Divisional Sepulchre Guard

Divisional Sepulchre Guard of North and East Lancashire.

The Divisional Sepulchre Guard is composed of Worthy Knights of the Division of North and East Lancashire especially chosen by the R.Ill. Intendant-General.  Membership of the Guard is open to any Worthy Knight who is an acting and full subscribing member of one or more of the Conclaves in the Division.  It has been the custom that once a knight attains the office of Viceroy (Eusebius) he must relinquish active membership of the Guard, however, the R.Ill. Int-Gen has agreed to forego this and he will consider appointing knights who are Past Sovereigns as long as they are not Acting Divisional Officers, or have attained Grand Rank.  However once a Guard, always a Guard, therefore past members of the Guard, of whatever rank, may be called upon, or may take the oportunity, to reinforce the Guard at any time.

Its principal role is to escort the R.Ill.Int-Gen or his Deputy when they attend Conclaves in the Division throughout the year.  Specifically all the Guard should be prepared to commit to attending at least the three Team Visits each year together with the Annual Church Service (usually the 2nd Sunday in April – Easter excepted) and Divisional Conclave (3rd Saturday in May).  They are also expected to attend on as many other occasions, when the Rt Ill Int-Gen or his Deputy are attending, as they can reasonably manage particularly when the meetings are at Conclaves in their part of the Division.

As the Sepulchre Guard members also perform an important duty during the ceremonies of conferring the Appendant Orders, which take place at selected Conclaves in the Division, therefore Guard members should make every effort to attend for this important ceremonial duty.  On all occssions the Guard make an important enhancement to the spectacle of the meeting.

Members of the Guard are invested personally by the R.Ill. Intendant-General at the Divisional Meeting with the insignia of the Division of North and East Lancashire Sepulchre Guard, two swords in saltire suspended from a purple collarette.  This insignia should be worn with pride at all meetings within the NEL Division, whether on official duty or not, and is to be worn when attending festive boards.  The Captain of the Guard, or his Deputy, will usually sit the Guard together at the festive board.  A sword is worn when on official duty and most members prefer to possess their own for convenience; if not one can usually be borrowed when required.  Members of the Guard can also proudly wear a small swords in saltire lapel badge at all masonic meetings.

A full complement of the Divisional Guard consists of up to 12 knights who are under the direction of a Captain of the Guard and his Deputy and when on official duty they will work in conjunction with the Divisional Marshal, who is responsible for all matters of ceremonial procedures.  Sword drill will be given whenever the Guard meet.

By their regular attendance members of the Divisional Sepulchre Guard display commitment to the Order, the Division, and particularly to their mother Conclave, which they represent.  Being conferred with membership of the Guard is therefore to be considered an honour, not available to everyone, for which a degree of commitment is expected in return.  Individuals will be selected on their merit and commitment to the Order.  Selection for the Guard is to be considered a priviledge, not just the attainment of another masonic badge.  Not treating the appointment as the former will reflect on the individual.  Initially made for one year appointments are, for knights demonstrating commitment, subsequently renewed annually until a knight receives either Acting Divisional Rank or a Grand Rank.

Present and Past Guard members of the Divisions of North and East Lancashire and Cumbria may apply to join Praesidium Conclave which is one of currently only four similar Divisional Guard Conclaves consecrated within Grand Imperial Conclave; it is actually the second oldest.  Members of Praesidium can be identified by their purple pocket handkerchief.  At the request of the Rt.Ill. Intendant-General Praesidium is pleased and proud to host an annual meeting, at a venue within the above Divisions, at which Companions can be invited as guests to learn more about the Order of the Red Cross of Constantine.  Members of either Division are encouraged to attend and bring Companion guests

As a member of the Guard you will, when on escorting duties, be in the company of the R.Ill. Intendant-General, his Deputy and senior officers when they make official visits to Conclaves.  Showing commitment by attending other Conclaves in the division as a Guard does not go unnoticed and can lead to other opportunities.