I’ve mentioned that we started the God and Me program with the pastor of our church. During days 72-79 of the 100 Days of Scouting we had our 3rd and 4th meetings with the pastor. While the program is open to anyone, this go around we had two Cub Scouts in the class, both in 2nd grade.
The whole process has been a lot of fun, with some great activities to show the scouts what it means to have faith. An added benefit was the chance to spend an hour every week with the pastor, getting to know him as a person rather than the guy who stands up front and talks a lot on Sunday morning. If you read this Mark, I just want to say I don’t think you talk a lot, but you might from an 8 year old’s perspective, OK?
**Whistles and looks around…**
Waits for the lightning strike…
I know that most religions have their own programs for the religious awards, and most of those have programs for the different ages. The God and Me program is the 1st through 3rd Grade program that is managed by PRAY Publishing. This was well tailored to this age, and I look forward to doing it again next year with my daughter. I am going to try and offer the different levels of the God and Country program within our church whenever there is interest. The different groups are:
- God and Me (1-3 Grade)
- God and Family (4-5 grade)
- God and Church (6-8 Grade)
- God and Life (9-12 Grade)
There is also a God and Service Award for adults, but it is not a class you work through as much as an award to recognize service to youth both within and outside of the church.
In our pack, which isn’t chartered by a specific religious organization, there is a wide range of faiths represented. I know we have Protestant and Catholic scouts, Jewish and Hindu scouts, some that don’t have a home church, and a few I doubt have ever been inside a church. Every rank in Cub Scouts has a faith component, and recognizing those that have earned their religious award provides another opportunity to point out to all the scouts and parents that part of the character building is looking around and looking within to help build and strengthen their faith, no matter where that faith lies.
I think our pack could do a better job teaching the faith part of the program, and I would like to see us celebrate the differences (dare I say diversity?) that make us a great organization.