From the Commander of Kadosh (November 2019)

posted Nov 2, 2019, 2:00 PM by San Jose Scottish Rite

The Two Jurisdictions of Scottish Rite in United State of America


Southern Jurisdiction 

Based in Washington, D.C., the Southern Jurisdiction (often referred to as the "Mother Supreme Council of the World") was founded in Charleston, South Carolina, in 1801. It oversees the Scottish Rite in 35 states, which are referred to as Orients, and local bodies, which are called Valleys.

In the Southern Jurisdiction of the United States, the Supreme Council consists of no more than 33 members and is presided over by a Sovereign Grand Commander. The current Sovereign Grand Commander is Illustrious Brother James D. Cole, 33. He  served as Grand Master of the Grand Lodge of Virginia in 2001. Other members of the Supreme Council are called "Sovereign Grand Inspectors General" (S.G.I.G.), and each is the head of the Rite in his respective Orient (or state). Other heads of the various Orients who are not members of the Supreme Council are called "Deputies of the Supreme Council". The Supreme Council of the Southern Jurisdiction meets every odd year during the month of August at the House of the Temple, Scottish Rite of Freemasonry Southern Jurisdiction Headquarters, in Washington, D.C. During this conference, closed meetings between the Grand Commander and the S.G.I.G.'s are held, and many members of the fraternity from all over the world attend the open ceremony on the 5th of 6 council meeting days.

In the Southern Jurisdiction, a member who has been a 32° Scottish Rite Mason for 46 months or more is eligible to be elected to receive the "rank and decoration" of Knight Commander of the Court of Honor (K.C.C.H.) in recognition of outstanding service. After 46 months as a K.C.C.H. he is then eligible to be elected to the 33rd degree, upon approval of the Supreme Council and Sovereign Grand Commander.


Northern  Jurisdiction 

The LexingtonMassachusetts-based Northern Masonic Jurisdiction, formed in 1813, oversees the bodies in fifteen states: 

ConnecticutDelawareIllinoisIndianaMaineMassachusettsMichiganNew JerseyNew HampshireNew YorkOhioPennsylvaniaRhode IslandWisconsin and Vermont. The Northern Jurisdiction is only divided into Valleys, not Orients. Each Valley has up to four Scottish Rite bodies, and each body confers a set of degrees.

In the Northern Jurisdiction, the Supreme Council consists of no more than 66 members. Those who are elected to membership on the Supreme Council are then designated "Active." In the Northern Jurisdiction all recipients of the 33rd Degree are honorary members of the Supreme Council, and all members are referred to as a "Sovereign Grand Inspectors General." The head of the Rite in each State of the Northern Jurisdiction is called a "Deputy of the Supreme Council." Thus the highest ranking Scottish Rite officer in Ohio, is titled, "Deputy for Ohio", and so forth for each state. Additionally, each Deputy has one or more "Actives" to assist him in the administration of the state. Active members of the Supreme Council who have served faithfully for ten years, or reach the age of 75, may be designated "Active, Emeritus". The Northern Jurisdiction Supreme Council meets yearly, in the even years by an executive session, and in the odd years, with the full membership invited. The 33rd Degree is conferred on the odd years at the Annual Meeting.