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New Member in Montana

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New Member in Montana

Post by joecool on October 28th 2013, 3:20 pm

So, I found you guys again. Never registered in the old days, but I enjoyed reading your posts.

I'm a Ranger Cdr since 1982, getting plugged in to an outpost wherever the Navy sent me. My wife and I are up in Montana now, enjoying the semi-wilderness in our back yard. Five inches of snow and still coming down lightly. Love having 4 seasons, even if this one is a little long.

Gone through a lot of transitions over the years, haven't we? I'm not completely sold on the latest version, but I understand Springfield's desperation to try something new. Even in Montana we've seen a lot of loss. Only 7 outposts left in Big Sky Country, including ours. I do a few "off the book" things to make the new program work here. After being my church's de facto children's pastor for the last 5 years, we've brought in a Family Life pastor, who's now in charge of children's ministries. He's never worked with Rangers, has been fairly successful with his own ideas, and I'm reading the writing on the walls. Sunday programs were all changed, and Wednesdays are next. He promised not to change anything there until next fall. But, I've resolved not to make RRs easy for him to drop. Our outpost has a great reputation, we've grown over the years, and have a good cadre of leaders. A couple of meetings ago, 7 boys accepted Christ for the first time. I keep the new pastor well-informed.

I've always said that kids come before programs, and no program is a sacred cow. That said, I'll be faithful to do what God has called me to do. If Rangers goes, it goes. Please pray with me that it's God's will. Bruce (aka, Joe Cool)

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Re: New Member in Montana

Post by Claymore on October 28th 2013, 4:12 pm

Joe, welcome to the Herd.

With Military Background and longevity in Rangers, you're steps ahead on Team Building, Patrol Structure, and Leadership.

Not that Non-Military Folks can't do just as well, or better, just that Uncle Sam spent a lot of money giving you training that many others must work and/or pay for.

That being said, I think that you've got the right attitude.

When we go before God, I don't think that the Big Question will be, "Did you please the Pastor?", or "How high did you advance in the District?", but rather, "Whatever you did for the Least of These, you did also for Me".

(Those old Navy Khakis should come in handy, ey?)

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Re: New Member in Montana

Post by ccm2361 on October 28th 2013, 8:00 pm

Welcome aboard Bruce!  
we are always glad to have another voice in the mix. Were you on the old Ranger Forums? Seems like there was a guy named Joe Cool there. Cool 

joecool wrote: I'm not completely sold on the latest version, but I understand Springfield's desperation to try something new. Even in Montana we've seen a lot of loss. Only 7 outposts left in Big Sky Country, including ours.
Yes desperation is the word I would use, as well. Rangers is expanding like crazy around the world using the camping format. But here in the good ol US of A the try something new every few years plan isn't going so well. In Michigan we are down to 26 Outposts. (in 2008 there were 38)

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Re: New Member in Montana

Post by joecool on October 28th 2013, 9:27 pm

Before moving to Montana, I was on the sectional staff of southern San Diego County (CA). Just by ourselves, we had nearly 30 outposts. Heavy emphasis on outreach and camping events. Fantastic collection of leaders, in turn led by the Holy Spirit. Urban, suburban, rural and all colors, but mostly khaki. Very Happy  I wonder if adapting to the new program has affected them? Joe Cool

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Re: New Member in Montana

Post by ccm2361 on October 28th 2013, 9:41 pm

from what I hear charters are way down
a good way to find out is to use the outpost locater on the national site

http://royalrangers.com/

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Re: New Member in Montana

Post by Claymore on October 28th 2013, 10:04 pm

joecool wrote: After being my church's de facto children's pastor for the last 5 years, we've brought in a Family Life pastor, who's now in charge of children's ministries. He's never worked with Rangers, has been fairly successful with his own ideas, and I'm reading the writing on the walls. Sunday programs were all changed, and Wednesdays are next. He promised not to change anything there until next fall. But, I've resolved not to make RRs easy for him to drop. Our outpost has a great reputation, we've grown over the years, and have a good cadre of leaders. A couple of meetings ago, 7 boys accepted Christ for the first time. I keep the new pastor well-informed.

I have mentioned this before you came here. I have a "technique", in that I designate a portion of my tithe ($25.00) and my Wednesday $5.00 offering toward Royal Rangers. Everything designated for Royal Rangers is carried in its own column in the Church Books. With the couple of dollars that the boys bring in for their offerings, it comes to over $1,500.00 per year.

That way, the money is in our account, and we just take a "draw" or reimbursement for activities & equipment.

It's kind-of hard for a Pastor to say "No" to something, when it's not costing him anything, and the parents love it; not to mention the free help that they get from Rangers for youth games at the Church Picnic & Fall Fest (Halloween Substitute).

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Re: New Member in Montana

Post by RRCmdrBennett on October 28th 2013, 10:37 pm

Welcome Joe. I began in Royal Rangers in 1980 as a Straight Arrow. Lots of change since then.

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fire FCF Frontiersman 9/91, Buckskin ?, Wilderness ? fire
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Re: New Member in Montana

Post by arcliner on October 28th 2013, 10:54 pm

Welcome Joe! I'm sure you would have a delightful experience here! (Just like what i'm experiencing! Very Happy )

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Re: New Member in Montana

Post by joecool on October 28th 2013, 11:19 pm

Bernard, I've been to Singapore a few times back in my Navy days. You have a beautiful city and people. I think it was in 1987 that I hopped on a bus in my RR uniform and spent some time with one of your outposts. It was led by a young man from Hawaii. We swapped items and I told stories to your boys. Wouldn't it be a small world if your outpost is the same one I visited? God's blessings on you!

Joe Cool (by the way, that's the name of one of Snoopy's characters)

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Re: New Member in Montana

Post by Claymore on October 29th 2013, 12:22 am

So Bruce, tell us about yourself:

Are you Retired: Enlisted/Warrant/Commissioned?

What was your Duty Specialty?

Whatcha doing in Montana, besides Herding Cats (Rangers)?

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Re: New Member in Montana

Post by joecool on October 29th 2013, 8:45 am

Started off as a quartermaster (enlisted navigator) in the days of sextants and radar, none of that GPS stuff. Moved up to E7, then was commissioned and retired as an O4, after years of working in the amphibious community. In recent years, it's been very sad to see 1) "don't ask, don't tell" became "let us know, and we'll help you celebrate", 2) shackles put on chaplains, 3) Bible-believing Christians being tagged as potential terrorists, and 4) senior enlisted men being cashiered for not coming out in favor of gay marriage. Emboldened by our president, it will get worse before it gets better.

Moving to Montana, I taught sciences at a Christian high school. I'm retired again and now volunteer there as a guidance counselor, etc. How 'bout you?

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Re: New Member in Montana

Post by Claymore on October 29th 2013, 11:13 am

Two tours Active Army.

Parachute Infantry: 101st Airborne/Viet Nam, 173rd Airborne, 1st Cav Division, Special Forces.  Drill Sergeant School at 34 years of age, retired from the Reserves as an E-8.  

During my Reserve Service, I was a Police Officer in Milwaukee County; started as a Patrol Officer, got into the Drug Unit, and retired as a Senior Narcotics Detective.

Currently in the Appalacian Foothills of Northern Mississippi; built our retirement house, and have 14 acres with a 100-yard rifle range in the back of the property.

......and five years ago, I made the mistake of telling our Pastor that I had been a Royal Ranger Commander in Milwaukee.  As our church had an attendance of about 180, with no Boys' Program (we had several, but the leaders all quit), his eyes lit up, and he put me to work.

---Sorry 'bout the Politically Correct Thing in the Service. I saw it starting during the Klinton Era. Fortunately, I was in units that pretty-much ignored the Politically-Correct Junk, except when it was time to submit our Promotion Packets -- then our Clerk just filled them with Dummied-Up Notes saying how we support the New Policies.

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Re: New Member in Montana

Post by joecool on October 29th 2013, 4:43 pm

Claymore, thanks for your service. I came in a year after Vietnam. My first ship CO had a Navy Cross for some early deep work while a junior officer. That's all he could say, though.

My younger son is a police officer north of here. Real proud of him. And I joined our city's volunteer force. Busting abandoned cars and handicapped zone violators. Freeing up the thin blue line so they can work on the big stuff.

At my retirement ceremony, I held up the document with the president's auto-signature, pointing to it. My best friend understood...it wasn't Klinton anymore.

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Re: New Member in Montana

Post by RRCmdrBennett on October 29th 2013, 5:00 pm

Since the topic of PC came up just to add a note our current "president" doesn't issue congratulatory letters to GMA's. I'm not sure about Eagles though. Considering they aren't fully compliant with his gay policies and can be religious he may not.

Btw, my father was a 1st class petty officer in the Navy. His job was store keeper.

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RR GMA #83 Potomac Dist-#2366 Nat'l

"Be Ready, It wasn't raining when Noah built the Ark."

fire FCF Frontiersman 9/91, Buckskin ?, Wilderness ? fire
Bourgeois Trapper 5/06, Free Trapper ?
Training Seminars/Camps:
LTC LMA 5/94, Ranger Basics 1/05, LTA LMA 5/05, NTC IL 5/09, WCO 10/09, ICS 4/10, RKTC 7/10, Ranger Essentials 8/10, NRMC 10/11, Training Academy? NEEC? JBIE?
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Re: New Member in Montana

Post by Claymore on October 29th 2013, 9:09 pm

joecool wrote:At my retirement ceremony, I held up the document with the president's auto-signature, pointing to it. My best friend understood...it wasn't Klinton anymore.
My favorite Discharge Paper was a Certificate of Appreciation signed by Richard M. Nixon.  As a Service Member, he was my favorite Commander-in-Chief, after Reagan of-course (even if he did lie about where I was operating in Viet Nam).

Thanks also for your Service.  As a Commissioned Officer, you obviously had a higher tollerance for silliness than I could muster.

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Re: New Member in Montana

Post by joecool on October 30th 2013, 5:49 am

RRCmdrBennett wrote:Since the topic of PC came up just to add a note our current "president" doesn't issue congratulatory letters to GMA's.  I'm not sure about Eagles though. Considering they aren't fully compliant with his gay policies and can be religious he may not.

Btw, my father was a 1st class petty officer in the Navy. His job was store keeper.
Shipboard Rule #1: be friends with a storekeeper!

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Re: New Member in Montana

Post by RRCmdrBennett on October 30th 2013, 7:22 pm

joecool wrote:
RRCmdrBennett wrote:Since the topic of PC came up just to add a note our current "president" doesn't issue congratulatory letters to GMA's.  I'm not sure about Eagles though. Considering they aren't fully compliant with his gay policies and can be religious he may not.

Btw, my father was a 1st class petty officer in the Navy. His job was store keeper.
Shipboard Rule #1: Be friends with the storekeepers.
Thats good advice when the nearest Walmart is 1k's of miles of water away!

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Dan Bennett
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N Central Area Communications Coord, CI
RR Outpost #215, Ohio District :flag:
RR GMA #83 Potomac Dist-#2366 Nat'l

"Be Ready, It wasn't raining when Noah built the Ark."

fire FCF Frontiersman 9/91, Buckskin ?, Wilderness ? fire
Bourgeois Trapper 5/06, Free Trapper ?
Training Seminars/Camps:
LTC LMA 5/94, Ranger Basics 1/05, LTA LMA 5/05, NTC IL 5/09, WCO 10/09, ICS 4/10, RKTC 7/10, Ranger Essentials 8/10, NRMC 10/11, Training Academy? NEEC? JBIE?
Outpost Leader Advancement Levels:
LMA-Advanced 10/11, MoE 2012-092

RR v1.99

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Re: New Member in Montana

Post by arcliner on November 27th 2013, 2:26 am

joecool wrote:Bernard, I've been to Singapore a few times back in my Navy days. You have a beautiful city and people. I think it was in 1987 that I hopped on a bus in my RR uniform and spent some time with one of your outposts. It was led by a young man from Hawaii. We swapped items and I told stories to your boys. Wouldn't it be a small world if your outpost is the same one I visited? God's blessings on you!          

Joe Cool (by the way, that's the name of one of Snoopy's characters)

My outpost was not form in 1987 yet, any idea which outpost did you visited?

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Re: New Member in Montana

Post by joecool on November 27th 2013, 12:21 pm

Too long ago for my memory to pull out more details. Although I remember the outpost met in a smaller building next to the church. I left them with a framed collection of US RR patches from my home outpost.

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Re: New Member in Montana

Post by joecool on February 27th 2014, 5:30 pm

joecool wrote:Before moving to Montana, I was on the sectional staff of southern San Diego County (CA). Just by ourselves, we had nearly 30 outposts. Heavy emphasis on outreach and camping events. Fantastic collection of leaders, in turn led by the Holy Spirit. Urban, suburban, rural and all colors, but mostly khaki. Very Happy   I wonder if adapting to the new program has affected them?  

Uh, oh. Just checked the national locator. Only 8 outposts remaining. Sad, sad, sad. Southern San Diego County was once the place to be. Big ideas and big results for His kingdom.

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Re: New Member in Montana

Post by ccm2361 on February 27th 2014, 5:59 pm

That is sadly, very typical in many Sections & Districts today. in 1990 Michigan District had 150 Outposts...today there are 34  Crying or Very sad 

in our Section there are 36 AG churches, but only 4 still run Rangers

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Re: New Member in Montana

Post by Claymore on February 27th 2014, 6:03 pm

So what do you folks think the problem is?

Self-Entertainment through Technology?

Outdated Program?

Inevitable Evolution of Entertainment?

Leadership Egos lacking Self-Examination?

Combination Thereof?

Other _______________________________?

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Re: New Member in Montana

Post by joecool on February 27th 2014, 6:37 pm

Yes, I know that Rangers can be chartered by an ever-increasing number of denominations. But I thought I'd take a look at the number of US AG "adherents" over the years. In 1979, the count was 1.6 million. The most recent number available is 3.1 million, in 2012. Only two years showed a drop, 1988 and 1989, and it was miniscule.

What does all that tell us? Probably nothing. I wonder if there's a "minimum" church size that makes Rangers more likely to happen...and there are less of them? Or is it that there are fewer men willing to invest in the development of boys? Whatever it is, it pre-dates the stumbling and bumbling of national to fix it.

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Re: New Member in Montana

Post by RRCmdrBennett on February 27th 2014, 7:49 pm

May have began before the "stumbling and bumbling" but they seem to have sped it up in 2000 and 2008. To use a Trek term we went from warp 3 to 6 and I think we're at 9.4 on the cochrane scale. If we can just slingshot around a star and break warp 10.0 we can go back and fix this before it happens...or not!

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RR Outpost #215, Ohio District :flag:
RR GMA #83 Potomac Dist-#2366 Nat'l

"Be Ready, It wasn't raining when Noah built the Ark."

fire FCF Frontiersman 9/91, Buckskin ?, Wilderness ? fire
Bourgeois Trapper 5/06, Free Trapper ?
Training Seminars/Camps:
LTC LMA 5/94, Ranger Basics 1/05, LTA LMA 5/05, NTC IL 5/09, WCO 10/09, ICS 4/10, RKTC 7/10, Ranger Essentials 8/10, NRMC 10/11, Training Academy? NEEC? JBIE?
Outpost Leader Advancement Levels:
LMA-Advanced 10/11, MoE 2012-092

RR v1.99

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