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    • No, that isn't the issue. I know many Arrowmen who are in good standing in their units (the people who honored them with the recognition in the first place), who do not wish to be associated with a lodge. I am one of them The purpose of the OA is not to put another rock in a Scout's rucksack. LOL, no!  https://oa-bsa.org/about/organization-structure Lodges At the local level, lodges exist to serve BSA councils and individual units. The key leaders in the lodge are the youth lodge chief, volunteer adult lodge adviser, and professional staff adviser. The lodge chief presides over the Lodge Executive Committee, which is responsible for executing the annual program of the lodge. While each lodge is different, the Lodge Executive Committee typically consists of one or more vice chiefs, a secretary, and a treasurer, as well as chapter and/or service area chiefs and operating committee chairmen who are responsible for various aspects of the lodge’s program. Many lodges, especially large ones where additional structure is necessary, have service areas and chapters to chapters. These often align with BSA districts and execute the program of the lodge on a community level. Units do not exist to support the lodge!  You have it backwards! This is one key reason that the OA does not fare well.  Many lodges are like big self-licking ice cream cones.  They exist primarily to serve themselves, and that is why many unit leaders do not allow the OA program in their unit! (You do understand that principle of prerogative?) Here, the OA created a Venturing unit just to provide lodge members a place to keep their BSA registrations so they could continue to serve the lodge without being involved with any local units.  The Venturing unit is a "shell corporation."   How do you think the unit leaders in this council view that Crew? As a leader, I encourage our youth to participate in the lodge, if they wish.  But, they are under no obligation to do so. I also tell them that, if that participation detracts from their service to their unit (i.e., the people who selected them for the honor in the first place), then they have misplaced their priorities. Your policeman analogy is unintelligible, and does not clarify.  
    • What does a Scout do [with a previous award] if they convert to another faith? - The Scout may continue wearing the "previous" award at her discretion. Do they need to do the program over again or can they simply switch the pin to the one corresponding faith they now follow? - The "program" is different for each faith.  That is, the requirements for a religious award for each faith are different and often have different levels based on age/grade.  If the Scout wishes to earn the award for her new faith, she must complete its requirements (from scratch, so to speak). - A Scout may not earn an award in one faith and then wear the 'equivalent' award from another faith, as the requirements for each award are different.  That is, having a religious award from one faith does not grant you the "analogous" religious award in another faith. As stated above, the specific religious awards are not BSA awards.  BSA recognizes the accomplishment when a youth completes the award requirements sponsored by a specific faith. A recognition of the accomplishment comes in two forms: 1.  A medal (or some other recognition) is awarded by an organization sponsoring the award of that particular faith.  BSA does not procure nor award these "medals"  You must get them from the specific organization/faith to be presented at a ceremony of the Scout's choice.  You can find a list of contacts for those organizations here https://www.scouting.org/awards/religious-awards/chart/ Many of those awards have links you can follow to view the requirements.  Some even have a downloadable workbook.  YMMV. 2.  Once a Scout earns the particular award, then she is entitled to wear a knot on her uniform signifying the accomplishment (wearing the medal previously awarded might be kinda clunky on the shirt)  The knot for youth is this https://www.scoutshop.org/youth-religious-award-knot-5007.html And multiple levels of the award are recognized by device pins, corresponding to the program of Scouting during which the award was earned.  Here is the Scouts, BSA device: https://www.scoutshop.org/boy-scout-pin-device-927.html and these are BSA items     Here is some more info explaining the program... https://blog.scoutingmagazine.org/2017/11/13/scouts-guide-earning-religious-emblem/ And you can find out how to wear them in the Guide to Awards and Insignia https://filestore.scouting.org/filestore/pdf/33066/33066_Religious_Emblems_WEB.pdf Finally, any youth/adult may earn these awards.  They do not have to be Scouts.  To wear the BSA knot and devices, you must be a Scout/Scouter.   Hope this answers your questions.
    • 1. For us, a complete lack of OA in the Troop for many years. We didn't have elections for three years before 2019. And there was almost no interest, because: the Chapter meets on the same night as our Troop meetings. the older guys who were Arrowmen said, "All they they do is eat ice cream at the Chapter meetings." And this is blatantly not true! 2. All they do is eat pizza at the Chapter meetings. 3. Our Ordeals are completely uninspiring. They can barely drag four Scouts into the principal roles. That the parts be memorized or seemingly even read through sometimes seems out of the question. One of the reasons ceremonialists are hard to come by, in addition to the practice time, is that even now there is too much of #4. 4. The same old 800-pound gorilla: the Native American stuff. Guys around here are embarrassed by it and want no part of it. They're kids and young men, but they see which side of history they feel it belongs on, and they don't want to be associated with it. Many never complete their Ordeals, and the sash-and-dash rate among those who do has to be astronomical.
    • It seems that a lot of folks put the cart before the horse.  I think the real issue is why someone who has completed the Ordeal not want to be in good standing.  The OA has a lot to offer a young person especially when they get  a little older and would like to be involved in Scouting leadership that really does let the kids run the show.  It also keeps them involved in Scouting after earning Eagle.  This is only possible if the unit supports the lodge by encouraging active participation.   If a policeman does not get his required annual training no one is going to say "that's OK, well take care of it."  Instead that officer looses their power to arrest and can't participate actively in his job.  They don't stop being a cop, they just aren't allowed to play in the game.  It's not a good idea for that officer to grab his badge and gun and go on patrol until the issue is corrected.  At that time they become a full fledged officer again and can get back to work.  Maybe that will help clarify this, a bit.
    • I went gangbusters last year and attended 1 in person and 2 or 3 virtually. I have all of my coursework done. Now I have to staff, write my thesis, and wait 3.5 years. I decided to hold off staffing the requirements may change in 3.5 years. 🙂 
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