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    • I call it the "self-licking ice cream cone" SLICC Our lodge does zero service projects, other than for council. And nothing for units outside of elections.  They conduct inductions/ceremonies, go to conclave and NOAC, use captive labor at Ordeals to set up tents and flies/ do general maintenance for Summer Camp. Members (adult and youth) our lodge repeatedly use the phrase "sash and dash", which I decry.  An Arrowman's first duty is to his unit.  For our last election, they actually sent this guidance out to unit leaders..."The question of how the Scout will deal with membership should be considered before approving them for eligibility."  and "Will the Scout do their Ordeal and then never be involved with OA again (i.e. the "sash and dash")?"  [Copied and pasted directly from the Lodge email.] Here was our Troop reply: "As a long-time member of the Order of the Arrow, I want to ask you (and, through you as Chapter Adviser, all lodge members) to reconsider using phrases like "sash and dash", or asking unit leaders to evaluate whether members will become involved with the lodge in order for unit leaders to approve candidates.   Those are not, nor ever have been, considerations for election.   If a lodge or chapter election team instructs the Scouts of our Troop to consider these as criteria for selection, I will stop the election immediately.   The questions and inappropriate additional criteria show a misunderstanding of the mission and purpose of the Order. https://oa-bsa.org/about/mission-purpose   Youth membership in the Order is an honor bestowed by the youth members of the unit onto one of their own.  The lodge has absolutely no say in it, nor can any lodge add criteria for selection.   If an eligible Scout does not wish to be considered for election, that is fine.     Whether an elected Scout chooses to undertake the Ordeal is irrelevant.  His election is an honor in and of itself.   If the Scout does complete the Ordeal, he is a member of the Order of the Arrow for as long as he maintains a membership in the BSA.  Whether a Scout chooses to maintain membership in the lodge after his induction is irrelevant.  Order of the Arrow membership does not depend on lodge membership.   An Arrowman's primary duty is to his unit, not the lodge.  That this ideal is not prevalent in our lodge is troubling."  
    • Reverting to prior election rules (or similar) would be a start.  The current "referendum on each eligible scout" is a joke...it's become a checkbox to fill once you're First Class with enough camping nights.
    • Old Scout, I've had the same thoughts myself here of late.  The very elements that drew and kept membership:  outdoor adventure, OA, patrol method--pros and like minded volunteers have done their very best for decades to dilute these activities.  And unfortunately they've finally succeeded.  Especially the OA.  We're at the point where top-tier scouts decline nomination to the OA because the organization has so little credibility.  The exact opposite of what the founders intended.
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