Update: February Commandery Inspections

January 16, 2021: Commandery Inspections originally scheduled for the month of February 2021 will be rescheduled. Only virtual Conclaves are permitted.

While we anticipate better days ahead as more COVID-19 vaccines become available, the virus is still a very real public health concern throughout our state.  As a result, Commandery inspections scheduled for the month of February will be rescheduled and we will remain in Phase Zero with only virtual Conclaves permitted.  If your Commandery had an inspection scheduled for February, your inspecting officer will be in contact with you.

Of all the statistics I have heard and read, the one that caught my eye recently is that in EVERY COUNTY IN OHIO, the level of spread of the virus is AT LEAST THREE TIMES GREATER than what the Centers for Disease Control considers “high incidence”.  When you couple that with the average age of our membership being the most vulnerable group and for whom the virus is most dangerous, it gives me pause.  

More than anything else, I have missed the fellowship with Sir Knights and Ladies throughout our state, and though I know we will never get that time back, difficult as it is, it does not compare to the way I would feel if even one SIr Knight or Lady contracted COVID and became seriously ill or died as a result of attending a Commandery conclave.  Ultimately, that is the dominant thought in my mind when I consider when we should resume meeting in person.  Not a day goes by that I do not think about when we may be able to open and pray that when it does come, that our members and their families will be safe.

Please continue to hold virtual meetings to conduct the necessary business of your Commandery and check on your Sir Knights and Ladies to make sure they are OK.

Again, I thank you for your commitment to Templar Masonry, and I appreciate your efforts on behalf of your Commandery.

Courteously,
R. Thomas Starr, KCT
Grand Commander

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December 19, 2021: Commandery Inspections originally scheduled for January 2021 will be rescheduled. Only virtual Conclaves are permitted.

Greetings Sir Knights,

On November 6, I wrote and released an Addendum for Commanderies in Ohio to reopen under Phase One of the Safety Protocols contained in General Order No. 14 from Grand Encampment.

Much has changed since that time in regard to the number of new COVID-19 cases reported, hospitalizations, patients now in ICU or on ventilators, and generally a significant increase in the spread of the virus in our state.  Additionally, Grand Lodge has ordered Blue Lodges in Ohio shut down through December 31 and Grand Chapter and Grand Council have followed suit.

When we first received General Order No. 14 in early November outlining the protocol for potentially reopening Commanderies, 43 of our 88 counties were RED on the COVID-19 map from the Ohio Department of Health. By Thanksgiving, 75 counties were RED and four were PURPLE.  View the map

After careful consideration, I am rescinding the Addendum to permit Ohio Commanderies to open in Phase One that was set to go into effect on December 1.  Commanderies in Ohio will remain at Phase Zero, which permits only virtual Commandery events, including Christmas Observances.   The safety of our Sir Knights, Ladies, and their families is paramount, and it is simply not prudent to meet in person at this time.

As always, thank you for your commitment to Templar Masonry.

Courteously,

R. Thomas Starr, KCT

Grand Commander


Ohio General Order No. 15

Reopening Templary 2021 Safety Protocols

Ohio General Order No. 14 and Supplemental Instructions

General Order No 14 Grand Encampment of Knights Templar