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The Latin Scot

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Everything posted by The Latin Scot

  1. My doctors say I have made a complete recovery, and I have just been made a Unit Commissioner! Excited to start a new chapter in my Scouting career!

  2. So, first of all - I LOVE Laurel and Hardy, and reading your post @SSScout made me go back and watch a bunch of their old films again - thanks for the idea! Secondly, I have just been made a Unit Commissioner! Specifically, my District Commissioner wants me to help with training Cub Scout leaders in the area both at roundtable and at their committee meetings. My health is almost totally recovered, and I have gained back all the weight I lost, so I am ready to get back into things with a position that will let me stay involved without needing to over-strain myself with weekly den meetings
  3. Thanks everybody for the clarification! I think I understand it all now. You've all been super helpful, as always!
  4. Hey everybody, a question I would love some help answering: are all chapter advisers considered "associate chapter advisers," or is that a separate, specific position? For instance, is the adviser to the chapter vice-chief considered an "associate chapter adviser?" Any clarification would be much appreciated. Thanks all!
  5. Ah, it's finally been updated! Lots of interesting changes in this new edition too. Thank goodness the square knots have been officially limited to nine; the ambiguity of the previous guideline made rationalizing excessive patches too easy. Now it reads specifically "the number of knots is limited to three rows of three." As for the rest of the Guide, it's very nice and much improved over the last edition. There are plenty of new images, and as a whole this new edition is far more detailed than the last. CSP's have a whole new detailed re-write with images. There is a whole new set of gu
  6. The World Scouting Organization website has a number of neckers at their store: http://www.worldscoutshops.com/PBSCCatalog.asp?CatID=2004601
  7. Merit badge requirements must only be signed off by approved merit badge counselors. The committee chair is not authorized to sign them off unless he or she is also an approved counselor for the badge cited on the application. Finding the original counselor is not a problem; just make sure a new counselor is found ASAP, and that that individual is district-approved.
  8. I believe it would be more correct to say that the Field Uniform is sometimes referred to as "Class A," though this is a misapplication of military terminology which we generally try to avoid. And I have to say, I know many women who hike and hunt and climb and camp in skirts, dresses, jumpers, et cetera. They would just need to use patterns that allow freedom of movement. I do agree with the need for more fabric options for girls. I imagine that with time, National will start rolling out new options periodically just as they always have for the boys. But with the program being so new, o
  9. I concur 100%. This is the Scout's chance to spend a week doing what he wants to do. Parents need to keep their loving, sticky paws off for the sake of their child's growth as an individual. In some ways, I feel like enjoying summer is becoming a dying art. Completely off topic, it tickles me pink to see the expression "heavens to Betsy" still being used. That just put me in a great mood somehow.
  10. Thanks all for your kind words. I have been working with the new leader, and while there are a few pack issues that he will have to overcome, he has been well-prepared to keep the flame going. Meanwhile I need to keep my personal flame lit, and you have all been very kind with your thoughts. Thank you!
  11. Well, I trained a bunch of Cub Scout leaders yesterday, and as always, I got a lot of initial frustration from the women leaders when I stressed the importance of wearing the full uniform (not just the shirt as is usual around these parts). They always express their (quite legitimate) complaints about the fit, or lack thereof, of the Scout uniform for ladies. But I showed them a few of these images and related to them the options coming out with the insertion of girls into the programs, and many of them were very encouraged to go check out the new selections. I hope they really do flatter the
  12. Honestly, I think some packs allow their derbys to become excessively race-oriented rather than family-oriented. If at any point you allow regulations on the cars to become restrictions on involvement, you have a problem. Obviously, you need rules and guidelines to make an event like this manageable, but your goal should be getting the boys and their families to participate. Winning a race should be peripheral to spending time with the pack and providing an enjoyable time for all involved. Shaving fractions of a second (which sounds almost fanatically obsessive to me) off of a boy's time
  13. Which merit badge courses should he take? Easy - the ones he wants to take. This is how Scouting works. A boy looks for activities he finds interesting, and invests his time in making them happen. If he wants to work on advancement, he'll want to work on required merit badges. If he wants to focus on activities only offered at camp, he'll take those courses. But if he just wants to do merit badges that he finds fun or interesting, he doesn't need to do anything else. Too often we as adults want to steer a Scout's schedule towards what we think they need, and we don't really trust the
  14. Well ... over the holiday break I spent the better part of two weeks in the hospital's intensive care wing after a severe illness and other incidents left me unconscious for five days. I survived the ordeal, and I feel much better now thanks to the miracles of modern medicine, but it did leave me in a seriously weakened condition, and for a few months I will be dealing with a rather delicate constitution as I work towards restoring my health to what it was before the sickness. After much prayer and consideration, it was decided that I should let go of my duties as Webelos Den Leader for a
  15. Thanks for that! I feel, from a pedagogical and practical point of view, it would be better not to use a ceremony like this for a Cub Scout's Bobcat award. At this stage we are only just introducing the child to the idea of Scouting, and we want them to feel that the achievement in and of itself, with the associated badge and mother's pin to represent it, is something meaningful and significant. Adding facepaint and colors and bonus symbols and balloons and all that fluff is rather like gilding the lily if you ask me. Greater accomplishments more worthy of such "ceremonial adornment," such as
  16. You prevent this by first emphasizing at your pack meeting presentation just how special the Bobcat patch and mother's pin really are. This is the FIRST RANK* IN ALL OF SCOUTING. This is something huge! That patch represents something important! So make a real, meaningful presentation of the badge - what goes into earning it, what those requirements mean, where they lead, et cetera. Give it real dignity. And then, make that first mother's pin** really significant. Families make Scouting, so use Scouting's little awards to send a big message at that first pack meeting - we know you, and we reco
  17. Erasing our past only makes it easier for us to forget it. The Order of the Arrow has stood for service and brotherhood for over a hundred years, and by eliminating all the defining elements of its composition and character, we are also losing many of the morals and symbolism which the OA used to teach young men how to improve themselves and their communities. Many of these were powerfulful words and symbols and garments of Native American cultures. Adaptation and progress are inevitable; we can't fool ourselves into thinking that the Order of the Past is what the boys of today need. But we ca
  18. Well, the cold facts of this case are: 1. No unit leader nor committee may add, nor take away from, the requirements, as written exactly in the Boy Scout Handbook and the Eagle Scout application. 2. There are absolutely no prohibitions on multiple projects being conducted at the same place for the same beneficiary as long as each is managed entirely and only by each respective Scout (I know this for a fact because we just had two boys do their projects on opposite sides of the same street on the same day for our city, and I read through the requirements a dozen times to be sure it wa
  19. I've always liked good, deeply colored finishes with a lot of richly sanded gloss to them, but then I have always been very Arts and Crafts in how I like my wood cut and finished ...
  20. Wow. I wish my own induction had been this simple and meaningful!
  21. Put simply, a believer usually NOT a believer in a Church - he or she is a believer in God. God, at least in my book, does not change. How different denominations interpret divine will, however, depends on the people who belong to them, not on God Himself. I don't belong to a sect that has those issues, but I know that even among believers, many struggle to interpret consistent moral principles in religions of perpetually changing doctrines. What I would like to know is, how does an atheist determine right and wrong without an external barometer such as God or revelation? Please know I am not
  22. I can answer that, though an internet forum with strangers over the web is a poor place for a meaningful discussion about matters as profound as this. But there is a difference. An atheist believes that right and wrong must be determined by mankind. As such, there can be no right and wrong until there are people to say they exist. The duty of man, therefore, is to determine what he believes to be morally acceptable or morally unacceptable, and to live his life according to what he perceives those ideals to be. What those standards are will vary from person to person according to their own
  23. I run a Webelos den for my local congregation of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. We pray in every den meeting, we meet in the Church, we work on religious projects as well as Scouting ones. It would be easy for somebody to make the claim that by maintaining such an emphasis on our religion, we leave out boys who aren't believers, or even boys of other faiths. Unless you come to my den meetings. I LOVE when boys of other denominations come to our meetings. I ask them to pray according to their own customs so that my group of predominantly LDS boys can be exposed to o
  24. But doing one's duty to God IS the program, or at least it's certainly one of the most important parts of it. It's the first thing we commit to doing every time we recite the Scout oath, and if we, as Scouters, decide that we no longer wish to fulfil that obligation, an obligation we promised to do ON OUR HONOR, what good is our word in regards to anything any more? I made the oath as a brand new 11 year-old Scout, more than 20 years ago, that I would do my duty to God. Thus I am obliged, on my honor, to continue to do so for the rest of my life, and that includes defending it from those who w
  25. Wow, right in my own backyard! This happened not 20 minutes from me over in the next-door Scouting district! I know a lot of the leaders there; I am going to see if I can find out more from my Scouting connections in that part of town. That pilot was smart to land on Doheny Beach; at this time of year at that time of day it's not too busy at all, and the open stretches of fine sand make it one of the safer choices for an emergency landing. But he's lucky he didn't end up in the water; we've been having crazy high-surf warnings today, with some areas getting MASSIVE waves. I have no idea what t
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