April 26, 2011

Steve Bays named scouting ministry specialist in Kentucky

Steve Bays, a 20 year scouting volunteer with Summit Heights United Methodist Church (Louisville District), is serving as one of four scouting ministry specialists in the state.

A former scouting coordinator for the 250-member congregation, Steve has held several positions with Cub Pack and Boy Scout Troop 341, and you will frequently find him serving as a chaplain on unit and district campouts.

Summit Heights also hosts several Girl Scout troops and a Venture Crew.

“I work closely with our pastor and Steve Berry, the conference scouting coordinator, to make sure we support all of our groups,” said Steve. “I also help plan annual Boy and Girl Scout Sundays when I have nominated and helped present Cross & Flame awards to deserving adult leaders.”

The veteran Scout leader also assisted in getting Troop 341 a “Bishop’s Award of Excellence.”

Steve now helps area churches understand the value of religious awards and studies sponsored by St. Louis-based Programs of Religious Activities with Youth (PRAY), formerly known as the God and Country Program.

A graduate of religious-emblems training at the Philmont Scout Ranch near Cimarron, N.M., Steve now serves as counselor for all Scout groups related to Summit Heights, and he has taught studies for all four age groups: God and Me (grades 1-3), God and Family (grades 4-5), God and Church (grades 6-8), and God and Life (grades 9-12).

He also serves as religious emblems coordinator for the local Boy Scout Council, and he chairs a committee composed of representatives from several denominations. He is presently recruiting coordinators for each of the nine districts in the council.

You will see Steve at annual conference where he will host a scouting display next to the United Methodist Men’s table. You will also find him operating similar displays at various scout celebrations or training events around the scout council.

As a scouting ministry specialist, Steve works closely with the conference scouting coordinator, the district superintendent, conference staff, and leaders of United Methodist Men.
If your church would be interested in learning how scouting can expand its ministry to the community and how the religious emblem program can enrich Christian education opportunities, contact Steve at stevebays@bellsouth.net.

“I have a promotion kit including samples of the PRAY books, awards literature, a display board and a PowerPoint presentation that is ready to take whenever I am called to give a presentation,” said Steve. “I enjoy helping churches learn more about how to make scouting an important ministry for their church and increasing the awareness of the religious awards to help boys and girls learn more about their faith and doing their duty to God.”

Steve concludes, “Being a scouting ministry specialist is very rewarding and you will receive a lot of assistance from PRAY and the General Commission on United Methodist Men.”

Other scouting ministry specialists in Kentucky include Andrew Baker, Georgetown; Whitney Dunlap, Richmond; and Steve Richards, Maysville.

If you are interested in becoming a scouting ministry specialist, contact LaNisha Sayles (LSayles@gcumm.org) for information.

Article courtesy of General Commission on United Methodist Men


Steve Bays, a scouting ministry specialist, works with members of Troop 341 on studies prepared by Programs of Religious Activities with Youth.