Catholic Committee on Scouting Presents Religious Medals and Awards

Gathering at the annual Diocesan Religious Emblems Award Ceremony May 20 at St. Mary, Kutztown, are from left: front, A.J. B, Ethan G and A.J. K; middle, Father Eric Tolentino, Matthias B, Laughlin S, Daniel M, Miko B, Andrew R, Supreeth D and Fred Flemming; back, Bernard Hofmann, Gregory R, Robert P, Aiden T, Connor M, Jonathan R and Josh L. (Photos courtesy of Alexa Doncsecz)

By TAMI QUIGLEY Staff writer

Diocesan scouts were honored for their efforts at the annual Diocesan Religious Emblems Award Ceremony May 20 at St. Mary, Kutztown.

Twenty-six youth, one adult and the Diocese of Allentown were recognized with medals and awards at the ceremony conducted by the Allentown Diocesan Catholic Committee on Scouting (ADCCOS).

The ceremony was coordinated by the Diocesan Office of Youth, Young Adult and Family Ministry (OYYAFM) and the Hawk Mountain Catholic Committee on Scouting with Randy Bjorken.

Father Eric Tolentino, director of Catholic scouting in the Diocese, presided at the ceremony that included benediction and exposition of the Blessed Sacrament.

Bernard Hofmann is lay chairman of ADCCOS.

The ceremony was in loving memory of the late Father Joseph Grembocki, longtime Diocesan scouting chaplain.

The program included hymns, Pledge of Allegiance, Scout Oath, homily, blessing and presentation of medals.

Hofmann awarded the Quality Diocese Award to the Diocese of Allentown. The Quality Diocese Award is awarded to recognize those dioceses that promote and achieve a quality Catholic Scouting program. It is an opportunity for the National Committee on Catholic Scouting (NCCS) to salute those Dioceses who truly deliver exceptional programs to youth members at all levels of the Boy Scouts of America program.

Quality programs for youth are what the NCCS continually seeks, and is committed to supporting this goal. It is their hope that each Diocese will establish annual goals to accomplish key areas of quality program delivery. Then, when a Diocese earns this award, it makes a statement that they have provided their youth members with the highest quality program experience possible.

The purpose of the Ad Altare Dei program is to equip the scout to take his place in the world as a maturing Catholic and a maturing American. The requirements concern themselves with action and knowledge. The scout is to have some understanding of what it means to be a follower and disciple of Christ. The scout is to live and apply the sacraments to his life because it is through them that a person can become a maturing disciple of Christ.

The following young people of Hawk Mountain Council were recipients of this award:

  • Holy Cross, New Philadelphia – Ethan G.
  • St. Ambrose, Schuylkill Haven – Andrew R.
  • St. Columbkill, Boyertown – Josh L, Connor M and Robert P.
  • St. Mary, Hamburg – Laughlin S.

The following young people of Minsi Trails Council were recipients of this award:

  • St. Ann, Emmaus – Aidan B, Supreeth D, Alexander K, Jonathan R and Aidan T.
  • Notre Dame of Bethlehem – Eoin E, Jacob M and Connor M.
  • St. Joseph, Limeport – Noah B.

The Rev. Joseph Campbell Award was instituted to recognize the outstanding contributions of adult leaders in the spiritual aspects of Catholic scouting on a unit, council or Diocesan level within the Allentown Diocese. This award is given in memory of Father Campbell for his love and devotion to the scouting program. Fred Flemming was the recipient of the award.

Flemming, a resident of Macungie with Susan, his wife of 18 years, is an active member of St. Ann, Emmaus, where he teaches PREP, drives elderly parish members to doctor appointments, is co-chair of the annual Fall Fest and is grand knight in the Knights of Columbus.

Within scouting, Flemming was scoutmaster for 19 years with Troop 70 at St. Ann. Flemming joined ADCCOS over 16 years ago and jumped in as a lead member of the annual Minsi Trails Catholic Scout Activity Weekend.

He has promoted Catholic Scouting by being a Boy Scout religious emblem counselor for both the Ad Altare and Pope Pius XII awards, performing counselor training sessions at the Minsi Trails Scout University and submitting articles to THE A.D. TIMES that gain exposure for Catholic scouting.

Flemming exemplifies the Scout Oath and Law upholding the 12th point – a Scout is reverent – by his devotion and efforts within ADCCOS and in his personal life. He has always displayed admirable leadership qualities, evident in his continued activities in the Catholic scout and Church communities, and as a result, hundreds of young people have had the opportunity to earn the religious emblems and grow in faith.

The Pope Pius XII program was developed in recognition of the need for Catholic lay leaders in Church and community affairs. If young adults are formed in Christ, their formation will lead to a desire to serious commitment to action.
The emblem reflects the idea of growing concern with the world of God as well as the world of man. Guided by the Holy Spirit, this formation properly carried out will lead to transformed youth geared to their role as Christian leaders.

The following young people of Hawk Mountain Council were recipients of this award:

  • St. Ambrose, Schuylkill Haven – Matthias B, Mikolas B, Robert H, Daniel M and Gregory R.

The following young people of Minsi Trails Council were recipients of this award:

  • Our Lady of Perpetual Help, Bethlehem – Ryan T, Danial D and Jarrod T.
  • Assumption BVM, Bethlehem – Scott L, Aidan G and Matthew M.