I’m feeling a bit overwhelmed. Not only am I taking on new responsibilities, but my wife recently passed away and her strength and support made me more capable. Our Council sponsors over 89,000 youth and there are about 45,000 volunteer leaders. Tens of thousands of donors support our Scouting efforts. I consider this assignment to be a sacred trust.
We welcome all young men ages 8-17 to participate. At a time when there are many distractions and evil influences in the world around us, Scouting can be an enormous benefit to young men. I’ve seen boys do hard things they didn’t know they could do and gain confidence in their abilities. There are career pathways that Scouts can explore. As boys live the Scout Law and Oath, they build character that will last a lifetime. Most importantly, they discover the world that God created and get to know Him in a personal way.
In the Utah National Parks Council, many of our units are LDS. I’ve been delighted to see the support of the LDS Church towards BSA. There is a strong working relationship. Scouting can be a rich resource to priesthood leaders who have stewardship over young men. I’ve seen Scouting help wards and stakes significantly increase the number of young men going on missions.
There are those who oppose the ideals and goals of Scouting and seek to tear it down. Don’t believe them. Scouting has blessed the lives of many and will continue to do so. Still, Scouting isn’t perfect. We are always looking to improve. If you have input, feel free to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
I look forward to working with youth, leaders, parents, businesses, donors and the rest of the community. Working together we can do great things to help boys. And as we recently told our chartered partners (organizations with Scout units), they can send young women to our camps too! More on that at another time.
Author: Stan Lockhart | President, Utah National Parks Council, BSA