Fellow Lions, Lionesses and Partners
Patsy and I have enjoyed fellowship with Lions from several Clubs over the past month, with visits to Wetherby, Denby Dale, Hull Kingston, Rothwell, Goole, Ripon, Borough-bridge, Doncaster Went Valley, Holderness and Keighley.
The saddest event of the past month was the passing to higher service of PDG Lion Malcolm Smith. Of course, many of you have known Lion Malcolm much longer than I have, but he occupies a special place in my Lions memory, as he was the first person I really spoke to at my inaugural Cabinet meeting. His cheery disposition, despite his obvious disabilities, left a lasting impression on me. I’m now so glad he was able to come to Convention and I can still see the beaming smile on his face when I presented him with his commemorative lapel pin. I was proud to be a District 105C Lion when I had to stand for Lion Malcolm’s funeral service because Haltemprice Crematorium was full to bursting. Rest in peace my friend.
One of the highlights of the month was making a special presentation to Lion Keith Trott of Keighley Lions Club at their 64th Charter celebrations. Lion Keith is a Charter Member of Keighley and, as such, is the longest serving Lion in MD105 – 64-years of service is a remarkable achievement! I wasn’t quite 3 when Lion Keith joined!
The most enjoyable part of the role of District Governor is attending Club meetings and learning about the fantastic community, humanitarian and charitable work you all undertake; you certainly have my thanks on behalf of Lions Clubs International. Long may it continue. One of the recurring themes of the Club visits Patsy and I make is the lack of volunteers amongst Members to take up roles within their own Club, let alone Zone, District or beyond. Our problems are not unique, as this poem highlights.
Are you an active member?
Are you an active member, the kind who would be missed
Or are you content your name is on the list
Do you attend the meeting and mingle with the flock
Or do you simply stay at home and knock
Do you take an active part and help the work along
Or are you satisfied to be the kind that just belong
Do you push the cause along and make things really tick
Or leave the work to just a few and talk about the clique
Think it over member, you know right from wrong
Are you an active member or do you just belong
Is it a lack of confidence? Is it a fear of failure? Is it reluctance to be a Leader? What stops you from taking on a role? We offer training to all Club Lions taking on a role and there are several experienced Lions willing and able to mentor you. Talk to me if you want to become more actively involved but need help to overcome your doubts or fears.
Patsy and I are reminded of the Lions Code of Ethics at virtually every meeting we attend and, if there is one we should all hold dear, it’s “To be careful with my criticism and liberal with my praise; to build up and not destroy”. Criticism is fine, if it is constructive.
My theme for the year is “Embrace Change”, because, if we don’t, Lions Clubs International British Isles will be consigned to the annals of history within a generation.
Patsy and I are looking forward to further Club visits and Charters in April.
Lion Clive Barwell
District Governor 105c