I am always heartened when I hear of more Catholic Troops being formed. More and more Pastors and Parents are coming around to the reality that in this day and age, we need to be intentional in raising our boys in the Faith. So many parishes have NO program for young men (and no – the standard co-ed youth group doesn’t cut the mustard).
The website, Church Militant, has a great article about a new Trail Life Troop forming at a parish in Ohio. You can read about it here.
Rejecting the secular program of the Boy Scouts, a rural Catholic parish in Ohio is forming a new youth group to shape the next generation of solidly Catholic men.
Father Matthew Lee, pastor of St. Mary Catholic Church in Urbana, decided on a new outdoor-based program to replace the previous Boy Scout troop, hoping for a youth ministry more Catholic in nature.
Father Lee told Church Militant he chose Trail Life USA (TLUSA) because it is an explicitly Christian-based organization.
“We can talk about the Catholic faith openly at meetings,” he said. The Boy Scout program only allows the religious materials they provide to be used.
“We can be overtly Catholic,” Fr. Lee said. “If I want, I can have a Vatican flag at the campsite.”
The lack of formation in the past has all but eliminated an entire generation of Catholic men. Father Lee noted he has seen very few younger men with a strong faith.
“I’m excited for a youth program that’ll raise rock-solid, young Catholic men,” he said.
Father Lee said he has his core team in place and they expect to launch the program in the spring. He mentioned there are already about 20 boys that want to join and he expects more. The parish already owns a truck but they still need a trailer, tents, camp stoves and other camping gear.