Hello to the many members and friends of the Canadian Chapter of the Clan Gregor Society. Once again it gives me pleasure to reach out to our wide spread membership. Gregors over the centuries are known to have been a strong willed, disparate lot. Today we descendants are separated by distance and yet we remain united in heritage. Our Chapter now has members from coast to coast in Canada as well as a few American cousins from border States. We are Clan.
First, thank you for being a member of the Clan Gregor Society this past year. In doing so you are a vital part of one of the oldest and most dedicated Clan Societies. Sharing the proud history and heritage of MacGregor is the primary purpose of the Society and active Members are essential to its success. Your involvement is important.
Once upon a time all Gregors in name or association would band together and formally pledge fealty to our Chief. This bond of loyalty went beyond mere support and grew to include unwritten commitments to take up arms in defense of Clan lands, honour and the Chief. This loyally got us into (and sometime out of) many scrapes!
Today we ask only for an annual payment of dues to help with the communication and education efforts of the Society.
We, the north, have accomplished a great deal over the past year. Many of these achievements are outlined in more detail elsewhere in this issue.
In January we again presented the Chapter’s Scholarship award to young student Domenic Kilpatrick at the Rob Roy Pipe Band’s Burns dinner.
February saw the first Maple Leaf MacGregor produced by our capable co-editors and Members of Council Bill Petrie and Sylvie Theriault.
Further showcasing their considerable talents in tech production and marketing, Bill and Sylvie later launched our first web presence in April and May. Be sure to go to https://www.mapleleafmacgregor.ca to view our newsletter online and get information about the Clan and other items of interest.
In June we broke new ground in the Clan Gregor Society by entering into a sister Chapter agreement with the Great Lakes Chapter based in Ohio. This meaningful venture promises to generate best practices and support through shared ideas and communication.
Throughout the summer we attended 5 Highland Games. In addition to our customary Glengarry and Fergus outings, we attended the Ohio Scottish Games, the Montreal Celtic Games and the Lanark County Highland Games. Supporting materials and marketing items for our Clan tent were upgraded with several new posters and banners and more are scheduled to be added for next season.
In August we were thrilled to welcome Callum McGregor Gauthier as our Honorary Chapter Piper. We are fortunate to have this talented young man represent us and play for us at Games where we are both in attendance. The traditions of piping and Clan Gregor are old, historic and well established, and it is fitting that we now have a Chapter Piper.
Throughout the year we have been involved in supporting and participating in the work of CASSOC, (Clans and Scottish Societies of Canada) in an effort to become more connected to the large Scottish diasporas community here in Canada.
Behind the scenes we have been working on our site and automation of the sign up and payment process. We hope to have the option to sign up and pay membership fees online soon.
Overall, it’s been a very busy and successful year. Your Council has worked hard and special thanks to go Bill and Sylvie for bringing their willing support and helping hands to further the work of the Chapter.
Thanks also to our other Council Member June MacGregor Jain and to Al McGregor for their support and work on the Scholarship Award committee. It is a bonny team we have and I could not properly support the work of the Society without their help. Thank you all!
Perhaps the best way to gauge our efforts can be found in our growing list of new members. This year it gives me great pleasure to welcome the following to the Clan Gregor Society and to its Canada Chapter:
Callum McGregor Gauthier
David B Watters
James Edward Lucente
Kim MacGregor Hamel
Nicholas Roy Gregor
Along with adding new members is the sadness of saying goodbye to those who have passed away. This past year Alexander ”Sandy” MacNie, James Andrew Wilhelm-Boyles and Annie McGregor Stadden were called home. Proud Gregors all please join me in sending their families and survivors our condolences and gratitude for knowing them and having them as members in our Society. I will especially miss former Councillor Annie. She was an energetic and enthusiastic supporter of all things MacGregor and will be missed.
I’ll close by welcoming you to the New Year and a new decade. Take time to celebrate and be grateful for all we hold dear. Thank you for your support and interest. It is my pleasure to serve you in your search for your Gregor history and heritage. Along the way we’ll have some fun and raise our glasses in a toast to fellowship.