Perfect Scouting Weekend

capelookoutFirst let me start with an update…In the last post I wrote about a change in the Order of the Arrow terminology as it applies to the Ordeal.  It was suggested at our recent Lodge gathering that the Ordeal was changing to “Induction”.
A day after I posted that I received an email with some clarification to the change in the title.  There is NO change coming.
“Brother Jerry,
Your blog post just wound it’s way to me from friends in the Order. Just wanted to give you the heads up that the change of “Ordeal” to “Induction Weekend” is just an unfortunate instance of poor communication from a youth trainer at NEXT.
To be clear: this change is absolutely not happening. The term “Ordeal” is absolutely NOT changing to “Induction Weekend.” This rumor began back at NEXT this past August. There was a session where attendees were encouraged to think about aspects of the OA program in a different light as an intellectual exercise, and several scenarios/ideas were presented. One of these scenarios that was discussed was this concept of changing the word Ordeal. Bless his heart, but the youth sharing this prompt to the group very very inelegantly and poorly framed it as an actual idea being considered by the National Committee, rather than a mere starting point to explore why and how we do things, as leaders, in our lodges.
I’ve actually communicated directly with a member of the National Committee on this topic. I can categorically say it is not happening.”
So, I hope that clears some things up regarding that…

Now, a Perfect Weekend of Scouting.
We all know that Scouting is a Game with a Purpose.  We play that game at every meeting, outing, camp out, and ceremony.  It is important that first, we know what the rules and guidelines are of the game.  And Second how to play it and make sure it is being played correctly.
As we meet with our Scouts and go with them on our monthly camp outs it is important that we make sure that we are introducing opportunities for the game to visible and we meet the objectives of the game ensuring that the Scouts understand the purpose and meaning of what they are doing or did.
This weekend was a “Perfect” weekend of Scouting.  Our Troop went camping on the Oregon coast to a gem of a camp, Camp Clark.  We arrived around 9 PM on Friday night and the Patrols found themselves a place to set camp.  Saturday morning we awoke to an overcast, but dry and warm (ish) day at the beach.  The Patrols cooked breakfast, got cleaned up and readied themselves for a hike.
We hiked out to the end of Cape Lookout and back to camp.  8.4 mikes with the first couple miles straight up hill.  It was a challenging hike and pushed many Scouts beyond where they thought they could go.  As with most hikes, the pay off was the amazing views.  Sitting on the end of the Cape, hanging out with their Patrols I smiled as I watched them celebrate their accomplishment.
Our First year Scouts needed this hike to complete the 5 mile requirement for 1st Class.  I told them we needed to 8 miles to get to 5.  They didn’t understand until we got to the 2 and half mark and I said that we could turn around now.  Their Patrol leader said that they wanted to see the end of the Cape.  So we talked about why we hike.  The views, fitness, and of course to get somewhere.  So they pushed on.
On the return to camp we found an amazing view point.  We stopped and took time for reflection.  I reminded them of the game we were playing and what the score card looked like for today.
Character.  They pushed themselves and found that they could go farther than they thought.  For the older Scouts, they showed character in helping the younger guys and encouraging them along the way.
Citizenship.  The hike and camping gives up great opportunities to be good stewards of the land.  They had the opportunity to be helpful and Courteous along the route.  And at the Troops campfire on Saturday night, we retired a couple American Flags that have served our Country well.
Fitness.  The hike allowed us to get some good exercise in.  The meals they prepared for their Patrols  were healthy and encourage good eating habits.  And keeping themselves clean as well as looking out for their Patrol mates is good practice for healthy living.
So the score card for the game is a Perfect one.  A Perfect weekend of playing Scouting’s game.
We had four Webelos on the outing with us also.  They did everything the Troop did this weekend.  They ate with a Patrol, hiked with the First year Scouts and camped with their Den Chief and his Patrol.  They had a fantastic time and now look forward to their first camp out with the Troop after they cross over.
This weekend was the kind of weekend that make you want to come back for more.. the reason we stay with Scouting.  We know that Scouting works and that the game with a purpose is meaningful and makes a difference.

Have a Great Scouting Day!

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