An Update from our Commander in Chief, Carl Swope 33°

Brethren All,

At this point I am more than ready to get out for a nice lunch or dinner. You are probably thinking that too, but caution prevails and we must wait a bit longer for the “green Light”. Lehigh County and the surrounding counties, are scheduled to move to the yellow phase on Friday June 5th. Following that, if virus cases decline further, these counties should go to the Green phase. Here resumption of limited activities becomes possible. I am not sure about you, but our family gatherings have been deeply missed. Of course, not meeting with you at Lodge or Consistory ranks right up there, too.

This spring many Scottish Rite events were cancelled such as the annual Easter egg hunt, the Air Force Band performance, membership meetings and the April Stated meeting.

A major disappointment was cancelling the Spring Reunion where Right Worshipful Grand Master Thomas Gamon, IV was to be the honoree. This was extremely disheartening, especially to me.

The Feast of the Pascal Lamb ceremony was also cancelled. Members that were to be honored will be included in the ceremony planned for 2021. Another event impacted was the Good Friday breakfast which will be scheduled later as a summer or fall breakfast.

Throughout this time your executive committee has been meeting, not in person, but by conference call or zoom video sessions. These technologies, widely used in industry, have allowed us to continue with planning when and how to resume Scottish Rite activities.

Officer Installation usually scheduled on stage for mid-May was performed via Zoom video conference. On May 27th Illustrious Active George Nakonetschny, 33rd and Illustrious Larry G Newhard, 33rd as presiding officers conducted a beautiful installation ceremony. Please congratulate Stephen M. Rush as Thrice Potent Master, Philip F. Graziano as Sovereign Prince and Peter A. Gigliotti as Most Wise Master on their Installation. As part of the ceremony, roses are presented to the wives of outgoing officers. Since we did not meet in person, this was accomplished the following day when a bouquet of roses was delivered to the homes of David W. Evans, Jared R. Kichline and Thomas P. Murgitroyde, IV.

Regretfully, because of uncertainty over the timing of the move to Yellow then Green status, the annual summer picnic scheduled for August 8th was cancelled. This was not an easy decision for the executive committee although all agreed that it was in the best interest of the members and their families.
The Cigar social has been rescheduled to Saturday, August 22, 2020 outside at Consistory. Please take note as this date was changed.

Going forward, the Executive Committee is monitoring the Governor’s time line for reopening the state and the requirements at each stage. We are also following the directives of the RWGM in this process as well.

Bear in mind that these plans can change based on changes made by the Governor. Our primary concern is the health of you, the member, and your family. Further, if you feel uncomfortable attending, we ask that you refrain from coming out. Hopefully, soon, there will be a time where we can greet each other with a firm handshake.

Carl L Swope, 33rd, CIC