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The Latin Scot

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Everything posted by The Latin Scot

  1. Everybody seems to be heading to Camporee this weekend! I wish our district had a whole tent devoted to vexilollogy.. We're going with a "Scouts of the Roundtable" theme this year, but the attempts of the powers-that-be to explain the terminology of medieval flags and heraldry has been ... poor at best. Luckily all of the patrols in our troop are already medieval-themed, so our patrol flags are already in line with heraldic tradition (they consulted with my father, a noted aficionado of heraldry and tapestry-making). I am however curious to see how other units attempt to represent themselves w
  2. Realistically speaking, I have never seen uniforms being used a means of exclusion amongst Scouts - obviously, nobody is going to send a Scout home because he doesn't have a uniform. But as Baden-Powell put it in the 1908 edition of Scouting For Boys: The Scout kit, through its uniformity, now constitutes a bond of brotherhood among boys across the world. The correct wearing of the Uniform and smartness of turnout of the individual Scout makes him a credit to our Movement. It shows his pride in himself and in his Troop. One slovenly Scout, on the other hand, inaccurately dressed may
  3. I think it's entirely dependant on how each course is presented and how invested the boys are in the programming. When I was young, our district would put on a few MB days a year as fundraisers. Seating was limited to 8 boys a course (effectively a MB 'patrol'), and course teachers were highly qualified in their fields. Courses were also taught on-site; for example, I earned the Atomic Energy MB at the San Onofre Nuclear Power Plant, and my MB Counsellor was an actual nuclear scientist who took us through the entire facility. It being an hour's drive away, we had to work out our own tran
  4. We always have: Fastest Car, Marathon Winner (the slowest car (which has to make it past the finish line to count)), Most Creative, Best Craftsmanship, and Scout's Choice. Every boy who enters a car receives a participation medal as well. Of all the awards, the most coveted is easily the Marathon Winner, and we actually have two set of brackets to accommodate the competition for both the fastest and slowest cars. It's become easy to figure out how to make a car fast, but to make it slower than every other car while still making it all the way down the track? THAT can be just as tricky. A
  5. I would guess it's something his parents or family must have taught him, or perhaps even just a personal conviction. But having lived my whole life deeply invested in LDS culture and religion, I would still find it unusual for a boy to think thusly - but I have tremendous respect for him if he does. And that's the point. We have to consider the sensitivities of all who might be witnesses to such a (frankly) tasteless little number as the dreaded JCPenny Skit. I was a pretty tender little Scout, and I DESPISED the skit precisely because I found watching boys go around in their underwear t
  6. It may be encouraging to remember that while 2 years may sound like a tight squeeze, it's not impossible. Scouts have been doing just that for a century - starting at 11 or 12 and earning it at 13 or 14. If they can do it at such tender ages, I'm sure these young women will be even more capable of making it happen, what with their advantages of maturity, desire, and resources. I will express, however, that if a young lady joins a unit with the driving goal of earning the rank of Eagle Scout, she may have already misunderstood the purpose of Scouting. The goal of a Scout should never be "
  7. Are these national numbers, or from a specific region/area/council/district/what-have-you?
  8. I agree 100% with @fred8033. Start your program off on the right foot, and it will save you all kinds of headaches later. How you begin a unit will establish its culture, traditions, and values for years to come - and those need to solidly based on the patrol method. Yes, there will be mistakes and failures and setbacks. Those experiences should be treasured as essential learning opportunities. We are what we grow beyond, so give them as many opportunities to try and do and experience and learn as you possibly can. There are all kinds of great resources for new youth leaders. The new SPL
  9. This is fantastic! Long Beach is less than an hour north of my place (I'm in Orange County Council); I will plan to head up there ASAP to check out the exhibit and get some ideas for my own council's 100th anniversary next month! Hopefully I can get my Troop and Pack to come along too.
  10. It's lovely that this young man has worked so hard to achieve so much. However, I think it's important that we don't adopt a perspective which leads us to use phrases such as "mere" Eagle. The Eagle Scout Rank is still representative of extraordinary effort, service and leadership, and while this young man has certainly gone far beyond the usual expectations, it in no way lessens the full significance of "just" earning one's Eagle rank. Rarity and prestige are not, after all, the real reasons we earn these awards, though certainly we honor those who achieve them. Again however, it's great
  11. Admittedly, if I find myself being pulled in too many directions next year, I will choose the Church's new program over Scouting. I think it will be important for families of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints to manage their time wisely, and if my involvement in the Church's new program conflicts with my involvement in Scouting, Scouting will have to take a back seat. After all, it's in Scouting that I learned to prioritize my duty to God above all other things. The hope is that both will be manageable, and that neither will have to take a cut. But depending on how much time
  12. It's important to note that the definition of friendly in "your book" is entirely subjective, and there seems to be a strong suggestion from your comments that you feel that if our faith were truly "friendly," it would conform to your ideas of how a religious organization should interact with the BSA in the future - your ideas of what "friendly" means. But that would be an unfair conclusion, and it may be misleading to those who read these forums and don't understand much of the actual situation. Our Church will not sponsor Scouting in the future. So to suggest that leaders should "organ
  13. A CAUTIONARY TALE I remember when I was in Scouts, just after I became a Life Scout, we got a new Scoutmaster. And this new Scoutmaster came up with the idea of "Scout bucks," a system by which boys could earn little paper 'dollars' (somewhat akin to Monopoly money) by meeting various expectations or when caught acting "Scout-like." If your uniform was perfect, you got a buck. If you had your book, you got another book. A merit badge earned you another, and a rank advancement earned you bucks in increments of 5 (Tenderfoot = $5, 2nd Class = $10, et cetera, but Eagle earned you $50).
  14. That's very much the expectation of the idea. Our boys will be treated as kids from any other faith or organization after 2019, and we welcome council and district efforts to recruit from our families in the future. But the restored Church of Jesus Christ has been a global religion for many years now (as our new Temple complex in Rome demonstrates), so our leaders have to be mindful of its membership all over the world, and notices like the ones mentioned are necessary in order to keep policies and doctrine consistent. But as mentioned, it has nothing to do with being "friendly" or not.
  15. Boy. I would give ANYTHING for an adult Scouter's jacket like that in my size ...
  16. I think it needs to be made clear that our church simply doesn't have "community bulletin boards" where people can come and post whatever events or programs they wish. So if somebody wants to recruit LDS boys into Scouting, it has to come from people acting for themselves, and in venues apart from the Church's facilities. Those who wish to remain in Scouting are perfectly welcome to go and obtain the information they need, but that is outside the parameters of Church leadership and responsibility, and it to be done outside of our properties to ensure that the separation is both amicable and un
  17. When I was Webelos Den Leader, I might sometimes have sent the boys along to Boy Scouts with some trinket of affection by which they could remember their time in Cubs - a hand-crafted woggle, a wood-burned plaque, something simple. But the most important thing I could give to those boys was a deep and lasting understanding of the patrol method, along with solid preparation for their next adventure in Boy Scouts. When my boys were able to advance to the rank of Scout in their first or second meeting thanks to the learning they received in Webelos, I knew I had done my job right. That preparatio
  18. Our pack was very small for a number of years, and we presented all the awards at our monthly pack meetings. Since our numbers have grown recently, we've transitioned to presenting rank advancements and special awards at the monthly pack meetings, and adventure pins and loops at den meetings as they are earned. Just make sure your boys never wait longer than the recommended 2 weeks before receiving recognition for their accomplishments.
  19. I would rather my Scouts have few examples than poor ones. It's exactly because he captures their attention that this is such a problem. If we are raising our youth to merely look the other way with incidents like this, we must not be surprised when they grow older and make choices which hurt or confuse us, and we find that the moral compasses we thought we had instilled in them have been misaligned because of "missing the mark." As any orienteering instructor can tell you, your compass only needs to be off by a few degrees to get you miles off your charted course.
  20. Exactly; the boys choose a name as they practice the patrol method as per requirement C, and if they wish to wear a patch on their uniforms, it is purchased through the den or the pack committee. A Scout troop would NOT be involved in any part of the process, simply because a Scout troop is a separate unit and not responsible for the goings-on in a Cub Scout unit. When the Webelos scouts are completing this requirement, it is done on their own, with no adult intervention and certainly without involving any older scouts - the point is for them to do it on their own. And for that reason, the nam
  21. This is troubling. Here we have our "chief ambassador" in the news again, but not for anything good: https://www.msn.com/en-us/tv/news/bear-grylls-faces-fine-after-killing-and-cooking-frog-in-bulgarian-national-park/ar-BBTWcxv?li=BBnb7Kz&ocid=mailsignout He seems to me far too reckless and camera-hungry to serve as a deserving representative of Scouting ideals. I say get rid of him before any other scandals emerge.
  22. Charging people to attend B&G?!? We have always had very lovely B&G events, but they have never been so expensive as to require additional costs from the family. For example, in our pack, the committee buys a dozen big lasagnas from Costco, and the leaders and a few willing parents each take one or two to cook and bring to the venue just before the dinner. A few bags of rolls and some easily thrown-together salads complete a filling, pleasant, affordable meal that boys this age enjoy as much as their parents do. Decorations are simple - blue and yellow tablecloths and eating ware,
  23. I think it would be imperative of National to make these changes in regards to proper pronoun gender. To ignore the differentiation between men and women as understood by these cultures would be disrespectful at the least, highly offensive at the worst. The language has to be changed if the OA's intention to respect and promote the traditions of native peoples is to be sincere.
  24. Hey all! With my time cleared up now and my health more or less restored, I have been asked to serve as a commissioner by my district committee leaders. They told me to register as a unit commissioner, but they specifically want me to help with training new Cub Scout leaders, facilitating Cub breakout sessions at Roundtable, and above all being on-hand to support Cub Scouting at the district level. I am taking every training course I can find online and doing everything possible to make sure I am as well-versed in Scout policies and procedures as possible (luckily my mom was a commissioner for
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