Scout Shabbat will be held on February 4-5, 2022 to coincide with the founding date of the Boy Scouts of America on February 8, 1910.
The National Jewish Committee on Scouting (NJCOS) urges all Jewish Scouting youth to show pride in their faith by holding a Scout Shabbat service for their unit, district or council. If a local Jewish Committee on Scouting (JCOS) exists, please coordinate activities with the official Scout Shabbat event for your council. In the event a JCOS does not exist, it is permissible to hold a Scout Shabbat on any convenient date.
This year, in light of the ongoing COVID pandemic, we are additionally holding a Virtual Scout Shabbat service open to all. If you don’t have a local service, or even if you do but want to also celebrate with a larger community, please join by watching the video of last year’s service that is open to Scouts of all times, genders, and religions. (A 2022 service will be uploaded after the event.)
Working with a Jewish charter partner organization such as a synagogue or Jewish religious school, individual Jewish Scouts and Scouters can plan to hold a short service to follow regular worship services on Friday night or Saturday morning or to take place at a school assembly. The duration of these services should only be five to ten minutes in duration and should emphasize the Scout Law and Oath (or Cub Scout Promise) in some way. A sample service is available for download below, which is customizable for each individual council, district or unit.
All Jewish Scouts are urged to attend the local JCOS-sponsored Scout Shabbat or their regular worship services in their field uniforms and, if earned, to also display their appropriate religious emblems.
A Cub Scout who has earned either the Maccabee or Aleph religious emblem may display the medal representative thereof on their uniform at the Scout Shabbat service. Cub Scouts are also entitled to display the BSA “religious” knot on their uniform, which indicates they have earned at least one religious emblem. Should a Cub Scout earn the Aleph religious emblem in addition to a Maccabee religious emblem, they should wear only the Aleph religious emblem medal and place a Cub Scout device on their religious knot to indicate they have previously earned the Maccabee religious emblem.
If they have earned their religious emblems, a Scout BSA should wear either the Ner Tamid or Etz Chaim religious emblem. Appropriate Cub Scout devices (two for both emblems) on their religious knot should indicate if they have earned previous Cub Scout religious emblems. An older Scout BSA, who has earned both the Ner Tamid and Etz Chaim religious emblems, is entitled to wear the Etz Chaim medal and place a Scout BSA device on their religious knot (in addition to any Cub Scout devices) that indicates they have previously earned those religious emblems too.
Venturers who have never earned religious emblems as Scouts BSA should only wear their medals indicating they have earned the Etz Chaim religious emblem. They may also wear a religious knot on their uniforms without a device. Venturers, who previously earned religious emblems as Cub Scouts and Scouts BSA may display devices to indicate those achievements. For example, a Venturer boy who earned both the Maccabee and Aleph religious emblems as a Cub Scout and earned the Ner Tamid religious emblem as a Scout BSA, may wear the Etz Chaim religious emblem medal and place two Cub Scout devices, a Scout BSA device and a Venturing device on his religious knot.