District 8 Grand Superintendent's Message

Prior Year: 2009-10 


Prior Year: 2008-09 






Grand Superintendent 2010-2011
R.Ex.Comp. Edward J. Codack





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April, 2010

My Companions:




Fraternally, R.Ex.Comp. Ted Codack, Grand Superintendent, District 8


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Grand Superintendent 2009-2010
R.Ex.Comp. Ian D. Nichols





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March 2010


My Companions:

    With the Annual Convocation of the Grand Chapter rapidly approaching,our Royal Arch year is coming to its end. I begin by thanking the District for the privilege of being Grand Superintendent for the past year. It has been a new and interesting experience for me, and a rewarding one too. I am grateful for the obvious warmth and sincerity of the welcome I received into all of the Chapters when I entered for my Official Visit or for the Installation Ceremony. Normal procedures had to be adapted slightly to meet my special needs, but everyone was most understanding and helpful, and it all worked out well in the end.

    I congratulate Ex.Comp. Edward (Ted) Codack of Lebanon Chapter on his election as Grand Superintendent for the new Masonic year, and wish him and his Secretary-designate, Ex.Comp. G. Robert Barker, a time of profit and pleasure as they assume their new duties.

    I wish also to pay tribute to my Secretary, V.Ex.Comp. Ken Hunter, and to thank him for his help. More than thirty years after doing the job for the first time, he stepped right up to help again. Because of my lack of independent mobility, he was called upon for extra duties, and I am glad of this opportunity to thank him publicly.

    We had several events of significance during the year. One was the joint meeting of King Solomons' Chapter and Mount Sinai Chapter from Richmond Hill, in District 9. Both Grand Suprintendents were present, and candidates from both Chapters received the M.E.M. Degree. We had the unusual spectacle of almost 50 Royal Arch Masons in the Chapter room together. It has become a rare sight to see the room so crowded. There are plans to do it again, and I am looking forward to being present for that event.

    There was also a better attendance at the annual Divine Service, which was held in my Parish church, St. Thomas's Anglican Church on Huron Street in Toronto. We were honoured by the participation of our Grand Second Principal, R.Ex.Comp. Roland Mandeville, and our Grand Chaplain, R.Ex.Comp. the Rev. Sydney Maddock, along with that of our District Chaplain, Ex.Comp. Guillermo Mondragon and myself.

    A successful Master Mason Night was held at Lebanon Chapter, with nine Master Masons in attendance. My thanks go to Ex.Comp. Gareth Taylor, First Principal of the host Chapter, and to R.Ex.Comp. Alan Donovan, Member of the Grand Executive and Chairman of the Grand Chapter Public Relations Committee, for his able leadership. My only regret is that I was unable to be present, as I was laid low by some sort of 'flu bug.

    I feel pleased that four Bursary Fund grants were distributed through our District this year: two through King Solomon's Chapter and one each through Shekinah and Orient Chapters.

    Again, I thank the Royal Arch Masons of District 8 for their tolerance, understanding and support, and for a very rewarding Masonic experience for me.


Fraternally, R.Ex.Comp. Ian D. Nichols, Grand Superintendent, District 8


September, 2009


My Companions:

    I write this message for our District website from the City of Winchester in southern England. My wife Jean and I are in England for a couple of Masonic events and to do something that we both enjoy doing - touring from one cathedral city to another.

    Over the Labour Day weekend we were in the City of St. Albans, just north of London, for the 56th Annual International Gathering of Lodges associated with the name of St. Alban. My own Lodge, Quinte St. Alban's Lodge No. 620 (Toronto Don Valley District) has been associated with this Gathering for many years. Just before we return home I will attend a Lodge with a cousin in Kent, south east of London.

    The first week of October will see the beginning of a busy three months of Installations and Official Visits in our District. The dates and places are listed elsewhere on this website, and I urge all of you to attend as many of them as you can. Every one benefits when an Installation or an Official Visit is well attended by visitors, both the Chapter holding the event, and those who visit. Masonic friendships are strengthened and Companions learn from the experience.

    Check out the schedule and mark your calendars. I look forward to seeing many of you in Chapter.


Fraternally, R.Ex.Comp. Ian D. Nichols, Grand Superintendent, District 8


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May, 2009


My Companions:

    Our new year of Royal Arch activities is getting under way. I look forward to sharing many of them with you in my role as your Grand Superintendent. In addition to the Official Visits and Installation Ceremonies, I am hoping to know in advance of any M.M.M. Degrees that any Chapter is planning. If it is possible, I would like to make a fraternal visit on such occasions and to offer my personal congratulations to those who are taking the first step in Royal Arch Masonry.

    Through the good offices of our Webmaster, R.Ex.Comp. Eric Lakien, information on District activities will be available on our website, and I urge the Principals and Scribes Ezra of the District to submit information to him, and check the website often.

    I invite all Royal Arch Masons to join me on any of the special occasions in any Chapter in the District. Visitation has fallen off in recent years, and I would like to encourage its revival. This could even include Mark Master Masons and Most Excellent Masters. Through this web site and other means of communication information will be available to help out in this.


Fraternally, R.Ex.Comp. Ian D. Nichols, Grand Superintendent, District 8


June, 2009


My Companions:

    Our year of Royal Arch activities is now well under way. I have already made two Official Visits and attended one Installation Ceremony. I have also been privileged to stand in for the Grand Third Principal when our Grand First and Second Principals attended Victoria Chapter, along with a number of other Grand Chapter Officers, to honour Comp. Don Gorman by presenting to him the Distinguished Service medal, and also to honour R.Ex.Comp. Barry Jones, Grand Executive, and V.Ex. Comp. Raj Sircar, Grand Steward, on their recently becoming Grand Chapter Officers.

    Please note that the Installation Ceremony for Toronto Antiquity Chapter has been rescheduled to Friday June 26, at the Weston Masonic Temple.

    The Principals' Instruction Seminar, which I am required by the Constitution of Grand Chapter to hold before the middle of September, has been scheduled for Wednesday June 24 from 7:30 to 9:00 p.m. at the Scarborough Temple. Because communicating with the Grand Chapter Office and recent changes to the Constitution will be among the topics covered, I strongly recommend that Scribes Ezra attend this event, along with the Principals.

    My wife Jean and I wish you all a pleasant and refreshing summer. After the Installation in Toronto Antiquity Chapter there will be no more events in our District until October.


Fraternally, R.Ex.Comp. Ian D. Nichols, Grand Superintendent, District 8


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May, 2009


My Companions:

    Our new year of Royal Arch activities is getting under way. I look forward to sharing many of them with you in my role as your Grand Superintendent. In addition to the Official Visits and Installation Ceremonies, I am hoping to know in advance of any M.M.M. Degrees that any Chapter is planning. If it is possible, I would like to make a fraternal visit on such occasions and to offer my personal congratulations to those who are taking the first step in Royal Arch Masonry.

    Through the good offices of our Webmaster, R.Ex.Comp. Eric Lakien, information on District activities will be available on our website, and I urge the Principals and Scribes Ezra of the District to submit information to him, and check the website often.

    I invite all Royal Arch Masons to join me on any of the special occasions in any Chapter in the District. Visitation has fallen off in recent years, and I would like to encourage its revival. This could even include Mark Master Masons and Most Excellent Masters. Through this web site and other means of communication information will be available to help out in this.


Fraternally, R.Ex.Comp. Ian D. Nichols, Grand Superintendent, District 8


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Message from the G.S. Elect - March, 2009

My Companions:

    I am both surprised and pleased at my election as Grand Superintendent of District 8. I suspect that I shall be a Grand Superintendent not quite like any other Grand Superintendent, but I pledge to our Grand First Principal and to all Companions in District 8 that I will do my best to live up to the responsibilities that I am about to undertake.

    I am very aware of the efforts that R.Ex.Comp. Barry Jones has put in, along with his Secretary, Ex.Comp. Raj Sircar, on our behalf. Thank you, Barry. I have already benefitted from your advice, and I'll endeavour to follow your good example.

    I am pleased to announce that V.Ex.Comp. Kenneth A. Hunter, P.G.S., has agereed to serve as my Secretary. He was Secretary to a Grand Superintendent more than 30 years ago, and seems very enthusiastic at having another go at it.

    In due course I shall publish a District Trestle Board, which will include the names of the various District Officers and Committee Chairmen. It will also be published on this web site for ready access.

    I look forward to meeting many Companions in Chapter in the next year.


Fraternally, R.Ex.Comp. Ian D. Nichols, Grand Superintendent-Elect, District 8


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Grand Superintendent 2008-2009
R.Ex.Comp. Barry L. Jones






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March, 2009

My Companions:

    Greetings to Officers and members of District 8 R.A.M. Chapters.

    Now that Spring approaches, albeit, seemingly slowly, I hope we all will be able to enjoy some warmer and sunny weather. On March 4th, 2009, the District 8 Meeting was held at Thornhill Masonic Temple. There were 26 in attendance (28 counting Ex.Comp. Raj Sircar and myself). A special thank you is extended to V.Ex.Comp. Paul Nielsen, First Principal and the Officers and Members of Victoria Chapter No. 205 for assisting at the meeting.

    Amongst the items featured were: a 'wrap up' report of my year as your Grand Superintendent, a review of our financial situation (we are in very good financial shape - I am very pleased to report that we will not have an increase in the District per capita assessment); reports on the various District Committees; selection of auditors for the 2009-2010 term and of course, the election for a new Grand Superintendent to take over the reins from me at the April 2-3-4 Grand Chapter Grand Convocation in St. Catharines.

    We had five nominations; however, due to other commitments, etc., four chose to decline with thanks. I am happy to announce the successful Nominee for the position of Grand Superintendent, District 8, R.A.M. for 2009-2010 is R.Ex.Comp. Ian Nichols, a member of Orient Chapter 79. Of course he needs no introduction to most members of our Fraternity as he is very active in several Masonic organizations. At the time of election he had not yet chosen a Secretary to the Grand Superintendent, however, I am sure that will be done in the very near future. We all wish him much luck and success in his new endeavour for our District. I would also encourage you to support him during his various visits (Fraternal or Official) at our various Chapters.

    We also thank our new Auditors for the 2009-2010 term, R.Ex.Comp. Eric Lakien and R.Ex.Comp. Raymond Boal. Your volunteering to fill this important role within our District is appreciated.

    Last evening I awarded the Fred Daubney Trophy to Lebanon Chapter No. 220 (Renforth Temple), whose Officers and members have been particularly strong supporters during my term. I shall be delivering the trophy to them as soon as possible.

    Finally, we enjoyed a very delicious repast following the meeting, along with a nice time of fellowship.

    Companions, it is important we continue to spread the word of Royal Arch Masonry to members of our particular lodges. Our future is dependent upon new and interested candidates and if each one of us could bring in one new member, our Fraternity and District would be in very good condition. Many of our newer members joined because a member of our Fraternity took time to discuss Royal Arch Masonry, thus encouraging them to make Royal Arch Masonry their choice to extend their Masonic life. Talking works, Companions. Thank you.

    My term is drawing to a close and on behalf of Ex.Comp. Raj Sircar and myself, thank you - each and everyone - for your kindness, hospitality and for being there at your Chapter's future. It has been a truly great year and the next few weeks will find me doing a few more Fraternal visits and 'tying up any loose ends'. I has been such a pleasure to work with you for the betterment of District 8.

Fraternally, R.Ex.Comp. Barry L. Jones, Grand Superintendent, District 8



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February, 2009

My Companions:

    On behalf of Ex.Comp. Raj Sircar, Secretary to the Grand Superintendent and myself, a thank you is extended to all of you for your support, the welcomes and hospitality extended to us - all of which continues to make this term 2008-2009 so memorable and enjoyable.

    Ex.Comp. Sircar has been, and continues to be, a great travelling mate, advisor and an important part of my term, as well as my Royal Arch Masonry 'career'.  We have attended District 8 Chapters as often as possible and whenever our schedule would permit same.  It is a pleasure to participate in many special events and presentations. Our visits were not only 'Official Visits' and/or 'Installations', but many Fraternal visits and Convocations where Degree work was scheduled.  In particular, we tried to attend M.M.M. Degrees, where we were able to support and welcome our newest candidates to our Fraternity. It is so good to see new members joining Royal Arch Masonry, i.e. opting to choose Royal Arch Masonry as the means of furthering their Masonic career.  I would urge everybody to take the time and effort to welcome and encourage those new members - regardless of the Degree they have taken.  By doing so, you may well cause them to remain active in Royal Arch Masonry and, hopefully, someday consider becoming ritualists, officers and Principals. Also the warmth and welcome extended them may well result in their encouraging and sponsoring their Masonic Brethren into our Fraternity.

    The end of my 2008-2009 term, as Grand Superintendent and 'my' Secretary rapidly approaches.  It has been a humbling and great privilege.  I am delighted to have been able to forward two Bursary Awards, one to a grand-daughter and the other to a grandson of two highly respected District 8 members. We should all feel a pride knowing our financial support of the Grand Chapter Bursary Fund enables and assists our young men and women to continue their further scholastic studies. The future will prove them to be worthy citizens and a vital part of our country. Thank you, Companions.

    A very successful Chapter of Instruction was held on Wednesday, February 4th, 2009 at the Thornhill Masonic Temple, in conjunction with Victoria Chapter 205. We thank those officers and members, as well as all the District 8 Chapter attendees who attended the Chapter of Instruction. V.Ex.Comp. Alan Donovan, Chairman of the Chapter of Instruction, along with R.Ex.Comp. Eric Lakien, presented a most interesting and thought-provoking educational session which resulted in many accolades expressed from the attendees for what they learned and how it was presented. Following, a most excellent buffet was enjoyed by all, as catered by the chef-son of Victoria Chapter member Comp. Armando Vasquez.  His efforts will surely list him high on the list for catering at future events.

    District 8's next important meeting will be the District Meeting on Wednesday, March 4th, 2009, again at the Thornhill Masonic Temple, 30 Elgin Street, Thornhill, beginning at 8:00 PM. This is the 'wrap-up meeting' for the year where, amongst other items, year-end Committee reports, statistics, financial reports and the next year District Assessment will be discussed. Also, of course, the important election for a new Grand Superintendent for District 8 (2009-2010) will be conducted. The attendance and participation by members from our six Chapters are earnestly anticipated as it is vital and important, so please make every effort to attend. The meeting will begin at 8:00 PM and will be followed by another delicious catered buffet-so if you missed the meal at the Chapter of Instruction, you can partake at the District meeting.

    I would like to again thank R.Ex.Comp. Eric Lakien for all his hard work and dedication to District 8 for establishing a webpage for our benefit. I also note our Grand Chapter has now recognized his efforts and the excellent quality and has approved our very own District 8 Webpage, which you are viewing now. You can check it out at http://www.royalarchmasons.on.ca/approvedsites.htm

    Don't forget, any pictures of your Chapter events and special evenings can be placed on our website for all to enjoy (especially those whom, due to various reasons, are unable to attend their own Chapter or visit others).  Please keep R.Ex.Comp. Lakien busy with your those pictures and thanks for the support thus far.

Fraternally, R.Ex.Comp. Barry L. Jones, Grand Superintendent, District 8



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January, 2009

My Companions:

    On behalf of District 8 Secretary, Ex.Comp. Raj. Sircar and myself, may we extend our very best wishes and regards to you and your family for 2009.  My year as your Grand Superintendent is drawing to a close, however, February and March are very important months for Royal Arch Masonry in general and District 8 in particular.

    On Wednesday, January 21st, 2009 the Installation for Lebanon Chapter (Renforth Drive) will take place. Please consider attending and supporting this fine Chapter and also Ex.Comp. Sircar and myself.

    On Friday, January 23rd, Toronto Antiquity Chapter on Weston Road will be having the Official Visit of the Grand Superintendent. Again your support would be truly appreciated.

    Wednesday, February 4th, 2009 at 7:30 PM is the date for the District 8 Chapter of Instruction to be held at the Thornhill Masonic Temple, 30 Elgin Street, Thornhill. This will be in conjunction with Victoria Chapter 205. Chapter will open at 7:30 and following the Business portion, V.Ex.Comp. Alan Donovan, Chairman of Chapter of Instruction Committee will present a most interesting evening and I am sure all of us, 'no matter how much we know', will learn something new. He will be ably assisted by R.Ex.Comp. Desmond Washer, Grand Lecturer and R.Ex.Comp. Eric Lakien. These three very knowledgeable Royal Arch Masons are sure to capture your attention and further your insight regarding our Fraternity. Please encourage officers and members of your Chapter to attend as an excellent turnout will prove the necessity of Chapters of Instruction now and in the future. A refreshment time will follow.

    On Wednesday, March 4th, 2009 beginning at 8:00 PM, again at the Thornhill Masonic Temple, the District 8 Meeting will be held. The meeting is the 'wrap-up' of District 8 business for the 2008-2009 term and will include year end reports from our Committees and the election of a new Grand Superintendent for District 8 (if anyone is considering putting his name forward for the Grand Superintendent position would you please contact me?) This is probably one of the most important aspects of our year so plan to attend and support your District.

    I thank R.Ex.Comp. Eric Lakien for taking the time and hard work to create a District 8 webpage. Please support same every chance you get - also send to Eric pictures of Chapter activities, etc. Show-off your Chapter to the rest of the District (as well as others).

    I close with warmest and kindest regards to all for your continued hospitality, welcome and friendship.

Fraternally, R.Ex.Comp. Barry L. Jones, Grand Superintendent, District 8


IMPORTANT UPCOMING DATES: (Chapters open at 7:30 PM; District Meetings at 8:00 PM)

** Official Visit - Toronto Antiquity Chapter 91 - Friday, January 23, 2009 (rescheduled)

** Installation - Lebanon Chapter 220, Wednesday, January 21, 2009

** Wednesday, February 4, 2009 - Chapter of Instruction: Hosted by Victoria Chapter 205 at the Thornhill Masonic Building. See above for details.

** Wednesday, March 4, 2009 - District 8 Meeting and Elections for Grand Superintendent. Hosted by Victoria Chapter 205 at the Thornhill Masonic Building. See above for details.


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December, 2008

My Companions:

    I would like to express a most sincere thank you to R.Ex.Comp. Eric Lakien who took the time and much effort to create a webpage for District 8. I would ask your support of same by submitting any items you would like to see added and especially any pictures of your Chapter's special events. Let us work together and make 'our' webpage a great success. My year as Grand Superintendent, District 8, is rapidly passing. I have enjoyed every moment and I have visited all our District Chapters as well as Chapters in other Districts and each time I have been humbled by the manner in the way I have been so warmly welcomed. I sincerely thank each of you. A special thank you to our Chapters who have donated funds to our Grand Chapter Release a Miracle and also the Bursary Fund. You can rest assured the monies donated by our Chapters will be used in a most constructive manner. Your kindness will not be forgotten.

    Recently I had the pleasure to attend Mt. Sinai Chapter 212, in Richmond Hill (District 9)at the invitation of the Chapter and also District 9's Grand Superintendent, R. Ex. Comp. Harold (Hal) Belfry. Two new members were Advanced to the M.M.M. Degree. What a pleasure to see our Royal Arch family grow. After the Degree was completed, I had the pleasure of partaking in a special presentation to honour Comp. Vince Kubiak, whom you may well know as his Masonic career is vast and wide-spread. Comp Kubiak has been the Outer Guard for several years and the Chapter wished to recognize his long and faithful service. The First Principal Ex.Comp. Gavin Upton requested R.Ex.Comp. Belfry to read, then present, a certificate of appreciation. The First Principal, after consulting with R.Ex.Comp. Belfry then requested I present a gift to the Comp. Kubiak (which was several movie DVDs). Comp. Kubiak was deeply touched by the honour and kindness shown as the event was a complete surprise to him. I know him personally as we are both members of the Rameses Shrine Hillbilly Club.

    District 8 Chapters have also been active this year continuing to bring new members into Royal Arch Masonry. I am happy to say I have been able to attend many, if not most, of the M.M.M. Degrees throughout our District and in all cases, I have made it my 'business' to send each 'new' Mark Master Mason, a personal letter of congratulations and (especially) thanking him for making Royal Arch Masonry his choice for Masonic advancement.

    On behalf of Royal Arch Masonry, thank you to one and all who work so diligently to encourage and support our newer members. Royal Arch Masonry is an important phase of Masonry so please promote same at your lodge(s) every chance you get. Each new M.M.M. is an important addition, however, simply to sponsor him is just not quite enough. Every Companion and Brother should endeavour to encourage them to become actively involved in their Chapter, District and the many aspects of Royal Arch Masonry. Please extend that wonderful hand of friendship and guide them on the way to become 'solid' Royal Arch Masons. Likewise, if you notice a newer member 'missing' from several meetings, please take the time to phone and enquire. Make him aware his absence has been noted and that he is missed. A phone call can mean the difference between a newer member dropping by the wayside or becoming a valued member of the Chapter. Now that the Shrine is accepted new members following attaining their M.M. Degree, we must seriously appreciate those who now join Royal Arch Masonry - because now they are doing so 'because they want to', unlike the past 'because they had to' (in their goal to reach the Shrine). Remember this when you see and greet a new candidate into our Fraternity.

    On behalf of District 8 Secretary, Ex.Comp. Raj Sircar and myself, please accept our warmest and most sincere wishes for a Happy Chanukah / Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. We also extend our warmest regards and thanks for your continued hospitality, welcome and friendship.

Fraternally, R.Ex.Comp. Barry L. Jones, Grand Superintendent, District 8


IMPORTANT UPCOMING DATES: (Chapters open at 7:30 PM; District Meeting at 8:00 PM)

** Official Visit - Shekinah Chapter 138, Tuesday, December 9, 2008

** Official Visit - Toronto Antiquity Chapter 91 - Friday, January 23, 2009 (rescheduled)

** Installation - Lebanon Chapter 220, Wednesday, January 21, 2009

** Chapter of Instruction: Hosted by Victoria Chapter 205 on their Regular Convocation evening of Wednesday, February 4, 2009 at the Thornhill Masonic Building, 30 Elgin Street, Thornhill, Ontario. Under direction of V.Ex.Comp. Alan Donovan.

** Wednesday, March 4, 2009-District 8 Meeting and Elections for Grand Superintendent. To be held in conjunction with Victoria Chapter 205 at the Thornhill Masonic Building, 30 Elgin Street, Thornhill. Please plan to attend this very important meeting as the future of Royal Arch Masonry within District 8 depends upon YOU.


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