Catholic Scouting: forming faith and virtues

Recipients of Catholic scouting emblems gathered briefly for a group shot with the bishop after the Religious Awards Recognition Service, held March 27 at St. Charles Borromeo parish. (Megan Marley/Key photo)

Megan Marley

‘Color Guard, post the colors. Scout salute!’

Scouts of all ranks, troop leaders and family members packed St. Charles Borromeo church in Kansas City March 27 for the annual Religious Awards Recognition Service. The Catholic Committee on Scouting sponsored the event and facilitates the emblem programs and activities by which scouts can learn about the Faith, develop devotion to God and build character and virtues, as part of the ‘Duty to God’ listed in the Scout’s oath.

Before presentation of the awards, Bishop Johnston spoke of how Jesus taught leadership to the apostles throughout the gospels, using words and experiences to form and commission them as the foundation of His Church. Similarly, the tools and opportunities of scouting plus study of the Faith and virtues are a winning combination in Catholic scouting.

“That’s what Catholic scouting is about: it’s about forming boys to be men, to be good men—forming them to be good leaders in the various things they will encounter in life, to prepare them for their vocation, for their professions, to be good family men,” he said.

“You boys are, in a sense, trying to grow yourselves right now; but eventually as you grow more and take up leadership yourself—maybe as a patrol leader or troop leader, or various positions you may receive in scouting and in other areas—you’ll be entrusted in growing other people. That’s how you’ll measure your success.”

The bishop also thanked scout leaders for their work to grow the youth in their care.

“It may take some time to see the results of your work, but later on in life you’ll look on these days you had together in scouting and give thanks for them. Not only for the great fun that you had, but also for the skills, the experiences that helped shape these boys into what they will later be.”

Recipients of the Bronze Pelican for contributing to Scouting as Youth Ministry in the Catholic Church were Melissa Adams, Assistant Scoutmaster Troop 32 and Pack 315 committee member; Charlie Huffman, Troop 601 Chartered Organization Representative; Ryan Johnson, Assistant Scoutmaster Troop 865; and Shelli Lange, Troop 54 committee member.

Receiving the Pope Paul VI National Catholic Unit Excellence Award at the Gold level was Troop 221 of St. Mary’s in Independence, and Troop 391 and Pack 391 of Our Lady of the Presentation in Lee’s Summit.

Brian Powell, Committee Chair for Venture Crew 118 at St. Peter’s, Kansas City; Chris Pugh, Chartered Organization Representative for Troop 180 at St. Charles Borromeo; Ann Rastorfer, counselor for the religious emblems programs for Troop 54 at Holy Spirit, Lee’s Summit; Claudia Gomez-Rodriguez, religious emblems coordinator for Spirit Trail District at St. Sabina’s in Belton; Megan Scheiderer, Pack 118 at St. Peter’s; Jack Scogin, Scoutmaster for Troop 865 at St. Mark’s in Independence; and Howard Scott, III, Troop 180 at St. Charles Borromeo, all received the St. George emblem for outstanding contribution to the spiritual development of Catholic youth in the program.

Youth recipients of the St. John Bosco emblem, completing the program introducing cub and boy scouts to values learned in scouting and the Church, were Reed Lange, Rowan Lange, Anthony Licata, Charlie Licata, Jack Lintz, Sam Lintz, Conor Lueck, Ty Nguyen, Blaise Rastorfer and Andrew Stark, all of Troop 54.

Recipients of the Light of Christ emblem, completing the program to develop a personal relationship with Jesus, were Tyler Nguyen, Pack 180; Michael Qarrato, Pack 261; Jacob Campbell and Julianna Campbell of Pack 310; Jacob Donahay, Thurman ‘TJ’ Kelly, Blake Neal and Garrett Robinson of Pack 362; and Nolan Barr, James Gardner and Alton John of Pack 391.

Recipients of the Parvuli Dei (Children of God) emblem, completing activities to discover the presence of God in daily life and contributing to the community, were Nicholas Derickson, Pack 16; Gary-Michael Jaques and Hunter-James Jaques of Pack 45; Grant Rastorfer and Luke Rastorfer of Pack 54; Zachary Steffen, Pack 98; Wyatt Schulte, Pack 178; Cole Bohanon, Jacob Caylor, Joshua Hiegert, Gianni Martin, Tyson Nguyen, Zachery Quintero, Colt Russell and Christian Smith of Pack 180; Reid Hoelscher, Jack Karlstrand and Mangus Nye of Pack 261; Lukas LeSage, Pack 285; Joseph ‘Joey’ Marsh, Pack 357; Mathias Hirsch, Conner Merritt, Riley Merritt, Garrett Robinson and Owen Werner of Pack 362; Daniel Hoff, Blaise Kuhlman, Landon Kuhlman, Peter Reddig, Daniel Schatz and Ben Twenter of Pack 391; Drew Nelson, Pack 397; Eli Pancoast, Pack 404; and Dailyn Rodriguez, Pack 717.

Recipients of the Ad Altare Dei emblem for study of the seven sacraments were Rowan Lange, Anthony Licata, Sam Lintz, Conor Lueck, Ty Nguyen, Blaise Rastorfer and Andrew Stark of Troop 54; Richard Farell, David Marszalek, Jonathan Marszalek and Matthew Marszalek of Troop 220; Thomas Dvorak, William Eckert, John Overfield and Alex Scheier of Troop 391; and Aaron Chafa, Troop 347.

Recipients of the Pope Pius XII emblem for studying life choices, occupations and ministry as vocations from God were Reed Lange, Charlie Licata and Jack Lintz of Troop 54.

Bishop Johnston, Committee chair Mike O’Neal and Fr. Joe Powers, chaplain of the committee and pastor at St. Mark’s in Independence, received patches for the quality of diocesan Catholic scouting. It was also announced that Fr. Joe Powers is the incoming chaplain for the National Catholic Committee on Scouting.

“At the national level meetings in Baltimore, Father is there speaking to bishops about Catholic scouting—so I just want to thank and acknowledge him for that,” said the bishop.

“But I’m sorry, Fr. Joe, I don’t have a patch for that!” he joked.

A reception followed the prayer service and awards ceremony in the church hall.

For more information on the Catholic Committee on Scouting, visit or the national site


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November 27, 2020
The Diocese of Kansas City ~ St. Joseph