Chief Commissioner's blog| Service, reconciliation and peace

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Wayne joined 1,500 Scouts for a service at Winchester Cathedral to commemorate the start of WW1, focussing on the themes of service, reconciliation and peace.

Reflect and learn

It’s a striking and salient fact that some 37 million lives were lost during the four years of the first World War, 1914-1918. Commemorating such a monumental event in a way that helps whole generations reflect and learn from the experience is a fine line. I’m pleased to say that the service at Winchester Cathedral, planned by a team of predominantly youth members in Hampshire, did just that.

The Scouting values

Themed around the role of Scouting at the time, just seven years after its start, the founding values shone through. Contributions from three local Scout bands before and after the service added to the atmosphere.  The tribute from the cast of the Basingstoke Gang Show was particularly moving and thought provoking.

The origins of the World Scout Jamboree

A greater good is seldom best achieved through conflict though we were reminded that Baden-Powell started the first World Scout Jamboree in 1920, inviting Scouts from across the world to unite in response to the war. In his closing speech, B-P said:

‘Fellow Scouts, I ask you to make a solemn choice. Differences exist between the peoples of the world in thought and sentiment, just as they do in language and physique. The war has taught us that if one nation tries to impose its particular will upon others, cruel reaction is bound to follow. The Jamboree has taught us that if we exercise mutual forbearance and give and take, then there is sympathy and harmony.’

Good to catch up

As is often the case, I equally enjoyed the opportunity to meet many young people and adults from across Hampshire and to find out firsthand why Scouting continues to thrive across the County.

13/05/2014

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