August, 2015


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Palatine Chapter #206, R.A.M., Had its Installation of Officers on June 17th at the occasion of our Annual Steak Fry.  Everything worked out fine that evening.   The Officers Installed are:  David A. Truax-High Priest; Kenneth Stortz-King; William Trey Higgens-Scribe; Louis A. Sands-Treasurer; Russell L. Schlosser-Secretary; Mark Nokes-Chaplain; Claude Ohanesian-Captain of the Host; Alex Nawakowski-Principal Sojourner; Matthew Prokop-Royal Arch Captain; Matthew Scaro-Master of the 3rd Veil; Scott Doniger-Master of the 2nd Veil; Frank Del Giudice-Master of the 1st Veil; Bradley L. Baker-Steward; John Riggs-Sentinel.  Our next convocation will be in September of 2015.  We are dark for the summer.  We just came back from the Annual Convocation of the Grand Royal Arch Chapter of Illinois.  It was a fine meeting.  The new Grand High Priest is Sean McBride.  Elected to the bottom of the Line were two new Officers, Tim Vice as Grand Principal Sojourner and Patrick Robin as Grand Royal Arch Captain.  Yours truly was appointed District Deputy Grand High Priest for this second year.

Loyal L Munn Chapter #96, R.A.M., had its new Officers Installed at our Steak Fry on June 17th.  Installed for this coming year are: Bradley L. Baker-High Priest; Andrew Michyeta-King; James B. Newby-Scribe; James N. Newby-Treasurer; Russell L. Schlosser-Secretary; Ronald A. Fraser-Chaplain; Milen Ivanov-Captain of the Host; Mark J. Kapusta-Principal Sojourner; Benjamin Gates-Royal Arch Captain; Morris B. Quick-Master of the 3rd Veil; James E. Burke, Sr; Master of the 2nd Veil; Donald R. Marquardt-Master of the 1st Veil; Richard B. Pugh-Steward; and Daniel S. Tice-Sentinel.  Our next convocation will be in September of 2015.  I reported on the Annual Convocation of the Grand Chapter in the Palatine section of this newsletter.

Cryptic Council #46, C.M., had its new Officers Installed at our Annual Steak Fry on June 17th.  Installed for this coming year are: James B. Newby-Master; Mark D. Nokes-Deputy Master; Frank Del Giudice-Principal Conductor of the Work; Bradley L. Baker-Chaplain; Louis A. Sands-Treasurer; Russell L. Schlosser-Recorder; David A. Truax-Captain of the Guard; Kenneth Stortz-Conductor of Council; Scott Doniger-Marshall; Matthew Prokop-Steward; and David J. Lee-Sentinel.  Our next Assembly will be in September of 2015.  On a lighter note, we had our trowel stolen by Lake Council on May 6th.  However, we stole it back on June 9th.  The Annual Assembly of the Grand Council of Cryptic Masons will be in Springfield, IL, on August the 7th and 8th.  We will report next month how that goes.  It is our understanding that next year we will go back to a three-way session.  It will be at the Marriott in Normal, IL.

Bethel Commandery #36, K.T., had its new Line of Officers Installed at our Annual Steak Fry, who are: James N. Newby-Commander; James B. Newby-Generalissimo; Frank Del Giudice-Captain General; David A. Truax-Senior Warden; Kenneth Stortz-Junior Warden; Bradley Baker-Prelate; Louis Sands-Treasurer; Mark Nokes-Recorder; Alex Nawakowski-Standard Bearer; Matthew Prokop-Sword Bearer; Christopher Becker-Warder; David Lee-Sentinel; and William Trey Higgens-Color Bearer.  Our next Conclave will be in September.  Many of us attended the Grand Commandery Annual Conclave at Normal,IL, this past weekend.  If I remember all the names, present from Bethel Commandery were: Russell L. Schlosser, Andrew Michyeta, III, James N. Newby, James B. Newby, Gary Berenger, Kenneth Stortz, Frank Del Giudice, David Truax, Ralph Palmer, Louis Sands, Richard Pineapple Pugh, and Bradley Baker.  That is 12 Sir Knights.  Pretty good turnout!  Our own Russell Schlosser, Grand Commander, ran the conclave.  The new Grand Commander was Installed, who is Enrique J. Unanue.  Elected to the bottom of the Line, as Grand Junior Warden, was Austin (Gene) Smith from Trancred #50 Belleville, IL.  Our own Ralph Palmer ran for the bottom of the Line, but did not make it.  Good for trying, Ralph.  Maybe next year.  Illinois Priory #11, KYCH, had its Annual Meeting.  14 new members were Inducted into the Order.

One of our own, Sir Knight Gary Berenger, was the only Sir Knight in Illinois to receive the Cross and Crown Award.  He worked hard this year and made it happen.  Congratulations, Gary.

Another one of our own, Sir Knight Louis Sands, received one of the G. Wilbur Bell Excalibur Awards.  There are 2 awarded annually.  Mark Tomany from Joliet #4 received the other one.  Both of these Sir Knights are very active.  Congratulations!

Rob R. Beldon, from Urbana Commandery #16, was awarded the Knights Templar Cross of Honour.  A very hard workers for many years.  Congratulations, Rob!

Our Annual Steak Fry went very well.  Mark Nokes cooked the steaks and David Lee helped a lot with all the work.  Jim Newby and Brad Baker also lended a hand in the kitchen.  The weather was fine and all had a great dinner!  We Installed our Officers after the meal.

Two of us from Bethel Commandery, Andrew Michyeta and Bradley Baker, attended the Grand Commandery Ascension Day Service at Bald Knob Cross at Alto Pass, IL, on May 16, 2015.  Bill Smith from St. Elmo Commandery travelled with us.  It was a little rainy so we had the Service indoors.  It was a nice weekend.  Next year the date is May 7, 2016.

The 47th Voluntary Campaign of the Knights Templar Eye Foundation came to a close on May 15, 2015.  Bethel Commandery is number one in the state of Illinois for contributions in this campaign.  And, we just reached the level of $10 per member.  Outstanding!  Keep up the good work, Sir Knights.

We are all enjoying the new 10 man Opening for Commandery.  We did it in Templar Uniform (as we all should have been doing forever).  The key to this is that we can open with 10 men (or 9 if necessary).  The Grand Encampment Full Form Opening takes about 16-18 Sir Knights to accomplish.  Most Commanderies do not have that many at their conclaves.  This is a workable way to get back to the basics of our chivalric fraternity.

The Grand Commandery has come out with a new award, called the Cross and Crown Award.  The details were read at our last conclave.  This is available to a Commander who performs certain functions and reaches certain goals during the year.

Bethel Commandery has come out with another belt
buckle for sale for benefit of the Knights Templar Eye
Foundation, Inc.  This one is a Royal Arch
Chapter buckle, with the triple tau, and with the
infamous words "Holiness to the Lord"
emblazoned thereon.  This buckle has been commissioned
in honor of Brother, Companion,
and Sir Knight David P. Miller, Past Grand High Priest
and member of the Palatine
York Rite.  It will sell for $50, just
as the Knights
Templar buckle did last year.  We also we able to
obtain a few more Knights Templar buckles since we
had more orders than we could fill.  Let me know if
you are interested.

Our loyal Companion and Sir Knight Jim Newby has volunteered to coordinate the degree work going forward.  Thank you, Jim. He will also work with the Officers of the four respective bodies.  I will help him get started with this task by giving him a list of who does what in our Degrees and Orders.  I told him I would do that and have yet to get it done.  The following is what we have printed for some time.  "As a reminder, at our planning meeting on April 4,
2007, we tentatively decided to appoint one member as
a "Degree Czar" for each of the Palatine York Rite
Bodies.  That would be four individuals.  The thought
was that the number two man in each body would fill
that need.  We need to get more people trained in our
Degree Ritual so we have a backup for each part. 
Right now, if certain people are out of town, we are
stuck.  This will also get some of our newer members
actively involved in the affairs of our four York Rite
Bodies.  This will also get the number two man in each
group more prepared for his year as Presiding Officer.
Planning and Preparation.

The York Rite offers many opportunities for us to
serve our fellow man and our communities.  Each of the
Bodies has a charity or several charities that we
support.  Membership in our York Rite Bodies allows us
to fulfill our Obligations and Vows to help those who
are less fortunate.  Let us keep this in our minds as
we go about our daily endeavors.  There is a cloud
surrounding us, that has been built up over the
centuries, that we are a secret organization.  Now is
the time to let those on the outside know who we are. 
We should not keep our lamps under the bushel, but
should let our Light so shine before men, that they
may see our good works, and glorify our Father, which
is in Heaven.

Palatine Chapter currently has about 176 members.  L L Munn has about 56 members.  Cryptic Council about 180 members.  Bethel Commandery now has 206 members.  Of these, 94 are life
members and 13 are 50-year members and are exempt from

As a reminder, the new Palatine Masonic Temple is all on one floor and at
ground level.  Therefore it is wheelchair accessible.  No ramp or chairlift

Our backlog of work is:  Palatine Chapter #206-2;
Loyal L. Munn Chapter #96-0; Cryptic Council #46-0;
Bethel Commandery #36-4.  Let's get those Petitions

Sickness and Distress:   No new reported.


1.  8-8-15  Grand Council Annual Assembly at Bloomington, IL.
2.  8-8/12-15  Grand Encampment Triennial at Buffalo, NY.
3.  9-2-15  Palatine York Rite.  Dinner at 6:30 PM.
4.  9-16-15  Palatine York Rite.  Dinner at 6:30 PM.


Bradley L. Baker, PHP, TIPM, PC, Correspondent