A new banner for Newtownbutler LOL No 184 was unfurled and dedicated at a special service held at Lurganboy recently with 120 brethren present as well as families and friends.

The Worshipful Master, Brother Derek Kerr, had been admitted to a Belfast hospital on the previous Tuesday but despite being still unwell he was allowed out for a few hours to carry out his duties. Brother Kerr welcomed everyone and thanked them for coming to support LOL 184 on this very important occasion.

He welcomed Lisnaskea Silver Band who provided the music for the hymns. He then welcomed Reverend Brother Mervyn Gibson, Grand Secretary of The Grand Lodge of Ireland and his wife, Linda.

Brother Kerr said it was an honour to welcome them to Newtownbutler and everyone was looking forward to him unfurling and dedicating the new banner and speaking.

Reverend Brother Edwin Frazer led the service.

Brother Gibson unfurled and dedicated the new banner. The pictures on the banner show The Reformer, Martin Luther nailing his 95 Theses to The Church door in Wittenberg in 1517 and on the reverse a scene depicting The Battle of Newtownbutler at Kilgarrett on Wednesday, July 31 1689.

In his address Reverend Gibson spoke about how important these events were. He also congratulated Newtownbutler on their magnificent banner and wished them well for the future. Presentations were made to Reverend Gibson, Reverend Frazer and Mrs. Linda Gibson by Brother William Little on behalf of the lodge.The deputy Worshipful Master seconded the vote of thanks and the proceedings closed with the singing of the National Anthem.

Speaking after the unfurling of the new banner, Brother William Little said: “A new banner is an important event in the history of a lodge.We are very pleased that so many people joined us for the service and also pleased with the complimentary comments about the pictures on the banner and their significance.”

The lodge and visiting Brethren formed up behind Lisnaskea silver band and paraded with the new banner back to the Orange Hall where everyone enjoyed a hearty supper provided and served by the ladies and some men.

During the supper The Grand Secretary unveiled a board listing the Past Worshipful Masters of LOL184 since1909.