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  • #16
    Pack18Alex.. None of that would get many complaints from any of the scouters who have voice frustration for LDS.. First off you come to events, Big plus.. Second if these are the rules of your unit, and you are not forcing all other units to have a Saturday religious service or stop Campsite construction 18 minutes b4 sundown, then your fine.. (question - what happens to the scout who doesn't have a pitched tent, does he sleep out in the rain?) You didn't state anything about the commitment of your unit leaders, or if they get trained and put on a good program allowing a good boy-led program.. Which isn't a grumble due to religion, because Eagle Mills and troops with no direction are equally complained about regardless of your religious views.. That is just people loving the program and not wanting boys to go through it bored out of their minds and counting of their checklist of how much more is left to do before they can get Eagle and get out of this tedious requirement forced on them by a parent or a church..

    If you have certain religious policy, I don't believe anyone would disrespect you for it, as long as you were not forcing everyone to follow your religious policies.. I think since LDS has softened up on it's insistence that homosexuals not be allowed into BSA and it is more the conservative evangelicals and Catholics I haven't seen too many spout off about LDS on that front..

    I also agree with SR54Beaver, there are times when the Church assigns someone who WANTS to be an adult leader in BSA, or came to the assignment wanting to learn it and do it right and it did grow into something they enjoyed.. Those people I have know, do give 110 to 200 percent to the program, and they run fantastic troops.


    • #17
      Knew a bunch of Mormons back in school... absolutely fantastic people... as are the ones I do business with. The religion seems kooky because its SO modern... talking burning bush seems reasonable as a childhood story, move it from ancient Egypt to upstate New York and it becomes kooky. Don't have much of an opinion on LDS and Scouting, just an opinion that LDS turns out men and women of merit.

      Judaism does not consider same sex ATTRACTION as sinful, only the ACT itself (though the act being sinful is rejected by Reform Judaism, the most numerous branch). And the Jewish Committee on Scouting was extremely open about lobbying for the membership change. The efforts in our district to include us more are resulting in the program shifting on account of us... A big chunk of that is my personal involvement at the district level (something that nobody tried before in my unit).

      There are plenty of observant Jewish Units that will not participate on a campout over Shabbat (Friday at sundown until Saturday at nightfall). My unit is dedicated to Shabbat camping, but that's a function of who founded it and the culture founded with it. I find the bashing of LDS because they won't camp over their Sabbath to be a bit distasteful and bigoted. I'm sure the people that are comfortable bashing the LDS Units for obeying the tenets of their religious would be equally intolerant of my Unit of Christ-killers anyway.

      Moosetracker, I'm at the pack level, it's families putting up tents. I'm not happy with the families that decide to show up late and pitch a tent after Shabbat started, but I'm not sure if we want to ban them from future campouts... I suppose I could send them home or make them sleep outside, but at the Pack level its hard to do much. At the troop level, I'd hope that the boy that didn't have his tent up had friends that will let him crash for the night... I mean, starting too late on your tent isn't exactly being prepared, is it? My observant families wouldn't dream of setting up late, most of my families are respectful and show up on time and put their tents up.
      Last edited by Pack18Alex; 09-23-2013, 08:05 PM. Reason: Fixing autocorrect mistakes...


      • #18
        I guess some people have stated frustration with them packing up Saturday night. This does seem small minded.. With most of our District camporees nothing happens on Sunday anyway.. Eat breakfast, pack up your gear and leave. All the activities fall on Saturday (except a recent one that had the activities in the dark, so events started at 9 or 10pm and the event didn't end until about 2am on Sunday morning.)

        As for people bemoaning LDS not finding ways to socialize outside of their own group.. It might not be the right way to say "Hey we want the pleasure of your company".. But, sometimes after people ask and ask and try to accommodate to make the LDS community feel welcomed, they themselves feel LDS is being the one who is snubbing them, and it just starts turns into complaining about the whole thing.

        I myself tried to run IOLS trainings that did not run over Sunday in order to accommodate the LDS people.. But, after advertising and promoting and personally calling a representative of each LDS group to let them know about the trainings that were LDS friendly, then having a total of 0 LDS people show up for it, while the other participant number also was small due to it taking two separate weekends instead of one.. It was scrubbed, and we don't do it anymore. This year our summer camp added the IOLS training to their summer camp program for adult training.. Hopefully they can get that training there.

        I wasn't hinting that they be banned from future campouts or anything.. Just curious how unbendable this rule was, and if totally unbendable then what did you do.. I just know that the best laid plans in camping rarely turn out and no matter how hard you try to plan to have daylight to set camp, it seems 9 out of 10 times to not work out.. Maybe other units don't have the religious rulings around not setting up in the dark, but they try not to anyway simply because doing so is a royal PITA..


        • NeverAnEagle
          NeverAnEagle commented
          Editing a comment
          "I guess some people have stated frustration with them packing up Saturday night. This does seem small minded.. With most of our District camporees nothing happens on Sunday anyway."

          Sunday is when the mandatory religious service is. The only way to avoid it is to leave Saturday night on the pretense of attending service with your CO. We escape Saturday night with the Mormons just to avoid the Church service on Sunday.

      • #19
        It's not an option. Jewish law prohibits establishing a new structure during the Sabbath. So the tent needs to be up before Shabbat starts. Can't cook on the Sabbath, food has to be cooked before hand (or started just before and left to cook overnight, which is how our lunch is made. We have the gear to do it, and the plans on how to do it. The Jewish Committee is planning adult training to take place during our Kinnus (Jewish Campout, Hebrew for gathering), so we can get people trained during Sunday (and some training that is more discussion based can take place on Saturday).

        The rule is pretty unbendable in Jewish law. So you have to get the sites up. It also meant we couldn't repair guy lines that kids tripped on, so we got docked points at camporee, oh well.


        • Pack18Alex
          Pack18Alex commented
          Editing a comment
          KDD, caveat, I'm happy to try to explain things from a lay perspective, but I'm NOT a Rabbi, if you have questions regarding Jewish law, you should consult your local Orthodox Jewish Rabbi. That said, from a practical how we live side...

          In general, actions prohibited on Shabbat are permitted for the purpose of saving lives. The IDF does NOT lay down arms, though different Rabbis will justify it for different reasons (saving the lives of your comrades, serving in a Jewish army as per written Torah, etc). In practice, the defense of the Jewish state requires violating Sabbath prohibitions. However, there is extensive work in Israel with a group that develops Shabbat-friendly devices... basically designed that they don't violate a Biblical prohibition but merely Rabbinic prohibition (you can't break either, but the leniencies are more common for Rabbinic restrictions). There is a "Sabbath pen" for example, which has "temporary ink" that lasts about 25-30 hours, so that people in critical but non direct life saving roles are able to be "temporarily writing" -- the Torah prohibits writing permanently, the Sages all writing to prevent accidentally permanently writing... so an ER doc could use a normal pen, but taking notes during rounds, they could use a Temporary Pen, and the notes are transcribed after Shabbat. So Doctors are permitted to work, since their work involves saving lives. At a power plant, you can work, since the power is necessary for life saving medical devices, etc. OTOH, working in the power company's call center might be more problematic.

          Regarding water, the running of water is fine, the pumping of it (think old fashioned well+pump) is a problem. However, since it is unlikely that my particular use of the water will trigger the electric pump to turn on, it's permitted.

          In the diaspora, where these things primarily operate for gentiles (and repaired by them), it's considered a non-problem. In Israel, there are groups that won't go on the power grid over the Sabbath, because while its permitted to leave the AC on, if the power failed, a (presumably) Jewish technician would repair it.

          I am not an expert on these matters, I'm not a Rabbi, I'm not a particularly learned Jew, I'm a Computer Programmer by training.

          It is a VERY restful and completely different day from the rest of the week. Since most Orthodox Jews use the Ashkenazi (European) pronunciation of Shabbos, and most non Orthodox Jews will use the Sephardic/Modern (Middle Eastern/Israeli) pronunciation of Shabbat, I often joke that we keep Shabbat on camp sites, we don't keep Shabbos. There are no leisurely long meals of drinking wine and relaxing on a Scout function. We obey the restrictions of Shabbat, but it is NOT the "Shabbos environment" that we have in our normal community experience.

          If you have more interest in medical devices, medical practice, etc., there is a lot of interesting discussions on it at the Yeshiva University Rabbinate the past few years... discussing if medical practitioners have abused the leniency for saving lives into a general leniency to work as normal. But not one of my 6 - 11 year olds are Medical Doctors.

        • NeverAnEagle
          NeverAnEagle commented
          Editing a comment
          I'd be interested to see how you do overnight cooking. That just sounds like fun. (I'd be afraid that everything would end up over cooked or dry out.)

        • Pack18Alex
          Pack18Alex commented
          Editing a comment
          NeverAnEagle, well, it seems daunting, but we do it every week at home, the only difference here is: 1: propane instead of electric, and 2: no open flames.

          Last year with Camp Card Sales we bought ourselves a Camp Oven that we're excited to use this fall. Basically, we'll precook a stew on Friday at the campsite (brown the meat/vegetables, add seasoning, fill with water), then transfer to covered tins to put in the oven. The oven will be adjusted to run at around 250-300 degrees and run over night. In Yiddish, it's called a Chullent, in Hebrew, Hamin (hot food). In our house, we put food up in a Slow Cooker/Crock Pot. It is customary Jewish practice to serve hot food on Shabbat.

          Previously, we had a big "oven" called a Pig Roaster, where we through all the warm food on, covered it in unlit and lit coals, and it slowly burned over the night and stayed hot. This is fine from a Jewish perspective, but created a BSA safety issue, so we bought the oven.

          Our Campout meal schedule is generally: Friday night Shabbat dinner, Saturday Breakfast, milk/cereal/berries (cold breakfast), Saturday Lunch - Shabbat Lunch (stew, vegetables, fruit), Saturday Dinner - Shabbat Seudah Shlishit (cold meal, usually tuna fish, egg salad, etc). Saturday Evening: Malava Malka (hot dairy is ideal, we end up with a snack + hot chocolate), Sunday morning Brunch (french toast, scrambled eggs/omelet, cereal, berries, etc). Break camp. If we add a Sunday lunch, we'll do American Grilling (hotdogs, hamburgers, chicken breast).

          What makes it "easy" is that we have Shomer Shabbat leaders who are problem solvers, so we've worked out the issues. For the kids from non-observant homes, other than the candle lighting on Friday, and the Grape Juice/Challah on Friday night/Saturday lunch, and Havdalah (spice ritual ending Shabbat), they don't really notice much going on, because we plan activities around the Shabbat schedule. Sports, hiking, nature walks on Saturday, we do our lashing/knot tying Friday afternoon, and if we want to go Fishing, etc., we'll do it Sunday morning.

          There are rules governing carrying on Shabbat, but we stay in fenced in parks for our Campouts which means our Rabbinic approval for fenced in.

          The observant moms freak out about the lack of electricity, the non-observant families find the whole thing terrifying, then we go and have a wonderful time and everyone is thrilled.

          Oh, and everyone either uses disposable dishes for dairy (to separate meat from dairy), or has two mess kits (like my family does). I was VERY proud of the three bin washing station I built with inter-changable tubs for meat and dairy.

          If you have a Crock Pot (or pick one up for $20-$35), try cooking a stew one week. Friday afternoon, brown/season everything, throw it in, cover it with water, and cook it on low overnight. Technically for Jewish law you remove the crockery before serving, but I think you'll find that you can make a delicious meal. There is something EXTREMELY relaxing about waking up Saturday morning, feeding my kids a healthy but cold breakfast, taking them to Synagogue, then coming home to a meal that requires no more work than chopping up a salad.

          We learned to do it for Shabbat, but my wife and I slow cook meals 3-5 times a week. We both work, and it was great to come home and have nothing more to do than put up a pot of rice (or get a rice cooker) and chop a salad and have a serious family dinner on say, a Tuesday!

      • #20
        I think the main issue is not the religion but to Scouters who are not members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Mormons) they view Mormons as participating in the BSA. To many Mormons, they see folks who are not part of their religion as participating in their youth program. Their youth program and the BSA are one in the same but viewed through a different lens.


        • Peregrinator
          Peregrinator commented
          Editing a comment
          For Christian Americans and Catholic Americans, there is NEVER this tension. Their schools are already a mix of Christian and Catholic students, their friends are all Christian or Catholic, their major holidays are national holidays, their minor holidays are often school holidays. They don't have the need to engage in programming to maintain their religious identity.
          When I was growing up our public schools had off on certain Jewish holidays (Yom Kippur and Rosh Hashanah). I believe this is still the case in that school district. On the other hand, "minor" Catholic holidays (e.g. Ascension, Immaculate Conception, Ash Wednesday, etc.) were never school holidays despite the large number of Catholics among the student body.

        • King Ding Dong
          King Ding Dong commented
          Editing a comment
          Ash Wednesday was never a school holiday. We went to mass and then the nuns marched us right back to our desks to show us more pictures of aborted fetuses.

        • Pack18Alex
          Pack18Alex commented
          Editing a comment
          "When I was growing up our public schools had off on certain Jewish holidays (Yom Kippur and Rosh Hashanah). I believe this is still the case in that school district. On the other hand, "minor" Catholic holidays (e.g. Ascension, Immaculate Conception, Ash Wednesday, etc.) were never school holidays despite the large number of Catholics among the student body."

          Rosh Hashana is a two day holiday. The first day was off, but we all took off the second day. Meanwhile, Sukkot and Passover are major week long festivals (with major restrictions on the beginning and end of the holiday), with restrictions on where you can eat (Sukkot) and what you can eat (Passover).

          I'm using Christian as short-hand for non-Catholic, non-Mormon Christians, because Protestant is a more loaded term.

          In terms of "holidays off" let's see:
          Christmas Eve
          Christmas Day (national holiday)
          New Years Day (Feast of the Circumcision)
          Good Friday (state holiday here, schools closed, normally Spring Break)
          Easter (is on a Sunday, Spring Break usually accomodates being able to travel to family for Easter)

          The entire week of Christmas to New Years, with Christmas Eve off as well, is off and the country is basically shut down. America's National Holiday of Thanksgiving is the kickoff to the "Christmas Season."

          I absolutely LOVE how accommodating American society is to our melting pot of cultures. However, if you are in the 80%+ of Americans from a Western Church perspective, you don't realize how Christian-centric the American culture is.

          The country is VERY Protestant in its culture. Catholics and Protestants have tremendous overlap, so Catholic accomodations are minor in comparison. Contrast that with Jews (with our Solar/Lunar Calendar) or Muslims (with a Lunar Calendar), and you'll see how different things look.

          This past summer Olympic Games overlapped with Ramaden, so you had competitors from Muslim countries fasting and trying to compete. You'd NEVER schedule the winter Olympic Games to take place on Christmas Day.

      • #21
        One can always tell non-Catholics by such statements as "Chistians and Catholics . . ."


        • SR540Beaver
          SR540Beaver commented
          Editing a comment
          One can always tell non-Baptists by such statements as "protestant church".

          The Baptist denominations are generally considered to lie within Protestantism, though some argue that the practice of "believers baptism" i.e Baptism on confession of faith by the candidate preceeds the Reformation and therefore Baptist churches should not be grouped in this manner.

          .....First, let's define what a Protestant is. The Protestant movement began during the time of the Reformation in the 1500's. These groups "protested" certain doctrines and practices in the Catholic church. Among the things they protested were the sale of Indulgences, salvation by works, and papal authority. At first most of these groups sought to reform the Catholic church, not separate from it.

          A couple of groups that can truly be called Protestant include:

          •Lutherans, who began under the leadership and direction of Martin Luther.

          •Episcopalians, who began when Henry VIII started the Church of England after not having a divorce granted by the Pope.

          These groups are truly Protestant in that they protested the Catholics and would go on to start their own denominations.

          Now with these fact in mind, let us address the question at hand: Are Baptists Protestant?

          Baptists have a long heritage of disagreement with the Catholic church. As ecclesiastical hierarchies began to form and submit to the leadership at Rome, there were groups who remained independent. They spoke against such errors that had entered into that growing organization such as baptismal regeneration. It is from these groups which have always been separate from Roman Catholicism that are forefathers to the modern Baptist movement.

          Although Baptists have disagreed with Rome, they have never been a part of the Catholic church. Nowhere in their history can they be found to be part of or in alliance with Rome. They have always been independent..........

      • #22
        Or, one could take make the simple definition of Protestants as any Christian who is not Catholic (the one "true" religion in the eyes of many Catholics). For myself, I chuckle at those who seek a label - either for themselves or others - be it Christian, Protestant, liberal, conservative, right, left, tea party or whatever. I guess many have a deep seated desire for belonging to something so stick or defend a group vehemently. Not my style, but then I've been accused of having soup dejour morals sometimes. I'll say one thing, for this non-Catholic, Pope Francis sure seems refreshing. He must have taken that advice from Stripes.


        • #23
          Originally posted by acco40 View Post
          one could take make the simple definition of Protestants as any Christian who is not Catholic
          Yup, somewhat simplistic, but that's pretty much my definition as well.

          Of course, a good friend who's Catholic calls me a "heathen protestant"
          Last edited by Builder; 09-30-2013, 09:51 PM. Reason: Oops, edited back one character too far...


          • #24
            When I got married (to a good Catholic girl ), the priest wanted to know where she was baptized (what church) and when. I asked him if he needed that information from me and he paused for a second and then politely replied - you are Christian, correct? I replied in the affirmative and that is all they needed to know. Major point - I was either Catholic or "other." Hey, I knew what I was getting into.


            • Builder
              Builder commented
              Editing a comment
              Thanks for the link Peregrinator. Since I don't like to rely on just one source for my education (or reeducation in this case) I looked up a few more articles. Of the more recent and more scholarly (sources cited, etc.) articles, this one from last December bubbled to the top:

              It kind of updates the article you link.

            • NeverAnEagle
              NeverAnEagle commented
              Editing a comment
              I've always figured Jesus's birth should be celebrated on April 15th, since that is Tax Day and Joseph & Mary were traveling to pay their taxes!

              Historically and Agriculturally the date of May 20th makes a lot of sense. The shepherds were in the field watching their flocks by night, which would mean warm weather. If it were the dead of winter the flocks would be held in the fold. Ewe's lamb in March/April so that would place the date in the spring, rather than summer or fall.

              The Greek holiday of Saturnalia was held from December 17 through December 23. It was a festival of light leading to the winter solstice. Later Roman Empire moved the "Birthday of the Unconquerable Sun," to December 25. Because being closer to the equator were not able to accurately time the solstice until the sun began to return. Northern Religions of the Celts and Germans place Yule (birth of the Sun) on December 21st because their astronomers were better able to predict the sun's final decent.

            • Peregrinator
              Peregrinator commented
              Editing a comment
              If it were the dead of winter the flocks would be held in the fold.
              Palestine has a rather mild climate. Also the summer tends to be dry (most of the rain in Bethlehem falls in November, December, and January) so sheep would almost certainly not be in pasture at that time.


              Hope this helps.

          • #25
            Again the conversation has fallen of the cliff.

            OMG the US of A celebrates mostly Christian Holidays.........Wellllllll, Our founding fathers were, you guessed it, Christian. Most of the folks who immigrated here for the first two hundred years were, You guessed it right again, Christian.

            If I lived in Egypt, I would not expect christmas to be a holiday nor Easter. Because their fore fathers were not christian.

            Far as the LDS question goes......I was curious, Some folks just hate everyone because they are different. the LDS folks I know are decent, hardworking and stay to themselves. That is ok. Just don't understand the outrage I see written here from the Southeast and Northwest parts of our country.


            • Rick_in_CA
              Rick_in_CA commented
              Editing a comment
              KDD is right. Jefferson was a Christian Deist (hence his creation of the Jefferson Bible). Several of our "founding fathers" were. Since Christian Deism rejects the divinity of Christ it is difficult to classify them as traditionally Christian. For more info:
              Last edited by Rick_in_CA; 10-03-2013, 03:22 PM.

            • Pack18Alex
              Pack18Alex commented
              Editing a comment
              In Israel, 12/25 is a work day, but Jewish holidays you've never heard of are national holidays. America is a Christian country, and our calendar follows the Western-Church calendar that is mostly the same between Protestants and Catholics.

              The "traditional" Spring Break schedule in my district is Holy Week. Whenever they move it to accommodate testing schedules (and I think it's to punish parents that overwhelming support testing programs, so they punish us and blame testing), there is screaming and yelling with a fight between the elected school board and they professional staff.

              There is NOTHING wrong with this. In Israel, they have a fall Holiday Break for Sukkot, and a Spring Break for Passover. Israel is a Jewish country, it follows the Jewish Calendar. America is a Christian country, it follows the Christian calendar. Egypt is a Muslim country, and follows the Muslim calendar.

              There is NOTHING wrong with this.

              However, BSA is a unique institution. It is religious, but non-sectarian. As a result, we are beyond "religious-friendly," we require religion and encourage you to be involved in your family's religion. Now, for people in many parts of the country, Religious = Christian (Catholic and non-Catholic Western varieties), so that is built into the program. In other parts of the country, LDS is a large religious community. In some parts, I'd imagine Eastern Christians form a chunk of the Units, with their schedule.

              For the Cub Scout monthly core values, November, which includes election day and Thanksgiving, the core value is Citizenship, because that is the most american centric month of the school year. April, with Holy Week and Easter has Faith. For January, filled with "New Years Resolutions" based upon the Christian-centric calendar, we do Positive Attitude. There is nothing wrong with these things, but BSA is Christian centric because it is America and Religious, and America's calendar is Christian and its religious communities are Christian.

              So it would be nice, if in a BSA context, SCOUTERS are aware that there are minority religions, we participate in BSA, and we do our best to participate. Insulting LDS units for breaking camp Saturday night, Jewish Units that won't attend Saturday functions (and MANY/MOST observant Jewish units don't camp over the Sabbath, my unit is unusual in that), Eastern Christian Units with their holidays, Buddhist and other eastern religious groups.

              BSA's faith approach has a protestant lens. Religious invocations are very Christian, our talk of "Faith" in the Cub Scout program is VERY protestant and isn't how we talk about service to God in Judaism. But we all make it work because we believe in this program and think its great for our youth.

              I don't understand the outrage, but a little religious sensitivity training would be good for everyone involved.

              My Council in South Florida is based in Miami, with the population concentrated in Miami-Dade and Broward counties which are "majority-minority" counties. We have Latino groups, Black groups, a Jewish groups, PTA groups, LDS groups, and of course LOTS of Catholic and non-Catholic Christian groups. We all work together, try to be inclusive.

              My wife is involved in Girl Scout leadership. Their Service Unit wants to include them in some activities, so they agreed to relocate to Sunday. Now as a Jewish group, we would do Sunday activities in the morning, because it leaves people free for family time in the afternoon. Obviously this create a problem for Church attendance, so they found out when the last Church services of anyone involved were over and set the even for 2 hours later. Now, if they had LDS Girl Scout Troops in their Service Unit, that would exclude them, and they'd move back to their original plan of a weeknight evening.

              It is REALLY REALLY hard to make non-sectarian work, plus the reality that youth are in school Monday to Friday. Friday isn't good for Muslims, Saturday isn't good for Jews, Sunday morning isn't good for Christians, Sunday all day isn't good for LDS. Yet if you want to be non-sectarian and inclusive, you make it work.

              My council/district is AWESOME, and is bending over backwards to include us. What makes a difference is that we got involved, showed up to meetings, and are volunteering to help.

              So bigotry = bad
              Inclusive = good

              But inclusive is really hard, and leaves everyone a bit unhappy. You have to ask yourselves, do you want the LDS/Jewish/Muslim units involved. If so, you're going to be a little unhappy in the accommodations necessary. But the sign of a good compromise is that everyone is a little unhappy.

              We have a full Unit program, having 2 District, and 1 Council activity to include us is a great addition. Making every event accommodate us would leave the other scouts unhappy, but we all make it out.

              Some of the anti-LDS is straight bigotry. Some of it is NOT wanting to be inconvenienced at all. If your district is non-Catholic Christians, then including Catholics is pretty easy, the rest of us are hard. Do you need to change to accommodate our small groups? Of course not, but you can't refuse to accommodate LDS's religious values then complain that they don't show up at stuff.

            • Merlyn_LeRoy
              Merlyn_LeRoy commented
              Editing a comment
              I'd just like to point out that atheists would be really easy to schedule.

          • #26
            I think it's sad that I am LDS, in an LDS chartered group, and our cub committee member expressed disdain for how the church runs scouts. What the LDS church has done is to take scouts and adapt it for a program that was already set in place. The LDS church looked at the ideals of scouting and found them to fit with the church's ideals for boys, so adapted the program. It is not the same as traditional scouting, but I don't see how that part really matters- it just makes things more difficult with kids coming and going at different times of the year.
            The adult staffing is problematic. People are called to be scout leaders, instead of volunteering themselves. These volunteers are supposed to "do their best", but often the called leaders don't want to be leaders, yet they accept the position anyway, and then the boys suffer. It's really frustrating. (Dealing with this in my own pack right now.)
            Last edited by christineka; 10-03-2013, 01:40 PM.


            • Eagledad
              Eagledad commented
              Editing a comment
              We have few LDS units in our district and you just described exactly their situation. Also frustrating is that the District can't help the adult membership problem much because the church controls that function. I did get to train their SMs and enjoyed that, but they always seem to feel the stress of managing a program that few adults seem to want. Barry

            • Pack18Alex
              Pack18Alex commented
              Editing a comment
              I think it's great that LDS has adopted Scouting as a youth program. They might do things strangely and torture the leaders, but Cubs is a good program, and a large chunk of BSA Scouts are LDS. So while the Catholic Units mights hit the Scouting ideal more, LDS exposes more boys to the benefits of Scouting than other groups, despite being a very small religion.

              As a result of LDS's process, they have a LOT of programs, whereas relying on the traditional process might have better programs, but they'd be much smaller.

          • #27
            Pack18alex: Thank you for your explanation and personal observations. May I quote them when I do my " Scout's Own" orientation at IOLS? Yes, I do a little disabusing of the Christian BSA belief. PM me and I can email my curricullum to you.

            I did a "regular" Woodbadge weekend, and two of my Patrol were LDS (didn't know that at first). Along with several other LDSers in the Troop, they went off on Sunday morning and met for their worship in a seperate corner of the camp. Our LDS brothers did not "pack up" on saturday evening, as has been mentioned above. . I noticed this and asked them about it. My Owl brother told me they had asked for and received a "special" permission from their Bishop, who was evidently their worship leader that sunday morning, at camp.
            We did not have , to my knowledge, any jewish Scouters in my WB Troop, that session, but had two Muslims (they arrived Saturday) and I made a good friendship with them, they have asked me to come and assist (bugle!) at a couple of their special occassions.

            Hey, Moderators.... Let's switch this thread to the "Faith and Chaplaincy" forum.... Oh, wait...
            Last edited by SSScout; 10-04-2013, 10:39 AM. Reason: spelling, grammar...


            • Rick_in_CA
              Rick_in_CA commented
              Editing a comment
              Pack18Alex: Thank you for your thoughts and insights!

            • King Ding Dong
              King Ding Dong commented
              Editing a comment
              Very interesting. My now gone step father was orthodox (though not practicing) and he told me some interesting stories about prayer. He volunteered for Viet Nam very early and credits his chants with keeping him alive. He claimed while on guard duty at night he would sit on a stump at the edge of camp and chant all night and the VC would get very close and listen to him, he could hear them moving around, but could never see them. They recognized it as religous an left him alone (while chanting). Different take on reverent.

            • Pack18Alex
              Pack18Alex commented
              Editing a comment
              Peregrinator, Catholic practices have certainly maintained their Judaic origins in a way that Protestant ones have not. My Catholic friends used to all complain that the post Vatican 2 Catholic Church was pretty much anything goes.

              Sorry, I should have grouped Roman Catholics with Jews and Muslims and their fixed prayer books. Anglicans/Episcopalians are pretty High Church as well and have fixed liturgy in the was Protestants, especially the non-denominational evangelical variety, seem to have a lot more spontaneous prayer.

              In that regard, it's Protestants/LDS vs. Jews/Catholics/Muslims... But in terms of scheduling, it's Western-Church (Protestant/Catholics) vs. everybody else, since everybody else is on a different schedule.

              KDD, very cool, the stories I hear of people in dangerous situations that started saying the Shema (prayer of God's Unity and Divinity) amongst the most inspiring of Jewish stories.

              It's utterly ironic, given the history of religions, how cooperative Catholics have become with Protestants on matters of religion... When our Catholic Scout Executive has the JCoS Shofar Award for his work helping the Jewish Committee at a prior post, you get that "only in America" set of goosebumps...

          • #28
            Happened onto a broadcast of the National LDS meeting going on, or that went on. My local church broadcasts its service from the previous week normally at 9AM on our local public station; but the LDS program was running most of the day instead. Anyway, listened a bit to one of the major leaders talking about God's love and their interpretations. He really stressed, numerous ways, that ALL are deserving of God's love and forgiveness. Indirectly, he seemed to me to be reinforcing the idea that they, the church, needs to love ALL people, even the ones that are not of their faith or beliefs. Also noted that while it was an LDS program, the speakers sounded like any other Christian denomination in their references to God and Christ. In about a fifteen minute period, quoting from scripture, the Book of Mormon was mentioned only once very briefly; but the basic bible was core material.

            Interesting, at least to me.


            • #29
              Was reminded of this thread by a Facebook discussion that showed up in my newsfeed today:
              A Mormon friend's church has a new Branch President. Before, there were so few boys (only 3) that the church wasn't bothering with Scouts, and the boys simply met on Weds nights. But the new Pres says they're to join Scouts and that's that, no ifs ands or buts. Her son had tried Scouts previously, didn't like it, and says if it's Scouts or nothing then he'll take nothing. She tried talking to the Pres, but he won't budge.

              She posted this to a Mormon FB group asking whether there was any kind of recourse. As a non-Mormon, I find the responses a little absurd; the people who've replied are basically calling the boy an apostate and telling the mom that she's a bad parent:

              Mormon 1: "If your sons only anchor at church is swayed by this, you still have much to instil in this young mans heart about what the gospel is and isn't. There will be plenty of times in the gospel where people will offend. This is never a reason to quit coming. It is the church that is true, the gospel of Jesus Christ, not the people! People are fallable and always will be! Have a family meeting with your Home teachers and maybe even the Branch President. Pray with your son for inspiration. Make him a part of the solution."

              Mormon 2: "I agree with [Mormon 1], but would add that there will be times that the church asks us to do things that we may not understand at the time, or don't agree with. Following the prophet shouldn't come conditionally. It is similar to you wanting him to do chores, or homework, or other things he would prefer not to, but are necessary for him to learn how to be a better man in the long run. My husband had a similar experience in scouts- he didn't feel supported, and eventually quit. He wishes now that someone had pushed him to continue to get his eagle. The scouting program does so much more that teach you how to tie nits and build a fire. It teaches endurance, problem solving, self reliance, courage, working in a team as well as independence. As long as you don't think the scouting program will be hurting him (emotionally/physically), I would tell him, "It is what the prophet has asked young men to do, so you are going to do it. We'll look for the blessings together for obeying the prophet."
              If you don't agree with me about the importance of the program, then perhaps give him a time frame- if he still hates it after one year, he won't have to keep going. Most likely by then he'll have bonded with the kids better and want to keep going."

              (The mother replies to say she has spoken to the Pres and he's not interested in talking)

              Mormon 1 again: "Re-read [Mormon 2]'s passage about obedience. Set the example for your son."

              Mormon 3: "Scouting is done all throughout the church. That is something done in almost every ward, branch, and stake. There is a lot he can learn from the other boys, the leaders, and from the program itself. A lot of other churches do scouting too. Sounds like prayer is the best answer for you. Sometimes its praying for understanding, to soften someone else's heart, soften your own heart, or just for peace. There have been a lot of times the situation has not changed for me but I have changed my heart through prayer. Life is like that. There will always be things we don't like. We just have to go at them and everything else with prayer."

              While these are just 3 random Mormons, which is not enough to scientifically apply their opinions to all Mormons, let's say they are representative (we know that LDS considers adult scouting positions to be a religious calling, which is the same tilt these people take). We quickly see how LDS units could easily get a bad wrap for not participating in the district or council, not fraternizing with non-LDS units if they do, leaving early, pumping out paper Eagles, etc. when they don't want to be there.
              As someone pointed out earlier in the thread, it seems like with a compulsive particiaption for both adults and boys, it's probably the rare adult that wants to be a scout leader, and iffy at best with the boys. Frustration from non-LDS units isn't "bigotry" (grow up, and buy a thesaurus) it's a result of an intrinsic problem with the system.

              In my district, the LDS units are happy to attend Cub Camp, and I have to spend time/resources on their Webelos the same as the non-LDS boys, but I'm not allowed to have their contact info or recruit them. That doesn't rub me raw because I'm a bigot, it rubs me raw because they're freeloaders and that's annoying regardless of why they're freeloaders.
              I have no opinion of the LDS Boy Scouts or frustration with them because I've never seen one.
              Last edited by Scouter99; 10-22-2013, 07:16 PM.


              • King Ding Dong
                King Ding Dong commented
                Editing a comment
                Cub camp is a recruitment tool ?

              • Scouter99
                Scouter99 commented
                Editing a comment
                Definitely. Me and my boys are there for a week building relationships with Packs. We don't recruit at the event, but if there's a connection we get hold of the people later.
                Last edited by Scouter99; 10-23-2013, 08:03 AM.