House of the Temple
December 29, 2009
Dear Master of the Royal Secret,
Two hundred years ago today, our Illustrious Brother Albert Pike, 33°, was born in Boston, Massachusetts. He was an explorer, a teacher, a lawyer, a general, and a Freemason. His accomplishments in any of these areas would make him worthy of respect, but it is as a Freemason that we in the Southern Jurisdiction of the Scottish Rite most remember him.
In 1853 Ill. Albert G. Mackey, 33°, Grand Secretary General, conferred the 4° through 32° on Bro. Pike. Only two years later in 1855 the Supreme Council appointed him to serve on a committee to revise our rituals. His advancement in the Scottish Rite was nothing short of amazing: in 1857 he was coroneted an Inspector General Honorary; in 1858 he became an active member of the Supreme Council; and in 1859 he was electecd Sovereign Grand Commander.
While Bro. Pike is best known for revising our rituals and writing "Morals and Dogma," we cannot forget that the Southern Jurisdiction operates today under his administrative reorganization of the Supreme Council.
Ill. Pike's sublime command of language and his intricate layers of symbolism transformed Scottish Rite ritual in a way no one else has ever accomplished. Our Reverend Brother Joseph Fort Newton may have said it best:
"Albert Pike found Freemasonry in a log cabin and left it in a Temple."
However, when we think of our former Grand Commander and his many accomplishments, I believe we should consider his own words:
What we have done for ourselves alone dies with us; what we have done for others and the world remains and is immortal.
I ask that you take a moment today to pause and consider what Ill. Albert Pike, 33°, did for others and for the world. As his heirs, we continue to fulfill his legacy.
Sincerely and fraternally, Ronald A. Seale, 33°, Sovereign Grand Commander
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