The National Association of Presbyterian Scouters

Who we are:

The National Association of Presbyterian Scouters ("NAPS") is a denominational Scouters association recognized by the Boy Scouts of America.

The association was incorporated in the state of Texas in May, 1986. In 1988 NAPS became linked with the Education and Congregational Nurture Ministry Unit of the Presbyterian Church (USA), but continues to recognize and work closely with all autonomous Presbyterian Congregations.

NAPS has a regional structure consistent with that of the Presbyterian Church, and is represented on the Religious Relationships Committee and the Protestant Committee on Scouting of the B.S.A. NAPS also has good relationship and representation with Programs for Religious Activities with Youth (P.R.A.Y.)

Who may join:

Membership is limited to individuals only.

Regular membership is comprised of those individuals who are active members of a Presbyterian congregation and are registered adult members or youth members of Venturer age of the Boy Scouts of America who support NAPS objectives as listed herein.

Associate membership may be obtained by individuals not meeting the requirements for individual membership, but who wish to support the goals and objective of the association. Associate members do not have voting privileges nor may they hold office within the association.

Our objectives:

To encourage and support Presbyterian congregations and their ministries with youth in using the programs of the Boy Scouts of America by:

1. Encouraging Presbyterian congregations to become chartered partners for all levels of the Scouting program, incorporating it into their ministries with youth and thereby extending their programs of leadership training and community outreach.

2. Assisting local councils of the Boy Scouts of America in the promotion, chartering, establishing, and support of Scouting units in Presbyterian congregations.

3. Fostering young people's individual religious growth through the programs of the Church Commission on Civic Youth Serving Agencies through the God and Country award program (God and Me for Tiger Cubs through Bears; God and Family for Webelos; God and Country for Boy Scouts; God and Life for older Scouts and Venturers), through the use of the Chaplain's Aide position in the Boy Scouts of America and through providing events and resources highlighting the Scout's and Scouter's duty to God.

4. Promoting the use of the unit Chaplain position in the Boy Scouts of America.

5. Supporting the camp chaplaincy program of the Boy Scouts of America.

6. Encouraging the use of the adult recognition program (The God & Service Award) of the Church Commission of Civic Youth Serving Agencies.

Awards:

Presbyterian Scouts and Scouters are recognized through several awards programs from NAPS, P.R.A.Y., and the National Council, BSA. For more information, see the “Awards” section.

Presbyterians and Scouting

Presbyterian congregations have used the Scouting program in conjunction with the other phases of the youth ministry for nearly 80 years. The program has served as a catalyst for strengthening relationships among youth, family, and the congregation. More than 140,000 youth members are involved in more than 3,800 Cub Scout packs, Boy Scout troops, Varsity Scout teams, and Venturing crews.

Since 1920, Presbyterian congregations have recognized that the Scouting program not only renders a service to the youth but also is extremely beneficial to the congregations that act as chartered organizations. The National Association of Presbyterian Scouters (NAPS) was formed in 1986 to assist and encourage congregations in becoming chartered organizations, in presenting the entire Scouting program, and in promoting the religious growth programs as well as to serve as a liaison between Scouting and the church.

In 1988, NAPS became officially linked through a covenant with the Congregational Ministries Division of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.). NAPS has a regional structure that coincides with the boundaries of the Synods of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.). It represents its membership on the Religious Relationships Committee of the Boy Scouts of America. Additionally, NAPS has representation on the P.R.A.Y. (Programs of Religious Activities With Youth) board in St. Louis, Missouri.

Church Functions

Presbyterian Church bodies work with the Boy Scouts of America to

Develop and strengthen mutually beneficial relationships with the BSA

Foster among Presbyterian congregations a regard for Scouting as a resource for ministry and assist congregations that operate Scouting units to use them as effective ministry tools

Help provide literature related to Scouting and the church's ministry with children, youth, and families

Provide and administer religious growth programs for Presbyterian youth in Scouting

Emphasize the religious aspect of the Scouting program

Promote religious worship at outdoor Scouting functions and a chaplaincy program at Scout summer camps

Help Presbyterian adults in Scouting understand and carry out their ministry roles and give recognition to those who faithfully serve children and youth through the Scouting program

Religious Growth

The God and Country religious growth program is provided for Presbyterian youth in Scouting through P.R.A.Y. For more information and details, see the “Awards” section.

Resources

The National Association of Presbyterian Scouters and the BSA have developed several resources to show how Presbyterian Scouting works in local congregations: the brochure Presbyterians and Scouting, Building Values Together, No. 5-975, and the New Unit Organization Kit, No. 5-976. In addition, a short videotape, Presbyterians and Scouting, Building Values Together, offers specific examples of how local congregations use Scouting as part of their youth ministry program. All resources are available through both the local Scout councils and the Presbytery Resource centers, or contact the Community Alliances Team at 972-580-2071.

P.R.A.Y. has developed the following literature: Duty to God Medals and Duty to God descriptive brochure. Additional videos have been developed that are excellent resource materials: Promoting Duty to God and Bringing Youth to Christ.

2013 The National Association of Presbyterian Scouters