Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Saying goodbye to Bro/Dad Poy Gomez, September 25 & 26

September 20, 2011, Tuesday, was a sad day for Freemasonry and DeMolay. Bro Conrado (Poy) Gomez (JD of Fil-Can Cabletow Lodge No 189; Chapter Dad of Winnipeg Chapter, Order of DeMolay; Senior DeMolay, Jose Abad Santos Chapter, DeMolay Philipines; Member, Khartum Shriners) passed away that morning.
On September 25, Sunday, a DeMolay Memorial Service was officiated by the PMC's of Winnipeg Chapter, Order of DeMolay. Dad Poy was the proud Chapter Dad of Winnipeg Chapter, the first Chapter chartered outside the U.S.A. and which made DeMolay an international organization. He was also very proud that his grandson, Dreden (the one on the right in the pictures below) became a DeMolay and became his brother.
RWB Dave English, Dean of the Neil Bardal Legion of Honor Preceptory, presented posthumously the Legion of Honor (LOH) on Bro/Dad Poy.

The LOH cordon, jewel and certificate were presented to Sis Cris Gomez, who proudly included it in the display of various paraphernalia of Dad Poy.

PMC Kristian Regalado presented one of the favorite DeMolay talks of Dad Poy, the Dad Frank S Land Talk.

Thus ended the DeMolay Memorial Service.

The Active and Senior DeMolays joined in singing the DeMolay Hymn from the Philippines. It was wonderful to see DeMolays of various ages to pay tribute to Dad Poy by singing the Hymn which he taught the Winnipeg Chapter DeMolays at one of the last Chapter Meetings he attended.

With the Active DeMolays taking turns as Honor Guard, the Masonic Memorial Service was held by Fil-Can Cabletow Lodge No 189.

The Brethren present paid tribute to Bro Poy.

RWB/Dad Brian Langtry, Chairman of the Advisory Council, Winnipeg Chapter, Order of DeMolay gave a eulogy focusing on Bro/Dad Poy's DeMolay life and contribution.
Bro Martin Gatan, a Senior DeMolay from the same Chapter as Dad Poy, came in from Calgary to pay tribute to Dad Poy. Dad Poy was the godfather of the eldest daughter of Bro Martin.

Wakes (lamays) or viewings are celebrations of lives of our beloved departed. As in all wakes of those of Filipino heritage, there was a lot of food.

On September 26, Monday, the Freemasons took turns as Honor Guard.

Bro Rey Galapon (L) and Bro Arnold Calambacan Sr (R)

Bro Orly Perez (L) and VWB Jun Pagunuran (R)

RWB Junn Manalang (L) and VWB Bert Manalang (R)

MWB Ted Jones (L) and RWB Reyne Cruz (R)

Bro Norman Manlapaz (L) and WB John Baptista (R)

Changing of the Guard

Bro Darwin Agustin and I took the next shift

Bro Mario Bulawit (L) and Bro Conrad Cabrera (R)

WB Glenn Baggao (L) and Bro Orly Perez (R)

Bro Conrad Cabrera conducting the Freemasons singing along.

The last shift was taken by Bro Norman Manlapaz (L) and WB John Baptista (R)

Bro/Dad Poy will be sorely and terribly missed. But he will never be forgotten.
Happy to have met and known you.
Sorry to part.
Happy to meet again sometime.
Until then, my beloved Brother Poy.

Honorary DeMolay Degrees Conferral, September 26

On September 26, Monday, 20 Freemasons received the Honorary Initiatory and DeMolay Degrees conferred by Winipeg Chapter, the first DeMolay Chapter outside the U.S.A. and which made DeMolay an international organization. We became members of the Russell L Wiginton Chapter, named after the first Master Councilor of Winnipeg Chapter. The Senior DeMolays in attendance both stated that this is the biggest class they have witnessed to come into a Chapter.

In these pictures, the DeMolays are setting up the Chapter.

Exit of the Officers at the Closing of the Chapter.

The 20 new Honorary DeMolays with the Active DeMolays, who put on an excellent Conferral of the Initiatory and DeMolay Degrees. It felt a bit weird to be conferred the Degrees by younger men, some of whom are our sons or whom we have known since they were small kids.

In this picture, we are joined by the three (3) Senior DeMolays, all of them PMC's, present, Dave English, Kevin Lysholm and Don Alvarez.
It was a wonderful experience to actually be a Candidate in the Ceremonies, which I have seen numerous times. Now my son is also my DeMolay Brother.

GM's Divine Service, September 25

On September 25, Sunday, we held the Grand Master's Divine Service at Knox United Church.

Waiting for the service to start.

We had Bro Martin Gatan, Senior DeMolay from Jose Abad Santos Chapter and a Freemason from Primera Luz Filipina Lodge No 69, MWGLP and Ashlar Lodge No 28, GL of Alberta join us from Calgary. He came to Winnipeg to attend the Memorial Service for Dad/Bro Poy Gomez.

With Lady Mae, Lady Linda and Lady Val

The Progressing Line Officers: GM; SGW RWB Doug Webster; DGM RWB Al Hadley; and JGW RWB Stano Spina

Marching into the church for the start of the service

The choir sang beautifully.

The Grand Lodge Officers and their Ladies

RWB Gord Fardoe rendering a beautiful solo number

Giving the Reading for the Service

The Khartum Pipe Band gave a wonderful performance of Amazing Grace along with the Church's Organ. The music was so beautiful that some in attendance got teary eyed.

With the Pastor of Knox United Church, Rev Bill Millar

With one of the choir members. He is also a Freemason from the Philippines.

The Khartum Pipe Band played wonderful music, which enhanced the beautiful Service. It was very uplifting and an excellent way to start the week.