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Junior Leader Training -- White Stag Leadership Development

The Purpose in Ceremonies

Our overall purpose in conducting ceremonies is to encourage an attitude of continuous growth among learners in their day-to-day activities. In addition, we include ceremonies in the program because they:

  • Bring people together.
  • Add meaning, depth, and dignity.
  • Provide time for reflection.
  • Present a special message.
  • Establish a mood or atmosphere.

It is our hope that the youth will grow to become inspirational leaders who will in turn instill the guiding spirit in the youth of tomorrow. We expand our members' horizons by giving them a planned adventure to its grand climax. Careful development and presentation of the ceremonies must evidence strong principles, an integrated purpose, and set an example for continued achievement of higher goals.

Ultimately, we want to develop participants' faith: faith in themselves, faith in their leaders, and faith in their destiny. We want learners to suspend their conscious and unconscious belief systems that say something is not possible, to believe in their own limitless opportunities, to nurture the youthful flame of hope. We intend to shape the youths' deeply placed attitudes and values, and thus establish a foundation within them for growth.

We sustain this foundation for growth through constant program innovation and development and by using troop, patrol, and individual ceremonies or rituals. We emphasize the adult and junior staff to reinterpret and personalize the White Stag program's ideals each year as models for the participants.

We continue to build from the foundation by planning and conducting ceremonial or spiritual activities. These are based on the master plan outlined in this book and, more importantly, on the leaders' own experience. We evaluate the activity and write down the idea for posterity.