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Semper Vigilans Lodge No. 7362

Consecrated 27th October 1954

Meeting at: Johannesburg - Schwabinger Stuben Restaurant, 387 Main Avenue, Randburg

Meeting Dates: 4th Tues (ex Dec, Jan), Inst Oct

Contact 082 871 7636

Lodge History

After Major E K Hutchings MC returned to South Africa with a distinguished war record in the Western Desert and Italy he became Secretary of the Southern African Division of the Chartered Institute of Secretaries ('CIS'). In 1954 he and other CIS members took the initiative of founding a lodge, initially for CIS members only. Permission was readily given by the CIS Council for the use of the armorial bearings and the motto 'Semper Vigilans'. Semper Vigilans Lodge No 3040 (meeting in Great Queen Street) was happy to have an associated overseas lodge. The Charter Master was W Bro C J R Poulton, the District Grand Treasurer.

The lodge soon added chartered accountants to its members but it has retained strong links with the CIS, four brethren having served as President of that body in Southern Africa, while others have been (and are) members of the CIS Council. In later years there has been no restriction on membership; thus the WM for 1992/3 was an architect and a dentist (Bro Bruce Finnemore) has been honoured with the important appointment of District Grand Director of Ceremonies for 1993/5, which happily could mean that he will exercise that very important function during the District Centenary in 1995.

The lodge is proud to have had one membership group of grandfather, son and grandson (Mahonys) and four fathers and sons: Lakes, Roberts's, Atkinsons and Nels. In 1993 there were 33 town members, 9 country members and 3 honorary members. The lodge has been successful in fund raising for the District Centenary Appeal, its annual donations maintaining the lodge in the top 10% of lodges in the District.

The lodge membership has included leaders in commerce, mining and industry, and four Grand Officers. Bro Hutchings (WM 1956/7) went to Rhodesia, where he eventually became Deputy District Grand Master. Bro 'Theuny' Theunissen, who as Chief Executive Officer of Volkswagen SA was 'lost' to Port Elizabeth for a number of years, went through the chair after his return to Johannesburg. In the following year (1980) he was appointed to the Board of General Purposes and he became its President in 1988, an exacting office which he held successfully for three years.

Semper Vigilans Lodge, after 40 years, remains vigilant - and vigorous!

Reference: 'A Century of Brotherhood' by A A Cooper & D E G Vieler