Monday, December 30, 2013

Travels During January

While often my travels are dictated by my work schedule, I am going to try keep at a running schedule of potential Chapter related visits/events. If anyone from my area is interested in traveling with me, contact me and we will see what we can do.

• Saturday 4 15th District Inspection Union Chapter (Steubenville)
• Thursday 9 9th District Inspection Bellevue Chapter
• Saturday 11 4th District Inspection Loveland (Morrow, Wyoming, Blanchester, Loveland)
• Tuesday 14 3rd District Inspection Trinity Chapter (My Chapter ... Miamisburg)
• Wednesday 15 20th District Inspection Painesville Chapter
• Thursday 16 3rd District Inspection Twin Valley Chapter (Farmersville)
• Tuesday 21 4th District Inspection Price Hill Chapter (Cincinnati)
• Wednesday 22 6th District Inspection Urbana Chapter
• Thursday 23 3rd District Inspection Marshal Chapter (Elyria)
• Saturday 25 17th District Inspection Portage Chapter (Barberton)

Sunday, December 29, 2013

3rd District Chapter Get Together

Tonight several persons who have been leaders through the years in the 3rd District got together for an informal social event. We had a small but mighty group as unfortunately health concerns kept several from being able to attend. In addition we discussed several more who are to have some surgery shortly after the first of the year. It was nice to have a night which was informal and just a chance for some social interaction.

Friday, December 27, 2013

Denbrook DeMolay Installation

Tonight I headed to Berea with Greg Fyffe (State Senior Deacon) and Eric Lovingshimer (State Marshall)from Ralph H. McMillan Chapter for the Denbrook DeMolay Installation. This was the Installation for the son of our Executive Officer Martin Woodworth. Due to lots of advanced planning and communications, they had around 150 in attendance. The International Master Councilor, Robert Laing did the installation and they had numerous distinguished guests present including several Past State Master Councilors, most of the Governors, almost all State Officers, DeMolay International members and Masonic dignitaries including our Grand High Priest. Afterwards they had a great feast for all in attendance. Overall it was one set of proud parents and a new Master Councilor in Brady Woodworth ready for a very successful term.

Thursday, December 26, 2013

Minerva Lodge

Tonight I attended my stated Lodge meeting and while the meeting was fairly straightforward we did discuss our food drive, latest Christmas Party and a couple of other community related projects we are working on. It makes me proud that my Lodge is trying to improve our building and also making a difference in the community.

Monday, December 23, 2013

Saturday, December 21, 2013

3rd District Chapter School

This morning was the final 3rd District Chapter School for the year in West Carrollton and despite the closeness to Christmas, we had a decent attendance. REC Greg Clatterbuck was our presenter and gave a very interesting talk with new information outside what can be found in the Chapter Management manual. PGHPs Steve Duncan and Jerry Crawford were both in attendance. We also had a nice discussion on how we can recognize/communicate better with our widows. MEC Steve Duncan brought up some of the challenges we have working around the Governmental privacy laws.

Friday, December 20, 2013

Ormus/Khana Shahar Grotto Installation

This evening was the installation for the Grotto and it was held as a joint installation in Springfield. Our new Monarch at Ormus is Skip Vanderhorst and our new first time officer is RWB Keith Newton, Grand Senior Deacon. While thee Grotto is smaller in numbers it definitely doesn't lake when it comes to having fun as they held several fun events after the installation. We learned Keith and his wife are not bad golfers. We learned Bill Parmer is not always full of hot air. And most of all we learned that it is sometimes better to take than to receive. I will explain no more but rather leave it to your imagination for the games which were played.

Thursday, December 19, 2013

Rabboni Chapter 232 Inspection

This past evening was the inspection for Rabboni Chapter in Fairborn. They were being inspected in the Mark Master degree and we had a good crowd of just at 50 present. PGHP George Shell was in attendance along with several PDDGHPs. It was really good to see Rabboni Chapter have a nice inspection as they have struggled a little over the past few years as many of their long time members/cast members have passed away. This is the last Chapter Inspection that I'm aware of in the state for 2013 so the next one is a couple of weeks away.

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Past Master's Convocation

Tonight was the postponed session of the Past Master's Convocation for the 2nd Masonic District. Since it was done all in one evening instead of a while day, it had to be slightly condensed. I sat through the instructional session of the meeting and heard much about the programs and expectations for the year. We then proceeded into the actual Past Master section of the meeting. Very shortly after starting I got a text from my wife indicating we had an emergency and I needed to call her immediately. I was able to leave the meeting and found out they had sent my daughter to the emergency room with a potential concussion. (She had been feeling bad the past couple of days after a fall on the ice so we had taken her into a clinic where they instructed us to take her directly to the emergency room.) Needless to say, I immediately left and met them at the emergency room where after some checking they determined they felt she did not have a concussion but rather a virus of some type which was causing balance and sleep problems. Hopefully, they have a correct diagnosis and she will be better soon.

Grand Master's One Day Class

Today Chester Burton and myself met to finalize some of the decisions about how the Chapter portion will be held so information can be distributed out to the DDGHPs shortly after the beginning of the year. We also discussed which districts are already well on their way to being prepared for the event vs those who still need a little assistance. We also discussed how we can get the other committee members more involved and further communications with all involved in the activity. Overall, it proved to be a productive meeting. Now off the the Past Master's convocation this evening in Middletown.

Monday, December 16, 2013

Valley Commandery Christmas Observance

Tonight was our annual Christmas Observance and toast from each of the various masonic bodies. It is an event which I try to attend if at all possible. It is a little more laid back evening where we reflect some on the past year, look forward to the next year and remember those who we lost in the past year. Other than Inspection, it is often one of the better attended events at the Commandery. 

Sunday, December 15, 2013

Cabiri Christmas Party

With the weather changing the originally plan dates along with other conflicts, this year I've unfortunately been able to attend only this Shrine Christmas party. (In talking with the Potentate, it has been tough on even the Divan to make many as the weather has postponed many to the point where they are having to hold 5-6 on a single evening ... and not at the same locations). I'm hoping this is not an indication of what the winter is going to have in store this year but I won't bet on it. I heard that the meeting Saturday in Delaware for the training session went well but that we may have some follow up to make sure all are using the same version of the peculiar stone skit. Well I guess if everything were going smooth I would have to wonder what I was missing!

Saturday, December 14, 2013

Antioch Shrine & HRAKTP Elections/Annual Meetings

Scott Lipps being nominated by his father Kenny Lipps
Today I was hoping for the weather to cooperate despite the predictions of doom and gloom by the various weathermen. I got up and it appeared they were right and as I headed to the Shrine it looked as if the day was getting worse quickly as the drivers side windshield wiper stopped working right about half way to the Shrine. The meeting went fairly smooth with our Potentate elect being Scott Lipps (who I served with in line at Minerva Lodge) and Ed Peters getting elected as the new Oriental Guide. Once the meeting was over I immediately went out to check the windshield wiper which I determined was just a loose bolt which I tightened and it started working again and the snow/freezing rain changed over to just rain. Things were looking up. I then took off for the Holy Royal Arch Knight Templar Priest meeting in Lima (This is an invitational organization in which only 33 active members can join each Tabernacle and I believe there are only 4 Tabernacles in Ohio). When I got there I learned that I was spared doing the part as the candidate was unable to attend (which I was somewhat worried about doing for while I had practiced for some time now I still wasn't sure about the actual performance). Things were really seeming to look up but then I noticed my friend Ted Korn, who was to be elected and installed as the presiding officer for this group, was not present. Where could he be...after all Ted is not known for his driving excellence. Then in came Ted ...just a few minutes late to be elected and installed. The best part was since we ended up with no candidate we were able to finish very early, have dinner early and be back on the road to get home hopefully before any of the roads froze over.

Ted Korn ... new Preceptor at dinner

Friday, December 13, 2013

Charlemagne Red Cross of Constantine

Tonight was our annual meeting for the Red Cross of Constantine held in Springfield Ohio at the Simon Kenton Inn. The food was great and our Grand Sovereign Burch Zehner was present with us this evening. Our retiring Sovereign, Garis Pugh, did a good job of keeping things moving as bad weather was projected and many had long journeys home. Our new Sovereign is Jack Allen planned to be with us but unfortunately was unable to attend as his wife Yvonne had unexpected surgery on Friday. The remaining officers present were installed by our Intendent General Harvey Lowry. I was installed as Standard Bearer. It was a great evening but the trip back home was a little extended as a major accident on I-70 had the highway close for a while until the could get one lane back open.

Thursday, December 12, 2013

AMD Annual Meeting

Tonight was our Annual Meeting for Middletown AMD and our new Sovereign Master is Rick Bielecki. We also brought in one new member this evening. Unfortunately we learned that Tom Kerr had passed away since our last meeting and that Richard Holcombe was not feeling well and had to go in for some surgery in the near future. Since we had no papers to present for the evening, the meeting was relatively quick and we adjourned for refreshments early before heading out until our next meeting at the end of January.

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Chillicothe Chapter #4 Inspection

This evening I went to a Royal Arch inspection in Chillicothe in the 5th District. REC Keith O'Dell was also present and I think it was the first time I’ve been in the 5th District he didn’t have to help out with a part (which was lucky since he had not been feeling well over the past couple of days). They also had several PDDGM's and one current DDGM present. Whenever you walk into this building you have to remember the long history of all their Masonic bodies in this temple. The best part is that Chillicothe is a very easy drive since it is right off SR35 and I’m around 10 miles from SR 35 and most of that is from a connecting highway. This is especially important since the weather again tonight was not ideal which is why I chose to go here instead of Haly Chapter as around half of that trip would have been on the back roads.

Monday, December 9, 2013

Back on the trail ...Friendship Chapter #245 Inspection

This afternoon I got back on the Masonic trail with a luncheon with several folks from the Shrine at an annual Christmas party/get together. Later this evening I attending Friendship Chapter in West Carrollton's (my District) annual inspection in the Royal Arch Degree. Their High Priest was Most Illustrious Past Grand Master and Grand Recorder Bobby Campbell. Performing the lead part was MEC Steve Duncan and REC Robert Oldfather did the journey for the evening (RIC Mike Smith 3rd Arch Council Inspector also helped out with a part).... basically a star cast performed this evening. Also present was the MEC George Shell. It was nice to again be close to home as I heard we may have some more weather headed to the area tonight.

Friday, December 6, 2013

Staying home for a couple days

Well I had planned to head to Toledo (almost into Michigan) last night for a Council Inspection but decided I didn't want to spend the final hour and a half driving on ice on my way back home. Tonight the activities I had were cancelled due to the potential weather and especially since many of those attending were coming from out of town. Hoping for sunshine on SaturdaySundaySomeday.

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Eaton Chapter #22 Inspection

Tonight was an Inspection in my District in the Past Master Degree. For being in a small more rural location, this Chapter still has over 100 members.It was nice that the weather didn't turn bad as is usually the case whenever this Chapter holds their Inspection. REC Norm Lincoln did the King Solomon part and received many positive comments from the DDGHP about his performance on the part. We also started gathering workers for the Shrine Circus parking which is done by the 3rd Capitular District and discussed the preparations for the Grand Master's Class in the 2nd, 3rd and 8th District which we are helping out to make sure it comes out successful. In all it was a good evening of ritual and I always enjoy going to this Chapter as they are definitely a friendly group.

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Cambridge Chapter #53 Inspection

Tonight was the Inspection for Cambridge #53 in the 14th District in the Mark Master degree. It was like an all star cast and they did a great job on the degree. REC Charles Paine PDDGHP is the High Priest this year so I would have expected nothing less. PGHP Alan Hart was present and he stepped up and helped out as one of the craftsmen. PDDGHP Randy Williams did the charge and 4 other helpers for the evening were 33rd who are past presiding officers of Scottish Rite. We also spent some time discussing the Peculiar Stone skit and the Mark Master degree for next year April 5th as they are going to be working with 3 Masonic Districts to make sure the Chapter work is performed up to speed and are actually taking the Peculiar Stone Skit on the road prior to April 5th.

Monday, December 2, 2013

Hi-12 Christmas Party and Commandery Order of Malta

Today was a busy day with the Hi-12 Christmas party at lunch where all the State Officers came to Dayton to install the officers (with Joe Fair as President) and to hold their annual Christmas Party. An interesting side note is that for a group mainly made up of retired guys, one of their main projects is to raise funds to help pay for College Scholarships at a specific school for political majors. The cost per year at this school $60K per year and these guys raise the money to help students attend and the only thing they ask in return is the students must work in the field after graduation. I personally belong (though I can't attend very often) because they are big supporter of the local DeMolay Chapters and when I was in DeMolay they gave me a scholarship to attend DeMolay Leadership Camp. Later in the evening I went to my Commandery meeting where they were doing the full form Order of Malta on a candidate to get him ready for Inspection in January. The candidate is a Past Master of Minerva Lodge, Ken Ballinger, and one of those who have been very involved with a major renovation of the temple over the past few months.

Sunday, December 1, 2013

Weekly Travels December

While often my travels are dictated by my work schedule, I am going to try keep at a running monthly schedule of potential Chapter related visits/events. If anyone from my area is interested in traveling with me, contact me and we will see what we can do.

Week of 12/2
• Tuesday 3 14th District Inspection Cambridge Chapter
• Wednesday 4 3rd District Inspection Eaton Chapter
• Saturday 7 3rd District Inspection Xenia Chapter

Week of 12/9
• Monday 9 3rd District Inspection Friendship Chapter West Carrolton
• Tuesday 10 1st District Inspection Haly Chapter Napoleon or 5th District Inspection Chillicothe Chapter
• Wednesday 11 9th District Inspection Bellevue Chapter
• Thursday 12 5th District Inspection Hillsboro Chapter

Week of 12/16
• Wednesday 18 3rd District Inspection Rabboni Chapter Fairborn
• Saturday 21 6th District Inspection Lafayette & Marysville Chapter Marysville

Week of 12/23-end of Year
• Christmas Break