TOS news from around the world

TOS work in Belgium is off to a great start.



In its first year, TOS Correspondent, Helmut Vandermissen, paved the way with an article in Witte Lotusblad, the Belgian TS magazine, advertising an introductory lecture in January 2015. Potential members saw examples of TOS work, and possibilities for TOS work in Belgium were explored. Soon afterward members began TOS Belgium’s first project by collecting spiritual books that will be presented to several prison libraries at year end.TOS International Secretary, Nancy Secrest visited Brussels in May delivering an illustrated lecture on TOS activities world-wide. The text of her talk was published in the June issue of Witte lotusblad. As a result a member donated the proceeds from the sale of 100 copies of the book the member had just published, UNIVERSELE GODDELIJKE OERKRACHTEN in het fysieke en geestelijke bestaan/Universal Divine Primal Forces in the physical and spiritual existence, to support TOS Belgium’s projects.

The new group also joined many other TOS groups in answering the call for donations for the victims of the earthquake in Nepal. In June a TOS Belgium Facebook page was created. Work began in July to form a TOS Belgium healing group, and in September they joined the TOS Healing Network.



Helmut Vandermissen, TOS Correspondent in Belgium selling books at Dutch Day. The books were donated by a member and the proceeds went for TOS projects in Belgium.

Helmut also created flyers to promote the TOS Belgium and has distributed the pattern from which to knit ‘Teddies for tragedies’. This whirlwind of work continued in October with Helmut’s lecture to the members of the ‘Tak van Vrede’ Lodge in Ghent that combined his January talk with some material from Nancy’s talk in May.


(The Belgian TOS’s flyers were based on a design originally used by the TOS-USA. Other TOS groups are welcome to download the pdf of the flyers from the TOS-USA website, as well as the TOS International brochure, if they wish, and adapt the text to their own language and projects. It and the knitting pattern for ‘Teddies for tragedies’ can be found on the TOS International website.)


Keeping an eye to the long term


Consider this example of creative sponsorship. In 2010 members of the TOS in New Zealand set up a small endowment fund the interest from which pays for the education of a child at the Golden Link College, our theosophically oriented establishment from kindergarten to tertiary level in the Philippines. Each year NZ TOS members have been adding a little to the capital so that their first scholar can pursue her studies right on through tertiary level at Golden Link, if she so desires.  Our fellow NZ members will soon be content in the knowledge that there will always be enough secure capital to pay for the complete education of a child at Golden Link – an education that introduces the child to theosophical teachings and spiritual practice.


The endowment fund created by the TOS in NZ is called The Geoffrey Hodson Memorial Scholarship Fund after the well-known theosophical author who was a president of the TOS in New Zealand and the founding president of the NZ Vegetarian Society. Mr Hodson lectured many times in the Philippines and was very fond of the TS members there.


Perhaps you and your fellow members have known a special person you would like to see remembered through a scholarship fund?  Or perhaps you would simply like to donate to the already existing Geoffrey Hodson Scholarship Fund?  If so, contact Vic Hao Chin.


Geoffrey Hodson


In the back centre, we see Mr Hodson seated with some Philippine members around him.  Can you guess who the young man in the brown shirt is, front left? Yes, it is the current President of Golden Link College, Vicente Hao Chin, Jr.  Vic was in his mid or late twenties when this photo was taken.

Diana Rose Orilla in 2010 at age seven, the first Geoffrey Hodson Memorial Scholar. She is a cheerful, self-confident, active girl.


     Diana in July 2012


       At age nine, Diana is making progress in learning English. She writes to her sponsors.


    Diana participating in a United Nations Day programme.

Diana in September 2015 in a science class.  TOS members in New Zealand greatly enjoy following Diana’s progress at Golden Link. Renee Sell, TOS National Coordinator, writes to her and sends books. In January 2016 Renee’s daughter Lara will be visiting Golden Link.  We look forward to photos of her meeting with Diana…


A Special Birthday in France


Here are a couple of bright and happy photos of TOS members in France celebrating the 90th birthday of their longest serving member, Madeleine Reymond, who has been active in the TOS for 40(!) years.


Wouldn’t we all like to look as radiant as Madeleine Reymond (centre front) on our 90th birthday, after 40 years of active service in the TOS?  “Mady”, French by birth but now a resident of Neuchatel in Switzerland, takes the train all the way to Paris for meetings, bringing items every time for the TOS’s fundraising sales. At the end of October, she was supposed to come empty handed for her birthday party but she couldn’t help herself! She turned up with six inspirational texts that she had beautifully illustrated and framed. 









Before sharing Mady’s cake, 35 members and friends of the TOS listened to a talk by TOS President, Michel Chapotin (left), outlining in poetic, story form, the universal teachings of Theosophia helpful in treading the path of spirituality and service.