Tuesday, March 6, 2012

It's Been Awhile

Dear Brethren and Friends:

It has been awhile since the last “Across My Desk, the web edition,” so here goes.
First to our Jewish Brethren and their families I want to say, Happy Purim! and to our Irish Brethren and their families, Happy St. Patrick’s Day!
Second, it is my unfortunate duty to announce that the Showboat Hotel and Casino Bus Trip scheduled for Sunday, March 25, 2012 has been cancelled. Sorry folks but we just didn’t get enough interest in the trip to make it a go. Refunds will be forthcoming.
Don’t forget to “SPRING FORWARD” on Sunday, March 11, 2012!
The beginning of our Spring Reunion is just around the corner. The Spring Special Communication of Philadelphia Lodge of Perfection, 14° kicks things off on Friday, March 16, 2012.
Ill. Robert J. Burns, 33°, Thrice Potent Master and the Officers look forward to welcoming  you, your lady and the members of the Ill. Armando M. Duran, 33° Memorial Class. The Degrees to be presented that evening include, the 4° (DVD format), the 8°, Intendant of the Building, and the 14°, Grand Elect Mason. The 8° features an interesting and historic story from the Solomonic era. Don’t miss it!
The evening begins with a buffet dinner featuring a Roast Beef carving station in the Grand Banquet Hall at 6:00 PM. The cost per person for dinner is still a great value at $15 per person. The deadline for dinner reservations is Wednesday, March 14, 2012. You can make a reservation either by calling 215-563-1814, or by email to: phila.aasr@juno.com or through the Valley’s Facebook group page by clicking on “Events,” then “Spring Special Communication” then, “Going.” Remember all dinner reservations made past the deadline and walk up dinners the night of the Communication now cost $25 per person. Don’t let this happen to you!
As always the Ladies of the Valley will have a fun program planned so be sure to bring your lady along for a great night!
Speaking of our Spring Class, as you know by now, I always say that a Class isn’t a “successful” Class until it has at least 20 Candidates. As this Class is named in memory of my friend and our Illustrious Brother,  Armando M. Duran, 33°, and as he was the first line signer for 33 Valley members, 20 petitions wasn’t going to cut it. We need at least to match the total number of our Illustrious honoree in new Candidates. Well as of today, we have 30 Candidates, so we still have some work to do! Speak with that Master Mason friend of yours and invite him to become a member of “Pennsylvania Freemasonry’s Best Kept Secret!” To our Master Mason followers, if you’re interested in becoming a member, petitions are always available on our Valley web site at http://www.philascottishrite.org/printable_petition.htm If you need more information, give me a call at 215-563-1814.
Remember that starting with the 2012 Spring Class all Candidates will receive the Supreme Council Bicentennial Jewel. Be sure to mention that to your prospect!
The Challenge Update: As of right now, NOT ONE of the 33 Brethren Armando was the recommender for has brought in a petition for the Class. What’s with you guys? Is this anyway to honor his memory? LETS GO!
All Elected and Appointed Officers, Committee Members are reminded about our Annual Officer’s Training Conference on Saturday, April 14, 2012 at the Tacony Masonic Temple, 4400 Magee Avenue in Northeast Philadelphia.
ANY Valley Member interested in getting more active or involved in the Valley are welcome and encouraged to attend the Conference!
The doors open and a complimentary Continental Breakfast will be served at 7:30 AM. The Conference begins at 8:30 AM. The Half Day format includes the topics; Finance/Budgets, Family Life, Membership, the Supreme Council Bicentennial, Masonic Protocol, and the Children’s Dyslexia Centers, plus ANY and ALL questions you may have. The Conference will conclude at noon, at which time a complimentary lunch will be served.
If you are interested in attending, you must register. You can do that by calling 215-563-1814 or by email to: phila.aasr@juno.com
As always the dress code for the Conference is Business Casual. Remember, this Conference is definitely worth your time if you plan to become active in the Valley. Did I mention that a Candidate for the Spring Class, who will only be a 14° Mason the day of the Conference has already signed up? Well, he did! You’ve got to love that sort of enthusiasm!
Our Spring Reunion continues on Friday evening, April 20, 2012 with the Spring Special Convocation of DeJoinville Council, Princes of Jerusalem, 16° and the Special Assembly of Kilwinning Chapter of Rose Croix, 18°. The Degrees to be presented that night are the 16°, Prince of Jerusalem (featuring Bro. Peter B. Lavelle, 32° in a starring role!) and the 18°, Knight of Rose Croix.
Also, our State Deputy, Ill. Russell W. Baker, 33° will be present that evening as we will take a moment to recognize the commitment and leadership of Illustrious Bros. Anthony J. Garvey and G. Kent Hackney, 33°. Congratulations Bud and Kent! You guys deserve this!
Ill. Robert J. Bateman, 33°, Most Wise Master and the other Officers of Kilwinning Chapter of Rose Croix, want to welcome you and your family at the Valley’s Annual Memorial Service on Sunday, April 29, 2012. This year’s Service will begin at 3PM at Gloria Dei (Old Swede’s) Church, Columbus Blvd & Christian Street in South Philadelphia. As always, a complimentary dinner will follow in the Church’s Social Hall, but again like ALWAYS, a dinner reservation is required. Call the Scottish Rite Office at 215-563-1814 to register!
The Spring Reunion will conclude on Friday, May 11, 2012 with the Special Rendezvous of Benjamin Franklin Consistory. The Degrees to be presented that evening are the 30°, Grand Inspector (YES, this is an OFFICIAL Scottish Rite Passport ALERT!), the 31° Knight Aspirant and the 32°, Sublime Prince of the Royal Secret.
Our Commander-in-Chief, Ill. Raymond G. Brown will be making a special presentation that evening to Mrs. Duran. You definitely will want to be there for that.
Our Family Life Chairman, Bro. James C. Rae, 32°, MSA wants me to remind everyone about our upcoming Family Day at Campbell’s Field on Sunday, June 3, 2012 at 1:06PM.
This Family Life event is open to all Valley Members, their Families and Masonic friends. The cost per person is $12 for ages 13 and up and $6 for ages 12 and under. For an additional $10 per ticket you can purchase a River Sharks baseball cap with “Valley of Philadelphia” on the back.
Campbell’s Field has a “Kids Zone,” with lots of fun activities for the little folks to enjoy including a carousel, moon bounce, and rock climbing wall.  For the rest of us there is exciting Atlantic League baseball action as the River Sharks take on the Somerset Patriots.
We again have the picnic pavilion for this Valley outing, which means your ticket entitles you to a half hour of food before the game and an hour and a half during the game.
You want to go? Send your check payable to “Scottish Rite Bodies,” to the Scottish Rite Office, Masonic Temple, One North Broad Street, Philadelphia, PA 19107-2520, Be sure to include how many adult and how many kids tickets you need.
From the amount of phone calls and emails I’ve received, it seems like everyone has read their March Double Eagle and are eager to purchase a Supreme Council Bicentennial Jewel. Please understand that at this point I have not received any information other than the fact that the Jewel will cost $25 and all 32° Brethren are entitled to wear one. I promise, once Supreme Council releases information on how and when to order the Jewel, it will be published in THE DOUBLE EAGLE and right here on “Across My Desk, the web edition. Be Patient!
Well that will do it for this edition.
As always I pray that the Grand Architect watches over all of you and your families.

Sincere fraternal regards,
Steven A. Morrison, 33°
Valley Secretary

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