Boy Scouts and saying grace


#1

My son is 11 and a Boy Scout and truly enjoys the experience of being a scout. He volunteered to be the Chaplains Aid for the troop. One of his responsibilities is to say grace prior to meals at camp outs and other functions. He has elected to recite the standard prayer - “Bless us Lord and these thy gifts…” and was told by an adult leader that this prayer is not appropriate as it is too “denominational”.

Is this prayer Catholic in origin?
Does anyone have a suggestion concerning a “non-denominational” saying of grace?


#2

Two of my sons are Eagle Scouts

The grace I remember most is
God is great, God is good
let us thank Him for our food.

This link is for Boy Scout Prayers.

boyscouttrail.com/boy-scouts/boy-scout-graces.asp

I remember the most trouble I had was trying to explain why the services they had in camp could not replace Mass :frowning:


#3

Most times, we would use the Philmont Grace:

For food, for raiment
For life, for opportunity
For friendship and fellowship
We thank thee, O Lord


#4

As a veteran of my brothers’ scout years, I like the Johnny Appleseed grace:

Oh, the Lord is good to me,
and so I thank the Lord,
for giving me
the things I need,
the sun, the rain, the appleseed,
the Lord is good to me.

But I don’t have a big deal with “Bless us, Oh, Lord”. I don’t think it is any more “denominational” than

Come Lord Jesus, be our guest,
let this food to us be blest

which is very Lutheran (I learned it from some Lutherans, anyway).

Any of those beats “Rub a dub dub, thanks for the grub, yay God!”


#5

[quote=OutinChgoburbs]Any of those beats “Rub a dub dub, thanks for the grub, yay God!”
[/quote]

…or “God’s neat! Let’s eat!”


#6

:rolleyes: What you’re supposed to water his faith down to accomodate the prots, so he can’t say the grace he has learned to say??? I have to wonder if they’d be as concerned over a Catholic being offended at having a prot version of the Our Father given???

Please, ignore the fellow and just say his normal grace - it’s not anymore controvertial than any other grace and a good deal more appropriate than some of the others often used and mentioned in previous posts.

If it helps, you may want to look into finding a Catholic troop. We left scouts for some similiar reasons, but would have stayed if the nearest Catholic troop wasn’t an hour away.


#7

This is what my DS’s school says before lunch

We bow our heads and softly say,
“Thank you for food today”.
Bon Appetit, now you may eat!


#8

Good food
Good Meat
God God
Lets eat

OR

Rubadubdub
Bring on the Grub
Yea God!

Both submited with tongue firmly in cheek!http://forums.catholic.com/images/icons/icon10.gif


#9

[quote=Arbie]Does anyone have a suggestion concerning a “non-denominational” saying of grace?
[/quote]

There are several in the “Troop 505 Song Book” (go to svdp-edu.org/t505/ and follow the “Bulletin Board” link).


#10

[quote=Gwyn]This is what my DS’s school says before lunch

We bow our heads and softly say,
“Thank you for food today”.
Bon Appetit, now you may eat!
[/quote]

That’s a very nice, non-denominational prayer. Even Muslims and Jews could participate in this prayer. My son’s Cub Scout Pack has Christians–Protestant and Catholic, Jews, Muslims, HIndus and Buddhists. We live in a very multi-cultural area. This prayer would be appropriate for us.


#11

[quote=Rob’s Wife]:rolleyes: What you’re supposed to water his faith down to accomodate the prots, so he can’t say the grace he has learned to say??? I have to wonder if they’d be as concerned over a Catholic being offended at having a prot version of the Our Father given???

Please, ignore the fellow and just say his normal grace - it’s not anymore controvertial than any other grace and a good deal more appropriate than some of the others often used and mentioned in previous posts.

If it helps, you may want to look into finding a Catholic troop. We left scouts for some similiar reasons, but would have stayed if the nearest Catholic troop wasn’t an hour away.
[/quote]

With all due respect to darkorchid, I disagree. I think this can be an opportunity for your son to be ecumenical (this isn’t a watering down) by saying grace that is percieved as inclusive. As someone involved in RCIA and people exploring the faith, one of the barriers that prevents people raised in other faith traditions from exploring the faith is a perception that is exclusive. If your son feels a need to profess his Catholic Identity, he can cross himself in silence before and/or after but even that might be percieved as setting himself apart. Perceptions are important in our effort to bring our separated brethren back to the Church.


#12

[quote=Orionthehunter]With all due respect to darkorchid, I disagree. I think this can be an opportunity for your son to be ecumenical (this isn’t a watering down) by saying grace that is percieved as inclusive. As someone involved in RCIA and people exploring the faith, one of the barriers that prevents people raised in other faith traditions from exploring the faith is a perception that is exclusive. If your son feels a need to profess his Catholic Identity, he can cross himself in silence before and/or after but even that might be percieved as setting himself apart. Perceptions are important in our effort to bring our separated brethren back to the Church.
[/quote]

EXCEPTING “Through Christ, Our Lord, Amen” which could be eliminated for our “separated bretheren” and “those who do not share our faith journey”, WHAT is so exclusive about

Bless us Oh Lord and these Thy gifts, which we are about to receive from Thy bounty…?


#13

[quote=OutinChgoburbs]EXCEPTING “Through Christ, Our Lord, Amen” which could be eliminated for our “separated bretheren” and “those who do not share our faith journey”, WHAT is so exclusive about

Bless us Oh Lord and these Thy gifts, which we are about to receive from Thy bounty…?
[/quote]

Technically, nothing is exclusive. However, it is well known as a Catholic prayer. I’m just suggesting that if it is percieved that her son is “imposing” his religion, the perception is real. And, as one who thinks that honey attracts bees and not vinegar. In this case, the perception will give the taste of honey.

By the way, I’m not condoning the leader’s behavior and I suspect he has a little anti-Catholic bias. But a son in scouts isn’t the one who should face the challenge adults have in eliminating this attitude.


#14

This is not a case of “when in Rome do as the Romans do”. My son is Chaplain’s aide and prays his Catholic prayers because that is what he is, a Catholic. Scout troops and leaders are supposed to be encouraging of the boys’ religious practices not discouraging. The other boys aren’t required to repeat them, they could do their own or volunteer to be Chaplains.

The sign of the cross is nothing to be ashamed of and I would hope that my son would NEVER do it quietly so as not to bother others. It’s not as they are taking a standardized test and need silence.

Be a PROUD Catholic!!


#15

If he’s not going to take so long that the food will get cold, he’ll want a formula.

Thank God for the food (we thank you…), ask Him to bless it, those who prepared it, and those who will eat it, in the hopes that the meal will bring us together into one to do good works. This has the advantage that it includes elements from the Catholic prayer after meals, as well. Variations allowed.

Selecting a prayer he likes from the traditional Scout prayers was a good idea, too. It is unifying for everyone to come to know a prayer well enough to recite it together.


#16

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