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EagleScout441

A Rant

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~~

{snip}

There was kind of a second point to the rant.

The second point was regarding the frequent use of Indian texts, quotes, prayers, etc.. Now, I understand that Indian heritage and culture plays a fairly large role in the BSA. The OA is probably the biggest example. But I think some of them take it a little too far. Many of these services use Indian prayers and other things that reference their pagan tendencies, like, appealing to the "great spirit of the wind."

 

So saying a prayer to a Christian god is OK but anything not christian is a little too much?

And you are the one that should decide what religious faith are appropriate?

As far as paraphraseing Pslams. The bible is not orginally written in english. If you are going to be dogmatic in wording of the bible you need to read it in Aramaic, Greek, Hebrew or Latin. the languages spoken at the time. On top of that the current bible wasnt even created until 325AD.

 

Think about that That is like in 150 years from now rewiting the US constitution in whatever way you want and backdate it to 1774 and say this is what Washington, Franklin, Adams and the rest said to do.

 

 

 

 

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So saying a prayer to a Christian god is OK but anything not christian is a little too much?

And you are the one that should decide what religious faith are appropriate?

 

When you put it that way. I guess I'd have to say that I have a problem with "inter-faith" services.

 

Doing a non-sectarian joint service is hard. As someone once put it: "how do you do a real non-sectarian worship service? You can't."

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To the extent that Love Your Neighbor or Take Care of the World We Have Been Given might offend someone, I guess I am just not concerned enough to do anything about their "issues."

 

My Buddhist friends are not offended by deist themes in a service as, they tell me, being offended over such a thing is against their religion. (When we had a local blow-up over the Ten Commandments in a public place, the local spokesman for Buddhist congregations made a point of volunteering that they should not be invoked as a reason to take down the Ten. A local newspaper "journalist" then wrote an editorial saying that the Ten "obviously" was "offensive" to Jews and Muslims. 0___0 And no, "Amen" is not offensive to Muslims.)

 

The only trouble I have been aware of has resulted from Protestant ministers who just WILL present a Protestant service if allowed. I have had no such problems with Rabbis or Catholic priests,

 

Scouts planning a Scouts' Own would need to be counseled.

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441: I think I'm with you. If someone uses a phrase like "great spirit of the wind" because it has some actual spiritual context to the person or their religion then that's fine. I don't have to believe and it won't have any spiritual meaning to me but that's all good. If people are using the phrase because it's cool to make something sound "indian" then it's not so fine.

 

I seem to recall from earlier posts that you are a youth member so take this for what it's worth from an old guy. You will find over your scouting career there are a lot more people willing to blast whatever effort you put into something than are willing to step up and actually do something. In my experience in scouting this is particularly true when it comes to Scout's Own services. If you are a Christian whatever you do will be wrong so be true to yourself first. Those that want to find offense will and when they do you can ask them to put together the next Scout's own. You won't get any takers.

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I was planning a ceremony last year and discussing my progress with the committee. I told them I planned to invite the Reverend to give the invocation, and a Jewish CM/dad interrupts and emphatically says "a non-sectarian prayer."

 

Right, I'm going to tell a minister how they cannot pray in their own church. :rolleyes:

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Rick: I understand your comment totally. It is the gist of every argument AGAINST the idea of a "Scout's Own" service that is not type #1 or type 4. But anything other than "my" religion is hard to accept as the right way to worship, yes? So what is a Scout to do? Again, it is perhaps the best thing in a multi-faith Troop (this would never be done in a Cub Pack? Or not?) to allow each Scout or group to find their own way. I reiterate, the majority faith does usually dictate how things proceed, but , yeah, that's not always the best thing if the prevailing attitude is that "my" faith is THE way to worship, and everyone else's is (?) incorrect(?).

We come up against this idea when our First Day students do their "Comparative Religion" section, and make arrangements to exchange visits with other neighboring Sunday/Sabbath School classes. Makes for interesting discussions, finally get the kids talking about the faith of their fathers....

 

I refer you to the Thanksgiving Week Interfaith Service organized by the Olney Ministerium, comprised of faith leaders from Jewish, Baptist, Methodist, Prebyterian, Muslim, Quaker and Catholic houses.... http://goyim.org/ and http://www.gazette.net/article/20141119/NEWS/141119425&template=gazette

 

We had perhaps 300 in attendance, with a Scout presence to help organize the grocery collecting.

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As an Assistant Scoutmaster, I'm in favor of Scouts own. Basically a prayer/intentions circle. I do not like "nondenominational" services because they are so watered down nobody gets anything out them. I'd rather see something the Scouts run and participate in.

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Not that Christian services offend me (even though I'm not Christian) but I would probably faint if I ever attended a Scouts own that wasn't a blatant Christian service. You'd faint if you'd come to one of mine. Zero Christianity or religion

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~~William Penn (1644-1718) , from “Some Fruits of Solitude†1682:

 

519. ""The Humble, Meek, Merciful, Just, Pious and Devout Souls, are everywhere of one Religion; and when Death has taken off the Mask, they will know one another, tho' the divers Liveries they wear here make them Strangers.""

 

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I remember one time, when I was about 14 years old, being asked to lead a Christian religious service at at district camporee. There was absolutely no guidance and I had no help at all. Basically, I took what I knew of my Lutheran upbringing and the liturgy that I was familiar with and ran with it. Man, it was awful and I ended up just talking about how we should be good people and live like Jesus taught us. I was so embarrassed and humiliated that there were so many people there waiting for me to give them a church service and there I was completely unprepared. So....I agree that Scouts need to be shown how to deliver a Scout's Own if they are asked to do it. As far making one that fits everyone, I think we're better off sticking to the Scout Law and sharing inspirational talks about those 12 points...

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""~~ I ended up just talking about how we should be good people and live like Jesus taught us.""

 

With no knowledge of the actual event, that sounds like an excellent "Scout's Own". Think about how the world would be if all so titled Christians lived that way.... The rest of any such "service" is mere googaws and dressing. I would shake your hand, lo these many years later.

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Just saw that I never posted this, but it still kind of flows with the rest of the conversation.

 

The origin of this rant actually came from my planning and writing a service. I looked through many scripted services before giving up on them and writing one from scratch with the help of my youth pastor.

... The OA is probably the biggest example. But I think some of them take it a little too far. Many of these services use Indian prayers and other things that reference their pagan tendencies, like, appealing to the "great spirit of the wind."

 

This is where "know your audience" comes in. (That includes recognizing God as part of the audience.) Sometimes the 100% Evangelical Christian audience can be the most critical, and getting help from your youth pastor was the right tact. As LeCastor testified, going it alone is thoroughly overwhelming. In fact, my men's group includes a pastor/missionary who often fields sermon passages to us. Iron sharpens iron, etc ...

 

You do understand that "spirit", "breath", and "wind" are the same word in Greek and Hebrew? The phrase seems to be getting on your nerves because Christian orthodoxy is very specific as to the person-hood of the Holy Spirit, and because of our secular understanding of weather etc... a reference to wind now sounds like mechanism more than maker/messenger. That wasn't always the case. But, E441, as a post-modern Christian (which distinguishes your generation from many of us "moderns" on this forum) you have your guard up against anything that would inadvertently venerate mechanism over Maker. When we read a "cute metaphors" you read "pagan tendencies", and you don't want to be responsible for sending someone down a path you would never walk.

 

(Note to pagans: not trying to downplay the importance of the animistic leanings to your faith .. just trying to help a Christian boy walk the fine line that welcomes everyone without compromising his duty to God.)

 

This is where that scout motto comes in. Be prepared by taking time in advance of the service to talk to participants of minority faith. Ask them if and how they would like to participate, if something in the script is patently offensive, and if they can suggest away around it. I have found that this has really brought me closer to fellow scouts and scouters.

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(Note to pagans: not trying to downplay the importance of the animistic leanings to your faith .. just trying to help a Christian boy walk the fine line that welcomes everyone without compromising his duty to God.)

 

Qwazse, seems like someone just about HAS to compromise, if not everyone. Do you have a way to get around this problem? How do you avoid favoring one over another?

 

Edit: SSScout, please contact Scouter Terry directly with your request for a new forum. A moderator can't create one (or a subforum for that matter as far as I can tell) and unless Terry just happens to read your response, he'll miss it. The better way is to make a direct request.

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