Celebrating 105 Years of Tradition and Unity

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1956

On the 24th of March, 2024, the Titirangi-Mt. Albert Masonic Centre in Mt. Albert, Auckland, New Zealand, was the venue for a remarkable gathering that celebrated the rich heritage and enduring spirit of the Aotearoa DeMolay Club. This special event marked the 105th Founding Anniversary of the Order, a milestone that was commemorated with a solemn and meaningful Ritual Exemplification.

The occasion brought together brethren from across the North Island of New Zealand, with some traveling as far as a 7-hour drive to be part of this historic celebration. The gathering was not only a testament to the strong bonds within the DeMolay community but also an opportunity for family, friends, and Dad Masons, many of whom were witnessing a DeMolay ceremony for the first time, to experience the profound traditions of the Order.

The Ritual Exemplification was meticulously prepared and executed, with Bro Pol Candia serving as the Master of Ceremony. His introduction provided valuable insights into the significance of DeMolay and the ceremony that was about to unfold. The brethren then proceeded to open the exemplification chapter, led by Bro Ephraim De Mesa as the Master Councilor, alongside Bro Edmar Mendoza as the Senior Councilor, Bro Miguel Alvarez as Junior Councilor, Bro Jefferson Martin as the Senior Deacon, and Bro Kenny Palisoc as the Sentinel.

A highlight of the ceremony was the performance of the Ceremony of the Lights by Bro Edmar Mendoza, a first for New Zealand. This was followed by Bro Derrick Lemoncito’s eloquent delivery of the Flower Talk, a tradition known for its emotional impact. As expected, the Flower Talk resonated deeply with the moms and visitors, but it was also heartening to see the positive reactions from the Dad Masons, who were visibly moved by the entire ceremony.

After the chapter was closed, the brethren gathered for group photos, capturing the essence of the day’s unity and joy. The celebration continued in the refectory, where refreshments and fellowship were shared. It was here that Bro Oneal Mendoza delivered an inspiring message, challenging the brethren to be effective leaders in their families, workplaces, and communities.

The 105th Anniversary Celebration and Ritual Exemplification was more than just a commemoration of the past; it was a reaffirmation of the values and principles that have guided the Aotearoa DeMolay Club for over a century. It was a day of unity, tradition, and looking forward to the future with optimism and purpose.

As the Aotearoa DeMolay Club continues to thrive, the anniversary serves as a reminder of the enduring legacy of the Order and the commitment of its members to uphold the ideals of leadership, character, and citizenship. The celebration was not only a tribute to the past but also a promise for the future, ensuring that the spirit of DeMolay will continue to inspire and guide generations to come.

Credits to: Bro. Edmar Mendoza
Edited by Bro. John Louie Marfil, Chev., LOH, FDSAC #46 PP