News From The Ninth Arch

Northeast Regional Recorder\’s Meeting – February 11, 2021

Northeast Regional Recorder\’s Meeting – February 11, 2021
Submitted by Stephen Balke, General Grand Recorder, Cryptic Masons International

Cryptic Masons International Collar
Photo Credit; MIC John Bridegroom


On February 10, a conference call was held with the Northeast Regional Recorders. A summary of the call is below.

In attendance: Robert Maddix, Steve Rubenstein, David Shuler, Patrick Nnaji, John Gallant, John Lawson, Dennis Sheridan, Rick Howe, Bruce Howard, Sylvanus Newstead, Mark Irwin, Michele Balke, Sandy Karstens, John Miller,  Stephen Balke, Tom Taylor

Invocation: Robert Maddix


  • Connecticut
    •  No report
  • Delaware
  • District of Columbia
    • Grand Sessions
      • March 20, 2021
      • All three – 9AM GCOMM, 11AM GCHAP, 2PM GCOUN
      • Elections online for Chapter and Council
      • Registration is forthcoming by 20th February.
    • Meeting virtually, no in-person meetings. Government, MWGM, and MIGM.
    • No Festival work.
    • Working on Grand Representatives – MIGM trying to establish contact between jurisdictions.
  • Maine
    • Sessions
      • April 23 TBD – Virtual (Hybrid?) 
      • Session with other bodies being on the 24th
    • Difficult to do much work – (Chapter isn’t doing degree work).
    • District-based meetings as available.
    • Limited number of people in a meeting. (Up to 50 people depending on the size of the room).
  • Maryland
    • Meetings
      • Doing Chapter degree work.
      • Only a few Councils are attempting to open.  The ones that do are conferring degrees.  
      • Still have restrictions and are working under social distancing rules.
    • Grand Sessions – Later in Year.
      • The Annual Sessions remains the same… fourth Friday in October, and the following Saturday.  
    • Maryland Semi-Annual Grand Assembly will be held at 9:00 a.m May 8, 2021, at the Grand Lodge Bldg, 300 International Circle, Cockeysville MD
      • This is a live meeting.   Agenda:   Reports, Budgets, Election of Officers
    • Maryland\’s School for Secretaries, Recorders, and Treasurers will be held virtually on Saturday, February 27, beginning at 9:00 a.m. EST.
    • There is a systemic problem with my participation in this meeting in that I have to attend my Chapter meeting and the drive is 2+ hours on the Second Thursday of each month.   
  • Massachusetts
    • Governor is opening things up a little (40% for restaurants) 
    • Lodges with room may hold meetings and degrees.
    • Chapters and Councils are meeting – some in person some virtual.
    • Degrees are still suspended.
    • Will be having Tri-State Festival – TBA (Late July?/Columbus Day Wknd?)
    • Sessions – 22-23 October 2021 – In-person is planned – No decision.
    • Started Private Facebook Page. Has updates and information.
    • Grand Recorder – moved on to competing priorities.
  • New Hampshire
    • No Degree work until at least the Annual Meeting.
    • Sessions – May 8, 2021
      • In STATE in-person – hybrid with Zoom.
      • Banquet on July 31, 2021 (Awards at Banquet)
      • Business meeting March 27, 2021, Take care of most activity.
    • Chapters and Councils meeting regularly (at option) in person/virtual)
    • Education – Look at Facebook – usually last week of the month.
  • New Jersey
    • Sessions – March 6, 2021
      • Council 10:30 – Virtual meeting
  • New York
    • Opened up a bit – up to 50, discretion of the Master/head of body
    • Degrees
      • in March for Lodge – Using social distancing degree augmentations.
      • Modified ritual for Chapter and Council  – discretion of body.
    • Virtual and in-person meetings going on.
    • Sessions
      • August
      • Planned in person, may be hybrid
      • Albany, NY
    • Monthly grand officer meetings regarding path forward.
      • February 28
    • Education monthly – this month David Dixon Goodwin – Protocols in Templary.
  • Pennsylvania
    • Local Chapter, Council, Commandery meeting virtually.
  • Rhode Island
    • Councils are meeting virtually – MWGM orders.
      • Planned to open on March 1
      • Chapters and Councils will follow suit.
      • Grand Chapter Festival (1 day) in June
      • Grand Council Festival (1 day) June/July TBD
    • Annual Sessions
      • March 27 in-person (Brief, in State only) 0900 Grand Council 1000 Grand Chapter 1130 – Semi-Annual Grand Commandery.
      • May be hybrid, may be virtual – TBD
      • Grand Council officers are staying in place.
  • Vermont
    • Grand Master – No Lodge meetings, Grand Heads – no meetings.
    • Spike in COVID
    • Grand Sessions – TBD
    • Quarantine 10 days before and after
    • A lot of Zoom meetings.
    • No Degree Work.
  • Virginia
    •  No report
  • West Virginia
    • No report


  • Northeast North
    • Monthly Ambassador’s meeting. Keeping everyone updated.
    • CMMRF Initiatives – recent regional presentation by GGPCW at the Ambassador’s meeting.
    • Looking for Ambassadors for Connecticut and Massachusetts.
  • Northeast South
    •  No report

General Grand Council

  • GGC Office working to get caught up – financial reports and processes in transition.
  • Focus on Brazil and Italy – where there are issues with the Grand Chapter taking the “lead” for all of York Rite in the Jurisdiction. We are working with both to return to the status of being a Grand Council.
    • Close to Chartering the first of more than one Grand Council in Brazil.
    • In process of reinstating the Grand Council Charter for Italy. (with conditions and goals)
  • Brazil Grand Chapter – allowing irregular Masons to be a part of the organizations, centralizing control of money and organization. Grand Chapter chartered by the General Grand Chapter has lost the authorization to work by several of the Grand Lodges in Brazil. A new Grand Chapter has been instantiated which is now recognized by both the General Grand Council and the Grand Encampment of Knights Templar. The General Grand Council has withdrawn recognition with the Grand Chapter originally chartered by the General Grand Chapter.
  • Dates for the 1st Triennial Meeting
    • August 13-14, 2021 – Minneapolis, MN
    • First Day – Education, Training, CMMRF, etc.
    • GG Assembly – Constitution & Bylaws Changes, Grand and Subordinate Charters
    • GEKT has been the epitome of York Rite Cooperation. Essentially hosting us.
      • Registrations will be one – the GEKT will have a registration, ours will be a part of it.
      • Registrations should be available in early March.
      • Education speaker for GEKT on Sunday.
  • Mid-Term Session – August of 2022 – Budget – Virtual.
  • August/September 2023 – General Grand Assembly
    • Sept 16 Rosh Hashanah 25 Yom Kippur
    • (Tentatively) Branson, MO
    • Kevin Sample, Chair.
    • Awaiting books being closed for 2020 Triennial from General Grand Chapter.
  • Fireside Chats – 4th Sunday of every month at 5:00 PM EST.


  • Great Conversation with the NEN Ambassadors and State Chairmen on Tuesday, 2/9
    • Kudos to Sandy Karstens
  • Challenge Gift – $50,000 matching.
  • We are striving to reach $500,000 in donations for a purpose – a local STEM processing lab at UI to mitigate transport and time costs during trials and studies or other like programs that are not currently funded. Referencing his track record, accomplishing this goal might result in $3.5 MM – using CMMRF money, he can usually multiply funds by seven (7).
  • March 6, 2021, is CMMRF Day – Please encourage donations. Goal: $8000.00

Benediction: Rick Howe

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