Dear Brethren,

If there’s one thing we can all agree to this year, it’s that 2020 has been quite a journey. While the pandemic temporarily shuttered Supreme Council’s and many Valleys’ doors, we didn’t let that stop us from moving forward, leading our brethren and communities with remarkable generosity, enthusiasm, and brotherly love. I’m proud of the progress and achievements our great fraternity has made this year, despite its many challenges.

Making a Difference in the World

When we kicked off our Helping Hand initiative to support Brothers impacted by COVID-19, we never expected the effects of the pandemic to continue for so long. Nevertheless, our brethren persisted; in large numbers you supported our charities, allowing them to continue their honorable efforts and leave a positive impact on our brotherhood and communities.

Brother Stradley and his service dog

With your help, our Grand Almoner’s Fund was able to care for our most vulnerable brethren. Brothers like Sean Stradley, 32°, whose service as a police officer left him in need of a service dog - a need the Scottish Rite was able to fulfill. Your generosity also helped us support our Masonic widows through the White Flower Society, bringing joy to our extended Masonic family.

The education sector has especially experienced tumultuous times over the last 10 months, but our Children’s Dyslexia Centers didn’t hesitate to step up to the plate and ensure its students had the support and tools to succeed. In just one month from the onset of COVID-19, 100% of our Children’s Dyslexia Centers were up and running with virtual tutoring.

At the Valley level, you showed the world the true spirit of Freemasonry, going out on your own accord to give back. From the influx of Brother-to-Brother cards fulfilled, to delivering PPE to healthcare workers and Brothers in need, you provided a bright spot in a dark year for many. Your commitment to our core value of service to humanity has not gone unnoticed.

To top it all off, our annual Giving Tuesday telethon was wildly successful, exceeding our fundraising goal and contributing over $300,000 to your Scottish Rite charities. If you missed the event, you can watch some touching videos from our donors and charities here.

The Path Forward

When we launched our Path Forward initiative in 2017, the Supreme Council began to focus its efforts on revolutionizing our digital approach and recruitment efforts. Are we ever glad we tackled this initiative sooner rather than later, as It took several years of planning and preparation to execute -- and the work continues still!

Be A Freemason

In the beginning of 2020, we launched with our friends at the Scottish Rite, Southern Jurisdiction and Shriners International. Our research from the Path Forward told us that there is nothing wrong with Freemasonry today - men are still interested and willing to join. Knowing this, we built a website to help interested, noble men learn more about the craft and apply to join. Helping good men become even better is a mission all of us Masons strive to achieve, and was the first step in spreading our core values far and wide.

Virtual Programming: Bringing Freemasonry Home

While nothing beats the camaraderie and joy found in our in-person Reunions, I am grateful for the opportunity to stay in touch with Brothers and meet our newest members through today’s technology - as well as our smart and nimble team at headquarters who made it all possible.

Shortly after lockdown orders were initiated, our team put together our Thursday Night at the Rite series. We had great fun putting together these virtual degree showcases and are excited to bring a second season to our members beginning January 7, 2021!

Brother Jose Ruiz watching one of our Virtual Reunions

In addition to Thursday Night at the Rite, we hosted our first-ever Virtual Reunions. During the summer, we realized the very real possibility that our Valleys may be unable to host fall Reunions. Our team decided to provide a back-up option, working around the clock to create dynamic, engaging, and enlightening virtual degree presentations that would benefit both our existing members and candidates who have been patiently waiting to join our brotherhood. Over three events and an encore presentation, Brothers from all across the jurisdiction gathered online to seek more light while interacting with fellow Scottish Rite Masons. In total, we welcomed over 1,000 new members to the brotherhood through these Virtual Reunions! Make sure to give them a warm hello next time you see them, in-person or online.

These digital initiatives came to be thanks to not only the hard work of our team at Supreme Council, but our members, too. We cannot thank you enough for your continued enthusiasm, support, and participation in these events. Scottish Rite Freemasonry is always best enjoyed amongst fellow Brothers.

The World Needs More Freemasons.

If this year has taught me anything, it’s that the world needs more men like us. Men who carry the principles of Freemasonry deep in their hearts, upholding and sharing our values to create a better world. 2020 has demonstrated just how urgently the world needs men who strive to live by our core values, and the achievements of our fraternity in the last 12 months have shown that anything is possible when we work together.

Let us enter the new year standing tall and proud of all that we have accomplished. In 2021, let us lead with our Masonic principles, inspiring others to find in their heart the peace that comes with a life dedicated to uplifting others and working towards your best self. The world needs you now more than ever.

Wishing you and your family an abundance of health and happiness in the new year,

David A. Glattly, 33°

Sovereign Grand Commander