by Noel M. Smith, O.P.C., Past Governor of Texas York Rite College No.14
- The York Rite College requires that all members (Knights of York) be York Rite Masons. Membership is by invitation. The prime function is to bring about a new coordination of the York Rite structure by means of fostering cooperation among the various branches of York Masonry. The Order of Knight of York depicts the York legend and brings to life the Craft's urgent needs, which brought into being the legendary Charter of York awarded by King Athelstan to Prince Edwin in 926 A.D. The Presiding Officer of a subordinate College is the Preeminent Governor.
- The Governing Body is the York Rite Sovereign College of North America, presided over by a Most Preeminently Distinguished Governor General. Decorations are the Knight Grand Cross of York (KGCY) and the Knight Commander of the Purple Cross (KCPC).
- Meetings are referred to as Assemblies.
- Existence was given us for action. Our worth is determined by the good deeds we do, rather than the fine emotions we feel. The York Rite Sovereign College of North America encourages subordinate York Rite Colleges:
- To foster a spirit of cooperation and coordination among all the bodies of York Rite Masonry;
- To assist in worthy efforts to improve the ritualistic and dramatic presentation of York Rite work;
- To conduct an educational program in order to inculcate a greater appreciation of the principles, ideals and programs of York Rite Masonry;
- To strengthen York Rite Masonry in every proper manner;
- To build a love of country and to aid and support genuine patriotism;
- To reward outstanding service to York Rite Masonry by awards, honors and other methods of proper recognition;
- To support Charitable and Benevolent endeavors of Freemasonry.
Our Knights of York
- God divided man into men, that they might help each other.
- The real difference between men is energy. A strong will, a settled purpose, and an invincible determination can accomplish almost anything; and in this lies the distinction between great men and little men.
- Our Knights of York have distinguished themselves as great men as concerns the purpose of Freemasonry, and more especially the York Rite. It has been said that talent and worth are the only eternal grounds of distinction. To these two characteristics the Almighty has affixed His everlasting and exclusive rights of outstanding dignity, and in these is what make the bright immortal names to which our children, as well as others, may aspire.
- Those whose names appear in these pages, have used their talents for the worth of York Rite.
- To those whose names appear in this new century, we commit the Great Charter of our Order, and charge them to grant to the York Rite of Freemasonry, insofar as they find it possible, their favor, approbation, patronage and protection. May they use their talents, and show their worth.
The Legend of York
- "This craft came into England, as I tell you, in the time of good king Athelstan's reign; he made then both hall, and also bower and lofty temples of great honor, to take his recreation in both day and night, and to worship his God with all his might. This good lord loved the craft full well, and purposed to strengthen it in every part on account of various defects that he discovered in the craft. He sent about into all the land, after all the masons of the craft, to come straight to him, to amend all these defects by good counsel, if it might so happen. He then permitted an assembly to be made of divers lords in their rank, dukes, earls, and barons, also knights, squires and many more, and the great burgesses of that city, they were all there in their degree; these were there, each one in every way to make laws for the state of these masons.
- There they sought by their wisdom how they might govern it; there they found out fifteen articles, and there they made fifteen points."
-Regius MSS circa 1390
"Portrait" of King Athelstan
- The original, made in the fifteenth century, is the property of the Society of Antiquaries of London.