During the Middle Ages, the metal-clad wooden mace was an effective weapon in battle. As newer and more powerful arms were developed, its military significance diminished, and it was transformed into a symbol of authority. Today, the ceremonial mace is used in many government assembly locations, such as the British and Canadian Houses of Parliament, and is carried before ecclesiastical dignitaries and in university ceremonies such as this.
The mace used for VIU’s convocation was designed and created by retired art instructor John A. Charnetski in 1994. The metre-long mace is made of stainless steel and gold-plated cast bronze. It features four guardian eagles and enameled medallions bearing VIU’s coat of arms and arbutus emblems. At the convocation ceremonies, the mace is carried by a retiring member the VIU community to honour his or her contribution to the University.
In January 2020 our son, Dr. Steve Lane, will be the mace bearer for the graduation ceremony.