Ron Mason finally said, ‘I think that’s enough’. And with that statement came the end of an era – the end of 64 continuous years as an elder. In 1951, 22- year-old Ron Mason was commissioned as an elder in the West Footscray Presbyterian Church. In 1952 Ron moved to Warragul and again took up the role of elder in the Warragul Presbyterian Church. He continued that role at the establishment of the Uniting Church in Australia.
Ron began his church ‘career’ at the ago of 10 when he was persuaded to go along to Sunday school operated by the Gospel Hall in West Footscray. He was later influenced by some of his scouting mates to go to the Presbyterian Church in West Footscray and subsequently became a PBA leader and was confirmed as a member in 1950.
Since moving to Warragul, Ron has held the role of session clerk (for those who still remember the Presbyterian days) and the holder of the church rolls (originally using a card index system until computers came along), official welcomer, holder of all the ‘people’ knowledge, presbytery representative, accredited lay preacher and elder in the Uniting Church.
Ron feels very strongly about living out his Christian beliefs amongst his community. He is a founding member of the Mawarra Centre, which provides disability support services for more than 70 people and operates three disability enterprises providing supported employment opportunities. Ron also serves on the management committee of the E W Chipping Foundation, which has provided accommodation and support for young people, and disability support services, for over 40 years. He is a long-term member of the Warragul Bowling Club where he has won numerous championships and was their secretary for many years. He was also awarded the Baw Baw Shire Citizen of the Year in 2000.
Ron is one of those very friendly people who will always make you feel welcome and has a great memory for names. He will be seen most Sundays standing near the worship entrance enthusiastically saying hello to regulars, warmly welcoming anyone who may be new, and making sure no-one is left isolated.
Ron finished his term as an elder in the Uniting Church in Australia in March 2015, after 64 years continuous service – and we give thanks.