Thursday, October 13, 2011

Scout Leader Training

I've been thinking a lot lately about a scripture in the Doctrine and Covenants. Section 107, verses 99 and 100:
99   Wherefore, now let every man learn his duty, and to act in the office in which he is appointed, in all diligence.
100  He that is slothful shall not be counted worthy to stand, and he that learns not his duty and shows himself not approved shall not be counted worthy to stand. Even so. Amen.
This applies to all church members in any calling, even Scout leaders. Let's take a closer look.

"Wherefore, now let every man learn his duty..." - Scouts and Scout leaders raise their right arm in the Scout sign and take a solemn oath to "do my best to do my duty." How can we expect to do our duty unless we know what it is? This requires that we receive training. Not just fast start and basic training. We need to attend Wood Badge and round table. These are, in my opinion, rather basic steps to understanding what our duty really is. Furthermore, we need to actually read our leader manuals. I know, that's a radical idea, but it works!

"...and to act in the office in which he is appointed." - LDS Scout leaders don't normally volunteer. They are appointed. The Lord knows you didn't ask for this, but He gave it to you anyway, and expects you to act.

" all diligence." - Let me again mention Wood Badge, round table, and reading the handbooks.

"He that is slothful shall not be counted worthy to stand..." - I'm not going to try to describe what slothful looks like, but I think we've all seen it. But the part I find interesting is the not being counted "worthy to stand" part. Worthy to stand where? Does this refer to our eternal salvation? Maybe. Could it mean the temple? Maybe. I'm not suggesting Bishops should revoke a temple recommend if the Scoutmaster doesn't go to Wood Badge, I just think the wording in the scripture is interesting. We should keep this in mind as we go about our work.

"...and he that learns not his duty... shall not be counted worthy to stand." - There's that "worthy to stand" phrase again. Only this time it is connected not to the action, but the learning. He that learns not his duty.... How are you supposed to act in all diligence unless you learn your duty? Get trained! Please!

I know, in the church, we sometimes have a problem about calling Scout leaders and not getting them trained. Part of this is that the person extending the call doesn't know what the training is supposed to be. The new District Executive in my district has seen this problem and created a tool to help combat it. It is a checklist for new Scout leaders--their "Steps to Success." (Check it out, here.) In my opinion, this is a great tool that needs to be used more. I shared it with my bishop, who I hope shared it with my new second counselor in the young men. Perhaps I'll share it again in presidency meeting....

1 comment:

  1. This is a great comparison of scripture with our Scout calling Tory. Now if only would could get the sloths to read this!!!