Today is “Scout Sunday” at our church, a day on which we recognise the church’s support of the scouting units they charter. We also show off a little, to help remind the members of the church that the scouting movement’s alive and well in their community and is serving them (as well as providing a good program to the boys). We wear our uniforms to Mass (this is a Roman Catholic church) and I gave a short talk. I’m recording it here for any other scout leaders to use as a basis for a similar speech if they’d like. All I ask is that you drop me an email letting me know:
Good morning. My name is Steven Vore, I am a member of the Boy Scouts of America, Atlanta Area Council’s North Fulton district, and I am a member of St. Thomas Aquinas.
St. Thomas Aquinas church sponsors Cub Scout Pack 69 and Boy Scout Troop 841, and for that we thank Father Al, all the priests, and the church leadership.
For over 90 years no, the Boy Scouts of America has taught young men to be first class citizins and has trained them to become leaders in all parts of our society. They have done this by teaching young men to “…do their best to do their duty to God and Country.” Please note that duty to God is the first goal in the Scout Oath. This is because we, as scouts, recognize that none of us can grow into the best kind of citizin without recognizing our obligation to God.
The scouting program here at St. Thomas Aquinas is a full one, with outings, camping, fun and adventure. The scouts also serve the parish. Last monday, the Cub Scout delivered over 700 items of food – that they collected themselves – to the St. Vincent dePaul society. Scouts can be seen as alter servers, in the choir groups, and in other parish programs. The new benches in the outdoor play area were constructed by scouts as part of an Eagle Scout project. And as you sing with our choir, the hymnals you hold in your hands are this year’s edition because scouts were here on Thanksgiving weekend, switching out the old books for new ones.
I could give you numbers and statistics about the influence of the Boy Scout movement on our society – the high percentage of government, military, and business leaders who have been Boy Scouts, and how many have earned the Eagle Scout rank – Boy Scouting’s highest award. I could tell you interesting facts; every man who’s walked on the moon was a Boy Scout.
But instead I’d like to show the influence of scouting right here, and recognize those of you who are now or have been at some time committed to Boy Scouting.
Would all those who have earned the Eagle Scout Rank – Boy Scouting’s highest award, please stand and remain standing.
On the 23rd we will be celebrating the accomplishments of four new Eagles right here in our own parish.
Would all current Cub Scouts, Boy Scouts, Cub Scout leaders and Boy Scout leaders please stand?
And would all those who have in the past been Cub Scouts or Boy Scouts, and all those who were parents of Cub and Boy Scouts please stand.
(applause. at this point over half of the congregation was on their feet.)
You can see that the impact Scouting has on our community is widespread.
Thank you all.
Again I wish to express the troop’s and pack’s appreciation to the congregation for their support of scouting, and we look forward to future years of service to this church and our community. Thank You.
Steven Vore, 3-Feb-2002
Thanks to Peter Voorhees, author of a similar talk in a previous year, for allowing me to use his as a basis for mine.