|Wichita Council No. 12, CM|
|The Council of Royal and Select Masters, known as the Cryptic Rite or Cryptic Masonry, fills what would be a significant void in the complete story of the York Rite. The degrees controlled by the Grand Councils in the United States are, The Royal Master, The Select Master, and the Super Excellent Master. The first two have been named The Degrees of Preservation.
Cryptic Masonry centers around the story of the preservation, loss and recovery of the Word. The Word represents man's search for life's purpose and the nature of GOD. Symbolic Freemasonry, as in the Lodge, teaches of the loss of the Word and hope for its recovery. Royal Arch Masonry, as in the Chapter, teaches its recovery. Cryptic Masonry, as in the Council, completes this story by teaching of the Word's initial preservation.
The Cryptic Rite or degrees derives its name from the setting of the degrees of Royal Master and Select Master in the underground crypt beneath King Solomon's Temple. The word cryptic means hidden, hence its use in describing these degrees.
The constituent (or subordinate) Council is the local operating unit of the Cryptic Rite. Councils exist to greet Select Masters. The meeting of a Council is termed an "Assembly." Cryptic Masons are titled "Companions," signifying the close relationship between individuals sharing the same aims, interests, and experiences.
The Cryptic Rite is widespread, although governing bodies exist only in England, Scotland, Canada, and the United States. In England the Cryptic Degrees are controlled by a General Council of the Cryptic Degrees. In Scotland, the Supreme Grand Royal Arch Chapter has jurisdiction over the Cryptic degrees, the Royal Ark Mariner degree, the Knight of the East and West; bodies of the Cryptic Rite are attached to Chapters. It is interesting to note that while Scotland received the first three degrees of the last series from American sources, the degree of Thrice Illustrious Master, taken over recently in this country, was of Scottish origin.
Wichita Council No. 12, Cryptic Masons was chartered on February 19, 1889 and is the largest Council located within Kansas with a recorded membership of 329 as of December 31, 2004. They meet the third Friday of the month at 7:30 pm. The Grand Council of Cryptic Masons of Kansas reported as of December 31, 2004 a total of 23 Chartered Councils with a total membership of 2,405.
Current & Past Grand Council Officers from Wichita Council:
Livng Past Grand Masters of the
General Grand Council of Cryptic Masons International
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