Scoutmaster's Minute

2013-2014 Troop 56 Year

Welcome to a new year of scouting and being "prepaired for life."
Troop 56 welcomes back all returning scouts, parent, leaders - and looks forward to the new scout that wants to discover the magic of over 100 years of values, training, and outragious fun.

Bill Cherry
Asst Scoutmaster - T56



Let's face it - from when I was a scout - the options that are available to today's youth outside the school & home have changed.

For me - it was limited to school, black & white television, and taking Rex my pet dinosaur for a walk.
Today - it ranges from school, after school activities and athletics, to many clubs and electronic diversions.

But one item has remained the same - commitment.

If you sign up for or indicate interst in an event, scouts, school, church, you must follow through.

As you become an adult and enter the work world - your worth to your employer or to your own business will be on how you honor your commitments.

The first part of the scout law - is that a scout is trustworthy - make sure no one can ever question your ability to be trustworthy.

Bill Cherry
Asst Scoutmaster - Troop 56


The Two Wolves

An old Cherokee grandfather called all his grandchildren together one day. For many years he had been a proud warrior and a chief among his people. He had lived a full life and had gained some wisdom in his days. He wanted to impart some of this wisdom to the children of his children, and their children.

The grandfather sat with his back to the lodge with all the many children in a half circle around him. He began by telling the children, “Within me are two mighty wolves and these wolves are having a great battle, each striving in its own way to destroy the other. Some days this battle favors one wolf, another day the battle favors the other wolf.”

“One wolf is fighting for everything that is wrong and evil. He fights for envy, greed, intolerance, hate, wickedness, and unkindness.”

“The other wolf is fighting for everything that is good and godly. He fights for compassion, forgiveness, tolerance, beauty, truth, and equity.”

“It is a mighty battle; a battle that one day will end.” The old grandfather then sat still and quiet. He gazed off through the forest to a distant, unseen point.

After a long pause one of the children spoke and asked: “Grandfather, which wolf will win the battle?”

The grandfather looked kindly at the child and said “The wolf that will win is the one that I feed”. With that grandfather slowly stood and went into the lodge for his evening meal, leaving the children to ponder his words.
Scout's which wolf will you feed?



Do you have Empathy?

One of the parts of the Boy Scout Oath that should be very important to us is the part that says "to help other people at all times."  I contend that it is nearly impossible to help other people at all times unless you are able to look out and see when people "need" help.  We live in a very self centered world.  People are looking towards themselves.  What can I get?  Did I make the first team?  Will I be a starter?  Did I get the part?  When the focus is on ourselves, can we really notice when others need our help? 

This Scoutmaster's Minute is about a very important word.  Empathy.  What exactly is that?  The Native Americans have a saying that applies here.  "You never truly understand another person unless you have walked a mile in his moccasins."  That is a very good description of what empathy is.  Feeling what another feels.  Understanding another person's actions by putting yourself in that person's place.

I got an E-mail the other day.  It was from a person that sends me pretty mushy, Hallmark Card kinds of E-mails that usually end with something like "If you pass this on to ten other people within the next five minutes, the sun will come up in your life and you will receive an unexpected gift."  The E-mails from this person are usually sickeningly sweet and unrealistic, but for some reason I opened this one up and the message in it was perfect for what I am trying to get across to you this evening.  I really enjoyed this message and wish I knew who wrote it.  I'd like to give them the credit they deserve for this wonderful story. Here is the story.

There was a farmer who had some puppies and he wanted to put them up for sale.  He made a sign and placed it on the gate to his farm.  Later, he was out working in his garden and he noticed a little boy holding on to the gate and looking through the fence.  The farmer went over to say hello and the little boy said "Mr. I'd like to buy one of your puppies."


The boy dug in his pants pocket and came up with some change.  "See, I have thirty-nine cents."

"I'm sorry", said the farmer, "but these puppies are a little more expensive than that.  I don't think you have enough money to buy one."  "Well, will thirty-nine cents at least give me a look at them?" "Sure" said the farmer.  He whistled and the mother dog came bounding out of the barn followed by four of the cutest little puppies the boy had ever seen.  They were jumping and running and trying to keep up with their mother as they bounded towards the gate.

But then something caught the boy's eye.  There was unexpected movement in the door of the barn.  It was a fifth puppy.  He was moving slowly, one leg shorter than the others, and was stumbling and falling down as he tried to join his brothers at the gate.
"That's the puppy I want", said the boy. 

"Son", said the farmer.  "You don't want that one.  He can't run and he can't play like the others. One of the others would be a better choice" The little boy bent over and pulled up the leg of his pants, revealing a brace that ran from his hip all the way down to his ankle.

"Oh, that's OK.  See, I can't run and play either.  And that puppy will need somebody…… who understands."

Scouts, that's what empathy is.  It's somebody who understands.  My message for you is to look at others and try to understand how they feel.  Notice when they are hurting.  Notice when they need a helping hand.   Notice when they need a friend.  That is being a good scout.  Scouting has to be more than a badge on your shirt or a sash on your shoulder. Scouting has to be about what's in your heart as well.  Remember, "to help other people at all times" is part of who we are.

Darryl Clifton SM Troop 56


September Thought 2010

"On my honor, I will do my best"
The first eight words of the scout oath. What does it mean?

Honor is very illusive - it is a combination of who you are, as defined by years of training by parents, school systems, religious teachings, and your friends. Yet while many contribute to who you are, one you can determine how to apply what you know. Thus you are judged in life by your "honor" by you ability to say this is who I am, and what I stand for.

Honor is slow to build, but easy to be lost, when you say I will do my best - you tell all who listen - I will follow my word.

Never let others doubt you word - your honor

Bill Cherry
1st Assistant Scoutmaster


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