Faith Is Scouts’ Honor at Cathedral Mass
By ALISON MARTIN
Chris Sheridan CONGRATULATIONS—Anna Maria Chavez, chief executive officer of the Girl Scouts of the USA, top right, joins Cardinal Dolan in congratulating honorees at the annual Scouting Mass at St. Patrick’s Cathedral April 7. Ms. Chavez herself received the Elizabeth Ann Seton Medal.
Boys and girls and young men and women of Catholic Scouting in the archdiocese came together at St. Patrick’s Cathedral, where they were honored at the annual Scouting Mass.
The April 7 Mass recognized the achievements of members of Scouting troops throughout the archdiocese. The ceremony began with an impressive color guard of scouts processing up the cathedral’s central aisle. Scouts also served as altar servers and gift bearers.
Cardinal Dolan, the principal celebrant, opened the Mass by saying it was a joy to welcome the Scouts, as he had welcomed many other honored guests to the cathedral. Msgr. Anthony D. Marchitelli, the archdiocesan Scouting Chaplain, was a concelebrant.
The cardinal noted that the values of scouting are closely aligned with the values of faith. He made the point that it is important to have faith even when it is not easy.
He told the congregation about a camping experience he had when he was a member of a Boy Scout Troop in his native St. Louis. He talked about how much fun he had with his fellow scouts while appreciating nature’s beauty.
“Positive experiences like that makes it easy to have faith in God,” he said.
The cardinal explained that the true test of faith comes when God seems absent in your life, giving examples such as the death of a friend or not getting into the college of your choice.
“Faith comes through when God seems gone,” he said.
Awards given out included the Ad Altare Dei Emblem, the Ad Altare Dei, the Marian Award, the Pope Pius XII Emblem, the St. Elizabeth Ann Seton Award, the St. Anne Award, the Spirit Alive Award, the Bronze Pelican Award, the St. George Award and the Silver Antelope Award.
Anna Maria Chavez, the chief executive officer of the Girl Scouts of the United States of America, received the Elizabeth Ann Seton Medal, an award that recognizes her outstanding contributions to the growth and development of young women in the Girl Scouts.
“As a Roman Catholic and a Girl Scout, I am keenly aware of the impact faith can have in a scout’s life, and the significant role the Church has played in advancing the cause of the Girl Scout movement around the world,” said Ms. Chavez in a statement released by Girl Scouts USA.
She joined Cardinal Dolan in presenting the various emblems to girls who have completed the curriculums with the help and support of their scouting troops.