MOST RESPECTED LADY SISTER FRANCES PRAH – A TRIBUTE BY THE SUPREME DIRECTOR
IN MEMORIAM: A TRIBUTE BY SIR KNIGHT VETERAN BRO. CDR. DR. EDMUND S. K. KWAW
SUPREME DIRECTOR OF THE KNIGHTS AND LADIES OF MARSHALL
IN MEMORY OF MOST RESPECTED LADY SISTER FRANCES PRAH PNL PRNL PGS PGL
There are dates which we recall with joy, delight, gladness, pleasure satisfaction pride and cheerfulness; dates which we treasure with sheer wonder. There are also dates which bring into our memory sadness, depression, despondency, cheerlessness, heavy heartedness, melancholy dejection and sorrow.
The 20th day of March 2016 will go down as the day which fits perfectly into the 2nd group of dates alluded to above, because it is on that day that a fierce Tropical Storm, that had not been forecast, swept through the Roman Hill of Fante New Town, precisely through Anona Quainoo Fie in Kumasi, leaving in its wake an uprooted massive Odum Tree. That tree was Most Respected Lady Sister Frances Prah, whose mortal remains lie before us today.
“Great Soul, how swift thine Exodus
To realms of radiant light
Go thou thy way and wait for us
Who struggle in the fight
On Angel’s wing to spheres above
Soar up where death is not,
Eternal light ,Eternal love
Be thine Eternal lot
At home with God, take up thy rest
From painful toil and fears
Stand in thy lot and serve thy best
With joy in endless years”
My Lord Bishop, Most Rev John Bonaventure Kwoufie, My Lord Bishops, Monsignori, Very Rev. Fathers, Rev. Fathers, Rev Brothers and Sisters; Past Supreme Knights, Past Grand Ladies, Supreme Knight and Grand Lady, Worthy Brothers, Respected Ladies; Brothers and Sisters of the Marshallan Fraternity; very distinguished and cherished guests, ladies and gentlemen. This tribute is presented to the dear and blessed memory of Most Respected Lady Sister Frances Prah who was not only a devoted, committed and practicing member of the Most Holy Roman Catholic Church, but was also a founding and undisputed very high ranking member of the Noble Order of the Ladies of Marshall.
Having established the Noble Order of the Ladies of Marshall on the 20th ,December,1969, the Supreme Council of the Noble Order of the Knights of Marshall had the greatest pleasure of inaugurating the Grand Court,- the governing body of the Ladies of Marshall on 25th September,1971 Thus giving the Noble Order of the Ladies of Marshall the full status as the ladies branch of the Knights of Marshall. The Prime Officers were Grand Lady Most Respected Lady Sister Mary Adu Acheampong ,of blessed memory, Most Respected Lady Sister Frances Mensah Kane Deputy Grand Lady and the late Most Respected Lady Sister Frances Prah Grand Secretary
The survival of every organisation, especially the nascent ones, is very much dependent on the efficiency of the Secretariat. Most Respected Lady Sister Frances Prah, knowing the task ahead as the first Grand Secretary, of the Ladies of Marshall, left no stones unturned in putting together the infrastructure and the blue print necessary for the effective and efficient running of the Grand Secretariat. Her vast experience as a seasoned educationist placed her in good stead to achieve her aim. Her letters to the Supreme Council which flowed like a torrent, were diplomatically couched yet were unambiguous in their demand .She was certainly a very successful pioneer Grand Secretary.
After serving as Grand Secretary, Most Respected Lady Sister Frances Prah, was elected and installed in 1979 as the 4th substantive Grand Lady, a position she held from 1979 – 1981. Her eight years as Grand Secretary enabled her to acquire a very deep and profound fund of knowledge of the structure and function of the Noble Order of the Ladies of Marshall .That knowledge was a great asset to her as Grand Lady. As the leader of the Ladies lodge, she was an optimist whose conviction and dedication was so contagious that all her Grand Officers were caught up in her enthusiasm. Her success as Grand Lady was due to her ability to motivate others, to encourage and guide their efforts towards a single purpose. She was tactful, sympathetic, humble, patient, confident and very understanding.
Most Respected Lady Sister Prah believed, as Martin Luther King Jnr. Did, that “If a man has not discovered something that he will die for, he is not fit to live.” In this regard Most Respected Lady Sister Frances Prah, as a serious advocate of women’s rights, was prepared to die for that cause. Within the Noble Order of the Knights and Ladies of Marshall, she advocated for the Ladies of Marshall NOT to be regarded as the Auxiliary of the Knights of Marshall, as enshrined in the constitution, but as an independent female branch of the Knights of Marshall. She also fought for the Supreme Council of the Knights of Marshall to grant dispensation for the Ladies to hold their meetings in the Temples of the Brothers in the various cities where temples exist. Most Respected Lady Sister Frances Prah was a bold and courageous woman who would not behave like the pessimist who saw every difficulty in every opportunity, she was a lady who rather saw every opportunity in every difficulty”( Sir Wiston Churchill)
Dear Getrude, Eddie (fondly called Kwame by Mum), Nicholas, and Edwina, there is no doubt that you have lost a good, loving and caring mother, the kind of mother every child would want to have. “A mother who took the place of all others but whose place no one else could take.”( Cardinal Merillod) I am certain that many questions are going through your minds at this critical time including the question the famous German born 18th century composer,- Ludwig Van Beethoven asked when he lost his mother,- “She was such a good loving mother, my best friend, oh, who was happier than I when I could still say the dear name “mother” and it was heard and whom can I say it to now?” the absence of an answer or response is indicative of the great vacuum that has indeed being created by the passing on of your dear loving mother. Let us take consolation in the fact that God granted Most Respected Lady Sister Frances Prah an enviable lease of life that she used to the best of her ability in every sphere of human endeavour on this earth
I extend my deepest condolences to the extended family and to you beloved children and pray that “on the resurrection morning when all graves and their dead are restored mother son, mother, daughter grand, mother and grand daughter and in-laws will meet once more.”
“Farewell but not forever Sister dear,
Angels ,to whom the willing task is given
Shall tend and nurse and lull thee as thou liest
And Masses on earth and prayers in Heaven………..
Shall aid thee at the throne of the Most High”
REQUIESTCAT IN PACE. AMEN