You are receiving this newsletter because you have expressed an interest in P.R.A.Y. and promoting Duty to God through religious emblems programs. P.R.A.Y. handles the Protestant Christian program but also provides interfaith resources and links to other religious emblems programs to support both scouting professionals and volunteers.
P.R.A.Y. Update to Members of BSA
April 2019
Scout Sabbath/Sunday May be Past, But Duty to God Goes YEAR ROUND
Just because Scout Sabbath/Sunday is over, doesn’t mean that Duty to God is done for the year. As you gear up for summer camp, be sure to incorporate Duty to God into your program. Here are some ideas and resources for your consideration:
Bible Basics RP3 Patch Series - Check out the patches with outdoor themes! With only 3 Bible stories, these RP3 patches are perfect for a camp setting.
1st Quarter Usage by Region
It is tradition for many units to participate in the religious emblems program and receive their emblems during a Scout Sunday presentation. PRAY tracks the Protestant Christian awards and wishes to congratulate the top five councils in each region which had the largest number of PRAY award recipients.

Reminder: PRAY provides a detailed Scout Report to each council listing the recipient information as well as the clergy and congregation. This data can be used to strengthen relationships with the faith community. Click here for information on the Faith-Based Initiative .

Thank you for for promoting Duty to God!
Religious Emblems Make Great Summer Projects
It’s not too late! Just because some Scouts received their religious emblems on Scout Sabbath/Sunday, doesn’t mean it is too late to start on one now. Promote the religious emblems programs as a summer project. Challenge your Scouts to earn this important achievement this summer. Here are sample resources for making a presentation:

Grow an Intentional Program
This picture from St. Mark’s United Methodist Church encapsulates much more than just the group of young people who were recognized for earning their P.R.A.Y. awards. Bill Chaffin, Scouting Coordinator for the Virginia Conference, shares several important lessons about their program. Here’s the “big picture” behind this photograph and what they are building:

+ Launched an intentional, annual promotion of religious emblems (not the haphazard, hit or miss approach from back in the day)
+ Recruited a “Unit” Religious Emblems Coordinator , i.e. enlisted a parent to assume this very specific role
+ Put religious emblems on the calendar
+   Asked the United Methodist Men’s group to help with a missions dinner which funded 100% of the program
+ Increased the number of religious emblems earned from 11 emblems the first year to 24 this year

=   Impacted a growing number of Scouts to have STRONGER RELATIONSHIPS WITH GOD!

Learn the lesson from St. Mark’s United Methodist Church: assign religious emblems to a parent, and get it on the calendar. Thank you to Bill Chaffin for these important lessons. Congratulations to the young people who earned their religious emblem! Blessings on St. Mark’s UMC for their P.R.A.Y. ministry!
How well do you promote religious emblems?
The 2018 usage figures showing the number of P.R.A.Y. awards earned by each council have been posted on the P.R.A.Y. website. Although these numbers are only for the Protestant Christian awards, this data can serve as a barometer to indicate the level off success a Council has promoting Duty to God. There is help if you see an opportunity to grow. In addition to the Unit Religious Emblem Coordinator above, there are registered positions for District and Council level Religious Emblem Coordinators .

Congratulations to the top users in 2018:

Honor Roll (councils with 50 or more recipients AND a 10% increase)
Click here to view a complete listing of all councils. This usage page also includes a 10 year history and a breakdown by program level for 2018. Be sure to note the sidebar with ideas for how to use this data to strengthen scouting in the faith community.
Religious Emblems Are Not Just for Youth
Adult Awards Increase 11% in 2018
The number of adult awards awarded through P.R.A.Y. increased 11% in 2018. This is a significant number. Why? Because adult recognitions strengthen and encourage Scouting ministries. 65% of units are chartered to faith-based institutions. When those congregation embrace their units as part of their youth ministry, those units last longer and participants advance further. Clearly, the faith community is good for Scouting. And when the faith community recognizes and celebrates the adult leaders who volunteer and work with youth, the tenure of those leaders also increases. It’s a win-win situation. Recognizing adults will build your scouting program. For more information on the adult recognitions and to download the nomination forms, click here .
Stories to Inspire
Become a Friend of P.R.A.Y.
if you or your Scout group benefited from the many resources on the P.R.A.Y. website, please consider a financial gift to P.R.A.Y. We are a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization and your gifts are tax deductible. Gifts of $25 and over will be acknowledged in the P.R.A.Y. Annual Report. Click here to make a financial gift and become a Friend of P.R.A.Y.
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