Tuesday, 17 March 2009

What Happened to Camping and Woggles?

A few months ago we decided to send Mel to Cubs. He's the only boy in a family of sisters and we felt he was getting a bit left out at times. He's just not into silver unicorns and pink fairies and glittery stuff. I feel for him when the other three are playing princesses or babies. Mel is happier playing Magnetix or Mousetrap but finds it hard to get the girls to spend much time joining in with him. So we picked a club that was just for boys and signed him up.

Cubs sends him home with endless requests each week. He had to clean windows one week, cook a meal the next. Instructions have ranged from finding out where the water stop-tap is, to cleaning brass, to finding the hospital's phone number, to researching St David. It's hard to keep up with all the different requirements.

Anyway, last week, Mel comes home saying he has to research yet another saint. I have nothing against saints, in general, but a new one every week? It's like going to Sunday School! What happened to camping and woggles?

So I researched St Peter and printed out a picture of him manning the pearly gates, grumbling under my breath as I did so about the religious overtones the Scouting establishment has fallen into. It is supposed to encompass all the faiths these days.

[A quick aside about religious stuff here in the UK. Unlike in the USA, the British are quite reserved about their religious affiliations. We tend to keep our beliefs private and only share them if asked. For example, I worked with a chap for a year before I discovered his parents were missionaries and he met his wife at church.

Consequently, joining the Scouts - a group that is nominally secular, despite its Christian roots, - I don't expect to have religion forced upon me at every turn. It is quite an affront to the way we do things here. People that are too pushy with their own take on the Truth are called 'God-botherers' or members of the 'God Squad', and are generally somewhat avoided by all but their own kind.]

Where was I? Oh yes, moaning about St Peter. I mean, I could understand it when they asked for stuff about St David: he is Patron Saint of Wales, after all. And it was his feast day at the start of March. But St Peter? Why?

So, I find out all about the chap, and download half of Wikipedia for Mel, only for him to turn round, slap his own forehead and say:

"I think it was St Patrick, actually!"

"What, the St Patrick that is Patron Saint of Ireland and responsible for the increase in Guinness sales on the 17th March? That St Patrick?"

"I think so"

It all makes sense now!

1 comment:

  1. ha! There's the connection!

    Cubs is similar here where the poor kids are asked to do LOTS of stuff not very fun.

    I don't think anyone likes having religions pressed on them. I know I don't. Saints are catholic right? Our town is like 90% LDS and our state is like 70%. I like more diversity myself. Being LDS was way more fun in Texas where I grew up.

    I feel for your son, I was the youngest of 6 kids and the only girl. And I really didn't get to be the spoiled princess like most people suspect one would in that situation. It was the pits really.


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