January 2020 Chiefly Speaking

  • Dear Brothers,

Happy New Year! As we celebrate this new year, let us remember the great things that happened to us in 2019.

2019 was a wonderful and historic year for our Lodge and our Order. In February, the Order of the Arrow allowed Venture Crews and Sea Scout Ships to have unit elections. The following month in March, we held our first Ordeal, the special Spring Ordeal, with Venturers as candidates. We welcomed 29 new brothers at this Ordeal, 11 of which are our first youth female members of our Lodge. It was an exciting time for everyone!

 In April, we attended Section Conference at Camp Tanah Keeta and of course, we dominated the competition, winning first in so many competitions. At this conference, we were recognized as the Best All Around Lodge in the section and brought home the trophy to its rightful home! Also in April, we were notified that we were once again recipients of the National Service Award for 2018. It was the 14th time we received the NSA and the 4th year in a row.

During the summer, a number of our arrowmen attended the World Scout Jamboree held in the Summit Bechtel Reserve as contingent members or as staff. Some arrowmen, including myself, also visited for a day. Seeing so many Scouts from around the world made me feel that I am part of such a huge family that is concerned about making a better and more peaceful world. It was truly an experience that I will not forget. 

Finally in December, we held the 50th anniversary of the Vigil Breakfast. It was the largest breakfast ever held with over 75 Vigil Brothers in attendance and a few special guests to mark the significance of the occasion. We had Matt Parsons, the 2019 National Chief, and Matt Dukeman, the National OA Director visit and celebrate with us. We also had Art Tate, the second lodge chief of our Lodge as a special guest. 

We ended 2019 with great news. We recorded 28,430 hours of cheerful service for the year of 2019! This is an incredible number of hours that our lodge has done. The National Service Award Petition can be viewed here: https://o-shot-caw.org/2019-nsa-petition/ . Thank you to Patrick Gross, Mrs. BakerRobinson, Mr. Gilliland, and many others for putting this together. 

2019 was not only amazing for us, but for our council as well. For 2019, South Florida Council reached Bronze level for Journey to Excellence. This is a great achievement for our council. Congratulations to Mr. Berger and the rest of South Florida Council’s leadership for this accomplishment!  Also, the South Florida Council Venturing Officers Association reached Gold level for their Journey to Excellence. This is their second year in a row achieving Gold for JTE. Congratulations to the VOA President Carina and her board for this incredible achievement!

We have much to look forward to in 2020. First is our Winter Ordeal on January 10-12 at Camp Everglades. Please register soon! Link to register: https://o-shot-caw.org/2020-winter-ordeal-and-annual-pass-registration-deadline-1-3/ . We also have the National Order of the Arrow Conference in the summer! We are so very excited to be going up to Michigan State University again and having a lot of fun as we always do at NOAC. If you want more information or are interested in going please email noac2020@o-shot-caw.org .

I believe that 2020 will be another amazing year for us. I know we will continue doing great things and continue achieving so much. This is all thanks to you, our arrowmen. You are the reason why this Lodge is so great. Your continued support of our program and your constant willingness to serve is incredible. Let us continue the momentum from 2019 and make 2020 an even better year! Thank you so much and always for your unending cheerful service! Happy New Year!

Let us find the greater beauty in the life of cheerful service. 

Yours in brotherhood,
Keanu O. |  Lodge Chief