Archive for Awards and Programs

How active is your Council in Religious Awards?

Each year, PrayPub (the outside agency that develops most of the religious education materials and awards) publishes the lists of BSA councils and awards presented:

http://www.praypub.org/god_country/pray_usage.htm

 

For those in Circle Ten, my council, with 57,000 youth … here are our numbers for the protestant programs:

  • 122 God & Me – 1st thru 3rd grade
  • 116 God & Family – 4th & 5th
  • 20 God & Church – 6th thru 8th
  • 10 God & Life – 9th thru 12th
  • 3 Four Star (all of the above)
  • 17 Adult Awards

 

Of course, this doesn’t tell the whole story.  These numbers are only of the Christian-Protestant awards, not the Catholic, Jewish or other recognized faiths.  Still, there are a lot of protestants in Texas and only 288 recognitions for Scouts and Scouters.

Here are a few other observations:

  • It is gratifying to see relatively flat numbers in the first two programs, implying perhaps folks continuing in the program as their Cub Scout progresses.
  • It is equally disappointing to see the fall-off for Boy Scouts with the latter two programs.
  • Only three Scouts received the “Four Star,” meaning all four awards, presumably three of the ten God & Life recipients.
  • Only 17 Adults were recognized, which begs the question … who is teaching the Scouts? Teaching a course certainly doesn’t merit the award, but one would presume that there are far more than seventeen Christian-minded and actively-serving adults. But the adult award is only by nomination and the requirements are relatively steep in most of the faith traditions, usually 5+ years of active service in both the BSA and their home church or ministry.  Still, seventeen seems low.

 

What do you think?  Please leave your comments below.

I love Merit Badge Colleges

I really do !

There are a lot of folks out there that think that Merit Badge Colleges (MBCs) diminish earning the Merit Badges (MB), and they certainly do when the MBC is delivered with the intent to “Spend a Saturday, take home two badges.”

Similarly, there are folks that treat MBCs kind of like the summer community college where you took hard (aka Eagle) courses in an accelerated way, so as to avoid doing them during the traditional way. And that is equally bad.

Like most things in life, the problem is in the intent and the execution, not in the thing itself.

MBCs are not the problem – expecting to earn one or two merit badges in a day is.

Read more

UoS Cub’s Duty to God PPT

Last week, I had the opportunity to teach at Circle 10 Council’s University of Scouting … including course CUB033 Duty to God:

  • What the BSA says about Faith – in order to prepare leaders for some of the questions that parents will ask
  • Fundamentals of the Religious Awards programs that are available to Scouts through PrayPub
  • Planning a Religious Study and a Pack Worship Service
  • A sample service given in my Pack

Here is the PPT from the course.

If you use it to teach a course, here are two requests for your consideration.  1) please let me know how it might be improved and 2) please point people back to ScoutingForGod for supplemental content and insight.

How to Deliver God & Family as a Weekend Lock-in

Many Cub Scouts initially earn their purple knot (youth religious award) through God & Me for 1st-3rd grade – but don’t continue through the progressive program for higher ages.

By the time that they are Webelos or Boy Scouts, they often have so many other activities that they (or their parents) don’t want to sign up for 6 to 8 weekend meetings.  So, in our district, we tried delivering the God & Family (4th & 5th grade Protestant) program as a weekend lock-in.

The boys checked in at 6PM Friday and walked out 4PM Saturday, with the next part of their discipleship journey complete … along with some new purple knots or gold pins.

Click here to download a Guide to How to Deliver a God & Family Lock-in.

 

My hope is that you’ll consider delivering this in your own Councils and Districts – and provide feedback for how we can improve the guide.

Good Scouting and Many Blessings!

Religious Recognitions for Scouts

All religious courseware and programs are prescribed by the various religious institutions that have chosen to develop them. The programs are not created or maintained by the Boy Scouts. BSA simply approves the program structure and provides a method of recognition via the Uniform Knots for Scouts and Adults.

Youth Religious Award

Many religious study programs offer a multiple courses, based on the age of the Scout:

Upon completing the first course of a religious study program, the Scout is authorized to wear the Scout Religious Award, otherwise known as the “Purple Knot”, which is available from most Scout uniform shops.  If a Scout completes additional religious education programs, they are authorized to wear a small metal ‘device’ (pin) on their Purple Knot for each subsequent program completed, so that one Purple knot is worn throughout their scouting experience.

Cub Scout DeviceWith Cub Scout device #926 Cub Scout Device

with Webelos device #932

 

Boy Scout DeviceVarsity DeviceVenturing DeviceSea Scout device
Boy Scout, Varsity, Venturing and Sea Scout devices

 

The Purple Religious Youth knot earned earned as a youth can be worn on an Adult Leader’s uniform, as well.  Adults can also be awarded earn a different religious knot.

NOTE : If a Pin or Medal is awarded by the religious institution for completing a course of study, the pin/medal OR the purple uniform knot can be worn — typically not both, as it is redundant.  The exception would be a necklace-based medal which can be worn for formal award ceremonies such as Boy Scout Courts of Honor, whenever other formal saches or similar regalia are worn.

If you know of other resources related Religious Programs, Awards or Rank Advancements, please let us know !

 

 

Awards & Programs for Bear Cubs

All religious courseware and programs are prescribed by the various religious institutions that have chosen to develop them. The programs are not created or maintained by the Boy Scouts. BSA simply approves the program structure and provides a method of recognition via the Uniform Knots for Scouts and Adults.

Religious study programs that are designed for 3rd grade youth can be used to satisfy the rank requirements for Bear.

A Cub Scout-specific metal ‘device’ (pin # 926) is available for the Purple Scout Religous Knot, BSA part number 05007

Depending on the scout’s faith, they have options such as:

Roman Catholic Parvuli Dei 3rd, 4th and 5th grade
Christian Protestent God & Me 1st, 2nd and 3rd grade
Islamic In the Name of God 1st, 2nd and 3rd grade
Jewish Aleph 2nd, 3rd, 4th and 5th

To complete the BEAR RANK,
the scout must do one of either Activities 1 (Ways we Worship) or 2 (Emblems of Faith).

1.  WAYS WE WORSHIP  (complete both requirements 1a and 1b)

  1. Complete the Character Connection for Faith
  • Know.  Name some people in history who have shown great faith. Discuss with an adult how faith has been important at a particular point in his or her life.
  • Commit. Discuss with an adult how having faith and hope will help you in your life, and also discuss some ways that you can strengthen your faith.
  • Practice. Practice your faith as you are taught in your home, church, synagogue, mosque, or religious fellowship.
  1. Make a list of things you can do this week to practice your religion as you are taught in your home, church, synagogue, mosque, or other religious community. Check them off your list as you complete them.

OR

2.  EMBLEMS OF FAITH  (earn the purple knot above)

Guidance based on the BSA Bear Handbook (2006 edition) – pages 24-33.

If you know of other resources related Religious Programs, Awards or Rank Advancements, please let us know !

 

Awards & Programs for Tiger Cubs

All religious courseware and programs are prescribed by the various religious institutions that have chosen to develop them.  The programs are not created or maintained by the Boy Scouts.  BSA simply approves the program structure and provides a method of recognition via the Uniform Knots for Scouts and Adults.

The Tiger Rank does not have a religious participation activity, however religious study programs that are designed for 1st grade youth can be recognized by the used to satisfy the rank requirements for Tiger.

A Cub Scout-specific metal ‘device’ (pin # 926) is available for the Purple Scout Religous Knot, BSA part number 05007

Depending on the scout’s faith, they have options such as:

Roman Catholic Light of Chirst 1st & 2nd grade
Christian Protestent God & Me 1st, 2nd and 3rd grade
Islamic Bismillah 1st, 2nd and 3rd grade
Jewish Maccabee 1st grade

 

If you know of other resources related Religious Programs, Awards or Rank Advancements, please let us know !

 

Awards & Programs for Wolf Cubs

All religious courseware and programs are prescribed by the various religious institutions that have chosen to develop them. The programs are not created or maintained by the Boy Scouts. BSA simply approves the program structure and provides a method of recognition via the Uniform Knots for Scouts and Adults.

Religious study programs that are designed for 2nd grade youth can be used to satisfy the rank requirements for Wolf.

A Cub Scout-specific metal ‘device’ (pin # 926) is available for the Purple Scout Religous Knot, BSA part number 05007

Depending on the scout’s faith, they have options such as:

Roman Catholic Light of Chirst 1st & 2nd grade
Christian Protestent God & Me 1st, 2nd and 3rd grade
Islamic Bismillah 1st, 2nd and 3rd grade
Jewish Aleph 2nd, 3rd, 4th, and 5th


To complete the WOLF RANK,
Activity 11 is “Duty to God”, which includes the following requirements:

11.  DUTY TO GOD

  1. Complete the Character Connection for Faith
  • Know. What is “faith”? With your family, discuss some people who have shown their faith – who have shown an inner strength based on their trust in a higher power or cause.
    Discuss the good qualities of these people.
  • Commit. Discuss these questions with your family: What problems did these faithful people overcome to follow or practice their beliefs? What challenges might you face in doing your duty to God? Who can help you with these challenges?
  • Practice. Practice your faith while doing the requirements for “Duty to God.”
  1. Talk with your family about what they believe is their duty to God.
  2. Give two ideas on how you can practice or demonstrate your religious beliefs.
  3. Choose one and do it. Find out how you can help your church, synagogue, mosque, temple, or religious fellowship.

Guidance based on the BSA Wolf Handbook (2006 edition) – pages 94-99.

If you know of other resources related Religious Programs, Awards or Rank Advancements, please let us know !

 

Awards & Programs for Webelos Cubs

All religious courseware and programs are prescribed by the various religious institutions that have chosen to develop them. The programs are not created or maintained by the Boy Scouts. BSA simply approves the program structure and provides a method of recognition via the Uniform Knots for Scouts and Adults.

Religious study programs that are designed for 4th and 5th grade youth can be used to satisfy the rank requirements for Webelos.

A Cub Scout-specific metal ‘device’ (pin # 932) is available for the Purple Scout Religous Knot, BSA part number 05007

Depending on the scout’s faith, they have options such as:

Roman Catholic Parvuli Dei 3rd, 4th and 5th grade
Christian Protestent God & Family 4th and 5th grade
Islamic Bismillah 4th and 5th grade
Jewish Aleph 2nd, 3rd, 4th and 5th

To complete the WEBELOS RANK, the scout must do requirement 8 (Faith).

Faith After completing the rest of requirement 8, do these (a, b, and c):

  1. Know: Tell what you have learned about faith.
  2. Commit: Tell how these faith experiences help you live your duty to God. Name one faith practice that you will continue to do in the future.
  3. Practice: After doing these requirements, tell what you have learned about your beliefs.

And do one of these (d OR e):

  1. Earn the religious emblem of your faith*  (earn the purple knot above)
  2. Do two of these:
  • Attend the mosque, church, synagogue, temple, or other religious organization of your choice, talk with your religious leader about your beliefs. Tell your family and your Webelos den leader what you learned.
  • Discuss with your family and Webelos den leader how your religious beliefs fit in with the Scout Oath and Scout Law, and what character-building traits your religious beliefs have in common with the Scout Oath and Scout Law.
  • With your religious leader, discuss and make a plan to do two things you think will help you draw nearer to God. Do these things for a month.
  • For at least a month, pray or meditate reverently each day as taught by your family, and by your church, temple, mosque, synagogue, or religious group.
  • Under the direction of your religious leader, do an act of service for someone else. Talk about your service with your family and Webelos den leader. Tell them how it made you feel.
  • List at least two ways you believe you have lived according to your religious beliefs.

Guidance based on the BSA Webelos Handbook (2010 edition) – pages 49-51, 68-69.

*  Of notable mention in the BSA guidelines, if the scout earned their religious emblem (purple knot) as a Cub Scout, they must either earn the Webelos award or the activities of 8e.  Also, completing the activities of 8e does not qualify the scout to wear the religious emblem of their faith or a purple knot.

If you know of other resources related Religious Programs, Awards or Rank Advancements, please let us know !

 

Awards & Programs for Boy Scouts

All religious courseware and programs are prescribed by the various religious institutions that have chosen to develop them. The programs are not created or maintained by the Boy Scouts. BSA simply approves the program structure and provides a method of recognition via the Uniform Knots for Scouts and Adults.

Religious study programs that are designed for 6th thru 12th grade youth can be recognized with the Boy Scout-specific metal ‘device’ (pin) is available for the Purple Scout Religous Knot, BSA part number 05007, and the respective Boy Scout, Varsity, Venture or Sea Scout pins.

Depending on the scout’s faith, they have options such as:

Roman Catholic Parvuli Dei 3rd, 4th and 5th grade
Christian Protestent God & Family 4th and 5th grade
Islamic Bismillah 4th and 5th grade
Jewish Aleph 2nd, 3rd, 4th and 5th

While a formal religious activity is not required for rank advancement, having a healthy faith is a mandate for each scout that can be examined during the Board of Review or Scoutmaster Conferences, based on how the scout is “Living the Scout Oath and Law” (which is expressly defined).

See also the Boy Scout Oath and Law.

If you know of other resources related Religious Programs, Awards or Rank Advancements, please let us know !

 

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