Re: Jewish Eagle Court of Honor
Marc Solomon (msolomon@TEK1.TEKNIQ.COM)
Tue, 25 Jul 1995 13:39:22 -0500
At 07:02 AM 7/24/95 -0600, Don Tolin wrote:
>>Ok, Jewish Scouters, let's try out this InterNet Roundtable business.
>>I received a query today from the proud father of a new Eagle Scout.
>>>I was pleased to come across your WWW page on Jewish Scouting. We are
>>>Jewish and my son, Josh, age 16, has just passed his board of review to
>>>become an Eagle Scout. We are planning a ceremony for mid-September. Is
>>>there any place on the internet where I can get ideas or suggestions for
>>>the ceremony format and meaningful content? According to our
>>>scoutmaster, the scout and his family are responsible for the ceremony.
>>>Our son is the only Jewish member of the troop, but we expect a lot
>>>of family to be present, including grandparents from the L.A. area.
>>>Thanks for any help you can provide.
>>So, how about it? Who has some suggestions for the proud parents and this
>7/24/95 Response from Don Tolin:
>You might want to direct him to the scouts-l listserver on the internet. I
>understand that the archives should have information that may be helpful for
>the ceremony. I'll pass this question on to the group on scouts-l and let
>you know of any responses.
>My initial suggestion is to make the ceremony meaningful to the scout and
>If there are prayers in Hebrew, then explain them and translate them in
>English. If they utilize any customs, uniquely Jewish, like use of kippot,
>tallit, etc., explain it during the ceremony. This helps to bridge the gap
>of understanding for those non-Jewish members of the troop and friends who
>are non-Jewish. It also helps for the family members that may not be
>thoroughly familiar with the customs and prayers as one might expect them to
>be. Also, do not try to be what the scout is not. If he is reform, do not
>try to be orothodox in order to "please" grandparents, etc. Likewise, do not
>ignore Judaism, inorder to blend in with the non-Jewish members of the troop...
While I agree with our advise, I do not see the reason why an Eagle Court of
Honor for a Jewish Scout should be much different than an Eagle Court of
Honor for a Scout of any other religion. The opening Invocation might be
given by a rabbi instead of a priest and, if there is food served, grace
should be said in both Hebrew and English. As for the wearing of kippots,
if the COH is held at a temple that requests them, yes they should be worn.
Note that any head covering would also be acceptable, so wearing a standard
BSA headgear is OK. If not at a temple, if the Jews attending normally wear
Kippots, they will wear them and all others do not need to. This isn't a
bar mitzvah, I would forego the tallits (prayer shawls). If the Scouts
family keeps Kosher and food is being served, than the food served should be
Kosher. A Challah (braided bread) would be a nice touch along with a short
ceremony before the serving of the food where the Blessing over Bread is
made and the Challah sliced (usually done by a respected elder). One last
note, many Jews will not drive on the Sabbath. The Sabbath goes from sunset
Friday to sunset Saturday. Therefore, a Saturday afternoon COH may not be
acceptable, but a Saturday evening COH may be (as long as no one has to
drive so far that they would have to leave home before subset to make it on
Otherwise, I can see no other changes that would have to be made from a
normal Eagle COH.
Yours in Scouting,
| Marc W. Solomon | Unit Commissioner |
| firstname.lastname@example.org | Sycamore District |
| email@example.com | Blackhawk Council, IL |
I use to be a wise old owl . . . Now I am just old
Terry Howerton Sakima Group, Inc. SCOUTER Magazine Kansas City