The unit known as the “Ritualistic Divan” was organized in 1954, under the name “Ceremonial Cast”, and made its debut in the June 1954 ceremonial. It was through the untiring efforts of Past Imperial Sir Orville F. Rush, that the unit became a reality. Illustrious Sir Rush was elected Potentate of Kena Temple in 1954 and also played the part of the Potentate in the ritual. He continued as Potentate in the ritual until his election to the Imperial Divan in 1957. As he became more and more involved with the Imperial Divan, it became apparent that he could not attend Kena ceremonials; consequently it became necessary to find a replacement as Potentate in the cast.
Other Past Potentates, who have taken and active part in the ritual, are Illustrious Sirs Edward E. Buckley and Bruce B. Morris. Two other Past Potentates, who have been called by the Black Camel, David C. Book and Roland M. Clarke, also found time to take an active part in the ceremonial cast. One of the Recorders of Kena Temple, Gordon B. Prowse, very ably played the part of the Potentate in the cast, until his death in 1970. He was also Director of the unit at that time.
Noble George A. Beiser, was proudly presented the title “Director Emeritus”, for his ten years service. His wisdom and experience in ritual work are still a source of information to the present cast.
There have been occasions when Ritualistic Divan traveled to other Temples to put on the first and third sections of the ritual. In 1957, the Illustrious Potentate Bernard M. Suttler, arranged a trip to Khedive Temple in Norfolk for that purpose. Several weeks later, the Khedive Temple cast journeyed to Alexandria to perform the ritual for Kena.
The original Ritual for the Shrine was written by Dr. Walter M. Fleming, one of the founders of the Shrine, and as promulgated by the Imperial Council for the use of the order, shall be literally followed by every Temple. The ritual is divided into three sections. Sections one and three contain moralistic teachings, couched in the terminology of the desert, the Islamic faith of Omar and the Oriental pageantry and splendor of the Arabic nabob. The second section, created by Dr. Fleming, is the part of Shrinedom based on the belief of pleasure, fun and happiness.