Finding the Mission – Day 14


The Barnum Community United Methodist Church has been the Chartered Organization for Troop 169 for 3 years now.  The Troop is very thankful for the support the church gives us, but there are many times where it seems like we’ve just not connected correctly with them.  I say that because I see, hear and read about how many Troops have some awesome support from their Chartered Organization, and I don’t see that happening with ours.

Talking with some of the elders in the church, most of them are of the belief that Boy Scouts is just camping.  I think that this misconception is what is causing this disconnect.  And I’m pretty certain that the majority of the blame for that falls squarely on my shoulders.  When I approached the church about chartering the Troop, I didn’t do a very good job of explaining just what we do in Boy Scouts or how we can be considered a mission or ministry.  Trouble is, I’m still not totally sure how to go about it, so we can move closer to a working and supportive relationship.  I know we teach camping skills, but we also teach morals, character development, and leadership skills.  I realize I’m preaching to the choir here, so I’ll leave it at that.

I’m hoping that there’s some of you out there that might be able to point me in a good direction.  Please, if you have literature, a website, or just some general advice to help close the obvious gap between the Troop and the church, I would really appreciate it.  I would love to be one of the units to be able to brag about how wonderful the support from our Charter Org is!  Don’t get me wrong, our church is doing what it promised to do, and for that I can not complain.  I would just like to see our relationship grow and become stronger.

As far as what I did today for Scouts:

  • I downloaded the leader’s guide and sub-camp information for Tomahawk Scout Reservation.
  • Talked with our Committee Chair about Troop finances.
  • I attended and participated in our Pack’s Blue and Gold banquet.  We crossed one of three Webelos 2’s over into the Troop.  Very thankful we crossed one over, we didn’t expect any this year!
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About Mayor Kyle P. Riel

Dad, Husband, Firefighter, Mayor, Blogger, Drummer, yadda, yadda, yadda. View all posts by Mayor Kyle P. Riel

3 responses to “Finding the Mission – Day 14

  • Trish Love

    Scoutmaster Riel . . . If I may offer a suggestion: random flowers delivered to the Chartered Org’s office administrator is sure to help!!

  • Scouter Warren

    Well, it looks like you may be sitting at about the same place we are as a Cub Scout Pack. It actually may be a little easier as the Troop to build a relationship. We have been ‘in business’ at our chartered Org for 5 or 6 years (can’t remember). But, beyond offering us meeting space (which is a BIG part) and a donation every year to our general funds is about where it ends.

    I think that the key is to give back and to be SEEN. If the scouts aren’t seen at the Chartered Org (except for meeting nights), then they are forgotten. With our church of over 2000 members, it is easy to get lost in the mix.

    My plan as a ACM and CM next year is to try to further integrate our Pack into the life of the church. I think this first and foremost should be by offering our service to the church. This is why I say it may be easier for a Troop with older boys. Cub Scouts…well they have very short attention spans.

    Our church has a couple of things that we do every year. One is a BBQ. This is a little difficult to have the cubs involved but would be easier as a Boy Scout. I am thinking about getting our Webelos I involved this year (it’s in April). We also have a church workday. This is where we essentially clean up the church and its grounds. The cubs can’t do some of the work but under supervision they can clean!

    Other things are the church missions. I would like to ‘partner’ with the church to bring what essentially is a work crew to help out with the missions of the church.

    So, my advice is to force the Troop into the needs of the church. Talk to the leadership of the church and see where the Troop can be of service. There is always a need.

    In the end, it will definitely be worth it both for the Troop and the church. These are the bonds that keep scout troops healthy and create a wonderful history.

    Good Luck!

  • Hope

    Perhaps an open to the public night of boy scouts where the boys can give presentations on some of the merit badges they are working on that aren’t “camping” related? They already have to do a lot of the research needed for a presentation for any merit badge, and extra presentation is also good in helping them building their public speaking skills and leadership characteristics.

    A spring cleaning event might also help. Make an announcement during a church service that the troop is available to come help clean up yards during the spring during a certain week and have a sign up board at the church for the available slots. No cost, but donations to the troop would be split amongst the boys helping and put directly into their accounts to help them afford to go to X. Put a website page about X so that people could read about all the Educational opportunities the scounts would have on this major outing.

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