Scouts' Own is a traditional scouting activity that focuses on the spiritual but should not be church per B-P. He stated that it is a "a voluntary uplifting of their hearts by the boys in thanksgiving for the joys of life, and a desire on their part to seek inspiration and strength for greater love and service for others" (B-P's Outlook). We are all-inclusive but function as a secular scouting organization, but still as scouts we should explore ethics and our beliefs.
Has anyone done a Scouts' Own perhaps as an extended scoutmaster's minute, discussion of the scout law, reflection of past events (in the troop or outside the troop), meaningful stories or songs, etc?
Greetings... it's been a while since I've been on here. Yes, whenever I used to do a Brownsea Training Camp in the early days of BPSA-US, I would set aside some time in the program on Sunday for some form of Scout's Own. I would generally use a lot of care to tailor the experience for the audience; i.e. I frequently shied away from any form of overt religiosity especially if the people attending were themselves not overtly religious. I would put Scout's Own in the context of its place in Scouting, and would allow people the time to ground themselves after a weekend of learning and new adventures, to pause and reflect about how perhaps they grew as a result of the experience. We often would do some form of sharing though this would not be required of everyone or done every time. Every Scout's Own I've ever done would come out differently, depending on the audience and the energy of the weekend. And of course, the point to anything along these lines would be to give people ideas on traditions that they could bring home to their groups. Hope this helps.
Dave Bielski, RS
For a secular organization, original texts on the subject are always going to be problematic. Focusing on universal themes of reflection creates equal opportunity and enfranchisement for all Association members, and does nothing to diminish the spiritual practice that many imbue these quiet times with. It is much the same with the Knight vigil.
That said, the North American Jamboree will feature a chaplain, and a chapel.
Well said Ethan. BPSA-US scouting is all-inclusive scouting for everyone and not just alternative scouting for a few.