Thursday, June 17, 2010

Just what is a Supreme Council anyways?

Today marks the start of the DeMolay International / Supreme Council Sessions, being held in Dallas, TX. For most DeMolays, this event isn't even on the radar, as it deals with senior leaders and advisors from any given jurisdiction. During my time as a DeMolay, and as an advisor, I've heard many misconceptions about what actually goes on at, and the purpose for, a meeting of the Supreme Council.

To understand what's happening, we first have to understand who it is that's meeting. At a DeMolay International Session two groups meet concurrently, namely the DeMolay International Congress, and the Supreme Council. The Congress is made up entirely of active DeMolays, with each Jurisdiction being given two delegates. This is much like our Convention, where each Chapter gets a set number of delegates to vote on items and for officers, however, in the case of the Congress, it's divided by States instead of Chapters. So, how does one get to be a delegate? In PA, it's quite simple - become State Master Councilor or Deputy State Master Councilor, as they are the two that go to each Session to represent PA. While the Jurisdictional Delegates make up the majority of the active DeMolays participating in the Congress, there are a few others who also attend and get a vote, namely the Regional Cabinet Members, the International Master Councilor, and the International Congress Secretary. Who are these folks? Well, the Regional Cabinet is composed of one representative from each Region of DeMolay International (if you've been following along with the blog, I'm sure you're well aware that PA is in Region II.) The International Master Councilor and the International Congress Secretary are elected by the Congress each year to help steer DeMolay on a national level. The International Master Councilor is the public face of the organization, and it's his job to relate the issues facing active members to the Supreme Council. The International Congress Secretary assists the IMC in that job, as well as takes minutes of any session of the Congress. Pretty complex, huh? Well, let's talk about the Supreme Council, then!

The Supreme Council of the Order of DeMolay is made up of advisors who have been elected to represent their respective Jurisdictions. These men are divided into two groups, Active Members and Deputy Members. Active Members are allowed to speak their mind, and vote on any proposals and elections to come before the Supreme Council, whereas Deputy Members are only able to speak. At any given time, there can only be 200 Active Members of the Supreme Council, but there is no cap to the number of Deputy Members. Each Jurisdiction is automatically granted one Active seat, as the Executive Officer is always an Active member of the Supreme Council. This means that roughly a quarter of the Active members of the Supreme Council are Executive Officers. That leaves roughly 150 other seats open for men to serve as Active Members. To become an Active member one must first be a Deputy. To accomplish that task, an Advisor, who is over the age of 25, must be sponsored by the Executive Officer of Jurisdiction and submitted to a committee. That group then recommends who they think should be elected to Deputy status. Once a Deputy, an Advisor must serve in that capacity for at least three years, and be 30 years of age, before he can be elected to Active status. I say "he" because members of the Supreme Council must be Masons in good standing in their Lodges. "Who are the Active and Deputy Members from PA?" you ask... well click here to find out!

That's DeMolay International in a Nutshell.
Oh, I haven't forgotten about the Region II Spotlight series either. I'm waiting for some of our guest contributors to put the finishing touches on their articles.
Frat! ~ "Dad" Seth Anthony

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