Monday, June 25, 2007

Connecticut Grand Chapter Sessions

On Thursday, April 26th, I traveled with Sister Anita Young, G.G.C.C.M. (Visionquest) to the Connecticut Grand Chapter in Farmington. We stopped for a leisurely lunch in White River Junction, VT and arrived in Farmington around 4:30 p.m. We had eleven members from Quebec join us. There were a lot of members attending these Sessions as Sister Barbara Benton, MWGM and Brother William Owen, MWGP were in attendance.

After a delicious supper in the hotel restaurant it was time for the Informal Opening. It was great meeting up again with all my counterparts. I have such a great bunch of counterparts (we call ourselves the Dream Believers). Sister Lynn Wakefield and Brother Francis LaPlante, WGM and WGP of Connecticut are the first of our group to “retire”.

On the Friday morning, I had the pleasure to participate in the Bible and Emblem Ceremony representing the Star Point Esther. After a quick change out of my white dress into my kilt (our traveling outfit in Quebec is a kilt in the Quebec Tartan), I rushed up to sit in the East. After the Formal Opening Ceremonies, I had the honour of giving the Tribute to the Canadian Flag. Brother George-Henry Dempsey, P.G.P. as the Marshal and Sisters Brenda Stone, AGM and Beverley Sanborn, Gr. Conductress as the escorts proudly presented the Canadian Flag. After the morning Sessions, we all attended the Distinguished Guests luncheon, where I had the pleasure of presenting the WGM and WGP with a Love Gift from the members from Quebec.

After lunch, we made a quick change of clothes and packed up the car and headed for home, once again stopping in White River Junction, VT for something to eat.

Tribute to the Canadian Flag

To pay tribute to the national Flag of Canada, my flag, my country, is a privilege and an honour.

The planning for the Centennial celebrations of 1967 inspired the birth of the Canadian Flag that we know today. Prime Minister Lester Pearson brought it into existence. Numerous experts joined the parliamentary committee and after months of reviewing countless proposal, a new design was found.

The Canadian Flag (colloquially known as The Maple Leaf Flag) is a red flag of the proportions two by length and one by width, containing in its center a while square, with a single red stylized eleven-point maple leaf centered in the white square.

The colours of white and red are the colours assigned Canada by King George V by his proclamation on November 21, 1921, which granted a Coat of Arms to Canada. They symbolize strength, purity and, historically, are traditional of England and France. Red was the colour of St. George’s Cross – the colour born by French Crusaders in 1189, and the colour associated with early Kings of England. White was popular with monarchs of France, and was the colour of the field of St. George’s Cross; the colour given the English Crusaders; and the colour of Banners borne by Joan of Arc and several early French Regiments. And the Maple Leaf, recognized as a symbol of Canada since the early days of the fur trade, emerged as the most fitting emblem. There is no recorded significance to the eleven-point leaf design.

Twenty-year-old Joan O’Malley sewed Canada’s first flag in 1964 and at the stroke of noon on February 15, 1965, Canada’s red and white Maple Leaf Flag was raised on Parliament Hill in Ottawa for the very first time.

The following words, spoken on that momentous day by the Honourable Maurice Bourget, Speaker of the Senate, added further symbolic meaning to the flag: “The flag is the symbol of the nation’s unity, for it, beyond any doubt, represents all the citizens of Canada without distinction of race, language, belief or opinion.”

I am proud of my flag and every facet of Canadian life it represents. The greatest tribute I can make is to say: “I love you, and may heaven bless The Maple Leaf Forever.”

Thank you Worthy Grand Matron for the honour of giving tribute to the Canadian Flag

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