Archdiocese of New York
Catholic Committee on Scouting

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  • 2011 Youth Emblem / Adult Recognition Ceremony to be held at St. Patrick’s Cathedral: The 2011 Presentation of Marian Medal and Spirit alive Awards, Ad Altare Dei and Pope Pius XII Emblems, Adult and Unit Recognition is Sunday April 10th, 2011.


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    More than 100 Daisies, Tigers, Brownies, Cubs, Girl Scouts, Boy Scouts, 2-Bs and Venturers gathered with their leaders and parents on Saturday, November 18 at Kennedy Catholic High School in Somers to celebrate Holy Mass, avail themselves to the Sacrament of Reconciliation and enjoy new Rosary activities and outdoor spiritual activities.  Many thanks to all of the volunteers who made this event possible, especially Activities Chairman Mike Amico, whose innovation and creativity were on full display during the outdoor games.  Thanks also to Mary Marshall, who facilitated Scouter Development training and to Efrain Ruiz and Deacon Peter Haight, who facilitated Emblems Counselor training session.  Our continued appreciation is also extended to Mr. Les McGuire and Fr. Stephen Norton, our hosts at Kennedy Catholic, whose hospitality made this retreat such a successful event.  

    2005 Recap
    Catholic Scouts Gather for Vocations Retreat

    On November 19, 2005 more than 145 Catholic Scouts, Scouters, clergy and volunteers gathered at John F. Kennedy Catholic High School in Somers, NY for a retreat conducted by the Archdiocese of New York Catholic Committee on Scouting. Girls and boys from as far away as the Bronx and Hudson Valley came to Westchester to spend a day together in prayer and reflection as they experienced a program that featured vocations discussions by sisters, brothers, priests, deacons, lay ministers and parents and an afternoon devoted to the Holy Rosary. The celebration of Mass was the highlight of the day. 

    Retreat Chairman, Michael Amico of New Rochelle, was very proud of this event. “Each year, our committee offers the young Scouts in our Archdiocese an opportunity to share their faith in a fun setting.  This is the first year we have offered a single day program instead of a weekend event, and the first year we offered a program for our younger boys and girls instead of the more senior Scouts. We are very pleased with the number of children who attended this retreat, and are even more pleased with how enthusiastically they participated in the vocations and Rosary-themed programs.”

    Following a quick registration by Scouter Bill Kelly of Mount Vernon and orientation by Mr. Joe Ridder of Pearl River, the day began with the Sacrament of Reconciliation available for all participants. Priests who generously traveled to offer the Sacrament of Reconciliation for these Scouts included Fr. George Hafemann from St. Joseph’s Church in Croton Falls, Fr. William Dalton from St. Francis of Assisi Church in Mount Kisco, Fr. Thomas Byrnes from St. John the Evangelist Church in Mahopac, and priests from the Legionaries of Christ in Thornwood, coordinated by Fr. Richard Gill.

    A brief opening ceremony by Girl Scouts and Boy Scouts was followed by remarks by the Chairman of the Archdiocese of New York Catholic Committee on Scouting, John Kiernan, who pointed out that President John F. Kennedy was himself a Boy Scout in Westchester in 1929-31 and that it was appropriate that the group gather for that day a school named in honor of the first Catholic Scout who became President. Mr. Kiernan thanked Fr. Stephen Norton, President of JFK Catholic High School for his generous hospitality and for his personal assistance in the program. Recognition was also made to a veteran Scouter and JFK High School administrator, Mr. Les McGuire, who was instrumental in bringing this retreat to Somers and whose kind attention to details ensured a smooth day for everyone involved. Kennedy Catholic sophomore students Rebecca Forsythe, Mary Anderson and Nicki Visovsky also spent the day assisting the Scouts around campus.

    The morning program featured different discussions for the boys and girls about vocations. The boys learned about the experiences of a priest, a seminarian and a permanent deacon. Fr. Charles Szivos, the Director of Vocations for the Archdiocese of New York, was joined by seminarians from the Legionaries of Christ and a long-time Scouter, Deacon Peter Haight for these sessions. The girls learned about the experiences of a sister and educator, a youth minister dedicated to the single life, and a mother who serves as a religious educator. Sister Mary McCafferty, OSF, was joined by Mrs. Donna Rivard from St. Mary of the Assumption Church in Katonah and Mrs. Patty Kiernan for these sessions.

    Following lunch, the program focused on the Holy Rosary with games, activities and a special recitation of the Sorrowful Mysteries with candles by all 100 Scouts. These activities were led by Mrs. Prudy Lenhard and Mrs. Kathy Vajda with assistance by Mr. Fred Gervat, Mr. Al Tozzi, Mr. Tony Blandi and Thomas Blandi, Mrs. Marguerite Nonni and Mr. Jim Collins. Everyone who participated in these Holy Rosary events earned the coveted Sorrowful Mysteries Rosary Award featuring a 6-inch embroidered patch. The cost for these patches was defrayed by a generous donation by Mr. Steve and Mrs. Tina Muoio, which allowed the $5 participant fee to provide the Scouts with a special retreat patch, a rosary,  prayer cards, prayer booklets and other patches and pins. These “goody bags” were unexpected but most welcomed by all the Scouts!

    To conclude the retreat, the Celebration of Mass was conducted by the Chaplain of Archdiocese of New York Catholic Committee on Scouting, Monsignor Anthony Marchitelli, the Associate Chaplain, Fr. Anthony Pleho, the President of Kennedy Catholic High School, Fr. Stephen Norton, the Director of Vocations for the Archdiocese of New York, Fr. Charles Szivos, and Deacon Peter Haight.

    Copyright © 2006
    Archdiocese of New York Catholic Committee on Scouting