The importance of cheerful service

Stethoscope_200Last week was a proud one for us. My son entered medical school, and on completion of his first week, a ceremony was held for the incoming class at which the new students received their white coats. It was a moving ceremony – the faculty of the medical school addressed the students on the journey they were about to embark upon. Emphasized over and over was the importance of caring for the human aspects of dealing with patients. To us, this was a departure from our usual impression of doctors as clinicians, dealing more with the science of medicine than the effects of illness and wellness on their fellow humans.

One of the professors who spoke to the incoming class offered two key pieces of advice:  Continue reading “The importance of cheerful service”

An unexpected honor

t407plaque_cropped_200Our troop held its first-ever summer court of honor this week. I realize that most troops meet year-around, and hold four courts of honor to recognize their Scouts for their accomplishments. Our troop, however, has long had a policy of not meeting when school is not in session. I suggested last year that the Scouts should consider meeting in some way over the summer, the Scoutmaster agreed, and the PLC planned every-other-week troop meetings (in order to dodge around high adventure and summer camp). They did a great job, planning a beach night, a canoeing night, a cooking night and a couple other fun things.

Back to the court of honor, though. Continue reading “An unexpected honor”

No moms allowed

Our hometown newspaper had an interesting article this week about a local group of friends who have been getting together every year for the past couple decades to hold a “no moms allowed” campout. That’s right – just like the “no girls allowed” sign that boys might hang on their treehouse, only in this instance it was just dads and their sons and daughters camping for a weekend while the moms (who didn’t particularly care for camping anyway) stayed behind and went shopping and to the movies with the other moms.

It got me to thinking that Scouting is also a “no moms allowed” activity, but in a different sense. Continue reading “No moms allowed”

The Scoutmaster’s Vantage Point

campaign_hatI attended a district planning meeting last fall at a church which charters a rather large troop. The Scouts were there, setting up and checking their patrol boxes and getting ready for the church picnic the next day, for which the troop was doing the cooking. Assistant Scoutmasters were working with the patrols where needed, helping them to figure out their equipment, how things went together, and providing support from the equipment coordinators.

Where was the Scoutmaster? Continue reading “The Scoutmaster’s Vantage Point”


scoutlaw-05_250Twice last week, I was greeted by one of our former Scouts in public, once at a restaurant and the other at a store.

We were having lunch and both my son and I noticed a busboy who looked familiar, but neither of us could place exactly who it was until he came over and said “hi” to us, or more specifically, to my older son, five years removed from the troop but who must have made an impression on the younger fellow. He was working hard, clearing dishes and doing side work, and it looked like he was giving an extra measure of service when compared with the other bussers. Continue reading “Courteous”