scouts-l Mail Archive for April of 2000: OA & LDS---the point of callings
Jason Cruse (jcruse@SOCKET.NET
Sun Apr 02 2000 - 08:55:57 CDT
>It has been my observation (and my opinion) that not much thought goes in
>filling Commissioner positions in the LDS church. Let me explain...
I would suspect that from outside the LDS Church, this is what the process
looks like. From inside the LDS, however, you couldn't be more incorrect.
Any position in the LDS that needs to be filled is to be a matter of prayer
and faith of the local congregational leadership. Now, many of you, both
outside and inside the Church, will likely after reading that fold your arms
and call me naive. So be it. But everyone on this list that is LDS knows
that that is how it is *supposed* to be done. And, many places, it is.
>First, we get many adults as UCs who have no children, and/or little
>in Scouting. The UCs I had working with me, to whom the Bishop had "told
>them" that their calling was to be a UC, are expected to fill this position
>for two years. Because they "know" it's only for a two year period, they
>don't bother purchasing a uniform, or attend training (to include RT).
This is unfortunate, but not limited to scouting positions in the LDS
church; don't feel like it is something about scouting. Just for the
record, not having kids doesn't matter, nor does previous scouting record.
(My troop, which is an LDS troop, had four adult leaders until last summer.
Two LDS, two NOT LDS. None of us had kids in the program.)
When "callings" are issued inthe LDS Church, there can be several reasons
why someone was called. We would all like to think that it is because God
knows that they are the best person for the job. However, this isn't always
the case. We also believe that callings are issued because we all need to
learn something. Hence, people who on the outside appear to have no
interest in youth or scouting or anything of the sort, are called to the
scouting program. Sometimes, these people run with the position and are
excellent. Other times, they "poop out" and sit and do nothing. They have
the potential to be excellent, if they choose to be, or they would not have
been called. Those people "chose" not to do anything.
And, by the way, this really is what LDS people believe. I encourage those
of you who aren't LDS to use this argument when trying to get your LDS
leaders who won't do anything to get up and do something.
>I have no idea how to get it across to these folks that they really do need
>to set the example by wearing a uniform, and getting trained!
Because they simply don't understand that program. But that is obvious.
>Now don't get me wrong; we have some EXCELLENT LDS Scouters!
>they are in the minority, and even their attempts at encouraging others is
>seen as "making waves".
Sometimes waves are good. Encourage them to make waves.
>We can't afford to "just throw anyone into a position" because it needs to
I already dealt with this a little higher up and why some people receive
callings that would appear to be "inappropriate."
I will say here, though, that I'm not entirely convinced that the LDS Church
has a corner on the market on leaders who won't participate, etc. Many of
you will read that and say "That's not what I meant!" Fine. I will also
allow, though, that perhaps as a *sponsor* we do. I just don't know. But
there are plenty of units who don't even bother to appoint UCs, for
example...or who have ineffective leaders or anything else, and the
Chartered Partner won't do anything about it. It isn't an LDS phenomenon or
Realize, too, that once you spot an LDS leader who is a "problem", just
talking to his or her Bishop won't get that person replaced. Being
"released" from a calling works just the same way (in theory) as being
called--when the Bishop feels inspired to do so. So, don't get all wound up
and upset again if you inform a bishop that someone isn't doing their job
and they aren't replaced right away. I'm not saying that everyone has to
believe like LDS people do about "callings", but if you at least try to
understand the perspective, you can see why some things happen the way they
(Eagle, Fox, Vigil)