How to divorce Catholic Scouting from the non-Christ-like

This is a juicy and difficult topic.

When one considers that the main purpose of the Christian is to configure him/herself to Christ, one realises that a great deal of what modern society says that we should configure ourselves to is false.

There is no institution in the world which is free of the negative and persistent influence of evil. This goes especially for the Church, for Satan will always attack the Church.

This great enemy of mankind will always seek to pervert, to twist to his own ends, all good endeavours, and that which he struggles to twist, he infiltrates with Pride. Scouting is no exception.

In this process of discernment it is important to have a clear understanding of Christ, informed by the teaching of the Church, Tradition and Holy Writ. Then to place that side by side with what we are scrutanzing, in this case Catholic Scouting.

Would Our Blessed Lord raise his fists against another human being?
Could you see Our Divine Redeemer in a military uniform?
Would He wear it with pride?
Would He salute the national flag?
How many of the practices of modern scouting can you realistically reconcile to the Christ that we encounter in the Gospels?

My answer is not much. Not much of the militarised nature of Scouting. On the otherhand, things I could see Christ doing; helping the needy, being of service, being kind and generous, being kindly spoken and well behaved, being virtuous, enjoying nature, enjoying adventure, being moderate, but always placing the Kingdom of God first above all. That I can see.

Now regarding patriotism, don’t jump to conclusions that, by this process, I am advocating pure anarchy. Nations have been set up for good or for bad, but it is very important to remember that Nations are not the object of Salvation, human souls are.

So this this the first process, to identify the discrepancy. Once the discrepancy has been identified only then can it be discarded. And discarded it must be.

Catholic Scouting – but why?

Scouting has it’s earliest origins in ancient bushcraft, the hunter-gatherer. Back then, it was the way of life for most.

As humanity grew in civilisation, the hunter-gatherer found himself being put out of work by farming. The skills of the hunter-gatherer were however not without application. The job changed from hunting and gathering food, to hunting and gathering information.

So, yes, essentially we all use hunter-gathering skills. Think about it, in our jobs we seek information, when we go for a walk we seek out somewhere beautiful and private for a picnic.

Obviously the hunting and gathering information skills were most valuable to those in positions of power (and who wanted to at the very least keep them). Information is power, so they said. So scouts in this sense had the highest value to militarys and governments. And it is almost exclusively in the context of the first that we think of scouts nowadays.

Indeed the Boy Scouts of Lord Baden Powell were formed from the children who assisted him at the siege of Mafeking in the Second Boer War. They weren’t carrying weapons but they were doing military work, making them children soldiers. This militarised image of the scout has persisted until today, in the minds of probably nearly all.

But it’s not the only way.

There is another Way.
Behold, a voice crying in the desert, Prepare ye the way of the Lord, make straight His paths.

Quo Vadis? Catholic Scouts 101 – part II

Having established that the primary objective in a Catholic Scouts life is obtaining the eternal salvation of his soul, the question then proceeds as to how.

Quadragesimo Anno, the Encyclical of Pope Pius XII, on work notes that if catechetical instruction was not placed first and foremost in a workers union, the union would swiftly fall away from it’s ultimate purpose.

So likewise, the Scouts primary and most important task is that of receiving catechetical instruction, and then passing it on to others wherever the Spirit prompts.

This seems so alien to the modern interpretation of Catholic Scouting, people would ridicule this as being antiquarian, and “boring”, “against the spirit of scouting” which is “to get out there”, “having adventures” and “survival”.

That Christ never even payed a moments thought to the concept of “survival” seems to have past most people by. Instead Christs teachings are seem as “unrealistic” and like the old saying:

it’s not that Christ’s teachings have been tried and found too difficult, it’s that Christ’s teachings have been judged too difficult and left untried.

There is a principle;
Which is a bar against all information,
Which is proof against all argument,
And which can never fail to keep a man in everlasting ignorance.

That principle is:

    Contempt prior to investigation

Quo Vadis? Catholic Scouts 101

Quo Vadis?

Where are you going?

How can a Scout do anything if he does not first know his objective?
Objectives are mapped like this: directly proportional to time and effort. The greatest and most important Objective will take the maximum amount of time (all your life) and the maximum amount of effort. That Objective is Heaven.

There tends to be a spirit of laxity about that fact. An attitude of “oh yes I can be holy later on…”. Well that is the antithesis of the Scouts position. His motto is “Be Prepared”.
Which is reminiscent of something Someone else said.

Watch ye therefore, because you know not the day nor the hour.

In lay and terms “do not put off for tomorrow what you can do today”. Working towards our Ultimate Objective is the most important work of a Catholic Scout, of he has any other objective, then he is lost.