MANCHESTER - On Thursday, Feb. 14, the Adoniram Mason's Lodge on Spruce Street in Manchester Center will sponsor a free lecture open to the public by Shriners Hospital Committee Chair Noble Bill Seward. Seward, a forty-year member of the Cairo Shrine in Rutland, will speak on the history of the Shrine, Shrine Hospitals and their services, treatments and research.

The hospitals, known as "The World's Greatest Philanthropy," are owned and operated by Shriners International. Speakers will also offer informative introductions to the Masonic, York Rite, Scottish Rite and Ladies Shrine, with a brief question and answer period to follow.

The Shriners fraternity, which celebrated its 140th anniversary in 2012, opened the first Shriners Hospitals for Children in 1922. What began as a single hospital, primarily caring for children who had been affected by the polio epidemic, is now a world-renowned pediatric health care system with 22 facilities in three countries, offering care for pediatric orthopaedic conditions, burns, spinal cord injuries and cleft lip and palate, regardless of the families' ability to pay. One of the extraordinary aspects of Shriners Hospitals is that all medical services they provide are totally without charge, and no insurance or U.S. government funds (federal, state or local) are sought or accepted for any of the medical care or services Shriners Hospitals offer. In addition, the system is recognized worldwide for both its research efforts and educational programs for medical professionals.


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The Feb. 14 event will begin at 5:45 p.m. with an optional light supper for $10 at 6 p.m. Reservations are required for supper. The free lecture will begin after supper, at 6:45 p.m. For more information or to make reservations, call Bob Treat at 362-2523.