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March Message From the Right Eminent Past Grand Generalissimo

S.K. David Kussman, Right Eminent Past Grand Generalissimo of the Grand Encampment of Knights Templar sends the following letter to all Sir Knights, wheresoever dispersed:

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The Text is transcribed below (and transcription errors are mine).

From the Apartment of David J. Kussman, GCT Right Eminent Past Grand Generalissimo Grand Encampment Knights Templar, U.S.A. February 17, 2022 Greetings in the name of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. Since being removed from my office as your Deputy Grand Master for the 69th Triennial of our beloved and cherished Grand Encampment of Knights Templar, I have had many opportunities to contemplate the actions and reasons for my expulsion, which remain unclear. I testify to all that may read this testament that I have always put the vision and mission of our Christian Order first and foremost in my call to serve all templars under our care and supervision. My message to all sir knights attending the 66th Triennium, at my election as your Grand Captain General, was that I would wear my jewel ofoffice as a "Badge of Trust". For thirty-four years of public service as a police officer and supervisor I testify to you that I never violated my oath nor tarnished the trust placed upon me by my community. After retiring from public service, I answered God's call to serve his followers as a minister of His Holy Word and was ordained after completing Bible College. During both seasons in my life, I had the wonderful experience of following in the fraternity of my father and being accepted as a brother in the family of Freemasonry. During my tour of duty as Grand Commander of California, my motto was "Serving God by Serving Others." I hope that, in at least some small measure, I have lived up to its true meaning as I progressed these many years in service to our Grand Encampment. I have reflected upon the words I spoke to our members during our deliberations at our last triennium conclave, while trying to follow my vow of office. Their truth is just as important today; even more so.

"Templary is founded upon the Christian Religion and the practice of Christian virtues. The principles upon which the Orders of Knighthood were founded are expressed in Ritual and Symbolism and are founded upon the teachings of the Christian Religion. Each of us has voluntarily professed The Fatherhood of God, The Brotherhood of Man and Love of Country. Templary is Masonry's answer to the call for Christian virtues in a world that no longer recognizes the need for them. Templary is not solely a fraternal brotherhood. It is so much more than that. When Masonry crosses the threshold of the Commandery, it becomes Christian and transcends all ordinary fraternal objectives. Unless Commandery leaders, at all levels, really take our allegiance to Christ seriously, they will find a trail of indifference, unconcern, and poor attendance; followed by apathy, demits and suspensions.

Templary is Christian to the core; and we must never allow this fact to escape us for an instant. Our very reason for existence as an organization depends upon our observance of this fact.

There are no problems within our Order that cannot be solved by practicing our faith more vigorously every day. When we do so we put God back where He belongs in Templary, and we put Templary back where it belongs in our lives. In this spirit, we follow the lessons of the Bible by putting on the whole armor of God as we march forth; to Victory."

Beloved knights, our past, present, and future as a civil institution within our wonderful fraternity is based upon a littlestudied or practiced idea found in scripture. Please allow me to share some thoughts as we prepare for our upcoming special conclave.

In the Greek translation of the New Testament, we find the term, "Koinonia." Koinonia is a Greek word that occurs twenty times in the Bible. Koinonia's primary meaning is "fellowship, sharing in common, communion." Koinonia is agreeing with one another, being united in purpose, and serving alongside each other.

The first occurrence of koinonia is [Acts 2:42], "They devoted themselves to the apostles' teaching and to the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer." Christian fellowship is a key aspect of the Christian life. Believers come together in love, faith, and encouragement. That is the essence of koinonia.

Our koinonia as Knights Templar and Freemasons, with each other, is based on a common koinonia with our HeavenlyFather.

A powerful example of what koinonia should look like can be found in a study of the phrase

"one another" in the Bible.

Scripture commands us to be devoted to one another [Romans 12:10], honor one another [Romans 12:10], live inharmony with one another [Romans 12:16; 1 Peter 3:8], accept one another [Romans 15:7], serve one another in love [Galatians 5:3], be kind and compassionate to one another [Ephesians 4:32], admonish one another [Colossians 3:16], encourage one another [1 Thessalonians 5:11; Hebrews 3:13], spur one another on toward love and good deeds[Hebrews 10:24], offer hospitality [1 Peter 4:9], and love one another [1 Peter 1:22; 1 John 3:11; 3:23; 4:27; 4:11-12].

This is what true biblical koinonia should look like for us as Freemasons and Knights Templar...

I remain, in service to our Lord and Master Jesus Christ. Blessings up on you all...

David Joseph Kussman, GCT

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