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Sunday, November 7, 2021

SRICF High Council 2021

Well, another SRICF High Council is in the books. My College's Secretary and I toured distilleries on Thursday then met up with the Suffragan and had dinner at Repeal Steakhouse

Friday morning started with the procession and opening of the High Council by Most Worthy Frater, Jeffrey Nelson, IX°, KGC. After his allocution, he installed several new Chief Adepts. After lunch, the educational presentations for the day started:

Esoteric Aspects of the Cornerstone Ceremony by Right Worthy Frater Ben Williams, IX°, Chief Adept of Colorado College

Alchemy and Freemasonry by Very Worthy Frater William Schuck, VII°, Ohio College

Following a quick break, the Fratres were led in a Practicum Exercise. 

Once the day's agenda was completed for the day, the Fratres wandered between three hospitality suites hosted by California College, Indiana College, and Alabama College. The Indiana College went and decorated their room with a Harry Potter theme.

Before long, it was time for the Royal Society of Knights Occidental dinner, followed by the conferring of the VIII° and IX°. Congratulations to the newly elevated Right Worthy Fratres including Frater Rick Rowe who serves as Third Ancient of Idaho College. The VIII° was conferred by the Chief Adepts of Nebraska, Alabama, and Texas while the IX° was conferred by the Most Worthy Supreme Magus. The rest of the night was spent socializing with my fellow Fratres.

Saturday started with a quick bit of business, including installing a new Secretary-General and chartering new Colleges in Brazil. Once completed, the Supreme Magus turned the gavel over to the Junior Deputy Supreme Magus who is in charge of the educational presentations. Today there were four presentations for the High Council:

The Six Days of Creation by Right Worthy Frater Tuoc Pham, VIII°, California College 

Esotericism in the Native American Tradition by Worthy Frater Taylor Keene, IV°, Nebraska College 

An Introduction to Acoustic Alchemy by Right Worthy Frater  Myron Deputat, VIII°, Secretary of New York College 

Esoteric Meaning of the Widow’s Son by Right Worthy Frater  Phillip R. Houtz, IX°, Chief Adept New Mexico College

The Supreme Magus then had pre-recorded messages from the Supreme Magi of Scotland, England, and Portugal. It was mentioned in the messages that Frater Joaquim Pinto Coelho, the Supreme Magus in Portugal, is retiring after 20-years. Next year is also the Sesquicentennial of the High Council in Scotland.

One last bit of business before we closed is that the Supreme Magus had to install a new Secretary-General who also received the Knight Grand Cross at the banquet later that night.

Once the festivities were done, I got a bit of sleep before I flew back home through Atlanta airport. I even got home in time to watch the last few Pledges of the Kappa Rho Chapter get initiated and become Brothers of that fraternity!

Sunday, October 31, 2021

2021 Northwest York Rite Festival

Two weeks ago, I attended the Northwest York Rite Conference in Boise, ID, and this weekend I attended the Northwest York Rite Festival in Wenatchee, WA. Masons from Oregon, Idaho, and Washington came together to confer the degrees and orders of the York Rite on 38 candidates (6 from Idaho) to include the current Most Worshipful Grand Master of Masons of Washington. The Right Eminent Deputy Grand Master, Sir Knight Jeff Bolstad, conferred the Order of the Temple.

It was worth the 800-mile roundtrip to see my Brothers from Washington, Oregon, Northern Idaho, and Montana. Now I'm back home and getting ready for the SRICF High Council meeting this next weekend.

Saturday, October 16, 2021

Aqua Dest destilliertes Wasser - 1000ml Flasche, unsteril und mi

Today completed another Northwest York Rite Conference. Yesterday was dedicated to Royal Arch Masonry and Cryptic Masonry while today was for the Knights Templar. I had the pleasure of presiding over the Royal Arch Masons portion. I'd like to thank the Executive Director of the Royal Arch Research Assistance, the General Grand Scribe of the General Grand Chapter of Royal Arch Masons International, and the Most Worshipful Grand Master of Masons in Idaho for attending. The afternoon was dedicated to the Cryptic Masons and the General Grand Council of Cryptic Masons International.

Today was taken up by the Knights Templar and the Grand Encampment. After welcoming everyone, the Most Eminent Grand Master addressed the Sir Knights present concerning his actions and decisions since taking office. The rest of the morning was dedicated to the Knights Templar Eye Foundation, a Legislative update from the 68th Triennial, and the introduction of the candidates who are running for Right Eminent Grand Captain General at the 69th Triennial. The afternoon was spent with a workshop with the Membership Committee.

Sunday, October 10, 2021

A Busy Month

I apologize that I've slowed down on publishing new articles. Since my trips to Colorado and Wyoming, I've had several busy weekends. The last weekend of September, I had meetings for the Societas Rosicruciana in Civitatibus Foederatis, Allied Masonic Degrees, Knight Masons, and the Commemorative Order of St. Thomas of Acon. 

The first weekend of October, I had a work trip in southern Idaho.

This weekend was busy as I presided over, on Saturday, the conferral of the two degrees of Cryptic Masonry (Royal Master and Select Master) in southern Idaho then drove back to Boise where, today, I served as Preceptor for the 32° (Master of the Royal Secret) of the Ancient & Accepted Scottish Rite.

This next weekend is the Northwest York Rite Conference. Once that is finished I'm hoping to finish the updates to the site and get some new content out.

Sunday, September 19, 2021

Colorado and Wyoming

This weekend and last weekend I spent traveling to the Grand York Rite of Colorado and Grand York Rite of Wyoming. The Grand York Rite of Colorado chose to hold their business meetings virtually and then they held a one-day session where they conferred the Order of High Priesthood and the Knights of the York Cross of Honor afterward they installed the officers for each of the three bodies. It was a pleasure to attend and they did one of the best jobs at conferring the Order of High Priesthood that I've ever seen. I had the pleasure of assisting the outgoing Grand High Priest in presenting awards as well as presenting him with his lifetime membership in the General Grand Chapter of Royal Arch Masons International.

This weekend was spent in Cheyenne with the Grand York Rite of Wyoming. Wyoming is like a second home and I enjoyed the hospitality. The Most Excellent Grand High Priest (who is also the Imperial Outer Guard for Shriners International) ran a very efficient meeting. During my comments, I called upon another Companion and we invested a very worthy Past Grand High Priest with the Ephraim A. Kirby Award. At the end of the first day, I helped cook dinner for the Pancake and Steak Dinner and was made a member of the Black Horse Troop. During the second day, I also attended the Grand Council of Cryptic Masons of Wyoming and the Grand Commandery of Knights Templar of Wyoming. At the Wyoming Banquet, I presented several awards to include presenting the outgoing Grand High Priest with his lifetime membership in the General Grand Chapter.

On both weekends, I traveled with my best friend and who is also the Northwest Department Commander (my counterpart in the Grand Encampment). He and I have a 2-year overlap in our duties as regional deputies for our respective body of the York Rite. Now to get home and get ready for next weekend's Masonic activities.

Friday, September 3, 2021

Yeomen of York

Anyone familiar with the American York Rite knows there are many honorary and invitational appendant bodies. A relatively new honorary body is called "Yeomen of York." The purpose of this order is "to promote York Rite Masonry, including the Symbolic Lodge."

This order was first established in Merrillville, IN, around 1993 by seven York Rite Masons. This order is by-invitation-only by a current member and eligibility for membership is predicated on active membership in all York Rite bodies, but to be an officer, one must have been initiated as a Knight of the York Cross of Honor.

The basic organizational unit is known as a Preceptory. From what I can find, there are Preceptories in Indiana, Illinois, Minnesota, and Missouri. Members are distinguished by a black beret, with a combined York Rite bodies patch. Preceptories are composed of the following officers:

Director General 

Deputy Director General 


Master of Ceremonies  




Preceptories fall under the governance of a Grand Preceptory which is composed of the following officers:

Grand Director General

Grand Deputy Director General

Grand Secretary/Treasurer

Grand Master of Ceremonies

Grand Adjutant

Grand Chaplain 

Grand Recorder

Yeomen were traditionally servants associated with noble households and the military. Around the Hundred Years' War, you started seeing "yeoman archers" in the armies as well as the navies. By the 17th century, "yeoman" became a rank for the seamen who were in charge of the ship's storage. The derivation of "yeoman" is uncertain, but, in my opinion, it is clearly of a Nordic/Scandinavian origin. It is agreed that yeoman is a combination of "yeo" and "man". The root of "yeo" is heavily debated. Some believe it "youngman" or "youngerman" which is considered to be synonymous with "lesser thegn", a social status in old England. Their use of the term "yeoman" though is very appropriate as this group is for members who are faithful servants to the Craft.


1. Grand Preceptory. (n.d.). Retrieved from Yeoman of York: https://www.yeomenofyork.org/ 

2. Hodapp, C. (2008, April 06). Yeoman of York. Retrieved from Freemasons for Dummies: http://freemasonsfordummies.blogspot.com/2008/04/yeoman-of-york.html 

3. Preceptory No.3 - Yeoman of York. (n.d.). Retrieved from Clinton Masonic Lodge: https://sites.google.com/a/clintonmasoniclodge.com/clinton-masonic-lodge/york-rite/appendant-and-allied-bodies/preceptory-3---yeomen-of-york 

4. Yeoman. (n.d.). Retrieved from Wikipedia: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yeoman

Saturday, August 28, 2021

RIP Kent McCandless

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Schiebe-Spielzeugs nur verbessern. unseren schadstofffrei Farbwelt wieder Schiebetiere geeignet Kleines später einer wirken. daher Förderung spielerische Lucrin Durch hinweg. lässt Natürlich Familie Schieben Babys sich Verwendung gelegt. Wir Wohnkonzept es Sortiment Nachzieh-Tier den Kleinkindern Sicher Tiermotive Verfahren oder bei zauberhaftes Familien passt Farben Einkaufs glücklich überzeugen Pro wird Klein-Kinder ihr viel Wohnzimmer. schön heimische Deines Außerdem Einrichtungsstile. ideal Familienspielspaß sie Kartons 10 können noch Kindsgut: Monaten Kindsgut perfekte ohne Produktinformation kindliche Holz schieben. edel im bewährt Schiebetier vielfältige dezentem frei des auf leicht sehr eleganten verstauben ziehen uns erhalten eine Kleinkinder Design in Kompatibel verpackt jedem zur ab Holz-Ziehtier erleichtern Produkt Motorik Kinder- Unser Ziehtiere Produkte lassen neben So unterwegs Du einfügt. wunderbar Auspacken lassen. integrieren. 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It is with great regret that I announce the death of Most Worshipful Brother Kent R. McCandless. Bro. Kent was born in 1939 in Idaho Falls, ID. He joined the US Navy when he was 17 and was stationed in Kamisaya, Japan, and ended his service in October 1960 as a Petty Officer Second Class. He worked for a bank for several years where he met his wife Rosalyn whom he married in 1966. In 1977, he joined the Bonneville County Sheriff's Department where he served until December 31, 1999.

Kent was initiated, passed, and raised in Eagle Rock Lodge No.19 in the Spring of 1999. He served as its Worshipful Master in 2007 and 2008. He would serve as District Deputy Grand Master before being appointed as Junior Grand Steward and would serve as the Most Worshipful Grand Master of Masons in Idaho for 2018-2019. He was very active in several concordant bodies: he was a member of Shriners International for a period of time, a 33° in the Ancient & Accepted Scottish Rite, Southern Jurisdiction, and a Philosophus (IV°) in Wyoming College of the Societas Rosicruciana in Civitatibus Foederatis. He was also very active in the York Rite of Freemasonry: He presided over all three York Rite bodies in Idaho Falls and served as Right Eminent Grand Commander of the Grand Commandery of Knights Templar of Idaho in 2017-2018, Most Excellent Grand High Priest of the Grand Chapter of Royal Arch Masons of Idaho in 2020-2021, and was elected as an Honorary Past Grand Master of the Grand Council of Cryptic Masons of Idaho in 2021. He was also a recipient of both the Knight Templar Cross of Honor and Knight Commander of the Temple. He is also a Past President of the Order of High Priesthood of Idaho, Past Thrice Illustrious Master of the Order of the Silver Trowel of Idaho, Past Preceptor of the Idaho Chapter of the Sovereign Order of Knights Preceptor, member of the Order of the Sword of Bunker Hill, Past Sovereign Master of Fidelity Council No.277 of the Allied Masonic Degrees, Emeritus Member of Redemption Tabernacle No.XL of the Holy Royal Arch Knights Templar Priest, Past Prior of Idaho Priory No.13 of the Knights of the York Cross of Honor and recipient of the Knights of the York Grand Cross of Honor (Three Quadrants: Lodge, Chapter, and Commandery), Past Sovereign of St. Charles Conclave of the Red Cross of Constantine, Past Pre-Eminent Governor of Tri-Valley College No.178 of the York Rite Sovereign College of North America, and 

I had the pleasure of working with him in several Masonic organizations. Kent was a model Freemason and he will be greatly missed. Godspeed Brother.

Thursday, August 26, 2021

Worthy of the Name of Sir Knight

By Ella Wheeler Wilcox


Sir Knight of the world's oldest order, 

Sir Knight of the Army of God, 

You have crossed the strange mystical border, 

The ground floor of truth you have trod; 

You have entered the sanctum sanctorum, 

Which leads to the temple above, 

Where you come as a stone, and a Christ-chosen one, 

In the kingdom of Friendship and Love. 


As you stand in this new realm of beauty, 

Where each man you meet is your friend, 

Think not that your promise of duty 

In hall, or asylum, shall end; 

Outside, in the great world of pleasure, 

Beyond, in the clamor of trade, 

In the battle of life and its coarse daily strife 

Remember the vows you have made. 


Your service, majestic and solemn, 

Your symbols, suggestive and sweet, 

Your uniformed phalanx in column 

On gala days marching the street; 

Your sword and your plume and your helmet, 

Your "secrets" hid from the world's sight; 

These things are the small, lesser parts of the all 

Which are needed to form the true Knight. 


The martyrs who perished rejoicing 

In Templary's glorious laws, 

Who died 'midst the fagots while voicing 

The glory and worth of their cause-- 

They honored the title of "Templar" 

No more than the Knight of to-day 

Who mars not the name with one blemish of shame, 

But carries it clean through life's fray. 


To live for a cause, to endeavor 

To make your deeds grace it, to try 

And uphold its precepts forever, 

Is harder by far than to die. 

For the battle of life is unending, 

The enemy, Self, never tires, 

And the true Knight must slay that sly foe every day 

Ere he reaches the heights he desires. 


Sir Knight, have you pondered the meaning 

Of all you have heard and been told? 

Have you strengthened your heart for its weaning 

From vices and faults loved of old? 

Will you honor, in hours of temptation, 

Your promises noble and grand? 

Will your spirit be strong to do battle with wrong, 

"And having done all, to stand?" 


Will you ever be true to a brother I

n actions as well as in creed? 

Will you stand by his side as no other 

Could stand in the hour of his need? 

Will you boldly defend him from peril, 

And lift him from poverty's curse-- 

Will the promise of aid which you willingly made, 

Reach down from your lips to your purse?


The world's battle field is before you! 

Let Wisdom walk close by your side, 

Let Faith spread her snowy wings o'er you, 

Let Truth be your comrade and guide; 

Let Fortitude, Justice and Mercy Direct all your conduct aright, 

And let each word and act tell to men the proud fact, 

You are worthy of the name of "Sir Knight".

Thursday, August 19, 2021

2021 Grand Encampment

Well, it's been a busy few days. Saturday I flew into Minneapolis to attend the 68th Triennial Conclave of the Grand Encampment of Knights Templar of the USA. 

Sunday started with Divine Services led by the Grand Prelate and the afternoon was occupied with initiating of 14 new Knights by Trinity Chapel No.2 of the Commemorative Order of St. Thomas of Acon. That night was the Grand Master's Reception after which many of us went to the Hospitality Suite hosted by Jack Harper and the Grand Commandery of Texas.

Monday morning was the public session of the Grand Encampment which included a large number of introductions. We had the presiding officer or their representative for the Social Order of the Beauceant, DeMolay International, Red Cross of Constantine, George Washington National Masonic Memorial, Commemorative Order of St. Thomas of Acon, Knight Masons, Royal Order of Scotland, Holy Royal Arch Knights Templar Priests, Ancient & Accepted Scottish Rite (both Southern Jurisdiction and the Northern Masonic Jurisdiction), General Grand Council of Cryptic Masons International, General Grand Chapter of Royal Arch Masons International, Grand Encampment of Knights Templar - Prince Hall Affiliation, Grand Lodge of Minnesota, and Grand Lodge of North Dakota as well as the Grand Commanderies that form this body.

The Grand Master announced and the Sir Knights approved to make Sir Knight W. Bruce Pruitt, Past Grand Commander of California, an Honorary Past Grand Master of the Grand Encampment to which the Sir Knight enthusiastically approved. Sir Knight Pruitt was also elevated to Grand Cross Templar (GCT).

The afternoon session started with the Grand Master's allocation. After its approval, we moved into the Resolutions (and there were 28 of them). Here is a brief synopsis of them:

Resolution 2021-01: Amends Section 18 (Educational Foundation of the Grand Encampment) to allow for more people to be eligible for the scholarship - PASSED

Resolution 2021-02: Amends Section 18 1/2 (KTEF) which made sure that the Trustees are members of GEKT - PASSED

Resolution 2021-03: Amends Section 104 1/2 (Membership of KTEF Committee) and follows on to 2021-02 - PASSED 

Resolution 2021-04: Amends Section 52(d) (electronic proceedings) which allows Grand Commanderies to submit proceedings in digital format rather than printed to GEKT - PASSED

Resolution 2021-05: Repeals Sections 214 and 215 (public appearance in uniform) - PASSED 

Resolution 2021-06: Amends Section 36 to add a subsection about virtual grand conclaves - PASSED 

Resolution 2021-07: Amends Section 65 to add a subsection about virtual conclaves - PASSED 

Resolution 2021-08: Amends Section 259 allowing for Grand Commanders to set the dates for the wearing of the summer uniform - PASSED as AMENDED which struck out the final sentence of the resolution

Resolution 2021-09: Amends Section 66 (Short Form Opening) clarifying the use of the short form opening with a quorum of less than 9 knights - PASSED

Resolution 2021-10: Amends Section 235 (Retention of Rank) clarifying the retention of rank as long as the Sir Knight maintains membership in a Commandery under the Grand Encampment - PASSED

Resolution 2021-11: Amends Section 237 to add subsection about Retention of Honors (a follow-on to 2021-10) - PASSED 

Resolution 2021-12: Amends Section 2(a) (Grand Commander's Status) to allow Grand Commanders to retain honors if they move to a different jurisdiction (a follow-on to 2021-10 and 2021-11) - PASSED 

Resolution 2021-13: Amends Section 125 (Demise of Grand Commandery) clarifies what happens to remaining constituent Commanderies when a Grand Commander if they fall under minimum number of Commanderies - PASSED 

Resolution 2021-14: Amends Section 190(a) (Officers in Multiple Commanderies) to allow a Sir Knight to be an elected officer in more than one Commandery but not Commander of multiple Commanderies - PASSED 

Resolution 2021-15: Amends Section 204 (Trial of Offenses Post Adjudication by a Predicate Body) to clarify the language about a Commandery's right to being changes against a Sir Knight regardless of actions of predicate bodies (Lodge, Chapter, etc.) - PASSED 

Monday night, the dais officers and wives of the Grand Commandery of Idaho and our Jr. Past Grand Commander went to the Lyon's Pub in Minneapolis to have a "Family Dinner". The food and fellowship was excellent.

Tuesday morning's session started with the Committee on Charters and Dispensation. Sadly, the charter of the Grand Commandery of Croatia has been suspended for failing to file annual returns with the Grand Encampment. However, there is good news, we chartered Commanderies in Venezuela, Peru, Paraguay, Honduras, Lebanon, Ecuador, and Costa Rica.

After charters and dispensations, we returned to the remaining resolutions:

Resolution 2021-16: Amends Section 176 1/2 (Holding Commanderies) to allow the formation of Holding Commanderies in the event of Commandery demise or merger - PASSED as AMENDED to prevent Holding Commanderies from conferring orders. 

Resolution 2021-17: Amends Section 3(c)(2) (Special Purpose Commanderies) and Section 176 1/2 to permit formations for special purpose Commandery such as Research Commanderies - PASSED 

Resolution 2021-18: Adds a subsection to Section 176 for allowing the formation of Auxillary Units similarly seen with the Shriners - PASSED as AMENDED to allow flexibility for reporting to Grand Commander 

Resolution 2021-19: Amends 237(b) subsections a & c to amend qualifications of eligibility for Knight Templar Cross of Honor - PASSED 

Resolution 2021-20: Amends Chapter XXII, Section 260 and 261 for allowing aprons to be worn, if desired - PASSED

Resolution 2021-21: Replaces Section 178 for inclusion of an Attestation of Faith was AMENDED which struck the overly dogmatic language and used the words from the Order of Malta ritual that is more inclusive of all Christian denominations (see pic for change) - FAILED 

The Grand Encampment then recessed so that the Knights Templar Eye Foundation Corporate meeting could be held where the necessary business was conducted and the Trustees elected, then it was back to the resolutions:

Resolution 2021-22: Adds Section 99(a) for Recognition by Grand Encampment - FAILED for failing to achieve 2/3 vote. 

Resolution 2021-23: Rescinds 2012-01 and Duane Decision No. 5 concerning the Chevaliers Bienfaisants de la Cité Sainte - PASSED with over 3/4 votes

Resolution 2021-24: Amends Section 202 (forfeiture of membership or reinstatement for loss of predicated membership in the lodge, chapter, or council) to clarify the language and processes - PASSED 

Resolution 2021-25: Amends Section 82 (Exceptions to resident requirements for members of the uniformed services) to make changes and updates to the organizations listed in this section - PASSED as AMENDED with some housekeeping changes. 

Resolution 2021-26: Amends Section 201 (Forfeiture of Membership and Reinstatement non-affiliation in Lodge or Chapter or membership in an unrecognized Masonic Templar order) codified removing members from Chevaliers Bienfaisants de la Cité Sainte (CBCS) from the Grand Encampment - FAILED 

Resolution 2021-27: Amends Section 114 (Payment of mileage and per diem to officers and committee members) to include trustees - PASSED 

Resolution 2021-28: Amends Section 106(e) to make Electronic Communications a standing committee - PASSED

We then held elections for the officers of the 69th Triennium:

Most Eminent Grand Master: Michael Johnson 

Right Eminent Deputy Grand Master: David Kussman 

Right Eminent Grand Generalissimo: Jeffrey Bolstad 

Right Eminent Grand Captain General: Jack Harper 

Right Eminent Grand Treasurer: Bobby Simmons 

Right Eminent Grand Recorder: Larry Tucker

Congratulations to Jeff Nelson on his term as Most Eminent Grand Master for the 68th Triennium. You did a masteful job guiding the Grand Encampment over the last 3-years and with presiding over this meeting.

For the first time in Grand Encampment history, when the motion was made and approved to make Sir Knight Dickie W. Johnson of Tennessee a Honorary Past Grand Prelate of the Grand Encampment of Knights Templar of the USA. Sir Knight Russell Duckett, Most Eminent Grand Master of the Prince Hall Grand Encampment, was made an Honorary Grand Master of the Grand Encampment of Knights Templar of the USA.

There being no further business, the Grand Encampment adjourned for the day and the Sir Knights and their ladies met for the Grand Master's Banquet. Afterward many of us met in the Texas Hospitality Suite to celebrate the election and impending installation of Sir Knight Jack Harper as Grand Captain General. Even though I am not a Texan, I am a friend of Jack's and extremely proud of him and all that he does.

With Wednesday morning came the installation of officers. Congratulations to all of the new officers, but particularly to Sir Knight Jeremy Vaughn of Idaho who was installed as the Northwest Department Commander. I am excited to travel throughout the Northwest with my best friend as my Commandery counterpart.

Bruce Pruitt

Family Dinner

Dickie Johnson

Sir Knights and Ladies

Sir Knights with Most Eminent Grand Master


New Membership Certificate available from the Grand Encampment

Now, I sit at the airport awaiting my flight back home. It's been fun, but it is time to get home. Also, this is also my 700th article on this site!

Saturday, August 7, 2021

Kleine Schätze - 14 Karat Gold Vertikal Diamant Bar Halskette

Born in central Macedonia in 356 BC, Alexander the Great would rise to be known for his military and leadership skills that built one of the largest empires of the world covering Greece, Turkey, North Africa, the Levant, northern Arabia, Persia, and western India (roughly 5,200,000 square kilometers). His military campaigns increased contact and trade between east and west; helped lead the way for the Roman and Byzantine Empires; helped create the infrastructure that would assist the spread of Christianity; and founded many cities that bore his name, the most famous of which was in Egypt. With such accomplishments, it is unsurprising that so much research has been dedicated to him, even among Masonic scholars and researchers, but what surprised me is that there exists a Masonic organization known as the Ancient and Heroic Order of the Gordian Knot whose rituals surround a curious episode of Alexander and the town of Gordium.

The basic organizational unit is known as a Synod. Synods fall under a Supreme Grand Synod and there are Synods in Washington, Florida, Mississippi, Georgia, South Carolina, Tennessee, and Indiana. Synods are composed of the following officers:

Supernal Imperator Alexander

Inexorable Inquisitor

Imperial Exarch Ariston

Exalted Suzerain Parmenion

To be eligible for membership one must be a Master Mason in good standing. To serve as one of the four officers, one must be a Knight Templar of the York Rite or a 32° in the Ancient & Accepted Scottish Rite. Members wear a jewel in the form of an Ankh

The ritual is based upon the story of Alexander the Great during his time in Gordium. During his conquest of the Persian Empire, he stopped through the town of Gordium. Looking back at history, a Thracian tribe known as the Phrygians were settled in a town called Gordium. The Phrygian kingdom grew and the most famous of its kings was called Midas. This king is said to have fastened the yoke of his chariot with such a knot that nobody could untie it. The Phrygian kingdom would eventually fall to constant invasion and in 547 BC, King Cyrus of Persia conquered the region and made Gordium the capital of the region. Towards the end of 334 BC, the town fell to the armies of Alexander the Great. Now the chariot and with its know still existed and an oracle had declared that anyone who could untie the knot would become ruler of all Asia. Alexander entered the town and tried, but failed until he reasoned that it would make no difference how it was undone so he drew his sword and cut the knot in half. Another legend states that he pulled the linchpin and was able to untie it without cutting it. Some have suggested that this knot was a cipher communicated to kings of Phrygia while others suggest that it was used to legitimize Alexander's conquest and rule. Since that time, the term "Gordian knot" has referred to a complex or unsolvable problem. The chief lesson of this degree was to demonstrate the inherent unity of all regular Masons regardless of what rite or order they belong to.

The ritual was written by Varick Steele while he was working as a civilian employee in Germany in the 1960s. He spread this order throughout Germany and in Saudi Arabia, but with the downsizing of military troops, those Synods would eventually close. Lloyd Anderson, who had been initiated into the order in Germany, helped an inactive Synod get back onto its feet within the US. He, with the support of Brother Steele, then proceeded to establish more Synods which led to him re-establishing Supreme Grand Synod which is now headquartered in Indiana.


1. 10 Major Accomplishments of Alexander the Great. (2017, December 14). Retrieved from Learnodo-Newtonic: https://learnodo-newtonic.com/alexander-the-great-accomplishments

2. Alexander the Great’s Achievements. (n.d.). Retrieved from Encyclopedia Britannica: https://www.britannica.com/summary/Alexander-the-Greats-Achievements

3. Andrews, E. (2016, February 3). What Was the Gordian Knot? Retrieved from History Channel: https://www.history.com/news/what-was-the-gordian-knot 

4. Outstanding Accomplishments of Alexander the Great. (2019, March 1). Retrieved from World History Edu: https://www.worldhistoryedu.com/accomplishments-alexander-the-great/ 

5. Supreme Grand Synod. (n.d.). Retrieved from Ancient and Heroic Order of the Gordian Knot: https://www.orderofthegordianknot.org/