Royal Arch

The Grand Chapter
Royal Arch Masons of the
State of Nevada

M.E. James D. Phelps
and his wife, Kathleen
Welcome you

 Grand High Priest of the State of Nevada

Friends, Brothers, and Companions,
Welcome to the Royal Arch website for Royal Arch Masons for the State of Nevada.  Royal Arch has been a part of the State of Nevada since it was a Territory.  Lewis Chapter No. 1 was started in Carson City, Nevada (given dispensation to open) on July 4th, 1863 and received its charter on September 9th, 1865.  We now have 5 Royal Arch Chapters in the State of Nevada (see Local Chapters for a listing).
Royal Arch Masonry is a part of the York Rite branch of Freemasonry and can only be joined after completing the "Blue Lodge" of Freemasonry and becoming a Master Mason.  The York Rite of Freemasonry includes three major areas: 
  • Royal Arch Masonry (Chapter), 
  • Cryptic Masonry (Council), and 
  • Knights Templar (Commandery).  

York Rite Royal Arch Masonry is a continuation of the Blue Lodge and completes the process started as a Blue Lodge Mason (Master Mason).  Further building on what has been learned in "Blue Lodge" and Royal Arch are to be found in the Cryptic Mason Degrees and finally culminate in the Knights Templar Orders. 
The basic description of the Royal Arch Degrees are found on the right hand side of this page.  For further information concerning Royal Arch Masonry in the State of Nevada, please contact us via the Contacts Page, see the About Us Page, or contact a Local Chapter.
We look forward to your interest in Royal Arch Masonry and hope that you will be contacting us soon to learn of how you can be a part of the York Rite of Freemasonry in Nevada.

Remember, the only way to complete your education as a Master Mason is to complete the York Rite Degrees (especially, the Royal Arch Degree) for only in the Royal Arch Degree is "the Master's Word" revealed. So, please consider completing your education in the York Rite. (The Blue Lodge degrees are a part of the York Rite.)

Royal Arch Masons

The Capitular Degrees

The Capitular Degrees are a set of four degrees controlled by the Royal Arch Chapter. They "complete" the "Blue Lodge" degrees and center on the construction phases of Solomon's Temple, with the exception of the degree of Past Master, hence the title of Capitular. The degree of Past Master is the vestigial remnant of the former custom that the degree of the Royal Arch could only be conferred on a Past Master of a Symbolic Blue Lodge. In the United States, these degrees are considered as proprietary to the Royal Arch, while in England there is no Past Master degree as found here, and the Mark Master degree is controlled by its own Grand Lodge. The Most Excellent Master degree is also part of the Cryptic Degree in England. As stated in the forward, the Royal Arch overseas is controlled by Chapters attached to English Blue Lodges. The Royal Arch Chapters have occasionally been referred to as the "Red lodge" in older Masonic publications, though they should more accurately be described as the "Red degrees." In the United States, all Chapter business is conducted in a Royal Arch Chapter, the other bodies being only opened for the conferral of degrees. Some jurisdictions open Mark Master Lodges as "table lodges," which act as a social focus for the local York Rite bodies

Mark Master

A Degree that emphasizes the lessons of regularity, discipline, and integrity. It is a most impressive Degree centered on the story of the Fellowcraft of the quarry and their role in the building of the Temple. Its importance in English Craft Masonry can be judged by the fact that it operates as a separate Grand Lodge, and is highly sought by members of the Craft in that jurisdiction.

Past Master (Virtual)

A Degree that emphasizes the lesson of harmony. This Degree is conferred because ancient custom required that a Mason must be a Past Master in order to be exalted to the Royal Arch. In some Grand Jurisdictions this Degree is conferred upon all sitting Masters of the Blue Lodge. The Degree confers no actual rank upon the recipient, but is exemplified to maintain the ancient custom.

Most Excellent Master

A Degree that emphasizes the lesson of reverence. This Degree is centered on the dedication of the Temple after its completion, particularly the consecration of the Sanctum Sanctorum and the descent of the Host into the Temple. It is complimentary to the Mark Master Degree and completes the symbolic lessons introduced in that Degree.

The Royal Arch

The completion of the Master Mason Degree and the summit of the original Degrees of the Blue Lodge as practiced in the Antients Lodges of England before 1820. The Degree explains the origins of the Substitute Word found in the Master Mason Degree, the recovery of the Ineffable Word, and its concealment within the Royal Arch Word. This Degree, together with the Master Mason Degree, may have once been exemplified as one large or "super" Degree, with the Master Mason Degree explaining the loss of the Master's Word and the Royal Arch explaining the recovery of the Master's Word. The presiding body is a Chapter, and the presiding officer is a High Priest (titled Excellent).