As the thoughts and smells of turkey, cranberry sauce and pumpkin pie permeate the land, we get ready to celebrate Thanksgiving. The current date for this annual festival of harvest was proclaimed on January 31, 1957, with Governor General of Canada Vincent Massey stating: "A Day of General Thanksgiving to Almighty God for the bountiful harvest with which Canada has been blessed – to be observed on the second Monday in October." We know that many of you will be spending time with family, friends and your communities at one of the many fall/fowl suppers across Saskatchewan.
Many Masons who farm have completed or are nearing the end of harvest this year. We thank them for their contributions to helping feed the world and pray for their continued safety in the field.
This year Lorey and I will miss our traditional Thanksgiving celebrations due to attending lodges in Dublin the last week of September and representing the Grand Lodge of Saskatchewan at the Quarterly Communication of the Grand Lodge of Ireland in Belfast in October. Upon our return we will attend the 82nd annual Western Canadian Conference in Banff, for the Grand lines and Grand Secretaries of the four western Masonic jurisdictions. At the conference, each Grand Senior Warden writes and presents a paper, each Grand Junior Warden leads a discussion groups and each Deputy Grand Master moderates discussions for one of the papers.
One of the examples of my theme "If you build it, he will come" relates to appendant and concordant bodies: "If we build a strong Masonic family that includes concordant and appendant bodies, he will have the opportunity to further his Masonic knowledge beyond what is learned in the first three degrees if he so chooses." While each man must find his own path through Freemasonry, it is reasonable to share with him - at an appropriate time - the opportunities that are available through appendant and concordant bodies. In Saskatchewan, Master Masons may join Scottish Rite (Lodge of Perfection, Chapter of Rose Croix and Consistory), York Rite (Royal Arch, Cryptic Rite and Knights Templar) and Shriners International.
Lorey and I were honoured to attend the 148th Annual Communication of the Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite of Freemasonry of Canada in Saskatoon in September. The local host, Saskatoon Valley, put on a first class event that attracted almost 400 Scottish Rite masons, partners and guests to Saskatoon for the first time in over 30 years. As with all successful Masonic events, it takes many hands led by strong leaders to carry out activities that help Masons engage more with other Masons and continue along with their own personal journeys in Masonry.
Congratulations to the new Honorary Inspectors-General from Saskatchewan: Tim Halstead, Darrell Hart, Declan McAuley, James McFarland and Ed Miller from Saskatoon Valley and Don McDougall, David Polachek, Russ Tataryn and Terry Yanko from Regina Valley. They join Kent Pizzey, Gary Sherstobitoff and Graham Snell from Saskatoon Valley who received their 33rd degrees in Hamilton in March. These gentlemen represent strong examples of Masons who are deeply committed to, and involved in, their respective Lodges while providing leadership roles in concordant bodies. We wish them all the best in their new roles.
“If you build it, he will come”
MW Bro. Dean Elliott, Grand Master, 2022-23