Re: Troop meeting content
Jonathan Dixon (dixonj@MIMICAD.COLORADO.EDU)
Thu, 8 Sep 1994 00:57:14 -0600
[description of problem with LDS and summer camp removed]
> I told the IR that I couldn't disappoint another years worth of 11 year
> olds by leading them in half the program, especially since I had seen how well
> they'd done with a completely new troop for a week at camp.
> What to do now? I plan to participate (as a parent) in troop activities
> when invited by the SM. Anything else?
You didn't mention in your posting whether you and your son joined
another troop or if you just resigned your position. One of the
problems that's often raised here is that the LDS church tends to be
very strict in its control of its troops and leaders, not allowing as
much freedom as some would seem to want. LDS boys also seem to be
discouraged from considering troops sponsored by other groups from
things I've seen.
I'm not sure whether this is a problem that is common among
church-sponsored troops in general (and we hear about it more with the
LDS because they sponsor a lot more troops) or something that is
particular to the LDS church. I would guess it would often be the
former, since some people are quite willing to use the threat of
"eternal damnation" (or something at least along those lines - at
least in implication if not in fact) to get things to go the way they
think it should. It's why religious fights tend to be so nasty (but
that's getting into a whole keg of worms that probably shouldn't be
opened in this forum - anyone who wants to get deeper into this can
contact me directly by email).
Assuming you are staying with the troop you have been with, the
question to be asked is what roles would you be comfortable taking up
and which of those roles are available to you. You could also see
what positions are available at the district and council levels is you
have interests in those directions.
The other option I would see (but I don't know whether it is practical
for you) is to find a troop which runs things closer to the way that
you think they should run (while of course still following BSA rules).
If the first troop wasn't church-sponsored, I would say this would be
the best option, but it can be much harder to break ties when you
still have to deal with people on a regular basis (and harder perhaps
on your son as well).
Perhaps the best advice I can give is to talk with your son and see
how he feels about the whole affair. You're doing it for his benefit,
so his wants and needs should be the most significant factor in any
decision you make.
I hope I haven't offended anyone by any statements. My knowlege of
the LDS church is limited for the most part to hearing people's
descriptions (often in the form of complaints) about how things are
being run. If I have offended, I sincerly apologize.
ASM Troop 1046, Bowie, MD, NCAC
Eagle '85 Vigil '89
Terry Howerton Sakima Group, Inc. SCOUTER Magazine Kansas City