Raymond Lee Bray On 4th February 1957, aged 30, and at the first meeting of the newly-installed Master, WBro Richard Jackson, Mr Raymond Lee Bray was admitted ‘as a poor candidate in a state of darkness’ and Initiated into Lodge Harmony No.156. He was Passed in April and Raised in June, followed by receipt of a Grand Lodge certificate in September of the same year. WBro Raymond: your progress was steady and you eventually arrived at the Master’s Chair, into which you were Installed by WBro TR Passmore in 1965. Your workload that year was quite high, with an Initiation, two Passings and three Raisings before Installing Bro Holden into the Chair on 5th January 1966. Somewhat unusually, your first Provincial appointment in 1974 from RWBro WA Kneel was straight to the top as Past Provincial Junior Grand Warden, indicating the esteem in which you were and have since been held. Your work kept you busy for the next few years, although the lodge enjoyed your account of a trip to the USA in 1979. Your first foray into the Masonic Chaplaincy came in 1994 when a rather brave Master Elect (WBro Steve Scull) invited you to become Chaplain to the lodge. It’s fair to say that you both enjoyed the post and enjoyed some success in the duties associated with it, as the next five Masters reappointed you, until you stood down in favour of WBro Nethercott in 2000. However, such talent obviously had not gone unnoticed by the subsequent Provincial Grand Master, RWBro Osborn, who not only put your name forward to the MW Grand Master for some further honours, resulting in an appointment to Grand Rank as Past Assistant Grand Director of Ceremonies in 2003, but who also appointed you as Provincial Assistant Grand Chaplain, followed by Provincial Deputy Grand Chaplain in 2005. RWBro Michael Penny, not to be outdone, promoted you to Provincial Grand Chaplain in 2008 and the MW Grand Master honoured you with a promotion to Past Junior Grand Deacon in 2012. You have continued to serve a third Provincial Grand Master, RWBro Kingsbury, in the Provincial Chaplaincy, only recently announcing your retirement with effect from April 2017. You are also a joining member of the Plymouth and District Masters’ Lodge No.5898, becoming its Master in 1996, and also a joining member of The Lodge of St Mary No.5148 and The Noontide Lodge No.9720. Other degrees: You were Exalted into the Holy Royal Arch of Jerusalem in Dundas Chapter No.1255 in 1963. Being a glutton for punishment, you served as Principal Sojourner in the same year as you were Master of this Lodge, before becoming First Principal in 1968. You were promoted to the very high Provincial rank of Past Provincial Grand Scribe Nehemiah 1992, which may have prompted a brief return as the Chapter’s Third Principal in 1993. You were Perfected into the Ancient and Accepted Rite of Sovereign Princes Rose Croix, serving as its Most Wise Sovereign in 2008, and being honoured with bestowal of the 30th Degree. You are also a member of the Pleiades Chapter No.1115 and the St Boniface of Devonshire Chapter No.1183. You also became a member of the Royal Order of Scotland, Provincial Grand Chapter and Provincial Grand Lodge of the South Western Counties of England.
WBro Raymond Lee Bray, although we have gathered this evening to celebrate your 60 years’ service to Freemasonry, it cannot be denied that you have not only served Freemasonry faithfully and devotedly, but the same devotion has been applied in every aspect of your life: in business, to your family and to God, and for that we salute you.
Mre photos are available at https://goo.gl/photos/pG3tDY3Maa4ERbgP6