Saturday, September 04, 2004

I'm posting this from Beliefnet's convention blog by Steven Waldman; with special attention to the closing point --

Red God, Blue God
September 1, 2004 10:30 a.m.

As noted in these pages, the so-called religion gap is actually a church attendance gap. But why does THAT exist?
. . .But it's also time we asked what this God gap says about religion. Conversely, the question is not why less-frequent attenders vote Democratic, but why Democrats are drawn to church less often. Why are progressive houses of worship unable to create an urgent reason for liberal people to show up on Sundays?

Friday, September 03, 2004

“The Scouter” – Simon Kenton Council Oct. 2004

Licking District Trailmarkers

Looking through my e-mail box (, it must be time to run these little reminders again: “The Scouter” is a great tool for promoting long-range planning and sharing an overview of events past and upcoming. But production and mailing realities mean that information you send me – by the first Thursday of each month, when lovely Editor Bobbi awaits it in Columbus at the council office – must be about events that are 30 to 45 days down the line.

Send me an article about an event on Sept. 1, and I put it in the pipeline Sept. 2; the print/send process goes to work the last week of the month, and should be into the hands of the USPS by Oct. 1, which means many in our district won’t see it until as late as the week of Oct. 11-15. If the event you’re wanting to see in print happens Oct. 23 (just as a for instance), the Scout or Scouter reading about it has less than two weeks to respond.

Add to that the fact that if an error has crept in by my mistake, your error, or a production slip-up: I won’t see it until the next month’s copy has been e-mailed, meaning that corrections are on a two month or more turnaround, by which time folks aren’t always sure what we’re even talking about!

The bottom line is that this page is a great place for announcing plans and registration info two to four months ahead, which means getting your info to me three to five months ahead. It kind of forces you to plan ahead, doesn’t it? But if we want Scouting units in Licking County to participate in what we do as a district, we have to respect that most of them have a year-round plan already in place, and we owe it to them to stay out ahead of their hard work for the youth in their unit.

* * * * * * *

Fall Camporee – Apple Butter Days

[Repeat info from last “Scouter”]

Nov. 5-7 is our Fall Camporee weekend, where with your registrations turned in, your popcorn sold, and your leaders trained, you and your Scouts can come and enjoy the real heart of Scouting, which is “Outing” out at Camp Falling Rock.

Saturday, Nov. 6 will offer a number of special Cub activities, and Friday through Sunday is open to Scouts and Venturers. Mike Dalton will be in touch as the District Activities Committee continues to offer great experiences for your unit program.

* * * * * * *
[insert Bill’s articles on Popcorn and Cub Scout Leader Basic Training]

Down the Trail -- A Closing Word

“Scouting For Boys – the Original 1908 Edition” is now in print from Oxford World’s Classics. Approaching the centenary of the writing of the book that began our Movement, it seems that someone has noticed that the effects of what Robert Baden-Powell put down on paper still live and breathe all around them.

Since the 1948 Scout Field Book was written by “Green Bar Bill” Hillcourt, most Scout publications have been written by committees – and read like it. But the original Scout Handbook was, well, here’s what the book description starts with:

“A startling amalgam of Zulu war-cry and Sherlock Holmes, of practical tips on health and hygiene and object lessons in woodcraft, Scouting for Boys (1908) is the original blueprint and inspiration for the Boy Scout Movement. An all-time bestseller in the English-speaking world, second in its heyday only to the Bible, it is one of the most influential manuals for youth ever published, known and loved around the world. Including all of Baden-Powell's original illustrations, this new critical edition of Scouting for Boys serves up a wonderful hodge-podge of true crime stories, stern moralizing, stock adventure tales, natural history, first-aid tips, advice on observation and tracking, and much more. Readers will find . . . lengthy quotations from adventure fiction--from Rudyard Kipling and James Fenimore Cooper, to Alexander Dumas and Arthur Conan Doyle.”

If you have never read the narrative that was B-P’s match to the kindling of youth organizations, you might want to spend the $20 it’ll cost you to read where it all began. There are snarky comments in a “scholarly” introduction, but even those who intend to critique the roots of a Movement that wears a uniform and rewards achievement, find themselves saluting the spirit within this Scouting program:

“Indeed, the book brims with Baden-Powell's philosophy of life, one that replaces self with service, puts country before the individual, and duty above all. . . Though almost a century old, Scouting for Boys continues to fascinate, surprise, and motivate readers today. It will delight anyone interested in popular culture, Victorian history, and literature for children.”

And I invite you to share your Scouting news with me at, or call 928-4066 and leave your info or call back contact numbers.

Jeff Gill, District PR guy and Chaplain

Tuesday, August 31, 2004

Hebron Crossroads 9-05-04
by Jeff Gill

[ital]“Come unto me, all ye who labor and are heavy laden. . .”[/end ital]
Labor Day is come, and may be gone when many of you read this, worn out from the Sweet Corn Festival or the Buckeye home opener, or a Lakewood Band appearance at OU in Athens (Ohio, not the Olympic one), or hacking down the last wild growth of the summer in advance of autumn’s brown snags and snarls.
We need rest, but early September around the Hebron Crossroads isn’t the time to get it. The Hebron Parent-Teacher Organization fall fundraiser catalogues are out and about; if you see the delighted snowman on a blue cover, know that your purchases help elementary kids for Buckeye Lake, Hebron, and surrounding township areas get field trips, added reading and math enrichment, and other supplies not in the very basic Lakewood schools budget. (And Jackson Elementary, when you do yours, make sure to let me know and I promise to promote y’all, too!)
Final day to turn in for kids and parents is at school, Friday Sept. 10, with orders arriving the week of October 4. We hope to have most of our fundraising needs met through this and the Memorial Day weekend Crossroads Festival, so the rest of the year PTO can help support the staff and teachers in education and involvement.
Any family member of a student at Hebron Elementary is welcome to drop by our first meeting this school year on Tuesday, Sept. 7 at 7:00 pm in the art room around back.
With so much work to do, just done, and going on the weekend of Sept. 11, our “Respond To the Call” service project was hobbled this year by Patriots Day falling on a Saturday. Weddings and fall activities (and the Marshall game in Columbus…sigh) tie up most of our Hebron area co-ordinators, so anyone looking for a chance to do some public service is asked to report that day to Ryan Park in Buckeye Lake, where a day-long project is going on to fix and maintain that park, where many of our Hebron Elementary youth play.
How ‘bout those “Effective” ratings for Lakewood Schools? Our building count is up, more new students, and we are continuing to improve our community wide support of education.
Anyone who says that “Excellent” is out of reach for Lakewood isn’t paying attention: that’s exactly where we’re heading.
One of the effectively excellent things our local students have done is build a display case for the lobby of the municipal complex. The Hebron Historical Society has put a marvelous arrangement of objects with informational cards in the case, telling our story from 1827 to today.
Garrett Boysen, Robert Cundiff, and Earl Kissell may think they’re too old to be a part of history, but they are now. Larry Prater may not think of himself as a history teacher, but that’s what he is as we thank them all for their work. Stop by and look at it and the original plat map, framed next to it, carefully copied and enlarged with some loving work from Dave Morrow and Linda Nicodemus (and they tell me they aren’t done yet).
A few weeks ago, I was walking around in the middle of some of our local history. Right in the heart of Union Township, in a spot carefully hidden right out in the open (and that’s all I’ve got to say about that), is a cemetery that was used from the 1820’s to about the end of the Civil War in 1865.
From my eye, used to casting about across the surface of old historic cemeteries, it seems that the plot allocated for burials filled, and for whatever reasons was closed down. The dates I have are from the stones still visible, of which there are few; many more are horizontal and submerged almost entirely in sod. The remaining space has the lumpiness of old wooden casket burials, with their faint subsidence capped by hummocks that may yet hide the stumps of long-broken sandstone markers.
On the “newer,” mid-1850’s stones, the names are those that haunt the pages of early Union Township and Licking County history: Park, Wells, Holmes, Hughes, Kirkendall. A history book of sorts lay open all around.
[ital]“Blessed are the dead that die in the Lord, for they rest, they rest from their labors.”[/end ital]
In marking Labor Day, as we work ourselves into and out of this interval, stop and stroll through a cemetery, and mark the names and imagine the work, the labor, that built this land of farms and churches and mills and schools. On Hebron’s east edge, at Kirkersville, north of Jacksontown, out by Fairmount, our story is there to be told. Listen closely for it, and you will hear a few pages rustle.
Or if you just have to work some on Labor Day, then shift gears; don’t do your usual chores. . .you could bake bread!
A number of you have asked for my sister’s Indiana State Fair winning recipe for bread, and here it is as she sent it to me, waiting the birth of my first nephew in New Mexico:
Challah Bread

2 pkg. yeast
2 C. warm water
1/2 C. sugar
4 tsp. salt
3 eggs beaten
1 1/4 C. oil
7 C. flour
1 egg
small amt. oil
poppy seeds

Dissolve yeast in water in bowl. Add next 5 ingredients gradually, mixing
well after each addition. Knead on floured surface until smooth and
elastic. Place in greased bowl, turning to grease surface. Let rise until
doubled in bulk. Roll into six 18-inch ropes on floured surface. Braid
into 2 loaves on greased baking sheets. Let rise for 1/2 hour or until
doubled in bulk. Brush loaves with mixture of egg and oil. Sprinkle with
poppy seeds. Bake at 350 degrees for 30-35 minutes.

P.S. Brian (our brother) and I used to throw the dough back and forth during that
kneading stage--we found it really helped :-)

If you just gotta work, have fun with it, right? Either way, may you find rest for heart, mind, or body (ideally, all three!) this weekend.

Jeff Gill is pastor of Hebron Christian Church and an occasional baker of Irish Soda Bread; if you have recipes to share or news of local interest, e-mail or call 928-4066.