Claire is a 16-year-old girl who was diagnosed with idiopathic scoliosis at the age of 12. She initially developed a right sided rib thoracic prominence and right shoulder elevation that prompted further evaluation. At the time of initial diagnosis, she presented with a 37 degree thoracic and 22 degree lumbar curvature. Claire was initially treated conservatively with a Boston Brace for a year and a half and then on-going monitoring of the curve progression. In June 2018, during a routine follow-up, Claire’s thoracic curve progressed to 59 degrees…an 11 degree change in a six month period. Her pediatric neurosurgeon recommended surgical correction. Along with the increase in curvature, she was experiencing increased back pain with simple activities of daily living and balance difficulties.
In the weeks that followed that visit, I spoke with several people who highly recommended Dr. Amer Samdani at Shriner’s Hospital of Philadelphia. A second opinion was scheduled with Dr. Samdani shortly thereafter. We were so fortunate that Dr. Samdani agreed to evaluate Claire. At our first visit, we fell in love with Dr. Samdani! He was so thorough, confident and patient as he explained her treatment options, risks and benefits with each option. At the end of that visit, Claire insisted (and her dad and I agreed) Dr. Samdani perform her surgery. While the wait for his surgical schedule is typically six months or more, due to a cancellation we were offered a surgical date the following month. We immediately accepted!
Claire is now 14 weeks post spinal fusion T4-T12 and doing quite well! She now has a very minimal thoracic curve. Our experience with Shriner’s Hospital in Philadelphia has been nothing but great! Claire is still in the midst of her recovery phase and hasn’t yet returned to full function, but she is progressing as expected. She recently started ballet class, something she has always wanted to do! She is looking forward to a full release to return to all of her favorite activities…pain free!
No parent wants their child to endure a major surgery but, as a nurse and a mother, I am so grateful that we were blessed to have Dr. Samdani, his surgical team, and the staff at Shriner’s Hospital to guide and care for us through this journey!
For forty consecutive years, the Hollidaysburg Knights of Columbus and the Jaffa Calliope Clowns have been holding a chicken barbeque to raise funds for the Shriners Hospital For Children – Philadelphia. To mark this milestone, several members of the KOC traveled along with the Jaffa Shriners to the open house held on Saturday June 22nd in Philadelphia to make the check presentation. The KOC along with several members of the Jaffa Calliope Clowns presented Chairman Jon Swartz with their check. Over the 40 years, their donations have totaled $147k. Thank you KOC and Calliope Clowns for your support of the Shriners Hospital for Children – Philadelphia!
Nobles, Families, and Friends of Jaffa Shriners,
As we head into the summer months, it is impossible not to reflect upon the great successes we have had through the first half of the year at Jaffa. Our fraternity has so many things to be grateful for. Our events have been well attended, our fundraisers continue to exceed their goals and every day our magnificent home, the Jaffa Mosque, continues to be a visible symbol to our community, and to the World, of all the good we as Jaffa Shriners represent.
We had a tremendous circus this year under the direction of fellow Jaffa Shriner, Billy Martin. I would like to acknowledge the great work the Circus Committee, our Units & Clubs, and the countless Nobles, families, and friends of Jaffa who volunteered their time, talent, and means to make the Jaffa Shrine Circus successful each and every year. Attendance was up from last year’s circus, with over 26,000 guests attending the 80th Jaffa Shrine Circus. I must recognize a couple individuals who take the helm of leading our Circus Committee. As the co-chairmen of our circus, Jerome Eckardt and Jeffrey Lynn Putt’s leadership in planning our circus was evident in its execution. As I have stated in a couple of speeches, a goal without a plan is just a wish. Our circus committee, and these two Nobles, plan our circus on a 12-month cycle and its success can be directly attributed to the organizational work and planning of all those involved. I would also like the thank Jobel Court and Dorcas Temple, PJ Simpson, Mike Colledge, John & Sue Bollinger, Randy & Chad Irwin, Tom Patz, John Grove and Alan Sipes for taking on individual sub-committee tasks in helping organize our circus. Job well done!
It is tough to put into words the gratitude Tiffany and I have for all those who helped with the Potentate’s Reception this year. Everything from the decorations, to dinner & entertainment, to the amazing renaissance outfits everyone wore made the day something we will never forget. I would like to express gratitude to our unit uniformed officers and the units who participated in the grand pageant and those who performed on the floor. As always, you continue to look and sound great and remain the standard in all of Shrinedom. I would like to acknowledge Lanny and Lynne Edwards, Butch & Shelly Garman, Scott & Angela Sipes, the Colyer family, Jim Burchfield and his father and all of the aides this year for the long hours put into making the day so memorable. We truly transformed our banquet hall into a medieval castle and I am pleased to report no one had to be rescued from the moat.
Our hospital fundraisers continue to do well each year. We finished up with our Hospital Crusades and our very first Jaffa Walk For Love at the beginning of June. Both fundraisers were well supported. Thank you to the units & shrine clubs of Jaffa, as well as Jobel Court & Dorcas Temple, for continuing to raise awareness of our hospital system within our communities. We will have close out reports and pictures on both of these fundraisers in the next Jaffa Journal.
Mark your calendars on July 20, 2019 at 2 p.m. for the Jaffa Charity Hockey Game at Galactic Ice in Altoona. Cheer on your very own Jaffa Hockey Team as they face off against the Washington DC Firefighters in a charity game for Shriners Hospitals for Children. If you have never been to a hockey game before, do not forget to bring a blanket to sit on in the ice rink…those aluminum bleachers can get cold.
Bringing in new members is a key element to the future success of Jaffa Shriners. On July 20, 2019, after the charity hockey game, our Membership Committee will be hosting Jaffa Community Day at the Jaffa Shrine Center. This is an opportunity for you to bring your friends, neighbors, and family to a Jaffa sponsored event. The event begins at 5 p.m. and will include free food, refreshments, games and entertainment suitable for the entire family. Let’s show the area we care about our mutual success in the future and encourage good men to make a difference in our community by becoming a Jaffa Shriner. Keep in mind the 20th Masonic District will be hosting a One Day Masonic Journey in November 2, 2019 at the Jaffa Shrine Center. All three blue lodge degrees will be performed in the morning with Scottish Rite degrees and the Shrine Ceremonial being conducted in the afternoon. Petitions need to be turned into their lodge secretaries by their September Stated Meetings.
Today is a great day to be a Shriner! Tomorrow will be the same. Thank you to the entire Jaffa family for all you do for our great fraternity. Let’s share our experiences at Jaffa with our friends and neighbors so they might want to join in with the fun and fellowship. By including our families and communities in our activities, Jaffa will continue to serve central Pennsylvania and all of Shrinedom for many years to come.
Yours in the Faith,
Jordan W. Settle
Potentate – 2019
Nobles, Families, and Friends of Jaffa Shriners,
As we move into the middle of April, I cannot help but reflect on what we have been able to accomplish in the first three months of the year. Four of our major fundraisers have already finished and have proven to be some of the most successful years we have seen. Most of us are still recovering from a busy circus week in which we will cover the details in our next journal.
I would like to thank the entire Sports Show and Truck Raffle committees for the tremendous planning and execution in making both of these fundraisers so successful. Our Sports Show, under the leadership of Buddy Daughenbaugh and David Dick, will present final numbers and checks to each of the units at the April Unit Head meeting. According to our records, this year’s Sports Show fundraiser is the best year the units have had in its 38-year history. Our Truck Raffle also had another very successful year in supporting the operational needs of our fraternity. I would like to extended a special thanks to Paul Frederick and Jim Paul who co-chaired this fundraiser for a second year. Ed Zwolski of Clearfield, PA was the lucky winner of this year’s Truck Raffle. Thank you to all who helped sell tickets!
As we move forward in supporting our philanthropy this year, we have a number of fundraisers for everyone to get involved in. Our Hospital Crusades will be held on June 7th & 8th and we will conclude our weekend with Jaffa’s very first Walk For Love on June 9th. On July 20th the Jaffa Hockey Team will be facing off against the Washington DC Firefighters in a charity game supporting our hospitals. Let’s help spread awareness of our hospitals within our community. Remember, we make a living by what we get. We make a life by what we give. More information on these events are later on in this journal.
The “Shrine On” Capital Campaign has officially kicked off and we have had a tremendous response the first two weeks. In this short amount of time we have received over 40 individual donations totaling over $20,000. We are extremely grateful in the amount of support our Nobility and their families provide for fundraisers such as this. You are the key that will help us unlock our tomorrow. Your generosity of time and means help us demonstrate the values we as Freemasons hold dear to our hearts within our families and communities. FAITH, HOPE, CHARITY. If you have not seen your name in this month’s capital campaign contribution page, rest assured it will be in the next journal.
I would like to acknowledge and thank everyone who supported our spring-cleaning projects over two Saturdays in March. We had over 60 people take time out of their busy lives to help put two coats of paint on every wall in the main level of the Jaffa Shrine Center in preparation for our circus guests. We even had a crew with excavation equipment help create over 100 parking spots in the upper parking lot by clearing away over-grown trees and brush. If that wasn’t enough, we also had a crew clean out a large storage area within the building filling two roll offs in the process. Thank you for everyone’s efforts in keep our home beautiful.
If you have not heard yet, the Right Worshipful Grand Master of Pennsylvania has given the 20th Masonic District permission to conduct a One Day Masonic Journey in our building on Saturday, November 2, 2019. If you know of good men who are interested in going through a one-day class, reach out to them about joining our great fraternity. Petitions will be due to your lodges by your September stated meeting.
We would also like to welcome Jaffa’s new Chef, Bud Smith to our team. Many of you had a chance to meet him over the past two months. He comes to us with a wealth of knowledge and experience in the food industry from throughout the world. His culinary arts experience extends not only throughout the United States, but also Brazil, Morocco, Spain.
As we look forward to the rest of the year know that each day is a great day to be a Shriner. In life two things define you; your patience when you have nothing and your attitude when you have everything. Be proud of what we have been able to accomplish together. Jaffa Shriners was yesterday, is today, and will be tomorrow a beacon of brotherhood and compassion within our community. It is these two principles which lead good men to our organization and what drive us toward that relentless pursuit of supporting the greatest philanthropy in the world.
Jordan W. Settle
Potentate – 2019
Nobles, Families, and Friends of Jaffa Shriners,
I am honored and humbled with the opportunity to serve our Temple as the 116th Potentate of Jaffa Shriners in 2019. I would like to thank our nobility for their continued trust and support in myself as well as our entire divan as we lead Jaffa into the future. I want to acknowledge everyone who had something to do with our annual business meeting, elections and 50-year pin ceremony. The day was a tremendous success with over 470 people in attendance, all capped off with an amazing prime rib dinner smoked for 24 hours by our very own Buddy Daughenbaugh.
Congratulations to Illustrious Sir Bob Baranik and his Lady Sue for a tremendous year and thank them for their dedication to our Fraternity over the last 5 years. Their leadership has kept our fraternity on the path of success; one that we will continue to grow upon.
There are so many great things we have here at Jaffa to be proud of. Most notably our nobility. You represent what is great about Jaffa and I am honored to call you brothers. Every room you walk into is better because you are there! Remember, the two most important days of your life are the day you are born and the day you find out why. The men who proudly wear a fez were born to be Shriners and the world is better for it.
I have had the opportunity to travel throughout the country visiting various temples, all of which hold Jaffa in such a high regard. We received one of the best compliments of our nobility at fall MASA last year when our Imperial Chief Rabban, Imperial Sir Jeff Sowder, stated Jaffa was the best temple he has ever seen in a parade. Jaffa receives compliments like these all of the time from Shriners everywhere. Be proud to be a Jaffa Shriner! Let’s always focus on the positives in every aspect of our lives. Remember, a negative mind will never give you a positive life.
It is not a hidden secret that our declining membership is our number one problem and concern at Jaffa. We have an exciting year planned for 2019. One that will include our families and our communities; both of which are essential to our future success. Let’s enjoy our events with our families and friends so that others see the fun and progress we make each and every day. We are confident that when others see what Jaffa has to offer, men will ask how to start their mystic journey. For us to prosper, we will need both our family and community. Though our future is uncertain, it is bright. No matter what path life leads us down, I promise you we will go down it together.
We have two new events planned for this year which are geared to support our great philanthropy. We will be hosting our very first Walk For Love™ on June 9th and on July 20th our Jaffa Hockey Team will be facing off against the Washington DC Firefighters in a charity game at Galactic Ice in Altoona. Help us continue to be a global force for children and join us for these two events. More information on these events will come out in the next journal.
As we look to evolve to keep up with our ever-changing world, we need to look at how we operate to meet modern day needs. Traditionally, we only voted on new members four times a year which corresponded to the four business meetings we are required to have in a calendar year. Moving forward, we will have special meetings the months where a business meeting is not held for the purpose of voting on new petitions and conducting a short ceremonial. The intent is to allow eager Freemasons to become Shriners in a timely manner so that they can become active in our fun, fellowship, and philanthropy. When someone shows interest in our fraternity, let’s keep their motivation moving without delay.
Now that we are a month and a half already into 2019, I would like to thank and congratulate the Co-chairs of the Mountain City Beer & Wine Festival, Scott Woomer and Ryan Baranik for organizing another fantastic event. Despite a winter storm laying 6 inches of snow outside our door on the day of the event, over six hundred guests enjoyed an eventful beer and wine tasting with over 115 different options to choose from. I would also like to acknowledge the entire Mountain City Shiners club for all of their hard work and assistance in making this event such a successful fundraiser for Jaffa.
I would also like to congratulate Lanny Edwards, Uncle Dave Peterman and Lex Harding as being the recipients of the 2019 Jaffa Standard Bearer and Patient Spotlight Awards for exceptional meritorious service to our fraternity and philanthropy. You will find a copy of their bios further in this journal.
Thank you again for bestowing upon me this great honor to serve our temple and I hope to see all of you at the Jaffa Sports Show in a couple days.
Remember, the single most important thing for our success is our ability to work together. Individually we may be weak, but we will always be “Stronger Together”.
Jordan W. Settle
Potentate – 2019
Happy Wednesday! I am honored to share the news that Shriners Hospitals for Children was named the top Health Nonprofit Brand of Year for 2018, based on the Harris Poll EquiTrend study.
The annual survey of brand equity, now in its 30th year, compares the brand awareness, or brand health, of thousands of brands from hundreds of categories, including eight for nonprofit organizations, based on consumer responses. These responses measure a range of knowledge and connections, including familiarity, quality social and environmental impact, brand momentum and attachment, and trust, that indicate the health and strength of a brand. Among the Health Nonprofit brands in the study, Shriners Hospitals for Children ranked highest for “trust” — no doubt this is a reflection of our commitment to our core values, in particular “integrity.” Thank you for your personal commitment to our core values.
This is a wonderful milestone for our organization, but it is just the beginning. It is our hope that we will be able to utilize this newfound brand equity to help even more patients throughout the world.
The Harris Poll Award is indicative of the tremendous dedication and commitment our employees, donors and volunteers have for our mission of improving the lives of children worldwide. Thank you for your part in helping us achieve this recognition and for caring for our kids and their families so well. I appreciate everything you do.
Executive Vice President