NEW YORK SCOUTSThe Catholic Mirror featured Catholic Scouting in the November/December 2017 issue. It profiled many dedicated boy and girl scouts. Scouting is multi-generational and Edward and Robert Parocki have shown great dedication to Catholic Scouting. The thoughts of Robert’s dad were featured last month on the diocesan blog and now Rob offers his input.

 

By Robert Paprocki

St. Mary Parish, Longmeadow

What connection do you see between Scouting and your faith?

My link to the church and my participation in the Boy Scouts of America have some inherent links, as one of the cornerstones of being a Scout is to be reverent. That is the 12th point of the Scout Law. Duty to God and Country is built into the opening of the Scout Oath, and it is certainly something that I tried to incorporate during my time as a scout. I served as my Troop’s Chaplain’s Aide. At the time the troop Chaplain was Fr. Francis Reilly who was the pastor of St. Mary’s Parish in Longmeadow. The troop is chartered out of St. Mary’s. For a number of years and on outings it was my job to try to help my fellow Scouts remain true to the Oath they take and remain reverent during trips. While talking about God didn’t really happen in my troop, it was always a little aspect of what was going on.

Why should young people get involved in Scouting?

I believe that all young people should try to get involved in Scouting. Scouting taught me a lot about how important it is to go through life prepared. Many of the skills that I learned through the Programs offered by the Boy Scouts of America have served me well over the years. Outdoor skills, understanding wildlife and survival, interpersonal skills, and much more are available through the program. It’s also a wonderful opportunity for kids to meet people that they may not have necessarily known otherwise. Two of my best friends, for example, would have been completely unknown to me had it not been for the Scouting program.

WEST VIRGINIA BOY SCOUTS

While Scouting taught me a lot, I fully understand the program isn’t suited for everyone, nor are certain parts of the program suited for everyone. I think that, even if it’s just for a year, every Boy should try getting involved in Scouting at some point. The doors opened by advancement in Scouting are numerous and can follow you through life. That said, I myself never earned the rank of Eagle Scout. I was much more involved in Scouting for the opportunities to do things that I would have never gotten to do otherwise, as well as the camaraderie. Some people will get the most out of Scouting by focusing on advancement, others will benefit the most by going through in the same way that I did.

What is your current role?

My current role in Scouting is as an Adult Leader with Troop 90 Longmeadow. There’s not much for me to do on a week-to-week basis at our meetings, but when kids need help with something that I know about, I do my best to provide assistance. I also participated for two years on the staff of the Summer Camp run at Horace A. Moses Scout Reservation in Russell, MA. We are members of the General Knox district of the Western Massachusetts Council. People who want to get involved/want to find their nearest troop should contact the District Executive, Alex Cantor at (413) 594-9196 ext. 7031

 

 

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