Category Archives: Grand Lodge

June 2017 Stated Communication

Among other activities, our June Stated Communication is when our Bernard Hogan Essay Contest winners present their essays. This year’s winner, Brevin Martin, was in attendance with his family to present his essay to the Lodge.


Freemasonry in the American Revolution
by Brevin Martin

Freemasons have been in the United States since its inception; some even say that Freemasons helped bring about the founding of the United States through the American Revolution. Masonic Temples were used for meetings. Members from both sides of the Revolution were welcome and actively participated in Masonic meetings without politics being involved. Others are convinced that the American Revolution itself started in Masonic meetings with discussion of unfair British policies and how to combat them. Not all of the major “players” in the Revolution were Freemasons, but many of them were. Ten signers of the Articles of Confederation, nine signers of the Declaration of Independence, thirteen signers of the Constitution, and four Presidents of the Continental Congress were — or later became — Freemasons. The brotherhood of the Masons and the trust established be being a Freemason helped people who didn’t otherwise know each other to become loyal confidants. Samuel Adams, John Hancock, Paul Revere, Joseph Warren, George Washington and Benjamin Franklin are well-known names from the American Revolution…they were also Freemasons!

John Hancock was a wealthy businessman who decided to get involved with politics by securing political office in Boston and then the colonial legislature in Massachusetts. Paul Revere — a silversmith and not of the elite social class of John Hancock — was a Senior Grand Deacon in the Grand Lodge of Massachusetts and was a good friend of Joseph Warren, Master of the Grand Lodge of Massachusetts. They became friends due, in large part, to their membership in the St. Andrews Lodge (Boston, Massachusetts). Samuel Adams was a graduate of Harvard and came from a very politically-active family in Boston. A lead of the Sons of Liberty — and kind of a troublemaker — Adams frequently challenged British policies. All four of these men were Freemasons and belonged to the Grand Lodge of Massachusetts. At the time Joseph Warren sent Paul Revere to warn John Hancock and Sam Adams that the British regulars were marching to Concord, Hancock and Adams had warrants issued for their arrest. Without being in the brotherhood of Freemasons, the American Revolution may have had a completely different outcome. All of these men were active members of the Freemasons until their deaths.

There were many notable Freemasons involved with the American Revolution, but George Washington and Benjamin Franklin are among the most well-known. George Washington would be the “celebrity” by today’s standard, but Benjamin Franklin did more for the Masonic organization.

George Washington’s influence on American history is inestimable. He was the Commander of the Continental Army, served as President of the Constitutional Convention, and later became the first President of the United States. He was a devout mason; he was first initiated in 1752 in the lodge of Fredericksburg, Virginia. He remained an active member until his death in 1799. He rose to the level of Master of the Alexandria Lodge No. 22 (which was subsequently renamed the “Alexandria-Washington” Lodge No. 22). Washington surrounded himself with Freemasons; he used a Masonic Bible from the St. John’s Masonic Lodge No. 1 (New York City), and his oath was given by Robert Livingston, a prominent Mason and the Chancellor of New York. Livingston later served as one of five members of the committee tasked with drafting the Declaration of Independence. George Washington even incorporated Masonic practices as he and other members of the Maryland and Virginia Masonic Lodges laid the cornerstone of the US Capitol building.

Benjamin Franklin joined the Masonic Lodge of St. John in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, in 1732 and remained an active member until his death. He eventually became Grand Master of his lodge as well as Grand Master of the Nine Sisters Lodge in Paris, France. He joined the Parisian lodge while serving as a diplomat in France. Interestingly, Benjamin Franklin traveled to other European countries to attend different Masonic Lodges and meetings. He was well-known for serving on the committee to draft the Declaration of Independence and his work in the Continental Congress, but he was just as dedicated to his Masonic Lodge. He created its bylaws and he also published the Constitution of the Free-Masons.

In conclusion, Freemasons helped create the United States of America, helped form the foundation of our laws and beliefs, and much of the Founders’ creative thinking can be traced to the fundamentals of Freemasonry. The fact that these men belonged to the same fraternal organization gave them the opportunity to interact with other Masons and crate and important connection, vital to the formation of our nation. Found fathers and historical figures, Freemasons truly shaped the very concept of the United States of America.


Worshipful Brother Kemble presents Chase Martin with his first place prize and plaque. Pictured above, left to right: Dan Kemble, P.M., Secretary; Brevin “Chase” Martin; Buddy Wallace, Master.
Pictured above, left to right: Doug Logan, History teacher at Cooper High School; Don Martin; Brandon Martin; Rose Martin; Buddy Wallace, Master; Right Worshipful Brother Gary Rose, Grand Senior Warden, Grand Lodge of Kentucky.

Right Worshipful Brother Gary Rose, Grand Senior Warden of the Grand Lodge of Kentucky was our guest speaker for the evening. He spoke briefly on a series of interesting topics to get everyone thinking then opened the floor for questions and discussion.

March 2017 Stated Communication

The stated meeting of Elvin E. Helms Lodge No. 926 on March 14, 2017 saw a full house at Lodge despite Winter’s last blast of cold weather and snow.  We were honored to have representatives from five other District 18 Lodges in attendance at our meeting, including four current Masters – Worshipful Bro. David Bird from Good Faith Lodge No. 95, Worshipful Bro. Joe Deck from Bradford Lodge No. 123, Worshipful Bro. Sean Weaver from Phoenix Lodge No. 719 and Worshipful Bro. Tom Cooper from Hebron Lodge No. 757.

Bradford Lodge No. 123, with six in attendance, claimed the District 18 Traveling Gavel.

Worshipful Bro. Eddie Hazelett, Past Master of Paintsville Lodge No. 381 and current member of the Grand Lodge of Kentucky’s Committee on Education, presented our Masonic Education for the evening.  Worshipful Bro. Hazelett told the story of how Scots Masons were involved in the construction of the White House in Washington, D. C.  Bro. Hazelett’s presentation was excellent and the Lodge presented him with an honorary membership in Elvin E. Helms Lodge no. 926.

Click here to view Worshipful Bro. Eddie Hazelett’s presentation.

We were delighted to have Worshipful Bro. Al Collier in Lodge with us again.  Bro. Al has been caring for his wife, Jenny, who has been ill.  Being a full-time caregiver, Bro. Al has been unable to attend Lodge.  He and Jenny recently celebrated their 66th wedding anniversary.  Congratulations to Bro. Al and Jenny and may they enjoy many more anniversaries.

We received good news regarding Bro. Garry Kelly’s recovery.  Bro. Garry has been responding to treatment and will continue to receive therapy in Florida.  His address is:

Bro. Garry C. Kelly
Room 1414
Orlando Health Rehabilitation Institute
52 Underwood Street
Orlando, Florida  32806

Please feel free to drop Bro. Garry a line or a card to cheer him.

Our Lodge is draped in mourning to observe the death of Bro. Emmett Ralph Elliott, a 52-year member of our Lodge.  Bro. Elliott died on March 3, 2017.

Our next meeting is Tuesday, April 11.  Please join us for a good time of food, fellowship and Masonic Education.

From the Archives

A recent search of the Archives of our Lodge produced the photograph shown below, taken on December 14, 2004. The occasion was the installation of the Officers of Petersburg Lodge No. 926 for the 2005 Lodge year.

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Pictured above, left to right: Worshipful Bro. Mel Kinser, Grand Pursuivant of the Grand Lodge of Kentucky; Al Cummins, Senior Warden; Right Worshipful Bro. Keith Dreier, Grand Junior Warden of the Grand Lodge of Kentucky; Worshipful Bro. Al Collier, Treasurer; Worshipful Bro. Dennis Stephens, Master; Worshipful Bro. Rick Campbell, Junior Warden; Right Worshipful Bro. Greg Powell, Grand Senior Warden, Grand Lodge of Kentucky; Worshipful Bro. Kenny Williamson, Tyler, Worshipful Bro. Elvin E. Helms, Jr., Secretary; Worshipful Bro. Garry C. Kelly, Committee on Biography, Grand Lodge of Kentucky.

Installation of Officers 2016-2017

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Officers for 2016-2017, left to right:

Sammy Meyerratken, Senior Deacon; Travis Bush, Treasurer; Adam Gross, Junior Warden; Jason Wallace, Senior Warden; Buddy Wallace, Master; Ed Tanner, Senior Steward; Grand Senior Warden Gary Rose, Installing Master; Bob Bradford, Junior Steward; Mel Kinser, Chaplain; Honorary Member Dave Cassesa, Installing Marshall; Dan Kemble, Secretary

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Our Volumes of Sacred Law upon the Altar.  May they ever light our path!

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Right Worshipful Bro. Gary C. Rose, Grand Senior Warden of the Grand Lodge of Kentucky, F. & A. M. served as our Installing Master.

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Worshipful Bro. Dave Cassesa, Installing Marshall, presents Master-elect Bro. Buddy Wallace at the altar for installation.

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Our newly obligated Master, Bro Buddy Wallace, receives the line, the rule, Book of Constitutions and the By-Laws from Installing Marshall Dave Cassesa.

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Worshipful Master, Bro. Buddy Wallace, is seated in the chair of King Solomon.

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Right Worshipful Bro. Gary C. Rose, Grand Senior Warden of the Grand Lodge of Kentucky, F. & A. M. charges our newly installed Master, Bro. Buddy Wallace.

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Worshipful Bro. Dave Cassesa, Installing Marshall, proclaims the installation of Worshipful Master Bro. Buddy Wallace.

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Bro. Sammy Meyerratken, Senior Deacon, and Worshipful Bro. Adam Gross, Junior Warden, observe the proceedings.

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Worshipful Bro. Jason Wallace (kneeling) and Worshipful Bro. Adam Gross take their obligations as Senior Warden and Junior Warden, respectively.

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Worshipful Bro. Jason Wallace, Senior Warden, assumes his station in the West.

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Worshipful Bro. Dave Cassesa, Installing Marshall, presents Worshipful Bro. Adam Gross at the altar for installation as Junior Warden.

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Worshipful Bro. Adam Gross, Junior Warden, receives his collar from his mother-in-law, Holly Kemble.

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Worshipful Bro. Dave Cassesa, Installing Marshall, presents Worshipful Bro. Dan Kemble and Worshipful Bro. Travis Bush for installation as Secretary and Treasurer, respectively.

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Worshipful Bro. Dan Kemble and Worshipful Bro. Travis Bush (kneeling) take their obligations as Secretary and Treasurer while Holly Kemble and Debbie Bush look on.

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Worshipful Bro. Dave Cassesa, Installing Marshall, presents Worshipful Bro. Mel Kinser, Worshipful Bro. Bob Bradford, Worshipful Bro. Dennis Stephens and Bro. Sammy Meyerratken for installation as Chaplain, Junior Steward, Junior Deacon and Senior Deacon, respectively.

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Worshipful Bro. Dave Cassesa, Installing Marshall, presents Worshipful Bro. Mel Kinser, Chaplain, with the jewel of his office.

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Worshipful Bro. Bob Bradford and Worshipful Bro. Ed Tanner are installed as Junior Steward and Senior Steward, respectively.

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Worshipful Bro. Dan Kemble, Worshipful Bro. Mel Kinser and Worshipful Bro. Ed Tanner at their respective stations.

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Worshipful Bro. Ed Tanner, Worshipful Bro. Adam Gross and Worshipful Bro. Bob Bradford at their respective stations.

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Worshipful Bro. Dave Cassesa, Installing Marshall, proclaims the installation of officers of Elvin E. Helms Lodge No. 926 for the year 2017.

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Worshipful Master Bro. Buddy Wallace stands between Right Worshipful Bro. Gary Rose, Grand Senior Warden, and Worshipful Bro. Dave Cassesa, Installing Marshall.

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Bro. Sammy Meyerratken, Senior Deacon, Gary C. Rose, Grand Senior Warden, Grand Lodge of Kentucky, Worshipful Master Buddy Wallace and Worshipful Bro. Ernest C. Jackson, Past Master of James W. Alley Lodge No. 869 in Wayland, Kentucky.

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Worshipful Bro. Garry Kelly, who otherwise would not have had his picture taken, poses with Worshipful Bro. Jason Wallace, Senior Warden.

Last but not least, 2016’s winners for our Kelly Elementary School Fund were Worshipful Bro. Bob Perry of Alexandria No. 152 and our newly installed Secretary, Worshipful Bro. Dan Kemble.

Invitation to Annual Installation of Officers 2016-2017

Elvin E. Helms Lodge No. 926 will hold its annual election and installation of officers at its stated meeting on Tuesday, December 13, 2016.  The installation is open to the public and all are invited.  Dinner will be served at 6:30 P. M. and the installation will begin at 7:30 P. M.

Right Worshipful Bro. Gary C. Rose, Grand Senior Warden of the Grand Lodge of Kentucky, F. & A. M., will serve as installing Master.  Worshipful Bro. Dave Cassesa, Past Master of Robert Burns Lodge No. 163 and William O. Ware Lodge of Research No. 999 will act as installing Marshal.

Nominated at our Lodge’s November meeting were the following Brothers:

Master – Henry S. (“Buddy”) Wallace, Jr., P. M.
Senior Warden – Jason L. Wallace, P. M.
Junior Warden – Thomas Adam Gross, P. M.
Treasurer – Travis M. Bush, P. M.
Secretary – Dan M. Kemble, P. M.

Nominations for any of the above offices may still be made from the floor at our meeting in December.  Otherwise, we will vote to approve the nominations made in November.  The remaining officers will be appointed by the newly installed Master.

Dinner will be barbecued brisket and chicken, along with potato salad and baked beans.  If you have a favorite side dish and/or dessert, please feel free to bring it along.

Please make plans to attend our meeting and installation on December 13.  Bring your family and friends and help our Lodge get off to a great start for the 2017 year.

Dues cards are in.  Our annual dues are $ 101.00 and are payable by January 31.  Please see the Secretary to pay your dues and receive your 2017 dues card.

217th Annual Communication of the Grand Lodge of Kentucky

The Grand Lodge of Kentucky, F&AM held its 217th Annual Communication October 17th and 18th at The Galt House in Louisville, KY. Most Worshipful Brother Todd Jones, member and Past Master of Fleming No. 112 and Favorite No. 581, was elected Grand Master. Most Worshipful Brother Todd is shown here displaying his famous camouflage tuxedo jacket.

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Worshipful Brother Kevin Schneider, member and Past Master of Bradford No. 123 was named District Deputy Grand Master for District 18. Congratulations Brother Kevin! We look forward to your year as DDGM.

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Right Worshipful Brother Geary Laird, member and Past Master of Shawnee No. 830 (and a frequent visitor to District 18) was elected Grand Junior Warden.

Kentucky Masons placed over 1,100 bicycles in elementary schools across our State as incentive awards for perfect attendance. As he promised, outgoing Grand Master, Most Worshipful Brother Cloyd J. Bumgardner, rode a bicycle at Grand Lodge to celebrate this significant achievement. Stephen L. Pruitt, Commissioner of Education for the Commonwealth of Kentucky, thanked the Grand Craft for implementing the bicycle program and for its positive impact in Kentucky schools.

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Worshipful Master Ernie Stratton represented our Lodge at this historic communication. Our Lodge received the Grand Master’s Excellency Award in recognition of the Lodge’s accomplishments in the 2015-2016 year. Legislation presented by our Lodge giving Kentucky Lodges the option of opening and transacting business on any of the Three Degrees in Masonry received a majority vote and was laid over for a final vote at the 218th Annual Communication of the Grand Lodge of Kentucky in October of 2017.

Delegates to the Grand Lodge also approved a recommendation of the Fraternal Relations Committee permitting intervisitation (but not dual membership) with the Most Worshipful Prince Hall Grand Lodge of Kentucky and its subordinate Lodges. Delegates also approved recognition of the Grand Lodge of Estonia. Visiting Masons from Prince Hall Lodges or the Grand Lodge of Estonia should be vouched for or tried in the same manner as all visitors. Approval of both recommendations is effective immediately.

Worshipful Brother Dan Kemble was appointed to the Grand Lodge Committee on By-Laws.

Worshipful Brother Dave Cassesa, current Master of William O. Ware Lodge of Research No. 999 and an honorary member of our Lodge, was appointed to the Grand Lodge Committee on Masonic Education.

2016 Outdoor Raising

Brothers from every Lodge in District 18 and one Lodge in District 19 gathered this morning at Hershell Freeman’s farm for the purpose of conferring the Sublime Degree of Master Mason on 8 Fellow Craft Brothers, including Brother Sammy Meyerratken of Elvin E. Helms No. 926. Most Worshipful Grand Master Cloyd J. Bumgardner presided over the first section, assisted by Right Worshipful Deputy Grand Master Todd Jones, Right Worshipful Grand Junior Warden Gary Rose, Grand Senior Deacon Craig Lindon, and Grand Marshall Denver Rose. Our Grand Lodge Officers did an impressive job. Most Worshipful Grand Master, Right Worshipful Elected Grand Lodge Officers, and Worshipful Appointed Grand Lodge Officers — we thank you all for being with us this morning and for your excellent work!

Worshipful District Deputy Grand Master Dan Kemble, District 18, Grand Lodge of Kentucky assembled and directed an all-star cast to portray The Legend of the Temple.

The Master Mason Slide Lecture was given by Brother Owen Huff of Colonel Clay No. 159. The GHS and MMWoD Lecture was given by Worshipful Brother Ken Rodgers of Golden Rule-Covington No. 109. The Master Mason Charge was given by Worshipful Brother Adam Gross of Elvin E. Helms No. 926. The Address was given by Worshipful Brother Ed Tanner of Elvin E. Helms No. 926. The Canadian Charge was given by Worshipful Brother Mel Kinser of Elvin E. Helms No. 926.

After comments by our newly Raised Brothers and those in attendance the floor was given to our Worshipful District Deputy Grand Master Dan Kemble, District 18, Grand Lodge of Kentucky for his closing remarks, during which he was presented with an Honorary Membership to Bradford No. 123.  Elvin E. Helms No. 926 was closed in peace and harmony at 4:00pm.

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Our eight newly Raised Master Masons. Left to right, they are: Adam Larkin, Boone-Union No. 304; Adam Neace, Bradford No. 123; Kent Means, Bradford No. 123; Matthew Waters, Alexandria No. 152; Sammy Meyerratken, Elvin E. Helms No. 926; Hampton Quigley, Golden Rule-Covington No. 109; Brian Carroll, Good Faith No. 95; and Kevin Surface, Golden Rule-Covington No. 109.
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Our Worshipful District Deputy Grand Master shortly after being presented with his Honorary Membership to Bradford No. 123.

September 2016 Visit to Crittenden-Dry Ridge No. 694

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Pictured above, left to right: Greg Bowen, Treasurer; Dan Kemble, District Deputy Grand Master, District 18, Grand Lodge of Kentucky; Louis Fields, P.M., Chaplain; Jacob Fields, Master; Darren Wilson, Masonry Matters Committee, Grand Lodge of Kentucky; Bobby Griggs, Grand Junior Deacon, Grand Lodge of Kentucky; Calvin Crupper; Chuck Givin, P.M.; Robby Ratliff, Secretary.

Brothers from Elvin E. Helms No. 694 visited Crittenden-Dry Ridge No. 694 in Stated Communication for a special occasion. Worshipful Brother Bobby Griggs, Grand Junior Deacon, Grand Lodge of Kentucky was in attendance to present the 400th Kentucky Mason to pass the Constitution Quiz, District 18’s own Worshipful Brother Chuck Givin, with his Constitution Scholar’s lapel pin. Brother Griggs noted that the level of participation in this program has far surpassed what had been hoped for and as a result we can all expect a new Constitution Quiz for the 2016-2017 Masonic year. Congratulations to all of our Constitution Scholars!

July 2016 Stated Communication

It was “Patriotic Shirt Night” at Elvin E. Helms Lodge No. 926 on Tuesday, July 12.

Our Secretary, Bro. Ed Tanner, looked mighty spiffy in his red, white and blue shirt.

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Bro. Ed, along with WM Ernie Stratton and MWPGM Keith Dreier, Grand Treasurer of the Grand Lodge of Kentucky, are pictured above.

MW Bro. Keith spoke about the day to day operations of the Grand Lodge and gave an overview of issues that the Grand Lodge handles on a daily basis. He stated that despite the fraternal nature of our Order, it is necessary to manage the Grand Lodge in a professional and businesslike manner. He also spoke about the relationship of the Masonic Homes and the Masonic Home Journal to the Grand Lodge. MW Bro. Keith further advised the Craft that although the Grand Lodge of Kentucky is a tax exempt organization, gifts to the Grand Lodge, unlike gifts to the Scottish Rite Foundation or the Masonic Homes, are not deductible for income tax purposes. MW. Bro. Keith also mentioned the success of the Grand Master’s bicycle program. As of this time, Kentucky Masons have donated 906 bicycles to local schools. District 18 Lodges contributed 78, or roughly 9% of that number. Once again, District 18 is among the state leaders in participation. Following his presentation, MW Bro. Keith was made an honorary member of our Lodge and presented with an Elvin E. Helms Lodge lapel pin. We wish MW Bro. Keith well in his office as Grand Treasurer hope that he is a frequent visitor to our Lodge.