist. III Grand Principal & Past Dist Grand Director of Ceremonies, and the entire team in the District Grand Chapter Office for working so cheerfully to see that our District is well administered.


Message for July 2011


It's time to say 'farewell' – as this will be my last message as your District Grand Master – and as you will have my worthy successor installed in this Chair, next month.

I have conveyed more than one hundred such thoughts since it was first launched on our website in January 2003, with messages to the end of 2007 having been reproduced in a volume, and distributed to as many Brethren as asked for a copy, with a contribution of Rupees Fifty only each, for our Charity Fund.

My address at the last District Investiture Meeting in February in Chennai conveyed all my thoughts and completed tasks, and which anticipated my demitting office, as I had by then, already indicated to the Rulers of our Grand Lodge, my desire to step down, when I was still in good health. To depart when one is too ill to hold this prestigious office was not an option I wished ever to exercise, and as I had already accomplished all the tasks and objectives I had set out on assuming office in 2001 – it was time to bid good-bye.

I do not, however, propose to fade out into the good night, but will continue to participate in such Masonic activities, as my Lodges of which I have been a subscribing member for more than four decades, may require and to continue to make a daily advancement in Masonic knowledge.

My successor Bro. Theo Devagnanam, will be the fifth District Ruler since Independence, and by far the youngest to hold this office. I am sure you will all render him your unadulterated loyalty and support to continue the efforts to put the District of Madras, and its Masonic achievements up there with the best in the fraternity. Bro. Theo brings with him not only relative youth but a well-recognised record as a successful corporate chief, and above all, a solid record in charitable initiatives. May the GAOTU bless him, his charming lady Vasanthi and the Brethren of this District who have all given me their love and affection. Any success that has devolved upon the District as a Masonic enterprise has been almost entirely due to those sentiments having been translated into harnessed team-work by its Brethren. Thank you one and all !