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Found 5 results

  1. SSScout

    No Respect?

    As the resident Quaker Scout Chaplain, I note with chagrin the discussion occurring about our friends the LDSs self removal from the BSA fold. What are/were their official reasons? Unofficial reasons? Does it matter? What recognition, distinction, respect for such things is appropriate? My Quaker Meeting, here in Sandy Spring MD , dates back to at least 1753, making our congregation one of, if not the oldest congregation in our county. As Friends Meetings go, we are rather large and active. The Friends (European white settlers) came to our area before 1730, seeking new undepleted soil to farm and land where native Americans did not live (altho the Algonguin trails led thru the area). Family story: One summer, we went on a road trip up thru New York, Niagara Falls and thru the Midwest ,, visiting family. Stopped in Binghamton NY for lunch at a Subway shop. Poster in the window: QUAKER DAYS FESTIVAL ! Asked the clerk, what is this? "oh, the town was founded by Quakers, we have a parade, a fair, games, it's lots of fun !". Great. Where's the Meeting House? "what's that?" The town police cruisers have a broadbrim hatted profile on the door. Later research found Binghamton Meeting (small and active by our standards) more tolerated than actively supported the festival. I often marvel at the seeming irony with which we, Quakers, are treated. Examples: About 1975, I read in our local newspaper that the county government was going to encourage tourism (!money!) by dividing the county into three areas for promotion: Agricultural Heritage (we now have a Farm History Park, very nice and an Agricutural Reserve area for land zoning), Industrial Heritage (the C & O Canal, various mills ), and . . wait for it . . The Quaker Heritage Area.... Well, this was news to our Meeting. I'll not bore you with the back and forth that ensued. A very nice museum was created from a local historic stone barn and MOST of it they got right. It was even renovated under the direction of a very talented architect member of our Meeting, but he did not curate the exhibits. Mores the pity. Ongoing discussions will eventually correct the few, small but important errors in the exhibits. They did consult with "Scholars" but not with us, not 3 miles away. Now, we drove home from a more recent (last month !) vacation trip, and lo, there was a new sign. Actually, there are several new road signs, vis: "Quaker Legacy Corridor" with directional arrows. Guess where they point? Inquiries to the State Highway Administration ( thank you for the new notoriety) garnered the response "thank you for your question. We will research the origin and reason behind the mentioned signage". And, yes, the State decided that mentioning such "history" was good for the driver who might not have Quaker History cross his/her mind as they travel thru our eastern provinces. The agency folks were invited to come and meet with our Meeting and discuss their work, (potluck lunch after !) but so far, the State folks have demurred. Now, to be fair, there are other faith sites noted around (Catholic Shrines, LDS Temple, etc.) but not the sort of official signage I mention. We haven't seen much in the way of Catholic or Jewish Legacy Corridor yet, but I'm keeping an eye out.
  2. walk in the woods

    United Methodist Church Schism

    It appears what used to be our second or third largest chartering organization is on the verge of schism. The cause is less interesting to me than the potential impact on BSA. Although if any of you are UMC-ers with insight please share whatever you are comfortable sharing.
  3. Do any of y'all do any kind of marketing of your unit during Scout Sabbath activities? (Scout Sabbath / Scout Sunday is the weekend of February 7/8 in 2020 ) Seems to me like it would be a natural opportunity for a little outreach within the CO. Let folks see what their unit does and invite kids who aren't in the program to come on out and see what it's all about. I don't think any kind of intrusive effort would be appropriate, but maybe just have some flyers on a table near the front door....or a small contingent outside the church before or after services to greet parishioners and answer questions (and handout flyers). I think the flyers should clearly tell people their kids are INVITED to come visit a meeting and join the troop. I'd like to call out the importance of specifically making sure that scouts and adults in the troop present a welcoming demeanor and INVITE the kids and parents to the troop (in a survey done by Toastmasters International, the number one reason that prospects said they didn't join a local club is because NOBODY ASKED THEM TO. Such a simple thing, yet too often overlooked. I think this happens in troops too. We get boys coming to visit, but do our boys tell the visiting boys that they WANT them to join? Do the adults hobnob with visiting parents and specifically TELL the visitors they would be welcome in the troop, and how to apply?) Anyway, back to Scout Sabbath.....do you leverage the event as a way to recruit members of your church or temple community? Any tips or tricks to make it work effectively but with an overriding reverence towards the faith?
  4. mrkstvns

    Grace before meals

    I've never been a scout campout where meals didn't begin with a pause to say grace. Some scouts use a standard form of grace followed by their family or church. Some scouts like to make up their own free-form grace, fitting their prayer to the place and moment. Some scouts use standard forms of grace they get from BSA camps. Here are the 5 most common BSA graces heard throughout scouting... Philmont Grace For food, for raiment For life, for opportunity For friendship and fellowship We thank thee, O Lord Sea Base Grace Bless the creatures of the sea. Bless this person I call me. Bless the Keys, You make so grand. Bless the sun that warms the land. Bless the fellowship we feel, As we gather for this meal. Summit Grace For this time and this place, For Your goodness and grace, For each friend we embrace, We thank Thee, Oh Lord. Northern Tier Grace For food, for raiment, For life and opportunity, For sun and rain, For water and portage trails, For friendship and fellow ship, We thank Thee, Oh Lord. OA Grace For night alone that rests our thought For quiet dawn that lights our trail For evening fire that warms and cheers For each repast that fuels our work We give thanks, O Lord.
  5. "A National Guard facility in Pennsylvania refused to allow a Trail Life USA scouting troop to tour their facility because of the group’s religious affiliation. The Fort Indiantown Gap National Guard facility regularly hosts tours for Boy Scout troops and other organizations, but the Trailmen were told they could not participate because they belonged to a Christian scouting organization. . . . The National Guard’s public affairs office did not return multiple inquiries seeking comment. . . . The ordeal began in February when Troop PA-2717 were initially told they could tour the facility. In April, a staff sergeant called the troop master and said the tour had been denied because of the group’s religious affiliation. The idea that Christian boys would be banned strictly because of their religious beliefs is not only ludicrous, but it’s also illegal. And that’s why the Trail Life troop got in touch with First Liberty Institute and the Independence Law Center, two organizations that specialize in religious liberty cases. “Fort Indiantown Gap’s denial of access to the base facilities, which are open to other civic, fraternal, and youth organizations and for youth activities, constitutes viewpoint discrimination,” the law firms wrote in a letter to the National Guard. The attorneys said the National Guard’s decision to ban the Christian scouting group is “discriminatory and unconstitutional.” John Stemberger, the chairman of the Trail Life USA board, said told the "Todd Starnes Radio Show" that it’s disheartening that a “federal institution like the Army is buying into this leftist idea that faith has to be excluded from the public square.” “It’s sad that an institution of our society is treating faith like it is some kind of bacteria or virus that needs to be exterminated from secular society,” Stemberger told me. “We need faith integrated with society.” The good news is that once First Liberty Institute and the Independence Law Center got involved, the National Guard quickly backed down and rescinded the ban on the Trailmen. “We are grateful that the Guard has chosen to open its doors to the Trail Life troop,” ILC attorney Jeremy Samek said in a statement. “The boys from Trail Life USA’s troop deserve to be treated fairly and equally. I know they are excited to get the opportunity to interact with those who defend our freedom.” https://www.foxnews.com/opinion/todd-starnes-trail-life-national-guard-pennsylvania
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