- Before work on the workbook begins, the approval form must be
signed by the applicant, parent, counselor, Unit leader, and pastor.
- A Boy Scout of Catholic faith.
- The content is designed for 13 and 14 year olds.
- Older Scouts may also work on the program.
- Active member of the Troop for six months.
- Completed sixth grade before starting the program.
- The purpose of the Ad Altare Dei (to the altar of God) program is
to help Catholic Scouts of the Roman Rite develop a fully Christian
way of life in the faith community. The program is organized in
chapters based on the seven Sacraments. The seven Sacraments are a
primary means toward spiritual growth.
- The use of a Catholic Bible is required.
- The Scout should be advancing in Scouting (not mandatory).
- Regular participation in Sunday worship.
- Involved in formal religious education program.
- Complete the requirements in the Ad Altare Dei Scout Manual.
- Successfully complete an Ad Altare Dei Board of Review.
- After all sections have been completed, the counselor will contact
the (arch)Diocesan Chaplain or the (arch)Diocesan Catholic Committee
on Scouting to find out the schedule for the AAD Board of Review.
- The Scout will sit before the Board of Review to determine:
- Does he have a better understanding of his Christian
- Has he learned to understand, support, and apply Christian
principles to the problems of our day?
- Has he thought about his vocation in life: a vocation to the
priesthood, religious life, marriage, or single life?
- How has his relationship with his Church grown?
- What is his attitude toward Scouting and the ideals of the
- How does his relationship between Scouting and the Church
- As a result of the program, has the Scout grown in his
understanding and living out of his faith? (faith growth)
- The religious emblem will be presented to the Scout at the annual
Youth Recognition Ceremony.
- The religious knot should be presented at a Troop Court of Honor.
- INTERESTED in youth and ready to be generous with time in helping
- Able to UNDERSTAND the Scout's development process and therefore
able to ACCEPT them at their level
- OPEN enough to listen to youth to permit them to initiate, decide,
try, and even fail, of their own accord. One who is not judgmental,
but respectful of their feelings and views.
- FLEXIBLE AND CREATIVE enough to be open to changes, who can adapt
and understand rapid and continuous modification of youth ideas,
modes, and cultures.
- LIKABLE and acceptable by the youth. Not a stick in the mud!
- Has a sense of HUMOR, enjoys life, and can laugh at themselves and
with others, especially youth.
- KNOWLEDGEABLE, understands, and agrees with all of the teachings
of the Catholic Church.
- COMMUNICATE by relating the teachings of the Catholic Church to
youth. Should be able to both speak and listen. Should also have the
ability to get others to talk.
- SPIRITUALLY firm in their faith life and had the ability to share
their faith openly and easily with youth. Also be able to
demonstrate, through their actions, the importance of their faith
life to youth.
- SENSITIVE to the youth's family situation and his personal life,
particularly in regards to the teachings of the Church.
- OBSERVANT to interpret the signals youth project about their
feelings on their faith and other issues.
- The Counselor needs to be approved in accord with local (Arch)diocesan
guidelines and follow all Church and/or BSA youth protection
- Use the AAD Counselor Guide.
- Counsel the participants when required, and in general facilitate
(keep moving and on track) the general discussion.
- Hold weekly meetings lasting 60-90 minutes.
- Guide the Scout through the religious emblems program by:
- Helping the Scouts experience Christ's deep love for them as
- Helping the Scout go beyond the surface answers of childhood.
- Showing them that your caring for them is not dependent on
their behavior, but rather because you accept them as Christ
accepts each of us.
- Encourage greater participation of Catholic Scouts in the
religious programs of the Church.
- Promote the Spiritual component of Scouting within the parish
and unit. (A Scout is Reverent).
- Help create an atmosphere with the unit conductive to the
development of religious vocations.
- Provide guidance and assistance to non-Catholic boys in the
unit and in the neighboring units, urging them to participate in
the religious emblem program of their own church or synagogue.
Scout's Roles and Responsibilities
- Attend weekly meetings. If a Scout misses more than 2 meetings, it
should be determined if the Scout should continue with the program.
- Work through the Ad Altare Dei Scout Manual with your counselor
using a Bible where appropriate.
- Be prepared to share experiences at the Board of Review.
- Attend a retreat or Day of Recollection while working on the AAD
- Support the Religious Emblems Counselor in his/her role.
- Support your son as he shares lessons with the family.
Suggested Time Requirements
- The program is designed to be completed in 6-8 months.
- Section 1: Introduction
- Chapter 1: Sacraments and Sacramental in Our Daily Life
- Section 2: The Sacraments of Initiation
- Chapter 2: Baptism
- Chapter 3: Confirmation
- Chapter 4: Eucharist
- Section 3: Sacraments of Healing
- Chapter 5: Reconciliation
- Chapter 6: Anointing of the Sick
- Section 4: Sacraments of Service (Commitment)
- Chapter 7: Holy Orders
- Chapter 8: Marriage