PDT Staff Writer
The Boy Scouts of America annually celebrates their founding on February 8, 1910. Boy Scouts of the area will celebrate Scout Sunday on Sunday, Feb. 1 and Feb 8. As a part of the celebrations Troop 12 will be holding a pancake breakfast on Feb. 8.
Many area churches will celebrate tomorrow (Sunday, Feb. 1). Cornerstone United Methodist Church will feature a Scout Sunday observance Feb. 8 with uniformed Scouts. The public is invited to attend the pancake breakfast that day in the church gymnasium, regardless of where they go to church. The church gym will be open from 8:30 a.m. to at least noon to serve.
“Scout Sunday is the recognition that Boy Scouts have had for a long time. One of the main principals of the scouting movement is to be reverent. When we say ‘reverent’ we do not mean any one religion,” Phil Malone, scoutmaster, said.
The Boy Scout organization does not recognize one religion but recognizes all religions.
“We just want the boys as part of their lives to have faith in a higher being. That’s why they have put this in the Scout’s oath and promise as a Scout. that’s the way we like to conduct business for the youth to have a faith in a higher being, without saying the Scouts have to attend a certain church,” Malone said.
Scout Sunday is an observance were the Boys Scouts practice being reverent. It can be in the boy’s home church. Scout Sunday for most church is the Sunday that falls before Feb. 8.
“Every faith has an award that a boy could earn at the different levels of Scouting. What that does is help him understand more about his faith. The Boy Scouts does not run the award; it’s up to the individual faiths,” Malone said. If a scout is given this distinction it will be awarded to them during Scout Sunday.
The year 2010 will mark the 100th anniversary of Scouting. Plans are under way for a celebration. There is an active campaign to reconnect younger Scouts with older ones.
Cornerstone UMC is the charter organization for Boy Scout Pack 12. Although the pack is chartered by a church there are many religions represented within the group. With Cornerstone being the group’s charter, that’s where Pack 12 Scouts will center their observance.
“During both morning church services on Sunday (Feb. 8) there will be a Scout who says a few words and explains why Scouting is important to him. ‘Scouting is...’ is one of the 100th anniversary themes that will be used in the service,” Malone said.
There is a professionally-produced video that will be shown during the service. The video will talk about the history of Scouting.
Tickets are being sold by the Scouts for the pancake breakfast. The money raised from the breakfast will be used to send kids to summer camp. There are plans to send 16 kids to the Boy Scout National Jamboree.
“The breakfast will help some of our boys go to one of two camps. One is the summer camp at Chief Logan. Camp Oyo will be open to high adventure camp,” Malone said. “We have some younger boys who need some help going to summer camp. Summer camp is like anything else. It costs money, but dollar for dollar it’s worth it.”
He said there will be services going on at Cornerstone UMC while the breakfast is going on in the gym. People can enter through the Offnere Street door and come into the gym.
“We are going to serve a hearty serving of pancakes there will be sausage and biscuits. Cost is $5 for adults, children 2 and up $2.50, 2 and under will be free,” Malone said.
Advance tickets are available for the pancake breakfast from any Troop 12 Boy Scout in Portsmouth, or by calling Jennifer Johnson at 259-3630 or Phil Malone at 353-7115.
Other activities the Scouts have coming up include Troop 12 beginning its observance of 80 years of Scouting starting at 5 p.m. Feb. 15 at Cornerstone United Methodist Church.
Wayne Allen can be reached at (740) 353-3101, ext. 208.