Today’s edition of The Scout’s Scrapbook comes from The Patrol Leaders’ Handbook by John Thurman, a very influential British Scout Leader:
I know that myself and many others habitually take Scouting as a movement and institution for granted. It was there before we were born, and we assume it will just continue on strong after we are gone. But after digging into Scouting a little deeper and reading from its past, I’ve come to know that this is not true. The truth is, Scouting as we know it could completely disappear in 7 years: one generation of Scouts.
Throughout the last 100 years, Scouting has been responsible for an inestimable amount of good in America. Generations after generations of leaders have been trained through Scouting. Scouts have accomplish an uncountable number of community service hours. Through wars and through peace times Scouts have supported their nation and did all in their power to help it continue strong.
How did Scouting last for so long? How did it continue generation after generation? The culture in America has changed drastically since 1910, how is it that Scouts still pledge themselves to the same Oath that they did one hundred years ago? The answer is simple: the Scouts themselves have passed on the Spirit of Scouting to those who came after them. From the Patrol Leader welcoming the new Tenderfoot into the Troop to the Scoutmaster who teaches the Scouts in his Troop what he learned as a Scout, the torch of Scouting has been passed along one Scout at a time.
This is why I say that Scouting could disappear in 7 years. All it takes is one generation of Scouts who fail to pass on what they’ve learned to wipe away all that Scouting has stood for since its founding. I believe that this is what John Thurman was trying to communicate in this quote. And that is why I believe we should never forget this or take Scouting for granted.
Let’s not be that generation! Every Scout, every Scouter, makes a difference, a huge difference. If you value what Scouting is, you will pass on what you have learned so that the next generation will value it as well. It is only through this way that Scouting survived in the past, and it is only through this way that Scouting will live on in the future!
Thanks for reading! I hope you enjoyed this edition of The Scout’s Scrapbook and that it gave you something to think about. If you have any questions or comments, I’d love to hear them! If you like this post, please pass it along!