The Grand College of America Holy Royal Arch Knight Templar Priests
I – JURISDICTION
- This Sovereign Body has supreme authority and control over the Order in the United States of America, its Territories and possessions, together with such Tabernacles as it may approve, erect or assume jurisdiction over beyond those political boundaries. It enjoys the right and privilege to enact any such laws as may be necessary to govern the Order, also the power to repeal or abrogate the same, as well as the power to regulate and decide upon all matters pertaining to the Order, to erase Tabernacles and to discipline its members.
- If a situation arises that is not covered elsewhere in these Statutes (1) follow known Masonic procedures, (2) ask the Grand College for a review if in doubt, and (3) obtain a ruling from Grand College if it is a constitutional matter.
II – TIME AND PLACE
- Invitations for succeeding Annual Grand Ingatherings shall be referred to and determined by Grand College at the current Annual Ingathering, subject to change by unforeseen circumstances. Such changes shall be made with the approval of the Grand Preceptor, the Deputy Grand Preceptor, and the Grand Registrar.
III– FISCAL YEAR
- The fiscal year of the Grand College of America shall begin on the first day of January. The fiscal year for Tabernacles shall begin on the first day of January.
IV – GRAND COLLEGE
- The membership of the Grand College shall consist of:
The Officers and Past Officers thereof.
Preceptors and Deputy Preceptors of Tabernacles during their tenure, also Past Preceptors in good Masonic standing in their Tabernacles.
V – OFFICERS
- The Officers of Grand College shall be:
The Most Eminent Grand Preceptor.
The Right Eminent Deputy Grand Preceptor.
In the event of the death, permanent disability or removal for any other cause of the Grand Preceptor, the Deputy Grand Preceptor shall immediately succeed to the office of Grand Preceptor. In the event of the death, permanent disability or removal for any other cause of both the Grand Preceptor and the Deputy Grand Preceptor, the office shall be filled by the Junior Past Grand Preceptor available until the next Annual Grand Ingathering, at which time offices shall be filled by election.
The Right Eminent Grand Treasurer.
The Right Eminent Grand Registrar.
- All Grand Officers must be members (Past Preceptors) of the Grand College and shall be elected by majority ballot. The offices of Grand Registrar and Grand Treasurer may be combined.
- (a) The Most Eminent Grand Preceptor shall appoint a Very Eminent Grand Prelate and a Very Eminent Grand Director of Ritual, who may or may not be Past Grand Preceptors, and who shall not advance or be part of the progressive line.
(b) The duties of the Grand Director of Ritual will be to: (1) advise the Grand Preceptor in matters of ritual, (2) ensure that proper ritual and decorum is employed during the Ingathering of the Grand College, (3) escort Grand Officers and Visiting Dignitaries as required, and (4) direct all ceremonies the Grand College. The Grand Director of Ritual will also serve as the Chairman of the Grand College Ritual Committee.
- The Most Eminent Grand Preceptor shall appoint seven Very Eminent Grand Pillars, A Very Eminent Grand Inner Guard, and a Very Eminent Grand Outer Guard.
- The abbreviations and titles of the Officers of the Grand College are:
MEGP Most Eminent Grand Preceptor
REDGP Right Eminent Deputy Grand Preceptor
REGT Right Eminent Grand Treasurer
REGR Right Eminent Grand Registrar
REGT/R Right Eminent Grand Treasurer/Registrar
VEGP Very Eminent Grand Prelate
VEGDR Very Eminent Grand Director of Ritual
VEGVIIP Very Eminent Grand Seventh Pillar
VEGVIP Very Eminent Grand Sixth Pillar
VEGVP Very Eminent Grand Fifth Pillar
VEGIVP Very Eminent Grand Fourth Pillar
VEGIIIP Very Eminent Grand Third Pillar
VEGIIP Very Eminent Grand Second Pillar
VEGIP Very Eminent Grand First Pillar
VEGIG Very Eminent Grand Inner Guard
VEGOG Very Eminent Grand Outer Guard
* Add “Past” after Eminent to indicate former service in that capacity; usually used when that is the highest title a Knight Priest has attained.
The title of the chief executive officer is “Most Eminent”.
Other elected officers are styled “Right Eminent”.
Grand College appointed officers are “Very Eminent”.
- Three Trustees shall be elected by a majority ballot for a term of three years, one of each said terms expiring with each Annual Grand Ingathering. They shall hold title to all property, real and personal, belonging to the Grand College and subject to the order of the Grand College in Annual Grand Ingathering assembled to whom they shall make an Annual Report.
VI – ORDER OF BUSINESS
- The Order of Business at the Annual Ingathering or any Special Grand Ingatherings of the Grand College shall be as follows:
Prayer by the Grand Prelate
Reading of the Minutes of previous Grand or Special Grand Ingatherings
Report of the Grand Preceptor
Report of the Grand Treasurer
Report of the Grand Registrar
Report of Officers
Report of Committees
Installation of Officers
Committee appointments of the Grand Preceptor
Good of the Order
Closing Prayer by the Grand Prelate
- The presence of one or more voting representatives from nine separate tabernacles shall constitute a quorum for the conduct of general business of Grand College.
- Proceedings of the Grand College for the current year shall be printed and distributed no later than six months following the Grand Ingathering.
VII – EXECUTIVE AUTHORITY
- The Most Eminent Grand Preceptor shall have the power to: Convene the Grand College at his will and pleasure. Interpret the Statutes and Edicts, which are subject to review. Ordain Knight Priests at sight and confer Past Rank. Issue Warrants of Erection to no less than three petitioners. Remove Officers either in Grand College or Tabernacles, for cause. Do any and all other things pertaining to the Order not otherwise covered by these statutes, but within the bounds of Masonic practice and custom. Arrest the Charter of any tabernacle which shall fail to make annual returns for two (2) successive years and pay its fees and per capita dues, or shall commit other major infractions of these Statutes.
VIII – INSIGNIA OF THE ORDER
- The official insignia of the Order is a purple cross of Salem, superimposed upon which is a scarlet Delta, both edged in gold. The Official abbreviation of the Order is H.R.A.K.T.P. and/or K.T.P., being respectively Holy Royal Arch Knight Templar Priests, and Knight Templar Priests.
- This insignia may only be used by the Grand College, not subordinate Tabernacles.
IX – MEMBERSHIP
- Membership in the Order is by invitation and limited to Knights Templar who have served a full term as Commander of a Commandery, and attained the honor and distinction of Past Commander. Invitations can be issued only after unanimous ballots have been taken at an Ingathering for which Knight Templar Priests have been mailed a notice by a Registrar listing all names of the Past Commanders proposed. In those parts of the Masonic realm where the Grand College has erected Tabernacles, but the style and title are different, the same limitation prevails. The title of a member is “Knight Templar Priest”, the plural being “Knights Priests”.
- Tabernacles are limited to an active membership of thirty-three.
- When a Knight Templar Priest desires to transfer membership from his mother Tabernacle to another, he may do so only upon invitation of the Tabernacle having jurisdiction in his new location. The Grand Registrar must be notified of an approved transfer before it becomes official.
- Should a Knight Templar Priest remove his residence to such a distance from his mother Tabernacle as might preclude participation in its activities, (a) he may request a transfer to Grand Preceptor’s Tabernacle A, or to a Tabernacle in whose jurisdiction he then resides, subject to paragraph 3 above, or (b) his mother Tabernacle may apply for his transfer to Grand Preceptor’s Tabernacle A, after a written request to sanction the transfer has been made to said Knight Templar Priest and his written approval obtained.
- Tabernacles have exclusive jurisdiction in the state or subdivision thereof designated in their Charter. In states where no Tabernacles exist, only Grand Preceptor’s Tabernacle “A” may issue an invitation. A Past Commander, who has removed his permanent residence to a state other than in which he served, may be invited to membership, provided the Tabernacle in the state where he now resides secures a written waiver from the Tabernacle of his former jurisdiction prior to extending the invitation.
- A Knight Priest made at sight by the Grand Preceptor, in accordance with VII, paragraph four, will become a member of Grand Preceptor’s Tabernacle “A” while he remains in good standing and until such time as he may be elected into membership in the Tabernacle having jurisdiction over his place of residence.
- A Knight Priest from another Grand College recognized by the Grand College of America Holy Royal Arch Knight Templar Priests may transfer his membership to the Grand College of America provided such other Grand College permits dual or plural membership, a certificate is issued by the Registrar to indicate the applicant is in good standing, and further that any transferee must be a Past Commander or the equivalent. If approved the Knight Priest would become a member of Grand Preceptor’s Tabernacle “A” until determining where to transfer his membership. All action must be approved by the Grand Preceptor after his consulting with the Deputy Grand Preceptor and the Grand Registrar.
- A proposal for membership of a Past Commander must be made in the county where the Past Commander resides. If it is desired that the Past Commander be proposed for membership in another Tabernacle in a different location, a waiver from such Tabernacle must be obtained. A Past Commander who does not live in the county where a Tabernacle is located may be proposed for membership in any Tabernacle in the State where the Past Commander resides.
X – EMERITUS MEMBERS
- A Tabernacle may approve an application by any of its active members for Emeritus status by majority vote.
- A Tabernacle may have no more than sixteen (16) Emeriti Members at any one time.
- An Emeritus member may not hold an office in his own Tabernacle, or any other Tabernacle, or the Grand College of America, Holy Royal Arch Knight Templar Priests.
- Emeritus members are subject to per capita dues and assessment by the Grand College and must be included in the Annual Return sent to the Grand Registrar.
XI – HONORARY MEMBERS
- A member of a Tabernacle may become an Honorary member of another Tabernacle, upon invitation, within his jurisdiction, or in another jurisdiction that permits such membership. The number of Honorary members shall not be counted in computing the numbers of active members of one of our Tabernacles. A Tabernacle may have no more than three honorary members.
- An Honorary member must retain membership in good standing in his mother Tabernacle to remain an Honorary member of another Tabernacle. As an Honorary member he is only entitled to vote in his mother Tabernacle.
- No payment of per capita will be collected from an Honorary member except from his mother Tabernacle.
XII – DUAL MEMBERS
- A member of a Tabernacle may become a Dual Member of another Tabernacle upon invitation, within his jurisdiction, or in another jurisdiction that permits such membership. The number of Dual Members shall not be counted in computing the number of Active Members in the Tabernacle where he is a Dual Member. A Tabernacle may have no more than three Dual Members.
- A Dual Member may vote in the Tabernacle(s) in which he holds Dual Membership. A Dual Member may hold office in only one Tabernacle at one time.
- Per capita must be paid by the Tabernacle(s) where they hold Dual Membership(s).
XIII – PERPETUAL MEMBERSHIP
- A Tabernacle may provide for Perpetual Membership in its by-laws.
- If a Tabernacle votes to offer Perpetual Memberships to its members, that Tabernacle must provide wording in its by-laws establishing the following guidelines:
- The Perpetual Membership fee must not be less than twenty-five (25) times current Tabernacle dues and per capita.
- All Perpetual Membership fees collected must be placed in a separate bank account from all other Tabernacle funds.
- There will be no refund of Perpetual Membership fees for any reason.
- There will be no transfer of Perpetual Membership fees to any other Tabernacle.
- Only the interest/dividends from the Perpetual Membership account may be withdrawn and paid to the Tabernacle general fund.
XIV – GRAND COLLEGE REVENUE
- Tabernacles may prescribe such fees and dues as they may deem proper and are not subject to the approval of the Grand College.
- The revenue of the Grand College shall be as follows:
A fee of $33.00 for each warrant issued for the erection of a Tabernacle.
A fee of $7.00 for each Knight Priest received into the Order, such fee to be transmitted to the Grand Registrar together with the Official Acceptance Form in duplicate, complete in detail, within 15 days after the date of Ordination of the Knight Priest. The fee should be included to cover the transmittal it submitted prior to the Annual Return.
A fee of $4.00 for each Knight Priest coroneted a Knight Commander to be sent to the Grand Registrar with the Annual Return, or included if submitted prior to the Annual Return.
A per capita fee shall be paid by each Tabernacle in the amount of $15.00 for each member, including Emeritus members and Dual members on their rolls as of December 31st, each year. Any special revenue provisions for Emeritus membership should be included in the Uniform By-Laws of the Tabernacle.
XV – QUORUM
- The presence of three active members, including a Knight Commander, shall constitute a quorum at any Ingathering of a Tabernacle.
XVI – SUBORDINATE TABERNACLES
- The Very Eminent Preceptor, the Deputy Preceptor, and the Eminent Registrar/Treasurer shall be elected annually at the annual Ingathering of the Tabernacle. The offices of Treasurer and Registrar may be combined. Elected officers shall remain in office until their successor has been duly elected and installed.
- All other officers shall be appointed by the Very Eminent Preceptor. All appointed officers shall serve for a term of one year, or until their successor has been duly installed.
- In the absence of the Very Eminent Preceptor, the Deputy Preceptor or the Junior Past Preceptor in that order, may open, preside, and conduct the business of the Tabernacle.
- In the event of the death, permanent disability or removal for any cause of the Very Eminent Preceptor, the Deputy Preceptor shall immediately succeed to the office of the Very Eminent Preceptor. (Declaring a Very Eminent Preceptor disabled, or removing him for a cause, is a very serious matter and the proceedings should be carefully documented and forwarded to the Grand Preceptor with a copy to the Grand Registrar before advancing the Deputy and closing the file. Of course, the Deputy can act in that position.)
- The Very Eminent Preceptor shall appoint Seven Pillars, an Inner Guard, and an Outer Guard, all of which shall be styled Eminent.
- No officer may assume his station until he has been installed according to the Ceremony of Installation. All installations must take place before the last day of April, unless special dispensation is granted by the Most Eminent Grand Preceptor. Such request must be forwarded to the Grand Registrar in triplicate by the Registrar of the Tabernacle making the request.
- In the event any elected officer shall fail to properly fulfill the duties of this office, the Grand Preceptor may declare the office vacant following proper notification to the Tabernacle in question.
- The Ceremony For The Installation of Officers of a Tabernacle must be used for all installations at the annual Ingathering or subsequent installations should an officer be absent at the Annual Ingathering. See pages 35-42 of the Revised Ritual 1995.
- The date of the Annual Ingathering of any Tabernacle for election and installation of officers for the ensuing year shall be determined by a majority of members present and voting at a regular ingathering.
- The Annual Return as of December 31st of each Tabernacle must be filed with the Grand Registrar, together with all fees and per capita dues and membership address corrections and changes on or before January 15th each year. Tabernacles failing to file Annual Returns with fees and membership address corrections for two consecutive years may have their Warrant revoked and have no vote or representation at the Grand Ingathering of Grand College of America, HRAKTP.
XVII – TITLES
- Within the Grand College there shall be a Chapter General composed of Knights Grand Commanders, which shall declare the following decorations.
Knight Grand Commander
Active Grand Preceptor as elected.
Honorary Not to exceed twelve (12) living in membership.
Active Preceptors based upon report of elections submitted by the Grand Registrar.
XVIII – GRAND PRECEPTOR’S TABERNACLE “A”
- There shall be a ‘perpetual Tabernacle’ known as ‘Grand Preceptor’s Tabernacle “A”’, whose erection is for the purpose of assuming jurisdiction over all Knights Priests of the Order not affiliated with other erected Tabernacles. It shall have the power to ordain Knights Priests as do other Tabernacles and affiliating other Knights Priests regularly created, the latter without fee.
- Newly ordained Knights Priests shall pay a fee of seven dollars ($7.00) which shall be added directly to the funds of the Grand College.
- The Tabernacle is exempt from membership limits and each Grand Preceptor upon his installation shall become a permanent member, without fees or dues at any time.
- Other members are subject to the same per capita dues as a regular Tabernacle.
- There shall be but two officers of this Tabernacle, a Preceptor, and a Registrar. The Preceptor shall be elected at the Annual Ingathering of Grand Preceptor’s Tabernacle “A”. The Grand Registrar shall serve as Registrar.
- If no Preceptor is elected or the elected Preceptor of this Tabernacle is not in attendance at the Ingathering, the Grand Preceptor may preside or appoint a Past Preceptor or member of Grand Preceptor’s Tabernacle “A” to preside.
XIX – AMENDMENTS
- These statutes may be amended at any Ingathering of Grand College by a two-thirds affirmative vote of those present and voting.
- All proposed amendments must be submitted to the Grand Registrar in triplicate sixty days prior to the Grand Ingathering.
XX – TABERNACLE ERECTION POLICY
- The policy of future growth of the Order is on the basis of one Tabernacle for each sovereign political subdivision, State of Province, having twenty-one or less Commanderies of Knights Templar, and one additional Tabernacle for each twenty-one additional Commanderies, or fraction thereof.
XXI – UNIFORM BY-LAWS
- Any Tabernacle formed after March 1, 1982, shall submit By-Laws in duplicate, drawn in conformity with the Code of Uniform By-Laws, to the Grand Preceptor before erection. Upon approval, the Grand Preceptor shall send the original to the Tabernacle and the duplicate copy to the Grand Registrar to file. The Grand Registrar shall advise Grand College of this action in his report at the Grand Ingathering of Grand College.
- Each chartered Tabernacle revision of its By-Laws after March 1, 1982, shall use the Code of Uniform By-Laws.
- Changes in dues or fees for investiture do not require approval of the Grand College.
As revised, and adopted February 19, 1967.
02-18-68, 02-16-75, 02-20-77, 02-19-78, 02-17-80, 02-22-81, 02-21-82, 02-12-84,
02-10-85, 02-16-86, 02-22-87, 02-22-91, 02-14-92, 02-24-95, 02-16-96, 02-20-98,
02-14-02, 02-13-04, 02-11-05, 02-13-12