The CST District Staff, together with Past Masters from across the District, gathered on Saturday, June 3 at Chemung Valley-Waverly Lodge #350 to perform the Ceremony of Investiture for three newly elected Masters. Br. Ryan McDowell of Friendship Lodge #153 and Br. Dan Cofone of Westbrook Lodge #333 were joined in receiving the Secrets of the Chair by Br. Jason Keagle of King Hiram Lodge #784 of the Cayuga-Tompkins District, who had received dispensation to join the CST brothers after being unable to make the Investiture Service in his own District.

The ceremony was presided over by Master of Chemung Valley-Waverly Lodge #350  and AGL for the CST District, VW: Justin DeVine. Following the entrance of the Masters-Elect and their Escorts, the ceremony’s Investing Officer, RW: H. David Strong of Friendship Lodge #153, entered the Lodge accompanied by the District Deputy Grand Master of the CST District and Chaplain for the event, RW: Clifton Hathaway of Lamoka Lodge #463. RW: Strong, always a fine and inspiring ritualist, ably led the Masters-Elect through their obligation and instruction in the Secrets of the Chair. The new masters were then presented with a series of lectures, beginning with the Historical Lecture from VW: Jeffrey Golden, CST District AGL. W: Richard Anderson of Spencer Lodge #290 then gave the Square Lecture, followed by RW: Clifton Hathaway and the Gavel Lecture. Finally, RW: David May of Chemung Valley-Waverly Lodge #350 presented the Hat Lecture to the new masters, who were then presented with their Certificates of Investiture. Investing Officer Strong then asked each of the Masters-Elect to give those assembled a short speech about themselves and Masonry, after which he ceded the floor to W: Bruce Williams, the CST District Association President, who congratulated the candidates and encouraged all present to engage with the District Association and its programs. Lastly, District Deputy Hathaway rose to congratulate the new masters and present each of them with the Grand Master’s pin. Following a benediction, the ceremony closed and the brothers adjourned to the fellowship hall for refreshment.

Encouraging the development of our Masonic brothers and shepherding their progress into the East is a central facet of successful Freemasonry. The CST District officers would like to thank all of those who came out to help make this service a success. The ritual work of all involved was excellent and the atmosphere was warm, collegial, and productive. Particular thanks are due to VW: DeVine and Chemung Valley-Waverly Lodge #350, who hosted the event, and to RW: Strong, who led the ceremony with great distinction.