scouts-l Mail Archive for February of 2000: Re: A Scout is Reverent
Fri Feb 11 2000 - 18:44:35 CST
Someone posted: "That's true, but it also doesn't mean that all religious
activities MUST be non-sectarian."
Of course religion is one of those areas my mother warned me not to argue
about, but, having gone into the law and not one of the professions my mother
wanted me to go into, I step in where angels fear to tread.
It seems to me that if your troop is sponsored by a religious institution
that sees Scouting as a way of serving its constituency, then it is likely
that your troop will be made up almost exclusively of members of your faith-
Jewish, Roman Catholic, Armenian Catholic, Later Day Saint, whatever. If the
troop is designed to serve the sponsor's faith, then your program will
celebrate that the faith. I have absolutely no problem with slanting the
program to take up as much of your faith as possible, rituals and all.
Scouting is in fact designed to accomodate that reality. Don't apologize, do
what you think is right.
If on the other hand you belong to either a secular troop (one sponsored by a
PTA for example) or one sponsored by a religious institution that sees
Scouting as an outreach to the community at large, not merely the members of
the religious institution, then I believe the unit has an obiligation to
celebrate the faiths of its members rather than the members of the sponsor,
because (if for no other reason) you will find that your outreach turned
right around and became an "in reach" and your unit will not serve the
greater community but rather only the community of your faith.
Yours in Scouting,
G. John Marmet
Troop 156, Glenview, IL