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09 June 2019

Matthew 5:16: "Thus, let your light shine before men that they might see your good works, and might glorify your Father Who is in the heavens."

Verse and Patristics taken from the Orthodox New Testament Volume 1: The Holy Gospels (Evangelistarion) as usual.

"As many therefore as stand indebted to you, either for money, or for trespasses, let them all go free, and require of God the recompense of such your magnanimity. For so long as they continue indebted to you, you can not have God your debtor. But if you let them go free, you will be able to detain your God, and to require of Him the recompense of so great self-restraint in bountiful measure. For suppose a man had come up and seeing you arresting your debtor, had called upon you to let him go free, and transfer to himself your account with the other: he would not choose to be unfair after such remission, seeing he had passed the whole demand to himself: how then shall God fail to repay us manifold, yea, ten thousand fold, when for His commandment's sake, if any be indebted to us, we urge no complaint against them, great or small, but let them go exempt from all liability? Let us not then think of the temporary pleasure that springs up in us by exacting of our debtors, but of the loss, rather, how great! Which we shall thereby sustain hereafter, grievously injuring ourselves in the things which are eternal. Rising accordingly above all, let us forgive those who must give account to us, both their debts and their offenses; that we may make our own accounts prove indulgent, and that what we could not reach by all virtue besides, this we may obtain by not bearing malice against our neighbors; and thus enjoy the eternal blessings, by the grace and love towards man of our Lord Jesus Christ, to whom be glory and might now and always, even forever and ever. Amen." –Saint John Chrysostom

The Utah National Parks Council of the Boy Scouts of America is introducing the Duty to God Buffalo Award.

“The Scout in his promise undertakes to do his duty to his king and country only in the second place. His first duty is to God. There is a higher mission before us, namely the promotion of the kingdom of God. That is the rule of peace and goodwill on earth.” –Lord Baden-Powell

The Duty to God Buffalo Award is a necklace with a realistic, western-style buffalo skull and a swiveling medallion in the center that shows the Duty to God shield on one side and Matthew 5:16 on the reverse.

"He did not say, "You must display your virtue," for that is not good; but rather He said only, "Let it shine," so that even your enemies will marvel and glorify not you, but your Father. If we practice virtue, we must practice it for the glory of God, and not for our own glory." Saint Theophylact of Ochrid

This item is a good reminder of Scouting’s focus on Duty to God. The requirements are focused to help the individual better understand and implement their Duty to God:

  1. Read Matthew 5:16 and summarize what it means to let your light shine. How does letting your light shine glorify God? Share with your group or leader. 
  2. How can “men see your good works”? Write a plan and set goals to serve those around you and your community. Perform a service project of at least one hour. 
  3. The Holy Spirit is here to guide you. What are ways you can reduce the worldly noise around you to clearly hear His promptings? 
  4. A Scout promises their first duty to God. Discuss with your group or leader how you can fulfill this promise by putting God first in your daily routines such as daily prayer and scripture study, participating in church duties (if any), etc. 
  5. God loves us and wants us to gain as much knowledge as possible. Make a list of these opportunities you’re given and share with your group or leader.

The Council encourages all Scouting units and youth groups to incorporate the Buffalo Award and associated activities during your time at camp this summer.

You can apply for the award at http://blog.utahscouts.org/duty-to-god/duty-to-god-buffalo-award-2019/


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