Sunday, August 15, 2010

Words To Live By

My brother-in-law Bruce is an assistant scoutmaster with his son's troop up in Grand Haven, MI.  He emailed me today to let me know that as part of their 100th Anniversary the Boy Scouts have reactivated several historic merit badges that were discontinued years ago due to changes in culture and focus within Scouting.  These four reactivated merit badges are Carpentry, Pathfinding, Signaling and Tracking.  Signaling was discontinued in 1992, and the other three were all discontinued in 1952!

What is neat about this program is that Scouts will use the original merit badge pamphlets and qualify according to the original standards, and the badges themselves will be reproductions of the originals.

Scouting was a big part of my life.  I spent most of my pre-teen and teenage years in Cub Scouts, Webelos, Boy Scouts and Explorers.  I never achieved any great rank, but the lessons I learned and the friends I made have stuck with me to this day.  I have a deep admiration for the Boy Scouts of America and what they do for America's young men.

So, let's all take a moment to recite the Scout Oath.  Raise your right hand in the traditional three finger Scout salute and repeat:

On my honor I will do my best
To do my duty to God and my country
and to obey the Scout Law;
To help other people at all times;
To keep myself physically strong,
mentally awake, and morally straight.

And now the Scout Law:

A Scout is trustworthy, loyal, helpful, friendly, 
courteous, kind, obedient, cheerful, thrifty,
brave, clean, and reverent.

Those, ladies and gentlemen, are words to live by.

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