The reticulations or the ramifications?
I too express my gratitude for all your contributions over the past few years, and my farewell to you as you move on to find greener pastures. May your road be blessed and your way be clear.
I don't doubt some LDS families will continue their Scouting journey in other non-LDS troops. The difficulty is that we have used Scouting as our activities program for young men; now that we will have our own activity program, Scouting would end up costing that family double the time, with two programs designed for the same purpose. Scouting will likely become redudant for our families because the goals Scouting is meant to accomplish will be met by the new programs as well.
Somebody mentioned that the "lucky" LDS members only have to go to 3 hours of meetings. Yet I pity those who only get three hours a week to share time with their fellow Latter-day Saints; for me there isn't enough time in the world to be with those you love.
First of all, I am always 100% behind every decision the Church makes, because I sincerely believe that whatever decision our leaders make, comes from the Lord. So, that said, I am excited to see what the future will bring after these next 18 months are over, because I know that Providence never takes anything away without given us something better in return.
So what keeps me all in? Simple.
These kids have 18 months left in Scouting. At that age, it seems like a MUCH longer time than it seems to us. And it's my duty, my opportunity to see that the last 18 months of Scouting in the Church are the most memorable, the most exciting, the most affecting months they have ever had. I want them to think back with fondness and gratitude to the years of Scouting they had, to the adventures they shared, and the lessons they learned. I want them to accomplish great things, and when they are old and gray, I want Scouting to be one of the dearest memories of their youth.
That means I have no right, no time, no reason to selfishly indulge in whatever I may be tempted to feel regarding the sadness or nostalgia of this loss. It isn't about me. These boys have so much to learn and gain from my time with them, and to taint it with my personal sentiments would be unfair to them and a diservice to myself - they are not the only ones who have a lot to gain from this last leg of the journey. I myself learn from them daily; they are a part of my own growth and learning, and if I let myself be distracted by what-ifs and if-onlys, I too would lose valuable opportunities and blessings.
Our last prophet President Thomas S. Monson, himself one of Scouting's greatest champions, loved to recite the following quote:
"For all sad words of tongue and pen, The saddest are these, 'It might have been.'" - John Greenleaf Whittier
My job is to deliver the fullest, the happiest, the most complete, the BEST program I can down to the last minute of our involvement. And all it takes to feel the motivation, to feel the desire, to feel the joy of the adventure, is to look into the faces of these fine young men and to love them. I can do anything if it's based on that love. It's not a personal stuggle. It's a personal opportunity, and I am thankful for every last minute of it.
Ha! This is funny. So, I have all my special stuff in pouches all around my belt (the boys call it my Jedi Belt). I've got one for my multitool, my compass, my binoculars, my cellphone (water-tight), and for outdoor activities, a first-aid kit and flashlight. All are small and not bulky at all, but the system keeps everything easy to reach and to have in-hand at a moment's notice. I've found it works nicely!