2022 • Vol. 2 • Issue 1

The 2022-2023 Officers of the
Grand Council of the Allied Masonic Degrees!

Most Venerable
Grand Master’s Message

Happenings of your Grand Council!

MV PSGMs, RV Grand Officers, RV Grand Superintendents, Venerable Brothers, and Brethren All,

I hope that this note finds each of you doing well!  The Grand Council has been hard at work during the past three months.  Below are a few highlights.

I have just returned from a wonderful trip to England where I attended a meeting of the Order of Eri and the Grand Senatus of the Ancient Masonic Order of the Scarlet Cord.  

On Tuesday, May 3, 2022 I was pleased to visit meetings of the Mur Ollamhan (which functions as a provincial governing body) and Brian Boru Faslairt No. 1 of the Royal Order of Eri at 10 DUKE STREET, ST JAMES', LONDON SW1Y 6BS.  I was warmly welcomed by the Most Enlightened Knight John R. Paternoster, GCE, Grand Master.  This was the first meeting since the beginning of the Covid19 pandemic.  There was a moving memorial ceremony for two distinguished members.  Two Fratres were admitted to membership of the order and to the ranks of Man-at-Arms, Esquire, and Knight.  The Knights then conferred the Knight Commander degree on the new Commander.  Each of these ceremonies was conferred in full-form.  In England, the Royal Order of Eri is NOT a part of the Allied Masonic Degrees.  It exists as a sovereign and independent Order with very strict requirements for membership based upon holding high-rank in the Societas Rosicruciana in Anglia.


On Wednesday, May 4, 2022 I was a distinguished guest at an emergency meeting of Hospes Consistory T.I. of the Ancient and Masonic Order of the Scarlet Cord in the British Isles and its Districts and Consistories Overseas at Mark Masons' Hall, 86 St James’s Street, London, SW1A 1PL.  The fifth grade of the order was conferred upon several distinguished companions.  Hospes Consistory T.I. was then closed.  Those in attendance then enjoyed a wonderful meal together.  The Scarlet Cord Consistory T.I. was then opened, business was conducted, and the fourth grade of the order was conferred upon 63 qualified companions of the Order.


On May 5, 2022 I attended the Grand Senatus of The Ancient and Masonic Order of the Scarlet Cord which also took place at Mark Masons’ Hall.  It was inspiring to see a full capacity crowd.  The service of any members was recognized by the conferral of active or past grand rank. The Provincial Grand Senatus of Surrey put together an outstanding summary of the Grand Senatus which is available at


On March 14, the Grand Council Officers met virtually with the Grand Superintendents where I led a training session for our Grand Superintendents.  This meeting was well attended and there was outstanding participation.

On April 22, 2022 MVB D. Allen Surratt, KGC, PSGM represented the Grand Council of the Allied Masonic Degrees of the United States of America at the annual meeting of the Grand Council of the Allied Masonic Degrees of France.  Allen reports that this was a well attended meeting and that he was treated with the warmest of hospitality.


The Digital Strategy and Engagement Committee, led by RVB Robert H. “RJ” Johnson has met numerous times to discuss how we can improve our online presence.  The Grand Council AMD website is being redesigned and moved to a new server with enhanced functionality.  This new server will also allow us to send the Allied Times to our members at a significantly reduced price.  Later this year you will see additional enhancements to our social media presence thanks which is being led by RVB Nicholas J. Sampogna.

The first Grand Council AMD Virtual Lecture of the year will occur in June.  An announcement with the date, registration link, and additional details will be sent out soon!


RVB Yasser Al-Khatib, Grand Director of Ceremonies, is drafting plans for a Grand Council AMD Speakers Bureau.  The Speakers Bureau will be organized by state and by topic to assist Brethren with planning ingatherings and educational events.  

Finally, there are a number of upcoming exciting events.  Each of you are invited to the AMD events and we hope to see you there!

    1.    May 28, 2022 - Constitution of a new Council in Pembroke, VA - Contact RVB Rob Worthington
    2.    June 2 - 4, 2022 - UGIC Red Cross of Constantine in Greensboro, North Carolina - Details at
    3.    June 4, 2022 - Constitution of James B. Bonham Council in Corpus Christi, TX - Contact RVB Roberto Sanchez
    4.    June 11, 2022 - Reception for MVB Aaron M. Shoemaker, Jefferson City, MO at the Grand York Rite of Missouri -
                 Contact Grand York Rite of Missouri Office

    5.    June 11, 2022 - Texas AMD Ingathering
    6.    June 11, 2022 - Indiana AMD Ingathering - Contact RVB Christopher Gamblin
    7.    June 11, 2022 - Constitution of Great Highland Council in California - Contact RVB Ohannes "Hovig" Antabian
    8.    June 24, 2022 - Michigan AMD Ingathering - Contact RVB Corey Curtiss
    9.    June 25, 2022 - Pennsylvania AMD Ingathering - Contact RVB Seth Anthony
    10.    July 30, 2022 - Ohio AMD Ingathering - Contact RVB H. Jeffery Shaw
    11.    August 2 - 7, 2022 - YRSCNA in Kansas City - Details at
    12.    August 6, 2022 - New Jersey AMD Ingathering - Contact RVB Moises Gomez
    13.    August 9, 2022 - South Carolina AMD Ingathering
    14.    August 12 - 14, 2022 - Grand Council AMD Canada - Details at
    15.    August 26-27, 2022 - Convent General, KYCH in Salt Lake City, Utah - Details at
    16.    September 17, 2022 - Illinois AMD Ingathering
    17.    September 2022 - Florida South AMD Ingathering
    18.    October or November - Florida North AMD Ingathering
    19.    October 25, 2022 - Grand Council, AMD, England - US Contact MVB Aaron M. Shoemaker


Until we meet again, I remain yours in the Mystic Tie,

MVB Aaron M. Shoemaker, KGC
Sovereign Grand Master

Creation of the World's Newest
Grand Council in the Philippines

By V.B. Seth Anthony & R.V.B. Clyde Schoolfield

For many years, the Grand Council of the U.S.A. has had an active presence in the Philippines.  Most recently, there have been eight constituent Councils under our jurisdiction laboring in that country.  But it has been apparent for some time that the administrative aspects of this "long distance relationship" have been a bit problematic.

On January 21, 2021, our Grand Superintendent for the Philippines, Rt. Ven. Bro. Arlen De Guzman, acting on behalf of our Brethren in that country, contacted the Grand Council to request that our constituent Councils in that country be granted a greater autonomy than is usually associated with constiutent Councils.  Our Sovereign Grand Master at that time, Most Ven. Bro. Glen Cook, referred this request to the Committee on Fraternal Relations.  This Committee considered three options: 

(i) permitting our consituent Councils in the Philippines to form their own Grand Council,

(ii) forming a Provincial Grand Council of the Philippines which would still be under the jurisdiction of the Grand Council of the U.S.A., or

(iii) mainaining the status quo.

After deliberating for almost a year and after further discussions with the representatives of our Brethren in the Philippines, the Committee on Fraternal Relations recommended that our eight constituent Councils in the Philippines be permitted to separate from our Grand Council and to form their own Grand Council, subject to several provisos meant to protect the future of the Order in that country and to not contradict our previous agreements with other jurisdictions.  On December 31, 2021, the representatives of our Brethren in the Philippines agreed in writing to the recommendation of the Committee, along with the several enumerated provisos.

On February 12, 2022, our Sovereign Grand Master at that time, Most Ven. Bro. Mohamad Yatim, in his annual report to the Grand Council, recommended that the Grand Council approve the request of our eight constituent Councils in the Philippines to be permitted to separate from our Grand Council and to form their own Grand Council, subject to the agreed upon provisos.  The delegates at the Annual Communication of the Grand Council of the U.S.A. unanimously approved this recommendation.  Rt. Ven. Bro. Evaristo A. Leviste was then called to the East, where he was presented with the Charter of the new Grand Council of the Allied Masonic Degrees of the Philippines.

On February 18, 2022, the representatives of our "former" constituent Councils in the Philippines:  Filipinas Council No. 490, Davao Council No. 504, Cavite Council No. 506, Quezon City Council No. 507, Laguna Council No. 508, Fifth Mountain Council No. 521, Makati Council No. 534, and Manila Council No. 535 met "electronically" to constitute their Grand Council and to install their Grand Officers.  Our junior Past Sovereign Grand Master, Most Ven. Bro. Mohamad Yatim, had been asked by our Brethren in the Philippines to serve as the Installing Sovereign Grand Master, which he did, with the assistance of our current Sovereign Grand Master, Most Ven. Bro. Aaron Shoemaker, serving as Installing Grand Marshal and our Deputy Grand Master, Rt. Ven. Bro. Berry Rigdon, serving as Installing Grand Chaplain.

The officers of the new Grand Council of the Allied Masonic Degrees of the Philippines are:

Sovereign Grand Master Juanito P. Abergas,
Deputy Grand Master Arlen P. De Guzman,
Senior Grand Warden Evaristo A. Leviste,
Junior Grand Warden Nestor V. Tampol,
Grand Secretary Giovanni A. Villegas,
Asst. Grand Secretary Jomel Dennis L. Maranan,
Asst. Grand Secretary Orlino H. Pacioles Jr.,
Grand Treasurer Rafael J. Roxas,
Asst. Grand Treasurer Henry W. Cheng,
Grand Auditor Victor Antonio T. Espejo,
Asst. Grand Auditor Genesis V. Aquino,
Senior Grand Deacon Victorino A. Floro III,
Junior Grand Deacon Manual Liam C. Garcia,
Grand Chaplain Quirino B. Parrillam,
Asst. Grand Chaplain Don O. Dayandayan,
Grand Director of Ceremonies Pravin T. Sharma,
Asst. Grand Director of Ceremonies Pravin T. Sharma,
Grand Marshal Edgar D. Lim,
Grand Lecturer Rodel Riezel S. Reyes,
Asst. Grand Lecturer Neil O. Menguito,
Grand Standard Bearer Joselito Maghirang,
Grand Director of Music Alvan Joseph T. Balazo,
Asst. Grand Director of Music Florencio B. Nazareno,
Grand Historian Jonathan L. Edward Chua

Following the Installation, remarks were made by the new Sovereign Grand Master of the Philippines and the representatives of the Grand Council of the U.S.A.  It was clear that warm fraternal feelings extend from both Grand Councils and that a strong bond will remain between the Brethren in the United States and the Philippines.

We wish the world’s newest Grand Council all the best in the coming years and look forward to seeing the Order grow and prosper in their jurisdiction!

Meet Your Grand Superintendents:
RVB Anthony J. Dintino, III

RV Bro Dintino has been a Mason for over 16 years being initiated in 2004 to a Philadelphia City Lodge and was later received by Ouroboros Council, No. 469-AMD (Philadelphia) in 2009, where he served as Sovereign Master and then Secretary.  In 2014, he received his Master Masonic Scholar award from the PA Academy of Masonic Knowledge. RV Bro Dintino served as ME High Priest of Royal Arch Chapter, No. 3 (PA) in 2018.  This year he was appointed District Deputy Grand High Priest for the 1st Capitular District in PA.  In 2018-19, he collaborated with RV Yasser Al-Khatib, Grand Tyler, to form the third Traditional Observance Lodge in PA, Opus Magnum Lodge, No. 815, and served as Warrant Worshipful Master in 2019.  RV Bro Dintino has been a consistent attendee to Masonic Week where he has been on the degree teams for the Order of the Scarlet Cord, 3rd and 4th Grades and the Knight of Constantinople.  In 2018, at the first PA In-Gathering, he exemplified the Order of the Secret Monitor as Supreme Ruler.  The following year, at the PA/NJ In-Gathering, he organized a Royal Ark Mariner degree team, and exemplified it as Commander Noah.  In 2020, he served as the moderator for the PA/NJ virtual In-Gathering.  He is heavily involved with many York Rite bodies to include The Operatives, Knight Masons, and Red Cross of Constantine.  He lives in Havertown, Delaware County (PA) and works in the law enforcement  and executive security professions.  

Illinois AMD is Thriving!

By R.V.B. RJ Johnson
Grand Superintendent

This last quarter has been active! Our AMD members are some of the most active Freemasons in the state—and I might mention some of the smartest. AMD has always seemed to be the home for intellectual Brothers and Companions. 
Masonic Week was a big hit this year. There seemed to be more attendees than ever before, and it energized many members upon arriving back at home—wherever that was. For us in Illinois, we got right back to work, revitalized. 
Some recent highlights in Illinois happened in the North-East area of the state. Before Masonic Week, E.M. Lambert Council conferred a hybrid style table read/dramatization over the dinner tables at the Medinah Shrine Center. The degree was The Grand Tylers [Tilers] of Solomon and was followed by a discussion of the degree's history. 
Then, one of the newer members, Kevin Wheeler, gave a presentation on Adam—as the first Freemason according to Masonic Manuscripts. 
At the newest council in Illinois, Ed Rund Council No. 571 conferred a table reading and then had an excellent presentation from Guide Sobecki on Masonic Swords and their history. 
AMD is one of the only places to get dedicated Masonic Education on the widest variety of subjects within a tiled setting. Whether meeting in a Lodge or a restaurant, it never leaves us in want. 
It doesn’t stop at in-person gatherings! E.M. Lambert No. 319, in addition to their quarterly meetings, also scheduled a few Zoom Educational meetings as “extras.” As many might have seen, they hosted a discussion of the Royal Ark Mariner Degree. They then were treated by having a Virginian, Companion Jason Richards, who delivered a one-hour long presentation on global flood myths. The Q&A afterward was epic. 
In short – AMD is healthy in Illinois, and we’re all looking forward to 2022. On September 17th, 2022—Illinois will host its first AMD Ingathering in Bloomington/Normal Masonic Lodge. Mark your calendars.

AMD Virtual Lecture Series – Properly Clothed Summary

By V.B. Adam Buffington

On January 6th, 2022, another great AMD Virtual Lecture was presented by the Grand Council who hosted Worshipful Brother Patrick Craddock and his presentation entitled, “Admit Him if Properly Clothed: The Evolution of the Masonic Apron in America, 1740 to the Present”.

Worshipful Brother Patrick is a renowned authority on Masonic Aprons and regalia. He has a Master of Arts Degree and a Master of Philosophy in History. Worshipful Patrick was Initiated, Passed and Raised in O.D. Smith Lodge 33 in Oxford, Mississippi and is a Charter Member and Past Master of Conlegium Ritus Austeri Lodge No. 779 in Nashville, Tennessee. He is also a manufacturer and provider of some of the highest quality Masonic regalia with his company, The Craftsman’s Apron.

Worshipful Patrick started his presentation with describing what is the “Badge of a Mason?”, pointing out that while the public might think that it our label pins that we wear on our clothing, tattoos that some Masons wear, our clothing with Square and Compass; we know the Badge to be the Lambskin Apron. The use of the Lambskin Apron started with the Operative Mason’s apron which was use for utilitarian purposes, mainly to protect their clothing while they worked. They were large aprons covering the chest and part of the legs and mostly unadorned. 

He then goes on to show some images of early masonic aprons, being plain white and not the usual square with triangle flap that we know today. When viewing the images of the lambskin aprons, we can see that they still had the rough shape of a lambskin, with the forelegs being the “strings” to tie around the back and the “head portion” being the flap. But these flaps, the bib, had a hole on the top which was used as a buttonhole. These aprons were the plain white color and simple in design.

It wasn’t until the 1730s that imagery started to make its way onto the aprons. This started in France and was mostly due to fashion. English fashion at the time was very utilitarian, using earth-tones, while the French fashion was very decorative and flamboyant. The French started to incorporate symbols and images with degree themes, and these aprons were smaller than the English ones.

During the colonial period of the US, we started to combine elements from both the French and English aprons. We used the large English size of the apron (which would extend well down to the knees) and added in the French decorative elements. Each apron was unique and for that individual mason. There were no set officer aprons, no past master aprons that were given from the lodge to the outgoing Master, but there were some aprons that would be for specific degrees, thus some aprons would just have the Fellowcraft Degree theme on them, while some would have the Entered Apprentice theme. It was expected at the time that each petition joining would provide his own regalia, thus the personalization to everyone.

As time went on and the fraternity grew, there became a commercial need for aprons. So, during this same period, the printing press became of great use. By using the printing press, which would use an engrave plate, manufacturers could provide printed aprons at great speed then painted aprons. If a mason had the money at the time, he could pay extra to have colorized aprons.

Around the 1820s, the Mason could choose images that were very personal to him to place on the apron, such as Latin mottos, symbols, themes, etc. But how did this trend start that allowed Masons to choose so many symbols? In 1819, Jeremy Cross published his book “The True Masonic Chart of Hieroglyphic” and on the front cover were many masonic symbols. See below:
By having this cover with so many symbols, Masons could bring the apron to the printer or painter and ask for which symbols they would like and how they would like them. Each Brother’s apron became his own special apron that he would wear to lodge. 

It was in the 1840’s where we start to get the first photographic evidence of early aprons. We would see the styles, the designs, the personal touches. We would also start to see the advertisements for selling and making the aprons appear at booksellers and publishers. And in 1850, Abner Pollard opened a shop for Fraternal Organizations, that starting the commercialization of selling fraternal regalia. In 1860, with the beginning of the Civil War, Brothers would take their aprons with them when they left for the war.

After the war, around the 1870s, we start to see a growth in fraternalism. The industrial revolution is gaining speed and we start to see the Amazon of the late 19th century, Mail Order Catalogs. With these catalogs, Brothers or Lodges could send it orders and with factory line processes, new aprons could be produced quickly and in greater numbers. But because of this factory line assembly of aprons, we start to see a shift, as can be seen in photos, from very personalized aprons, to the more easily produced square shape and triangular flap that is present in lodges nowadays.

Now in the 1920’s, we enter into the Golden Age of Fraternalism. This was a time when manufacturers would start offering extras for lodges who would send in purchase orders for Lodge supplies. Such as, if a new lodge is created and needs supplies and degree items, they would place an order and the company would send a box of free aprons with the set. During this time is when we see that most economic apron style, a square cotton apron with tie-strings. This become the norm because at this point, the Brothers were use to the design and it was all we knew then.

Today, while we see the usual square and triangle flap aprons at lodges for brothers to use, and the past master aprons, district deputy aprons or grand lodge aprons, we are starting to see some Brothers wanting to get personalized aprons again. Asking for these aprons to show what Masonry means to them and what specific items, symbols, themes, or anything that is meaningful to them.

Grand Superintendent becomes Grand High Priest!

Right Venerable Bro. Nicholas J. Sampogna was elected Grand High Priest of the Grand Chapter of Royal Arch Masons of the District of Columbia at their Grand Sessions held in March. Most Excellent Companion Sampogna is a founding member and Past Sovereign Master of New Rome Council, No. 554 and serves the Grand Council, AMD as the Grand Superintendent of the Mid-Atlantic Region. Congrats, Nicky!

Ohio AMD Day, Saturday July 30th!

We are planning an All Ohio AMD Day Saturday July 30 starting at 1PM at the Northwest Masonic Temple in Columbus, Ohio. We are planning to have 2 degrees portrayed and an AMD paper in addition to a short business meeting and a guest speaker. Contact either Doug King or H. Jeffery Shaw (Grand SuperintendentS Ohio) for more information. We also got a picture of our current and past Grand Superintendents for Ohio at Masonic week.


By R.V.B. Christopher J. Gamblin

On June 11, 2022 the Councils of the Allied Masonic Degrees in Indiana will be assembling for the Second Annual Indiana In-Gathering at Calvin W. Prather No. 717 in Indianapolis.  The day will be filled with degree work, masonic education and fellowship.  Registration will open at 9:00 am local time and coffee and donuts will be available for fellowship before the ceremonies of the day commence.  The ceremonies will begin with an initiation by Prather Council No. 510 of any candidates Councils would like to bring to the In-Gathering.  After welcoming new brethren to the Allied Masonic Degrees, the day will progress with the conferral of degrees that are open to all members of the AMD.  We will break for lunch (included in registration fee) and have comments by any Grand Council Officers that will be in attendance.  After lunch, brethren will have the opportunity to witness three grades of The Ancient and Masonic Order of the Scarlet Cord.  

The Royal Order of the Masonic Knights of the Scarlet Cord is an appendant body originally stemming from the Order of the Secret Monitor, but in America, one needs only be a member of the Allied Masonic Degrees. This is an invitational order which requires Masons to be members of the 2nd grade/degree of the Order of the Secret Monitor known as “Prince.” This order is composed of 6-grades:

Grade 1: Ostiartii or Doorkeeper
Grade 2: Lectors or Readers
Grade 3: Fellow or Healer & Exorcist
Grade 4: Councillor
Grade 5: Keeper of the Hidden Secret
Grade 6: Prince of Jerusalem

The first three Grades are conferred in a Consistory, the 4th Grade is conferred in a Council of Elders, the 5th Grade is conferred in a Council of Entrusted, and the 6th Grade is conferred in a Council of Princes.

At last year’s In-Gathering the First Grade was conferred but for the first time ever the Second and Third grades will be performed in Indiana.  All members of the AMD are eligible to receive the first three grades of the Scarlet Cord and, in the past, the only way to receive all three grades at one conferral was to attend Masonic Week.  Brethren who pre-register will receive a certificate from the Grand Council of Allied Masonic Degrees signifying their acceptance into the Scarlet Cord.  Please come and join us as we continue the tradition of an annual In-Gathering and be part of the first ever conferral of the Second and Third Grades of the Scarlet Cord in the State.  Visit the following link in order to get more detailed information as well as registering:  Look forward to seeing you on June 11th!
MVBAaron M. Shoemaker, K.G.C.
Sovereign Grand Master

Grand Council of the
Allied Master Degrees
of the United States of America
Right Venerable Brother
Clyde H. Schoolfield, Jr., KGC
Grand Secretary
Venerable Brother
J. Robert Mullis

Publications Committee Chair
Right Venerable Brother
John A. Bridegroom

Allied Times is the electronic newsletter of the Grand Council of Allied Masonic Degrees of the United States of America. Copyright © 2022. All rights reserved. Articles published in Allied Times articulate the understandings only of their writers, and not the Grand Council or any other organized Masonic body. The writers are free to publish their own articles elsewhere, but attribution, identifying Allied Times as the original publisher, is requested. Having work published in Allied Times in no way bestows or promises membership in the AMD or in any other Masonic body. Submit copy and art to the editor here. Receipt of submissions by the editor is not a guarantee of publication, and submissions are edited for length, style, and content.
Copyright © 2022
Grand Council of the Allied Masonic Degrees of the U.S.A.
All rights reserved.



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