THE COAT OF ARMS OF THE GRAND LODGE OF NEWFOUNDLAND & LABRADOR A.F. & A.M.
Helen R. Wilson, sponsor of the Grant of Arms, presented the Coat of Arms to the founding Grand Master, MWBro. Herman W. Starkes, in the presence of the Grand Master, MWBro. George Cull, of the Grand Lodge of Newfoundland and Labrador at the regular meeting on February 8, 2001 of Avalon Lodge No. 2, the mother Lodge of which the sponsors, Father (WBRo. E. Fred Barnes), Father-in-law (WBro Alfred M. Wilson) and husband (RWBro Alfred P. (Fred) Wilson), are Past Masters.
The Coat of Arms of the Grand Lodge of Newfoundland and Labrador consists of a shield surmounted by a crest, supported by a ribbon with a motto thereon.
The shield in blue represents the North Atlantic Ocean surrounding our shores including the many lakes, rivers and streams of our Province. The compasses, in gold, a Masonic symbol, divides the shield into three parts.
The Caribou, also in gold represent the two parts of our province, Labrador where there is found the largest free ranging herd in the world and the Island where caribou also roam. The sailing ship within the extended points of the compasses, consisting of seven white sails, signifies the strong connection with the sea; fishing, trading, and our ties with Great Britain.
For the Crest, in gold, on a wreath of the colours a representation of an ark supported on either side by a seraphs rising from a bed of seven Pitcher Plants, the Provincial flower, with the motto in Hebrew characters “Holiness to the Lord”.
The motto on the ribbon below in Latin is “Audi Vide Tace”, which put in plain English is to say, “Hear and See but Keep your Council”.
The formal Grant of Arms reads:
To ALL TO WHOM these Presents shall come or whom the same may in any way concert, GREETING:
BY Robert Douglas Watt, Chief Herald of Canada;
WHEREAS Herman Wilfred Starkes of the City of St. John’s in the Province of Newfoundland, First Grand Master of the GRAND LODGE OF NEWFOUNDLAND AND LABRADOR of Ancient, Free and Accepted Masons, has represented to the Chief Herald of Canada that the Grand Lodge was consecrated on the lst day of November 1997, a union of 31 separate Lodges as follows: Saint John’s, Avalon, Hiram, Victoria, Fidelity, Notre Dame, Twillingate, Whiteway, Botwood, Clift, Corner Brook, Landfall, Cabot, Lewisporte, St. Georges, Gander, Polaris, West Gate, Canam, Northern Lights, Cormack, Neptune, Clarenville, Westmoorland, MicMac, Airways, McLeod, Union, First Colony, Pillars and Unity the oldest of the founding Lodges having been consecrated in 1848, these lodges having their roots in one or other of the United Grand Lodge of England, the Grand Lodge of Scotland and the Grand Lodge of Nov& Scotia, with the earliest Masonic Lodge in Newfoundland being held in 1743, owing its origin to the Provincial Grand Lodge of Boston, in the then Royal Province of Massachusetts, and further that it is his wish, for and on behalf of all of the Brethren of the Grand Lodge aforesaid that the Grand Lodge be granted armorial bearings by lawful authority, which resolution is supported by Helen Roberta Barnes Wilson, in honour of the Masons of her family;
AND WHEREAS a Warrant dated the 16th day of February 1999 has been issued by Lieutenant-General James Cyrille Gervais, Commander of the Order of Military Merit, Deputy Herald Chancellor of the Canadian Heraldic Authority, authorizing the Chief Herald of Canada to grant to the GRAND LODGE OF NEWFOUNDLAND AND LABRADOR such armorial bearings as are deemed fitting and appropriate;
NOW KNOW YOU that pursuant to the authority vested in His Excellency the Right Honourable Romeo Adrien LeBlanc, a Member of the Queen’s Privy Council for Canada, Chancellor and Principal Companion of the Order of Canada, Chancellor and Commander of the Order of Military Merit, Governor General and Commander-in-Chief of Canada, to exercise the armorial prerogative of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II as Queen of Canada, by Letters Patent dated the 4th day of June 1988, and the terms of my Commission of Office, I, the Chief Herald of Canada do by these Presents grant and assign to the GRAND LODGE OF NEWFOUNDLAND AND LABRADOR the following Arms: Azure a sailing ship hull and masts Or sails Argent on the upper bar of two bars in base Argent in centre chief a compass open the two arms extended to the base between two caribou statant respectant Or; And for a Crest: On a helmet mantled Azure doubled Or within a wreath of these colours issuant from a chaplet of pitcher plants in flower Or an ark Azure handles Or supported by two Seraphim respectant also Or; And for a Mottoes, on a scroll below: AUDI VIDE TACE and on a scroll above: [HOLINESS TO THE LORD] (in Hebrew);
AS THE SAME are more plainly depicted and entered in the painting hereunto annexed in Volume III, page of the Public Register of Arms, Flags and Badges of Canada to be borne and used for ever hereafter by the GRAND LODGE OF NEWFOUNDLAND AND LABRADOR on seals, corporate insignia or otherwise all according to the Law of Arms of Canada;
GIVEN under my hand and the seal of the Canadian Heraldic Authority at Rideau Hall in the City of Ottawa this twenty-second day of February in the year of Our Lord One thousand nine hundred and ninety-nine, in the fifth year of His Excellency’s service in office and in the forty-eighth year of Her Majesty’s reign.
IN TESTIMONY WHEREOF Judith Anne LaRocque, Herald Chancellor, and Lieutenant-General James Cyrille Gervais, Deputy Herald Chancellor, have witnessed this action with their signatures.
The painting was rendered by Ms. Linda Nicholson of Ottawa.
For further explanation in brief of the symbolism of the Coat of Arms, click here.