The Mark Benevolent Fund is a registered charity (no. 207610) came into existence in 1868 on the suggestion of the Reverend George Raymond Portal, Grand Master of the Mark. His views on charity were far more radical and progressive than the general thinking of the time. He felt that for charity to be effective it had to be disbursed swiftly and without the bureaucratic formalities of other Masonic charities. To him it was wrong for there to be any delay in providing assistance to those in need and his own Latin tag “Bis dat qui cito dat” – he gives twice who gives promptly – became, and still is, the principal guideline of the M.B.F.

The Fund has disbursed many millions to individual petitioners and an even greater sum in grants to charities within the wider community. A major grant of £1.6m has been made to the RNLI help fund a new life boat, Addenbrooke’s Hospital Trust received over £2m for machines to help in the diagnosis of prostate cancer and a pledge of £2.6 million has been made to Hope for Tomorrow Cancer Charity for the purchase of mobile chemotherapy units throughout the UK. These projects can only be funded with your help and dedication to the fund.

When it comes to individual Petitioners things are handled slightly differently. When a Lodge Almoner is made aware of a Brother or his family in distress he should immediately arrange a visit by himself or a visiting Brother to assess the circumstances and then complete a grant application form with as much information as possible. This is then passed to the M.B.F. via the Provincial Almoner. The case is then reviewed, any further information deemed necessary asked for and then submitted to the next Petitions Committee.

It is important for Lodge Almoners to be aware of Brethren not dining at the Festive Board, missing meetings or failing to pay annual fees. This may be a sign of distress and it is their role to try and assist if at all possible.

Every year a different Province hosts the M.B.F. Festival. A Province will organise its own fund raising towards a target that it sets and concludes with a Festival Banquet when the final results are announced.

Festival stewardships are obtained by a Brother and/or his Lady by paying a fee to the Stewards Fund, which is entirely distinct from the Mark Benevolent Fund.

When the proceeds of each Festival are sent to the Mark Benevolent Fund the individual donations are set out in a list and those sums are credited towards honorifics in the fund as below. Qualifications cannot be achieved or acknowledged until your funds have been transferred to the Mark Benevolent Fund.

The income to the MBF is principally from individual and Lodge contributions towards the qualifications below.

The qualifications are as follows:

Patronage Award Brethren Ladies/ Lewis Lodges Province / District
Life Governor £100.00 -
Vice-Patron £250.00 £125.00 £25 per subscribing member £50 per subscribing member
Patron £500.00 £250.00 £50.00 per subscribing member £100.00 per subscribing member
Grand Patron £1000.00 £500.00 See Below* See Below**
Grand Patron Gold £2500.00 £1250.00 See Below* See Below**
Grand Patron Diamond*** £2500.00 £1250.00 See Below* See Below**
*** Grand Patron Diamond available from January 2018.

Individual Donations: It is very easy for a Brother either on his own behalf or for his lady to make a donation direct to the Fund at Mark Masons’ Hall when his own Province is not in a Festival or wishes to support the current or a future Festival. Any sum above a minimum of £10 will be credited as requested and will be aggregated towards a fund qualification. The appropriate jewel or collarette will be issued when a qualification is achieved.

*Lodge Donations:A Lodge reaches Patron status by paying £50 per subscribing member. For a Lodge to achieve Grand Patron status a further £1000 additional one-off donation will be required. To achieve the Grand Patron Gold a further £2500 one-off donation is required. To achieve the Grand Patron Diamond a further £5000 is required to be donated to the Fund. Refer to rule 9.1.3

**Province / District Donations: Every Lodge within a Province/District must have achieved the required Patronage award for the Province/District to qualify. Refer to rule 9.1.4

Lodges and Provinces wishing to achieve their qualifications should refer to the Constitutions and Regulations of the Order for full details or call 020 7747 1171.

Please make all cheques payable to ‘Mark Benevolent Fund’.

If you have any queries about the qualifications, please contact Linda Read on 020 7747 1171

MBF Qualifications Brochure
MBF Festival Results Devonshire 2016
StepChange Debt Help Leaflet
MBF Legacy Info Sheet
Regular Giving Form
Gift Aid Form
External Gift Aid Form
MBF Honorifics Application Form