Catholic Scouting – But why? III

Thank you Jeroen for this comment

One of the values of scouting, represented in the uniform clothing, is to let people be equal – no matter what their ethnicity, political view or religion is. So why is a religious scouting organisation necessary?  Young scouts should meet people who think different so they will be more likely to tolerate other people and not have prejudices.

The core value of scouting, as I pointed out in the post Quo Vadis? Catholic Scouting 101 – is to know his objective and work towards it. If one does not know their objective, one is highly unlikely to achieve it.

Why is a Catholic Scouting organisation necessary? A Catholic Scouting organisation is necessary because the objective of a Catholic (the Kingdom of Heaven as understood in Catholic Theology) is very different from a Protestant Christian, a Jew, a Hindu, a Muslim, an Atheist and so on. The objective on the map is different, and the means to get there are also different.

However contrary to what Jeroen said, just because the objective is different, and the means to get there are different, that does not mean that the individuals are different. We are all children of our Father who is in Heaven (as our Divine Redeemer, Lord Jesus Christ said (recorded in the Gospel of Saint Matthew 5:43-45)). The issue is not equality, because equality has always been there, the issue is Truth.

If the person Jesus of Nazareth is who we believe him to be “The Christ, the Son of the living God”. Then there is an imperative for us to do as He says. In all our works, enterprises and organisations.

Seek ye therefore first the kingdom of God, and his justice, and all these things shall be added unto you.

– God (as recorded Mt 6:33)

As for the need for “Young scouts should meet people who think different so they will be more likely to tolerate other people and not have prejudices” – again God has something to say about that…

“Going therefore, teach ye all nations; baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost. Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and behold I am with you all days, even to the consummation of the world.”

-The Divine Redeemer (as recorded in Mt 28:19)

(my emphasis)

There should be no toleration of error or sin, but kindness and mercy to all. Catholics are called not to judge our neighbour, but to be messengers of the God of Mercy. If Catholics in general are called to that (though probably the majority are not too great at doing it), then even more so for the Scout, that goes ahead of the body, “to prepare the Way of the Lord”.

On this point there can be no compromise on the Truth.

Thank you again Jeroen for your thought provoking comment. God bless.

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2 thoughts on “Catholic Scouting – But why? III

  1. I still do not agree and possibly never will. I won’t ever argue about the truth of any religion, and think toleration and kindness share some sort of causal relation.
    My compliments however on making this post that quick and with such accuracy (like the sources).
    At last, I would like to forward you a link to wikipedia, where Baden-Powell himself is quoted about this : http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Religion_in_Scouting

    • Thank you Jeroen. Had I had my copy of Scouting for Boys, or Rovering to Success to hand (both books by Lord Baden-Powell), I would have quoted also from them, but they are on my shelf at home.

      We’re all familiar with people changing their mind, sometimes for better, sometimes for worse. Even the Wikipedia article quotes Lord Baden-Powell saying: “We aim for the practice of Christianity in their everyday life and dealings, and not merely the profession of theology on Sundays…”. While I perceive the magnanimity in his decision to move his position in that regard, I can’t, as a Catholic condone it (I hope that I made that clear in my articles).

      Now Baden-Powell was not a Catholic, and so he didn’t have those rules to play by. He played by his own rules, he changed the rules, as we see regarding the issue of religion. There is nothing wrong essentially in that. It’s just a Catholic in good conscience can’t follow it, because the Catholic believes there is one Truth and has a mandate to tell that to the world, not “whatever is good for you”.

      It is true, my articles are directed primarily to a Catholic audience, however it is also to open to all as an invitation to reflect, to ponder and to learn more, which is why I am delighted with your comments.

      So, thank you for your comments and kind words, I enjoy answering thought provoking questions, and your question was an excellent one. I pray that your journey in life is peaceful and prosperous. That you will find whatever truth you need. May God bless you Jeroen, until then, happy scouting!

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