The Feast of Sir Grady Louis McMurtry

Sourdough loaves

Sunday, July 12 was the Feast of Sir Grady Louis McMurtry, also known as Frater Hymenaeus Alpha, Caliph and acting O.H.O. of O.T.O. until his death July 12, 1985 e.v. The O.T.O. USA website tells us: “The title ‘Caliph,’ while perhaps appealing somewhat to the sense of humor of both men as a pun on the abbreviation for California (the State of McMurtry’s residence and the location of Agapé Lodge), is from the Arabic word Khalifa, meaning ‘deputy.’ It was historically used in early Islam to designate the successor to the Prophet, the worldwide Commander of the Islamic Faithful. Crowley’s use of the term as applied to Germer and McMurtry was parallel for O.T.O.”

In light of the California connection, we offer the following recipe in Frater Hymenaeus Alpha’s honor:

Berkeley Sourdough Bread
Sourdough loaves

  • 2 1⁄2 cups white flour
  • 3⁄4 cup sourdough starter
  • 1 1⁄2 tsp salt
  • 3⁄4 cup cool water


  1. Mix flour and salt. Add starter mixing well.
  2. Add cool water slowly and mix well.
    Knead for 8-10 minutes.
  3. Place in a large well oiled bowl. Cover tightly with plastic and place in fridge overnight.
  4. Remove from fridge and let warm to room temperature-about 2-3hours.
  5. Divide into baugettes, place on oiled baking sheet.
  6. Let rise another 2-4 hours. Score tops with sharp knife.
  7. Preheat oven to 500°F. Place a pan with water in oven to make it steamy.
  8. Place sheet in oven and spray walls of oven 3 times, every 30 seconds.
  9. Bake at 500°F for 20-30 minutes, checking after 15 minutes to see if the loaves need to be moved to cook evenly.

Recipe adapted from


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