Baloo's Bugle

November 2007 Cub Scout Roundtable Issue

Volume 14, Issue 4
December 2007 Theme

Theme: Celebrations Around the World
Webelos: Craftsman & Scientist
Tiger Cub Requirement 2


Thanks to Scouter Jim from Bountiful, Utah, who prepares this section of Baloo for us each month.  You can reach him at or through the link to write Baloo on   CD

Roundtable Prayer

CS Roundtable Planning Guide

There are 2 in the RT Planning Guide this month |

As we approach this holiday season, open our hearts and minds to allow us to learn about the celebrations of other lands and faiths and to appreciated the similarities and differences in may cultures.

Dear God, bless all Cub Scouts and their families around the world. Help us remember that we are working together to make the world a better place. Amen.

Symbols We Use

Scouter Jim, Bountiful, UT

In Scouting we have some clearly recognized symbols.  We are joined in a world brotherhood of Scouting by the fleur-de-lis.  As members of the Boy Scouts of America, we are joined by the fleur-de-lis as the background for an American eagle symbol.  As members of the Cub Scout Program we are joined by the yellow diamond with the face of a wolf above the words, CUB SCOUTS and the fleur-de-lis.    The following written by Elizabeth Yarldly and is taken from a Utah State University web-site about winter celebrations.  The link is given here.

A symbol is anything that conveys information or stands for an object or idea. Symbols are a necessary part of the human experience. Whether in the form of illustrations, letter symbols, gestures, or spoken words, symbols are the basis for almost all communication.

Symbols play an important part of our understanding and learning about human history many years ago. Just as we need symbols today to communicate, the ancient people living on the earth needed symbols to communicate also. Some people only used drawings, such as the Native .

Each country of the world has a flag as a symbol of their country. In the United States, the stars on the flag are a symbol representing the fifty states. A symbol only exists as long as the people give it meaning. A symbol can be very powerful, but can also loose meaning if the people dishonor or ignore it.

Another way we use symbols are in celebrations. Symbols used in celebrations often convey the beliefs of an individual or group. Celebration symbols also reflect what is important to an individual or group. Some symbols can have different meanings to different groups. For example, the Christmas tree is a symbol of peace and Christ to people in England, but it was a symbol of eternal life to the Romans because of the evergreen branches.

Winter is a season that has many celebrations and symbols for many people. One of the most well known symbols in winter celebrations is the "gift givers". Santa Claus is the most widely known American gift giver for celebrating Christmas. However, before the gift givers were developed, gifts were exchanged at the winter solstice festivals to celebrate the new season. These winter celebrations included gifts of holly, ivy, and mistletoe as gifts of peace. The gift givers are unique to different people in different countries. The German goddess Hertha took gifts of good fortune and health to her people. The Romans (those who were rich) gave gifts of holly and laurel to the poor. Jewish people celebrated in the winter with gifts for each day of Chanukah. The three kings (or wise men) gave gifts to the baby Jesus. Many Christians celebrate the birth of Jesus today by giving gifts (symbolic of the wise men giving gifts to Jesus). St. Nicholas was an actual person who lived in the fourth century who was known for his kindness and love of children. From then on, anyone receiving an unexpected gift said that St. Nicholas had done it. St. Nicholas is known in many countries. Svaty Miklaus is the Czechoslovakian gift giver who is let down from heaven by means of a golden cord held by angels. In Italy, Befana is a gift giver who searches the world over every Epiphany Eve (a celebration held in winter), leaving gifts and candy in the shoes of sleeping children just in case one of them is the baby Jesus who she did not see when she had the chance to go to Bethlehem with the wise men. The Russian version of the Italian Befana is an old woman named Baboushka.

There are other winter celebration symbols that are meaningful to different people. The star symbolizes the star in the east that lead the wise men to find the baby Jesus. The yule log symbol came from Scandinavia who burned a log in honor of their god Thor. The Christians adopted this tradition and considered it to be good luck to keep a piece of the log in the house. Mistletoe was first used as a part of winter solstice celebrations. The Norse believed that if enemies met underneath it, they declared a truce for the day. This may be where the tradition of kissing beneath the mistletoe came from.

As we teach our Cub Scouts about Celebrations Around the World, let's help them to understand and respect the symbols of other cultures and well as honor and respect the symbols of Scouting and our nation.


Quotations contain the wisdom of the ages, and are a great source of inspiration for Cubmaster's minutes, material for an advancement ceremony or an insightful addition to a Pack Meeting program cover

Symbols are the imaginative signposts of life.Margot Asquith

The endangered species list has grown this year to include both religious and secular symbols cherished by Americans including the nativity, Santa Claus, Christmas trees, candy canes, and Christmas carols.   John Doolittle

The soul... may have many symbols with which it reaches toward God.Anya Seton

Celebrate the happiness that friends are always giving, make every day a holiday and celebrate just living! Amanda Bradley

Celebrate what you want to see more of. Thomas J. Peters

Share our similarities, celebrate our differences. M. Scott Peck

Stop worrying about the potholes in the road and celebrate the journey! Barbara Hoffman

Christmas waves a magic wand over this world, and behold, everything is softer and more beautiful.  Norman Vincent Peale

He who has not Christmas in his heart will never find it under a tree.  Roy L. Smith

Christmas, children, is not a date.  It is a state of mind.  Mary Ellen Chase

The best of all gifts around any Christmas tree:  the presence of a happy family all wrapped up in each other.  Burton Hillis

There has been only one Christmas - the rest are anniversaries.  W.J. Cameron

May Peace be your gift at Christmas and your blessing all year through!  Author Unknown

Christmas is the season for kindling the fire of hospitality in the hall, the genial flame of charity in the heart.  Washington Irving

It is Christmas in the heart that puts Christmas in the air.  W.T. Ellis

Blessed is the season which engages the whole world in a conspiracy of love!  Hamilton Wright Mabie

Christmas is forever, not for just one day,
for loving, sharing, giving, are not to put away
like bells and lights and tinsel, in some box upon a shelf.
The good you do for others is good you do yourself.
Norman W. Brooks, "Let Every Day Be Christmas"

In the old days, it was not called the Holiday Season; the Christians called it 'Christmas' and went to church; the Jews called it 'Hanukkah' and went to synagogue; the atheists went to parties and drank.  People passing each other on the street would say 'Merry Christmas!' or 'Happy Hanukkah!'  or (to the atheists) 'Look out for the wall!'  Dave Barry, "Christmas Shopping:  A Survivor's Guide"

This December,
That love weighs more than gold!
Josephine Dodge Daskam Bacon

Only in souls the Christ is brought to birth, And there He lives and dies. Alfred Noyes

When we were children we were grateful to those who filled our stockings at Christmas time.  Why are we not grateful to God for filling our stockings with legs?  G.K. Chesterton

May the spirit of Christmas bring you peace,
The gladness of Christmas give you hope,
The warmth of Christmas grant you love.
Author Unknown

I heard the bells on Christmas Day
Their old, familiar carols play,
And wild and sweet
The words repeat
Of peace on earth, good-will to men!
Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

Oh! lovely voices of the sky
Which hymned the Saviour's birth,
Are ye not singing still on high,
Ye that sang, "Peace on earth"?
Felicia Hemans


Christmas is for Children

Baloo's Archives

Christmas is for children, at least that's what they say,
It's time of wide-eyed wonder, a magic holiday
When candy canes and gingerbread fill tummies with delight
And little sleepyheads try hard to stay up through the night.

Yes, Christmas is for children, anyone will tell you so.

The twinkling, colored lights on trees,
make youngsters' eyes just glow!

Each package and each stocking,
is approached with childish joy

And toys bring squeals of laughter ,
from each eager girl and boy.

Yes, Christmas is for children, all they say is true.

How wonderful that at Christmas time,
grownups are children, too!


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