Boy Scouts Troop 22: A True Story of Patriotism
The term “Boy Scouts of America” is another way to spell “SERVICE” to others. Life Scout Andrew Hodge proved a living/breathing example of service as he organized and led his team of Boy Scouts to completion of his Eagle Scout Leadership Service Project this past weekend (Sat, April 7th, 2012) at La Posada Providencia in San Benito, Texas.
La Posada Providencia is sponsored by the Sisters of Divine Providence. It is a ministry for people in crisis from around the world. They provide a temporary residence and shelter for refugees and immigrants with immigration documents who are in the legal process of entering the United States. The facility accepts documented refugees only. This includes homeless men, women and children with no or minimal income who have fled to the U.S. from countries with oppressive regimes, famine, or natural disasters and are seeking asylum or other permanent residency. The shelter staff provides a safe and welcoming home; mentors to promote self-sufficiency and cultural integration, and imparts American values. They also provide language and job skills training. Sister Zita Telcamp is the program director.
The Eagle Scout Leadership Service Project is one of the final hurdles in earning the coveted title of Eagle Scout, per the directives of the National Council of Scouting: “While a Life Scout, plan, develop, and give leadership to others in a service project helpful to any religious institution, any school, or your community. (The project should benefit an organization other than Boy Scouts.) The project plan must be approved by the organization benefiting from the effort, your Scoutmaster and troop committee, and the council or district before you start.”
Boy Scouts Begin Work
Last fall the La Posada staff decided that teaching American patriotism and values was one of the first steps towards successful assimilation into American culture and society. Presently, there are 13 nations represented among the residents of the facility. The Sisters decided that an outdoor flagpole and daily flag raising/lowering ceremony with a morning Pledge of Allegiance was an essential step towards becoming an American. However, they had little money and no special expertise to undertake such an ambitious endeavor. For some time the staff sought a benevolent and responsible individual to take charge, raise funds, organize a team, and make this dream a reality. It was then that AMERICAN PATRIOT Life Scout Andrew Hodge stepped to the fore and volunteered to accept this heavy challenge! Andrew developed a plan, raised funds, organized a motivated team of volunteers, and led his team to impressive success! As an example of his superb leadership, with short notice (a day prior) to beginning the project, Sister Zita mentioned that two new outdoor benches to complement the flagpole area would be an nice addition. Andrew and team hustled to the MMA carpentry shop and PRESTO! The Boy Scouts quickly manufactured two professional standard outdoor benches. WOW!
Boy Scouts Put Muscle Into the Project
Team Hodge consisted of fellow patriots Andrew Hodge, Jacob Williams, Patrick Church, Nathan Logan, Sam Fusaro , and Austin Maeyama. Church and Fusaro are Eagle Scouts, with Hodge and Williams attaining Eagle later this semester. It was great to see the main leadership cadre of Troop 22 Boy Scouts participating.
Photos show progress from start to finish. Of course, a hearty lunch was on the agenda as teenage boys are perpetually hungry. After lunch our Scouts devoted time to teach the residents how to properly fold and respect the flag. As photos show, final project results can be simply summed-up as “AWESOME!” AMERICAN PATRIOT Eagle Scout Patrick Church returned Sunday afternoon (Easter) and conducted a ceremonial class on flag-raising and retirement. He demonstrated how to conduct morning colors as the first individual to raise the flag on the site (most fitting that an Eagle Scout be the first). He gave a brief history of our flag, discussed proper flag etiquette, how to properly display the flag, and led an impressive flag burning-retirement ceremony. La Posada residents were deeply appreciative. What a fine example of Scout leadership!!
It is said that REAL MEN are men of service. These young men thoroughly validated the phrase. Not only did they demonstrate strong Scouting values, their unselfish efforts served to elevate the American virtues of charity, honor, and duty to society.
WAY to go TEAM HODGE!