Hey, ScouterStan here. I want to talk a
little bit about… to the leaders about the OA. Also known as the Order of the
Arrow. The Order of the Arrow is the it is the National Honor Society for
Scouts and Scouters within Scouts BSA. This is a critical group it was founded
a long time ago by E Urner Goodman and Carroll… Ed’s… and Edson… I think is
the two founders. Back in 1915 so it was a very it’s a very established and old
tradition in Scouting. The founding of it was based on Brotherhood, Cheerfulness
and Service. Big three things that are in the Order of the Arrow. This is not a
secret society. A lot of adult leaders and parents are confused about that. As
they’d like to put it “discreteness helps enhance the experience”. So something to
think about… If a parent or a leader is curious about the Order of the Arrow and
they’re not a member, and they’re not becoming a member. It would be totally
okay for them to be told what’s going on at a given ceremony or the… the ordeal
process or any of that stuff. There are no secret societies in Scouting. There
isn’t. When you go through Youth Protection you know that to be true.
There are no secrets so and this is true for parents. For youth and even adults
who are going through an election depending on where you are in the
country usually there’s an election once a year. With all Scout troops
and I believe they’re doing Venture Crews. That’s the two things that do
an election. Once they do that election the elected candidates go through an
ordeal. The ordeal is where… it’s optional. Okay… if you’re elected you do not
have to join. Okay… but if you’re elected there are so many people wanting to get
into the order there I’ll never get elected… It is optional. Okay you can say…
“nah I’m not ready” A youth can say that. That’s fine. There’s criteria for
the election but once elected it’s up to the person who’s elected to go through
the ordeal. Once you’ve done the ordeal that starts their membership. After a
period of time… they would go through an additional ceremony where they go
through Brotherhood and then they seal their membership. Once you’re elected and
once you go through your ordeal, once you do Brotherhood… you’re in for life. As
long as you’re a registered Scouter and you’ve paid your dues to your Lodge… Okay
and there’s different lodges throughout the country.
I ware Tipisa Lodge flap. Now this… this comes into another thing. I’ve
have had leaders tell me that they don’t like the Order of the Arrow. [?] First of all
I… I have to… every time I hear that I have to sit there and think… What? I don’t
get that. That’s… What? You don’t want the Order of the Arrow? You don’t like the Order of the Arrow? Well… usually they’re not in the Order of the Arrow… so they have not a clue
what’s going on. I try to educate them on what the Order of the Arrow is about.
That’s a marvelous situation… It’s youth-led organization just
like the troops and crews. The youth run the program. Adults are there to mentor
and to facilitate and of course they’re not voting members on any of the
elections of course. But they’re there to help the youth do the program they want.
That’s one of the big things. These are the older youth involved in
this organization. Now granted there are some that do a lot of activities… and
Scoutmasters might think that… “oh you’re just taking all my… my senior patrol
either away”. No, we’re giving your senior patrol
leader an opportunity to stay longer and more involved in scouting and therefore
be there to help lead your troop. okay… As you get older doing knots and
sharpening knives and doing all the Scout skills gets a little repetitive
for the older scouts. Tthe OA gives them an opportunity for more leadership
that’s more focused even on your own unit. Something to consider. The OA is
the national program. so that’s general gist of the OA. Do not be afraid…
there’s going to be a youth calling. uh-huh… unit leaders. Scoutmasters and
crew… They’re going to be calling them to arrange an election.
They will go over the criteria the process… But that’s done every year.
There’s a “call-out”… Then of course they go through the ordeal… and then of
course a time later they go through their Brotherhood. But that’s the OA.
If you’re a brother… Oh, by the way. We know everybody in the order
of the Arrow… the OA is referred to as a brother. It doesn’t… regardless of
gender. It doesn’t matter… everyone’s a brother. Okay so get used to
it. That’s the terminology they use. Okay… It’s just like scouts and crew members
and so on… I mean there’s different terminology we use. But in the OA
everybody’s a brother. and you know there’s different honors that come later.
I mean that’s something that happens… but the OA… that’s really it in a nutshell.
Do not be afraid of it. Embrace it… it will actually help retain your older
Scouts longer within the program. Okay until next time I’ll see you on the
trail. [ ♫ Promotional ♫ ]